What is Your Period Blood Telling You?

Our periods are a great way to check in with how our bodies are doing. The color, texture, smell, and more gives us great insight into how our bodies are operating, allowing us to get more attuned and in touch with ourselves. Familiarizing yourself with this information will be helpful for making the most of your next OBGYN appointment.

Keep reading to discover what your period says about your health and become your own period whisperer.

Period blood color meaning

Changes in your period blood color are normal. Different period blood colors can tell you anything from the age of the blood to how far into your period you are. While your overall health generally affects the length of your menstrual cycle and the duration of your period, here are some reasons why period blood may vary in color:

Bright red to dark red or dark brown

Healthy Period

A healthy blood color ranges from bright red to dark red or brown, depending on how new the blood shed from the uterus is. Some people might describe their old period blood as black, but this can be a sign for something else (keep reading!).

Egg Implantation Spotting

Less likely, brown period blood could also be spotting from egg implantation – light bleeding that can occur in the very early stages of pregnancy.

Ovarian Cysts and Lochia

Lochia is mild-to-heavy bleeding that occurs after having a baby, lasting around 6-8 weeks after birth, but you’ll know if you’ve given birth recently. This colour of period blood may also be a sign of ovarian cysts. Cysts on your ovaries can often go unnoticed, but if you’re worried or experiencing other symptoms, like pain during and after sex, or bloating of your abdomen, you should book in to see your doctor.

Pink to light pink or white

Low Estrogen Levels / Low Flow

You’ll most likely see pink to light pink blood at the beginning or end of your cycle, and this just means a low flow of fresh menstrual blood. If it’s the only blood you see over multiple periods, it’s a possible sign that your estrogen levels are low. Another symptom of low estrogen levels is vaginal dryness. If you notice both, we recommend you see your doctor.

Ovulatory Bleeding

Outside of your regular period cycle, pink spotting can be from mid-cycle (ovulatory) bleeding, this is quite common and normal for some people.

Cervical Cancer

If you get pink vaginal discharge when you’re not on your period or outside of what’s typical of your body, it could be a sign of cervical cancer and you should get it checked out by your healthcare provider.

Grey to black

Older Period Blood

You may find yourself asking: Why is my period blood black? Similar to dark red or brown period blood, it usually means your period blood has reacted with oxygen and the majority of water in the blood has evaporated; i.e. it’s slightly older period blood that took a little longer to leave your uterus.

Infections

Grey, however, can also be a sign of an infection. Other signs of an infection include; irritation, pain, fever or foul odor. To be on the safe side, check in with your healthcare provider.

Miscarriage

If it’s accompanied by heavy bleeding and grey tissue, it could be a sign of a miscarriage. There are multiple reasons why you might bleed during pregnancy, so it’s best to let a professional take a look at what might be happening.

Period blood consistency and texture meaning

The texture and consistency of your period blood can be a sign of the health of your uterus lining. Period blood is also made up of endometrial tissue, so the texture varies as a result of this. Whether it’s thick or clumpy, or smooth and light – different flow viscosity (i.e. the thickness of menstrual blood) is normal throughout your period and no cause for alarm.

Normal

‘Normal’ period blood will differ from person to person, but you can typically expect a thicker consistency at the start of your period. Every menstrual cycle you experience will differ slightly. Some may experience bleeding to be more like a runny liquid at the beginning.

Watery/thin

In most cases, a thinner, watery texture is a sign of light menstrual flow. If accompanied with a light pink period blood color, this could be a sign of stress or pre-menopause.

However, you should talk to your healthcare provider if you get it with a greyish discharge color, as it can be a sign of an infection or something more serious. If it feels out of the ordinary for your body, it’s always worth taking the time to talk to your doctor.

Clots/thick and clumpy

Clots and thick clumps in period blood are completely normal – especially on the heaviest days of a period. It’s particularly common with darker period blood color because it’s had time to build up, in comparison to quicker flows of fresh bright red blood.

When the period blood clots are a similar size to a golf ball or consistently around the size of a 5 pence coin, it’s time to talk to your doctor. It may be an indication of a miscarriage or a uterine fibroid – a small, non-cancerous growth inside the uterus.

Jelly-like

Menstrual blood that is slippery and has a jelly-like texture is mixed with high levels of cervical mucus, which is totally normal.

Stringy

Stringy period blood, usually dark red to dark brown in color, means older blood. It’s simply another type of bloody clot and is totally normal! But, if the stringy blood at the end of your flow happens to be heavier too, then it may need to be seen by a doctor, so book in an appointment.

period blood colors and textures meanings

When to see your doctor

It’s important to know what is normal for your period so you can tell when something is out of the ordinary and just not right. If you’re experiencing any prolonged changes in your menstrual cycle or any of the following signs, reach out to your doctor:

  • Bleeding between periods
  • Significantly irregular cycles, varying in length; shorter than 24 days or longer than 38
  • No period for over three months
  • If you’re pregnant and notice bleeding
  • If you’ve experienced menopause and are bleeding
  • Unusual pain during your period

Period blood colors and textures vary throughout your cycle – this is completely normal! The most important thing is to pay attention to your body and the patterns of variations in your period. Minor changes in period color and texture don’t necessarily suggest a health problem, and you know what’s normal for your body.

