They look like a thinner, smaller version of a pad, but they won’t be of much help when you’re on your period. So, what exactly are panty liners and when would you use them?
Panty liners are for your non-period days. While pads are superabsorbent and are used to prevent period blood leakage, panty liners can be used to absorb vaginal discharge or in-between period spotting. Some women swear by them because they offer a layer of protection and hygiene. Some women may go through their whole life never ever using a panty liner. So let’s deep dive into what panty liners are and find out if YOU would like to use them or not.
What Are Panty Liners?
A panty liner is a thin, absorbent napkin that is meant to be placed in your panty’s gusset or the crotch area to prevent vaginal discharge from staining your panties. It keeps the panty dry, clean and fresh throughout the day. However, it is usually recommended that you change it every 3 to 4 hours. They are thinner versions of your regular sanitary napkins and are worn in the same way as your napkins, but they’re worn on non-period days.
Two Types Of Panty Liners
Panty liners are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and portability options. Small panty liners help you with regular vaginal discharge, while the large ones are designed for heavy vaginal discharge and even light menstrual flow. Some are even designed to fit into thongs or G-string underwear.
As the name suggests, disposable panty liners are for use and throw. Available in natural or synthetic material, the latter is at times believed to be harmful to vaginal health. This is because synthetic material can be highly irritating to your skin. What’s more, a liner accompanied by a fragrance can adversely affect the pH balance of your vagina, causing infections. Some disposable liners have a sticky adhesive or have wings, much like sanitary pads, to keep them in place. On the other hand, liners made from natural materials are preferred as they are breathable and safe for your vaginal health. They are devoid of fragrances, making them safe for use for your skin.
As apparent from the name, reusable panty liners can be washed and reused for a few years. These are made from natural fabrics and are devoid of chemicals and other irritants. They safeguard your skin from rashes and infections. The reusable ones are available in various shapes, sizes, colours, patterns, materials, and absorbencies. Reusable panty liners come with wings that can be secured along the lining of the gusset of your panties to keep it in its place.
5 Uses Of Panty Liners
Now, let’s take a close look at what panty liners are used for in some detail:
- Spotting: Spotting or light vaginal bleeding is perfectly normal among women even on non-period days. Some women use sanitary napkins even on days when they are not expecting their periods. But, why do so when you can easily replace your pad with a panty liner, which is a more convenient, comfortable, lightweight, and practical solution for such days?
- Light Periods: Your periods become lighter after day 3, right? In fact, many women only experience spotting on day 4, and virtually little to no period bleeding on day 5. Though you may have been using sanitary pads these days too, why not switch to a smaller and lighter panty liner on these days? That way, you will end up saving your sanitary pads for your heavy flow days.
- Vaginal Discharge: Vaginal discharge makes you feel sticky and icky at times, and can get absorbed into your underwear. Discharge in fact quite common when you are ovulating or are aroused. During such moments, you may want to change into clean panties, which is not possible when you are on the go. However, using a panty liner can come in extremely handy and keep you feeling fresh.
- Postpartum Flow: If you have just become a new mother, chances are that you are experiencing vaginal discharge throughout the day. This occurs because your uterus is healing and is flushing out excess fluid. Panty liners can prove to be helpful on such days.
- Urinary Incontinence: Common during pregnancy, post-pregnancy, and even after menopause, many women aren’t able to control their pee and may end up releasing a few drops of urine if they sneeze too hard, laugh too hard, or don’t make it to the bathroom in time. It is in these moments that women can use panty liners to protect themselves from embarrassment and practice vaginal hygiene.
5 Disadvantages Of Panty Liners
Even though panty liners keep your underwear smelling clean and keep the crotch area moisture-free, there are some disadvantages that may dissuade women from using them:
- Pany liners need to be changed immediately if they become too moist, which is not always practical if you are on the go.
- Liners with fragrances can contain chemicals that may irritate the sensitive tissues around your vagina. Hence, it is recommended that you use unscented organic cotton liners only.
- They can rub against the labia, causing irritation, itching, and redness around the area.
- Everyday use of panty liners that are non-breathable can block the natural flow of air to the reproductive organs and also not allow perspiration to evaporate. Synthetic panty liners also cause the same problem. Hence, it is advisable to use only breathable liners.
- They cannot be used at night because they have to be changed every 3 to 4 hours.
Now that you know all there is you need to know, do you think panty liners are for you? Have you ever used them and if yes, what has been your experience? Let us know in the comments.