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05th May 2021

West Cork company launches eco-friendly period product subscription service

This Irish initiative aims to make having a period a stress-free experience.

A company based in West Cork has launched a subscription service that delivers eco-friendly period products through your letter box on a monthly or quarterly basis.

Riley aims to offer a convenient and sustainable alternative to non-recyclable period products.

The company’s mission is to “ensure that period products do as little damage to our environment as possible.”

The average sanitary pad has a plastic content of 90%. Riley’s products, on the other hand, are made from 100% GOTS certified organic cotton. All of their products are free from chemicals and toxins, while the tampon applicators are made from bio-based sugar cane.

Additionally, the majority of Riley’s packaging is compostable.

Speaking on the need for sustainable period product options, co-founder Lauren Duggan said: “Periods are a given in life but our experience of them is not uniform. We wanted to create a product that changed the conversation around periods, that was a clarion call for higher standards around the products billions of people use every month, demonstrating that we can do periods better.”

Co-founder Fiona Parfrey echoed her comments.

“It’s high time people don’t feel guilty about the environmental impact their period is having,” Parfrey said. “We want people to be proud of their period and to do it their way. Our menstrual cycle is the most natural thing in the world and the products we use to facilitate it should reflect that.”

Riley’s subscription boxes start at €6.90. For every box sold, €1 goes to Development Pamoja, a registered Irish charity based in Kenya. This initiative supplies sanitary products to young girls, and stocks the development’s medical clinics.

The conversation around period products in Ireland is certainly shifting. Claire Hunt of Homeless Period Ireland welcomed Riley’s contribution to the growing movement.

“It’s fantastic to see the launch of Riley, an Irish based and female founded company who are fighting against period plastic and period poverty,” she said. “I hope this will continue to open up the conversation on a normal bodily function so it is no longer seen as shameful or that it should be hidden away. Organisations working together is a major piece of the puzzle towards ending period poverty – Riley are playing their part.”