Harmful chemicals found in ‘essential’ feminine products

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) — also known as “forever chemicals” — are, according to Phys.org, used in things such as food packaging and makeup that have been linked to diseases such as cancer.

And a new report has highlighted how these chemicals are present in some “essential” feminine hygiene products.

The Hill — as part of a series called “Fighting ‘Forever Chemicals’: Women face pervasive PFAS risks” — published this report Wednesday, pointing specifically to menstrual underwear from Thinx as well as certain product wrappers for tampons and pads that were found to have contained PFAS.

This was discovered, explains the same Hill report, after columnist at Sierra Magazine and former employee at the San Francisco Environmental Department, Jessian Choy, was asked by a reader to recommend some eco-friendly period products.

“I had always known that anything water, grease and stain resistant could have toxic PFAS chemicals in them because of my day job at the time,” says Choy. “But my only vice at the time was..the Thinx underwear, and I just didn’t want to know what was in it.”

Choy’s resulting 2020 article detailed how this Thinx underwear — which is also marketed to teens — contains PFAS in the crotch area, which Choy points out is “one of the most sensitive and absorbent parts of the body” for women. Copper was also found on the inside of the crouch, as well as zinc on both sides.

“Putting potent antimicrobial chemicals adjacent to vaginal tissue where a balance of health vaginal bacteria is crucial to health sounds like a truly unnecessary ricks,” told Women’s Voices for the Earth (WVE) director of science and research, Alexandra Scranton, to Choy.

Thinx has denied using these substances in its products, but has, states The Hill, settled a lawsuit related to such accusations last year.

Source: Pennlive

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