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Moldy Tampons: Let’s talk health!

Image Courtesy of Parr for the Course

First things first. If you haven’t seen the moldy tampon you should!  The ‘ick’ factor is undeniable, but what’s worse is the company’s initial response to the customer, Danielle of Parr for the Course.  The letter from Kimberly-Clark read, in part:

“We understand how distressing it can be to find mold on a product that is used for personal hygiene and apologize for your concern.  In instances where it has been found, we conducted tests on the product involved and have found the mold to be a common environmental species that carries no health risk.  The vegetative mold is similar in nature to mold on vegetables or in baked goods.”

After the post went viral, Kimberly-Clark responded with a letter that read, in part:

In Betty’s eagerness to get back to your e-mail right away, she unfortunately sent you incorrect information concerning this issue.

Nothing is more important to us than consumer safety.  Any discoloration or abnormality with our tampons is extremely rare, and we want to do a full investigation to determine the source and follow-up with our manufacturing facility.  So if you still have the tampon, can you please return it to us by using the prepaid mailing envelope we’re sending you? “

Mistakes happen, but is anyone buying this garbage?  Couple your uneasy feeling with the fact that Danielle has been contacted by several women who have had similar moldy tampon incidents, and you are left with a feeling of,  well…. you decide.

All of this insanity aside, my first thought was If this unused tampon alone can provide an atmostphere that a mold can happily grow in, what makes that a good choice for internal menstrual care?!

Kotex tampons are made from a blend of natural cotton and synthetic rayon (ingredients like rayon create the physical-chemical conditions that allow for TSST-1 toxin production – which can lead to Toxic Shock Syndrome – Source, though the text on their box paints a different picture.  The actual Kotex box reads “Touch of Natural Cotton”, no mention of the  synthetic rayon.  Perhaps their box should look something more like this:

Looking for a safer option?  Check out these posts and please feel free to email me with any questions!
FAQ about various products (cups, cloth pads, sponges)


What are your thoughts on this matter?  Do you think that Kotex has handled this properly?  Has this event made you look into other menstrual care options?
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