If you're squeamish about reusable feminine hygiene products then this post is not for you. Feel free to look away. Also, no one is paying me for this post- this is strictly my own personal opinion of these products after using them for a few years.
Today I'm going to discuss two products I use-
The Keeper is a reusable menstrual cup made from natural rubber that is inserted inside the body. The insertion technique is slightly more difficult than inserting a disposable tampon. You fold it in half twice to insert and then you have to twist it bit to get it to fit into place. It took me a little while to figure this out but now that I have I prefer this greatly to any overnight tampons. It has never leaked on me. I've never even needed a pad like I do with regular tampons. I only use this overnight but I am not replacing my disposable tampons. This is in fact, A Keeper, for me. The initial price seems steep ($35) but when you think about paying $5 and up for a box of disposable tampons it pays for itself in a few months. Also, I love those leak free mornings.
The clean up isn't bad. Just dump the contents into the toilet and give it a good wash and rinse with hot water and soap. You can also do all of this in the shower too.
My favorite feminine hygiene product has to be my GladRags though. I know it seems yucky to have to wash out the dirtied pads but it's not much different than washing out leaked on panties or a pee pee diaper. I simply put mine in the wash with dirty towels. They come out clean and ready to go. They are shaped like normal pads with wings but have a snap instead of sticky tape.
There is an envelope bottom that you can put more pads into for however heavy your flow is that day. They are really absorbent. My favorite part of using Glad Rags though is that they are so much more comfortable than disposable pad. I don't feel like I'm wearing a diaper and there is no fear of having the tape stick painfully to anything it isn't supposed to.
If you don't mind the slight squirm factor involved with sustainable hygiene (and really it's not bad) and you are tired of paying out the nose for uncomfortable disposable cotton and plastic then these products might be right for you. I've had menses for over half my life (27 years in fact) and I prefer the comfort and ease of the reusable products to the disposable. I never have to make an emergency run to the store and I'm not filling up our trash cans with used up tampons and pads (discretion is a bonus).