A Guide to Cleaning and Caring for Your Menstrual Underwear

Scarlet Period Blog | How to wash period underwear

Menstrual underwear can be a convenient, cost-effective, eco-friendly alternative to pads and tampons. But if you're considering giving them a go, it's important to know how to properly care for your menstrual panties to keep them in the best condition. Here’s everything you need to know about how to clean period underwear so that they remain hygienic, safe, and comfortable.


How to care for period underwear

It's as easy as putting them in the washing machine (no softener or bleach) and hanging them out to dry! After each use, it's completely up to you whether you rinse out any visible blood first: if you have a heavy flow, you may prefer to give your undies a quick rinse under cool water until they run clear before you pop them in the washing machine.

When you’re ready to clean your menstrual underwear, put them in with the rest of your laundry on a cold wash cycle (your other clothes will be fine!), then tumble dry on low or hang them to dry in the sun. That’s it!

OUR TOP TIP: Invest in a Scarlet Laundry Bag to safeguard them during your wash cycle.


Your top period underwear cleaning questions

Do I need to pre-wash my period underwear?
This one’s totally your call. It’s not necessary to rinse your period undies before putting them in the washing machine. Still, if you’re a few days away from laundry day or have a heavy flow, you may prefer to rinse them under cold water to prevent staining and build-up of bacteria.

Should I wash period underwear on a gentle cycle?
Our period underwear is made with the highest quality materials to handle a regular cycle. That said, a gentle cycle is always preferred to prolong the lifespan of your period underwear. Pop them into our Laundry Bag whenever you wash them to protect them further.

What water temperature should I wash my period underwear in?
Cold water is best. It is gentler on the fabrics (so your period undies will last longer) and helps prevent staining.

How often should I wash my period underwear?
For hygiene purposes, you need to wash your period underwear after each use. But that doesn’t mean you must put on a load of washing daily during your period. Invest in numerous pairs of period undies to comfortably get you through each cycle, then wash them all together at the end of your period.

Cleaning tips & tricks from our Scarlet community

👉 “Rinse them in the shower! I go into the shower with them, and rinse them there. Then I throw them into the washing machine ready for whenever I do my next load.” - Prue F.

👉 “Invest in a mesh bag. During the week of my period, I store them in a mesh laundry bag, then after they’re washed with my other clothes, they’re altogether and I don’t have to go through all the wet laundry to find them!” – Raffy L

👉 “I don’t bother rinsing them, and it’s still totally fine! I just chuck them straight in the dirty washing basket until I have a full load. I have a light flow so skipping that step works for me.” – Ally H