06 Aug “How long do the Sheba products take to biodegrade?”
We recently got an interesting and necessary question in our Instagram comments this week and knew we HAD to write on it- (Shoutout to @rebone_mmino for the awesome question). Rebone asks, “How long do the Sheba pads take to biodegrade?”
Biodegradation refers to the chemical dissolving of materials by biological means. Basically it refers to the process of materials disappearing into the compounds it was originally made from or disappearing into the soil. You may ask yourself why it’s important that your sanitary products are biodegradable? This is because menstruators use more than 11 000 menstrual products throughout their lifetime. And with normal pads having a plastic content of 90%, we throw them away, they get sent to landfills or the ocean and they stay there for longer than we’ll be alive (+500 years) or they end up being eaten by animals. So effectively, all the tampons or pads you’ve ever used are still on the earth somewhere! YIKES! But, don’t fear, it is possible to have little to no period pollution with Sheba products!
Sheba products are made from organic, biodegradable cotton which is a plant-based material that is able to decompose into natural components. This means that Sheba products are also compostable. In fact, Sheba products being made from plant-based materials, guarantees that they are compostable in the right conditions. Basically Sheba products can be disposed of by compost, bin – wrap it in toilet paper and put it into the bins provided, and you can also recycle all the cardboard packaging that we use. And the fact that they are made from ORGANIC cotton means that when they biodegrade, no toxic substances will go back into the earth and destroy environments.
How can you ensure that Sheba products are made of organic cotton? We are verified through the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). The GOTS is the leading organic textile processing standard for organic fibers. To use their logo, a company must be environmentally and socially conscious and responsible when manufacturing their product. The textile must comprise of a minimum of 95% of certified organic fibers in order to have the GOTS label. Find the GOTS seal on your Sheba products and send us your photos!
And finally, how long do Sheba products take to decompose? In the right conditions organic tampons should take 6 months to decompose and organic cotton pads should take 18-24 months. Try composting Sheba products and let us know what you think!
We all need to ask ourselves and the companies that produce our products very hard, but essential questions about what the human legacy will be on this earth. A tweet we saw the other day by @elaxation read’ “The earth has gone through 5 mass extinctions; the last one was 66 million years ago caused by an asteroid. Humans will cause the sixth.”
Hopefully that’s food for thought.
P.s. Please do not flush Sheba pads and tampons down the toilet. Yes, they can biodegrade, but a lot of water-waste systems struggle to digest such products and they end up blocking the entire system.