There is an app for almost everything these days, and someone, somewhere, somehow keeps coming up with more that we didn’t even know we needed. Need Harry Styles to put you to sleep? Calm app coming right up! Need a period tracking app because your monthly menstruation is actually not so timely? There you go, period trackers are now a thing!
Having tried and tested a few myself, I now wouldn’t want to live without them. No more criss-crossing your ‘on’ days and confusingly counting down the days you’re going to be ‘off’. Additionally, these apps help you understand your hormones, bringing me peace of mind that when I act like a moody bitch ‘sometimes’, I can avoid the people I’d rather not act like a total loose canon around. It’s a win-win.
By tracking your period and logging all the symptoms that go along with going through one, those apps allow you to recognise patterns or irregularities that you might have otherwise missed. As a result, this could help you see whether there is something wrong with your reproductive system, if your mood is affected or bloating is persistent for example, and your doctor can figure out the reason for it far more easily by having all the data to look into.
Most apps will also show you your fertile windows, however this isn’t something any of us should rely on when it comes to either wanting to fall pregnant or not as these apps don’t replace contraception, especially if your period is irregular.
As mentioned earlier, there are quite a few apps to choose from, and one definitely does not fit all in this case. Here’s a summary of the options you have to help you pick the best option for your period
A generic name, but it is exactly what it says it is, so why over complicate it? This app is one of the most simple ones to use, it shows you a full calendar that clearly marks your predicate days as well as what you have logged. You can also track your weight to see how it fluctuates over the course of each month due to period symptoms. The symptoms are broken down into categories, like head, body, cervix, belly along with emotional categories.
Clue markets itself as being able to teach you about your body, which it definitely does. You can track literally everything that goes on in your body during your cycle, like headaches or period-induced skin problems. The user interface is also simple, easy to use and easy to understand.
You’ve probably heard of this one before, and if you haven’t, someone you know will have. It’s one of the main players in the period tracker game, and that’s for a good reason. Flo lets you log your ovulation and period symptoms, like they all do, but this app also turns your data into graphs that visually show you exactly what your body is doing and when, which makes it really easy to understand (for those visual learners out there).
It also has a feature that allows you to log and track your pregnancy if you ever need to do that, so it’s a go-to all-in-one. Oh, and it’s password protected for those nosy partners or family members that want to know absolutely everything about your intimate and private life.
This app uses its estimation of your cycle, according to what you log of course, to give you a daily ‘fertility score’ or information as to how likely you are to get pregnant that day. This is where a serious word of caution comes in: do not use this as your sole form of contraception if you are not wanting to get pregnant, it’s probably more for those who do. Bonus: Ovia allows you to export all of your logs into an Excel spreadsheet, if you’re into that sort of thing.
For all the minimalists out there, this one’s for you. Cycles is customisable, so you can really make it feel like your app. It has simple colours, simple graphics, and because of how customisable it is you can make it look like an app that has nothing to do with periods. Discreet logging will encourage you to log more, even with those uninvited eyes glancing over your shoulder. To flip that, Cycles also gets your partner in on the tracking action: you can invite them to sync up their own device with your app, even if it’s to know what’s up with your mood swings or cravings. Emotional support? Yes please and thank you.
Last but by no means least, there’s Eve. It does all the expected things, but also has a few extra cheeky features like a daily ‘Cyclescope’, a horoscope-like forecast based on where you are in your cycle. It gives you sex tips in the blog section, like “orgasm with these game-changing strategics” or how to “make sex sexier.” Eve is for the people that understand what ‘Did you get some?’ means, when the answer options are ‘banana’, ‘banana-free’ and ‘all me’. Eve’s design is fun, frisky while also just making you feel proud, like we should all be, to have a period. Yas queens!
If until now you’ve solely relied on disposable menstrual supplies such as tampons, pads or liners while on your period, then we understand why period underwear might sound like a miracle solution to you. Period panties look and feel just like normal underwear, only they have an added protective layer that helps prevent blood from seeping through, instead absorbing it completely. What are the positives of period underwear, and do we think they’re the best period product to use? Here’s everything you need to know.
Period underwear is often advertised as ‘unleakable’. But according to many early adopters (me included), compared to disposable pads, tampons or even menstrual cups, period panties are not the best for those with heavy periods. The Good Housekeeping Institute Textiles Lab even tested the absorbency of several pairs and found that the panties couldn’t absorb liquids as well as other period products.
So, the first thing you should keep in mind when looking to buy period underwear is that they’re best for lighter days or as a backup on heavier days. Usually, they can hold around 2 tampons worth, which means that if you thought you could just rely on your period underwear for the first day of your period, think again, because it will leak in no time.
This one cannot be denied: simply wearing panties is definitely more comfortable than any other kind of period product. Potential leaks put aside, there isn’t much difference between being on your period or not when you find the right type of period underwear.
On your search for the perfect period underwear, you might have stumbled upon some serious grandma-style ones. Depending on what you’re looking for, you can actually find period panties that are really stylish too. The most famous brand for these is probably Thinx, which offers comfortable, cute and functional underwear in a wide range of colours.
If you’re looking for underwear that looks less ‘mature’, then Thinx BTWN period panties have the same functionality of the originals, except the styles, colours and styles are designed specifically for younger women. My advice? Start with the brand’s Fresh Start Period Kit for $59, which includes one pair of each of the three different styles.
In terms of sustainability, period underwear is one of the best options you could go for, just after menstrual cups. That’s because although you might end up using your new period panties for a few years, I doubt you’ll be using it for 10 years, like you can with a menstrual cup. On top of cutting back on waste, period panties can also be cost-effective as you won’t need to buy a new pair every month.
But keep in mind that if you have to add an extra period product to your period underwear in case you’re worried about a leak, then this might not be the best choice for you.
As listed above, period underwear have some positives as well as some negatives. While I would not recommend them as someone’s first option for period care (my number one will always be menstrual cups), I would advise you to buy one pair just to see how you like them for yourself. On heavy days, just forget about period panties, but towards the end of your period, why not treat yourself with one of these above? The time to wear them is when you’re light enough to avoid using another product, and where you can toss them straight into the wash after you wear them. You wouldn’t want to stuff a used pad into your bag for the rest of the day now, would you?
They do definitely come in handy, especially when you want to avoid the risk of a leak in a white party dress. I would personally recommend the Dream Short by KNIX just because I like their tomboy look and because they’re probably the most absorbent period panties. They’re slightly pricier than other pairs, but trust me, just try them for one night when you’re nearing the end of your period—you’ll thank me.