While you here, why not check out our range of organic and natural period products?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


30 thoughts on “What is Your Period Blood Telling You?

  1. Arielle Seay said:

    Is it normal for a 6 year old girl do wear a training bra?

    • Natracare said:

      It depends on them and the adult carers around them! When it comes to how quickly our bodies develop, there is no ‘normal’, if it makes them more comfortable in their own skin, why not. We hope this helps!

  2. Caity Johnson said:

    I have reddish orange blood at the end of my period. Is that normal. It’s day 6.

    • Madeleine said:

      Hi Caity, reddish orange blood indicates a lighter flow. This sounds about right because day 6 will be towards the end of your period!

        • Madeleine said:

          You’ll be a person who menstruates for 30-35 years, but actual periods last about 5-7 days in a menstrual cycle (typically 28 days).

  3. bailey said:

    ive been “bleeding” for about 4 days but no cramps and the color keeps changing its not even heavy enough to get on my underwear liner… what does this mean?

  4. Shannon Farrelly said:

    Hi i had a baby 11 weeks ago I have been bleeding on and since I had her iv also been in and out off hospital iv had scans and on the scan they could see either a very small blood or a bit off retained placenta I was put on antibiotics for 10 days and also told to change my contraceptive to a different I have been previously on yasminelle I took one whole packet and then 10 out the second pack my doctor told me not to take a break to see would it stop the bleeding but it didn’t I’m now on microlite and getting breakthrough bleeding but it’s brown discharge but enuf can come out at times but only when I wipe myself. Is that my period trying to break through and does antibiotics effect your pill that I could have a break through off bleeding from them

  5. alexandria said:

    I’ve had my period for a full week and I’m still heavy bleeding with clots

    • Natracare said:

      Sounds like it might be a good time to check in with your doctor, especially if this is unusual for you.

  6. Vanessa said:

    I am 33 my period change now it is lighter I am not bleeding like I use to it took me 7 months to get it.

  7. Catherine said:

    I don’t quite know but the months leading up to my first period I had brown streaks on my underwear. Is it just me or was that my period?

    • Natracare said:

      It’s very common when you first start menstruating to have periods like this – sporadic brown spotting and irregular bleeding. It can take your body a while to menstruate regularly.

  8. Kristen said:

    Bright red heavy flow (not suppose to start my period for another 5 days) and suddenly brown. What could this mean?

  9. Amba said:

    I gave birth 10-11 weeks ago and have been on the pill since 8. I’m now having my first period from the pill and am having 2-3 blood clots the size of 2 50p coins every time I go to the toilet. Is this normal after giving birth? I never bled much after giving birth.

    • Natracare said:

      First of all, congratulations! This might be best checked with your doctor, so we suggest you book an appointment if it continues!

  10. Kaurjazz said:

    Is the dark stringy blood is the sign of pregnancy?if it occur after sexual activity

    • Natracare said:

      Dark and stringy blood is most likely just old blood, but if you think you might be pregnant, it’s definitely best to see a doctor!

  11. Gloria Martinez said:

    I’ve had light watery bleeding for a month then a normal flow period for 6 days then back to watery blood again so basically 2 months of bleeding then a normal period what can this be ?

    • Natracare said:

      Hi Gloria, sounds like it might be worth a visit to your local healthcare provider to check what’s going on for you. Two months of bleeding is quite a lot!

  12. Ana said:

    I’m 9 days late. I’m not pregnant. Cramps for the last 4 days. Yesterday after urinating, I wiped a pink mucus discharged and I thought I was initiating my period. However, it didn’t. Today, after 21 hours a similar pink thick mucus was discharged after urinating. I’m 29 years old. So I don’t think it is menopause

    • Natracare said:

      Hey Ana, this might simply be a sign of stress, but if you’re worried we recommend you see a doctor to be sure!

  13. Sarah said:

    i used to have really bright red, flowly blood on my periods and as of about three months ago i began getting like brown, mucusy period but its always when i stop my birth control. i take junel and been taking it since december of 2017 so idk why its different now and consistently so

    • Natracare said:

      It might be worth checking in with your doctor, just to be safe!

  14. Ella said:

    How do I know how long my first period will last?

    • Natracare said:

      Hi Ella, the length of your very first period can vary! It could be some light spotting lasting only a day, or it can longer and slightly heavier. Periods often have a light flow and can be short at the start of puberty. Hope this helps 🙂

  15. Aprileen said:

    I have black blood this is the first time that 2 days I have still black blood.. Before first day only… This is normal or I need to go and consult about this?

  16. Anonymous said:

    Really heavy flow passing clots the size of golf balls very dark red soaking both a tampon and pad in less than an hr day 2 of this.