Camping, Hiking, and Festivals During Menstruation: Navigating Period Products and Hygiene Care

Camping, Hiking, and Festivals During Menstruation: Navigating Period Products and Hygiene Care
Heading into the great outdoors for activities such as camping, hiking, and attending festivals can be incredibly exciting and enjoyable. However, for menstruating individuals, it often brings up concerns about managing their periods while enjoying these activities to the fullest. In this blog post, I'll share my personal journey and insights on different period products, including menstrual cups, tampons, pads, and period panties, and provide valuable tips on maintaining hygiene without access to toilets or showers.

Exploring Period Products: Pros and Cons:

Menstrual Cups:

    During my camping and festival experiences, I discovered that menstrual cups are a game-changer. Gentle Day flexible medical TPE cups are worn internally, collecting menstrual flow for up to 12 hours. Here are some pros and cons:


    • Longer wear time compared to tampons or pads, perfect for extended outdoor activities.
    • Can be used during water-based activities like swimming eliminating the need for immediate removal like tampons.
    • It takes up minimal space in your backpack or bag, unlike bulkier alternatives.
    • Environmentally friendly, as they are reusable and produce less waste.
    • No risk of toxic shock syndrome (TSS) associated with tampons.
    • Comfortable, once you find the right fit and insertion technique.


    • Learning curve: It may take a few tries to master the insertion and removal process.
    • Emptying the cup can be challenging without access to clean water or private facilities, but there are workarounds (more on that later).


      Tampons have long been a go-to option for many menstruators due to their convenience and discreetness. Here's what I found:


      • Easy to carry and dispose of discreetly.
      • Available in different absorbencies to accommodate light to heavy flows.
      • Can be used during water-based activities like swimming.


      • Regular tampons require frequent changes, especially during heavy flows.
      • Increased risk of TSS if not changed regularly.
      • Environmental impact due to waste generation.


        Pads offer simplicity and ease of use, making them popular among those seeking hassle-free period management. Here's what I learned:


        • Suitable for those uncomfortable with internal products.
        • Wide range of sizes and absorbencies available.
        • Easy to change, even in outdoor settings.


        • Can feel bulky and uncomfortable during physical activities.
        • Frequent changes may be necessary, especially during heavier flows.
        • Disposal can be problematic in wilderness areas without proper waste management facilities.

        Period Panties:

          Period panties are a newer addition to the menstrual product market, providing an alternative to traditional products. Here's what I discovered:


          • Can be worn alone or as a backup with other products.
          • Comfortable and absorbent, ideal for lighter flow days.
          • Reusable, reducing environmental impact.


          • Limited absorbency for heavy flow days.
          • Requires washing and drying, which can be challenging in outdoor settings.

          Tips for Managing Hygiene During Outdoor Adventures:

          1. Pack Sufficient Supplies: Ensure you have an ample supply of your chosen period products. Estimate your flow and pack accordingly, accounting for potential changes in intensity due to physical activity and stress.

          2. Disposal and Storage: Carry sealable bags or small containers to store used products until you can dispose of them properly. Avoid littering or leaving waste behind in natural surroundings.

          3. Hygiene Maintenance: Maintaining cleanliness without showers or toilets can be challenging but not impossible. Pack unscented wet wipes or biodegradable toilet paper for gentle cleaning. Opt for natural, fragrance-free products to minimize irritation.

          4. Water and Sanitization: Carry a water bottle or collapsible water container for rinsing menstrual cups or for general cleaning purposes. Alternatively, use a small spray bottle filled with water and a mild soap solution for cleaning reusable products.

          5. Backup Options: Consider using a combination of period products to ensure backup protection, especially during heavy flows. For example, pair a menstrual cup or tampon with a panty liner or period panties for added security.


          Exploring the great outdoors and enjoying festivals should never be hindered by menstruation. By understanding the pros and cons of various period products like menstrual cups, tampons, pads, and period panties, and following these hygiene tips, you can confidently manage your period while immersing yourself in unforgettable adventures. Embrace the freedom, connect with nature, and revel in the joy of living life to the fullest, even during your period.

          Remember, it's all about finding what works best for you and embracing your unique experience. Happy camping, hiking, and festival-going!

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