Eight pieces of legislation throughout the nation are specifically addressing the safety and disclosure of ingredients used in menstrual products. This signifies that lawmakers are paying more attention to ingredient safety and the right to know what ingredients menstruators are being exposed to!
Recently, the Robin Danielson Menstrual Product and Intimate Care Product Safety Act of 2022 (HR 8724) was introduced in Congress. If passed, the bill requires a research program focused on studying the health risks of fragrance ingredients, pesticides, phthalates, titanium dioxide, and other ingredients used in these products.
Because of new disclosure requirements coming out of New York State, our research has found the every period product user is getting way more information about these products than ever before. Some period products are a lot more complicated than we ever knew.
A new report released by health and justice organizations, Women’s Voices for the Earth (WVE), Clean & Healthy New York, Sierra Club (Atlantic Chapter) and WE ACT for Environmental Justice, spotlights how new ingredient disclosure requirements for menstrual products are providing improved and vital information about chemical exposure from the use of these products. The report, "What’s in Your Period Product? An investigation of ingredients disclosed on product labels", calls attention to significant changes the industry has made in increasing ingredient transparency, as well as chemicals of concern that, until now, were kept hidden from people who use these products.
Systemic inequities in correctional facilities, like the inability to get period products, are critical in both addressing a healthy and safe quality of life and reproducing the dangerous hierarchies of power outside of prison walls.
Companies selling tampons, pads, menstrual cups or period underwear in New York State are now required to disclose all intentionally added ingredients on product labels. In 2019, New York became the first state in the nation to require period product makers to disclose ingredients by passing A.164-A/S.2387, introduced by Assembly Member Linda B. Rosenthal (D-Manhattan) and Senator Roxanne J. Persaud (D-District 19). The law went into effect this October. There is no federal requirement to disclose, and without requirements, regulations or clear standards, only a few companies were voluntarily providing limited ingredient information. While passed in New York, this law sets a new precedent for period product ingredient disclosure.
Learn more about these women leaders who are changing policy and working to ensure period products are safe, affordable and accessible!
This testing doesn’t tell us everything we need to know. It is just one snapshot demonstrating that there is more to these products than is currently being disclosed.