If you were shocked to find out about the amount of plastic in period pads, and you’ve since switched to Natracare for plastic free and compostable alternatives – welcome to the club! Now that you’re here, it’s a good idea to know exactly how to dispose of Natracare pads after use. Read on to find out:
All Natracare pads are made from materials that are commercially compostable to European standard EN 13432. The pads themselves, and most of their packaging, are also suitable for home composting. Let’s break down the products and what you should do with each component.
Ultra and Ultra Extra pads outer packaging
The outer packaging for Natracare Ultra pads and Ultra Extra pads are made from recycled and recyclable cardboard. Cardboard is recyclable, so you can dispose of it in your cardboard recycling bin for curb-side collection.
If this isn’t an option for you then they’re also compostable and considered brown compost, so can be composted in a home compost bin if you have one. Another option is a community compost.
Plastic in your pads?
Natracare pads are plastic free, biodegradable, and compostable.
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Maxi pads outer packaging
Our Maxi pads come packaged in a home-compostable bag which is OK Home Compost certified. If you don’t have access to compost at home, we recommend checking with your local waste collection that they’ll be happy to collect these bags with your roadside organic/food waste bins for industrial composting.
If neither is an option, they should go in with your general waste.
Pad peel strips
The peel strips which cover the glue strip on any of our pads are made from silicone-coated paper. They’re suitable for either home composting or industrial composting. Again, if neither is an option, dispose of with your general waste.
Ultra and Maxi pad wrappers
Natracare Ultra pads and Maxi pads are wrapped in paper, laminated with a home-compostable bioplastic. Just like cardboard packaging, you can recycle, compost at home, or in a community compost bin. Or they can be sent for industrial composting in your organic/food waste.
Ultra Extra pad wrappers
The Ultra Extra pads are wrapped in an industrially compostable plant-based polymer. For disposing of these we recommend checking with your local waste collection management, like for the Maxi pad bags, that they can collect these bags in your organic/food waste bins. They can also go in your general waste bin.
All Natracare pads
The whole Natracare pad is tested to be commercially compostable. This applies to multiple composting standards: the European standard EN 13432 (2000), American standard ASTM D6400 (2019) and the international standard ISO 17088 (2012). So, we have you covered for minimising unnecessary waste and allowing Natracare pads and packaging to contribute to a circular waste economy, rather than outliving us for the next 500 years!
The pads are industrially compostable but it’s also possible to compost them at home. They’re considered brown compost and take around 12 months to decompose – and even faster if you don’t mind cutting them up into smaller pieces first too! Find out more about how long it takes to compost pads at home.
If you don’t have a home compost other options include:
- Putting them in a community compost bin (so long as this adheres to their rules and the compost isn’t used for growing food)
- Checking that your local waste management will collect them in your organic/food waste bins for curb-side collection. We expect waste collection for homes to change in the next decade to account for rise in certified compostable non-food items!
- Wrapping them and putting them in the general waste bin
Don’t flush pads, even Natracare ones!
Put simply: you should never flush anything that isn’t pee, paper, or poo. Which means your period products, regardless of brand and sustainability credentials, should never be flushed.
Only flushing these P’s helps to avoid blockages. Natracare pads are made from a combination of natural materials, including 100% certified organic cotton, cellulose pulp, and plant starch. They’re biodegradable and compostable, but just like all other pads they aren’t flushable.
Have you tried composting Natracare pads yet? If you’re a home composting pro, why not give hot composting a go!