Friday Undies: A Review by Sanya Sundar
About the Writer
Sanya enjoys looking for wonder in the synchronized dance between the inward and outward experiences of life. Having grown up in Saudi Arabia, she came to India to understand and follow her passion for the Arts. With a background in Media, Journalism &. Photography, she is currently traveling and creating art that reflects the beauty, love, hope and humanity that she sees in the world. Moments of order, that would otherwise be forgotten in the chaos of life.
According Google, the Vagina has three functions :
- It provides a passageway for blood and mucosal tissue from the uterus during a woman’s monthly period.
- It receives the penis during sexual intercourse and holds the sperm until they pass into the uterus.
- It provides a passageway for childbirth.
The second function involves other people, in my case, straight men. The third function also involves other people and more importantly, creating and nurturing a brand new little person; my views on which will remain private at the moment.
The first function is all about me. Something that is truly mine to experience each month. No one man has managed to remind me of my womanhood as much as my periods have - consistently showing up for over 20 years now, for a whole week each month. So it would suffice to say that I have felt responsible to put time and thought into understanding my menstruation and how it affects my mind, body and soul- biologically, psychologically, culturally and environmentally.
I’ve always known about the various anxieties that are linked to my menstrual cycle, but it was only when my super awesome friend and a total inspiration, Shivani Singh, sent me her oh so genius product, that I got down to actually verbalising all these anxieties. Shivani sent me her product a few months ago, and asked me to photograph it for her. I’ve been using it since. Here’s my love for it growing with each month and my anxieties related to my cycle fading away along with my love.
I must admit, I photographed the product before I used it. I enjoy when my professional and personal life come together once in a while. It provides for a unique richness of experience that opens up room for an extra boost of creative outburst as an artist.
Friday Undies feels like any comfortable mid waist underwear. The bamboo fibre used feels like a slightly thick layer, but barely out of place. I used them for the last three months and made a few observations with each use. I’m sharing some of them with you below:
Month 1 Using Friday Undies
I used Friday Undies just once this month, on my last day. I decided to try it for the first time on my last day, just to understand how well it responds to a not too heavy flow before I went all guns blazing on the first day of the period. What stayed with me was the moment I disposed off the sanitary napkin I was using before I put Friday Undies on. Years of guilt, torment and disappointment of reading this statement “one sanitary pad could take from 500 to 800 years to decompose” was finally going to be behind me. The relief was indescribable.
There was another unexpected moment of insight. For the first time in my life, I could stand in front of the mirror in my underwear during my period, and look and feel amazing. It’s got a great cut, very flattering to the hips and the best part, it feels like a regular underwear! Not even the slightest discomfort felt; like when using a tampon or a pad. Not even the awareness of a different texture or material being down there. I must confess, I indulged in so much self-love and self-esteem boost in front of the mirror that my partner started to get worried I was becoming too frivolous, getting drunk with vanity. I was so happy that his concerns were a mere mosquito buzzing around my ears (Normally an elephant comes out to trample such statements during my period dates). I responded joyfully - I don’t care, I deserve this and I’m owning it :laugh: It’s amazing how much of a mood stabiliser it proved to be! Vanity is often underrated for the ego boost it can give.
Month 2 Using Friday Undies
I used them on the 2nd day of my period. There was no trouble and they stayed dry despite my heavy flow, I felt barely any discomfort and I even managed to wear them comfortably during my Kalaripayttu classes (Martial & Healing Art form from Kerala). That was a huge relief! Skipping exercise because of the discomfort of doing it with a sanitary napkin or a tampon would be a huge battle I have with myself each month. I must admit, there have been many times I have fallen prey to the lazy bug because of this and ended up skipping more than a few days of exercise - the consequences of which seep on to the days leading up to and following the end of my cycle as well at times. If you put it down in numbers, it can read up to 10 days of skipped exercise in a month. Yes, the guilt is horrible, especially if the 10 days falls in the middle of the month.
Month 3 Using Friday Undies
I ordered a couple more and used them for the entire duration of my period. They were extremely convenient and I must say, for the first time, I felt like the thought of my periods arriving no longer left like a stressful time of the month.
I was able to spend some time appreciating and reflecting on how far we’ve come, as a gender, as humans, as a community. I remember hearing stories from my mother, my grandmother and my great grandmother about their times and what menstrual hygiene translated to for them. From your cycle being considered as a time of rest and rejuvenation, where the women folk were given their time and space to heal and unwind (yes, there was a time when being on your period meant that!) to talk of being un-pure, unworthy of many activities during your period (yes, there is that as well, unfortunately) to every other story you may have heard to today, with me looking at myself, wearing my
Friday Undies, with a big smile on my face. A small moment of order in the middle of a lot of chaos we also see nowadays.
Let’s also talk a little about the other logical bits to using this product. Washing them is pretty simple. I must admit, it felt a little queasy the first time around, but only because of my own perceptions and limitations. I found it helpful to soak it in warm water for a while, then do a quick wash using my hands before I put it in the machine. This was pretty quick and efficient. I dry them out in the sun, but I’m sure a machine could be just as useful as well.
I’m also waiting to see what the durability of the product is. Shivani tells me that with proper care & use, a single pair can last you up to 2-5 years. The price is highly sustainable if that is the case, Friday Undies translates as a product that can be made accessible to help support and improve the menstrual hygiene of many millions of women out there, regardless of the socio economic conditions.
Overall, I would recommend this product to anyone who is looking to ease their period woes. Not only is it functional, it may also open up many layers of your own insight as well :)
About Friday Undies
We make eco-friendly, period underwear for women in an effort to reduce the 9,000 tonnes of plastic waste generated from sanitary products in India, every year. Period underwear is easy to use, comfortable and completely rash-free.