Getting your period is never pleasant, but it’s even worse when you look at your calendar at your upcoming vacation, which you’re just dying to finally take, only to realize that Mother Nature has some other plans for your vagina.
It throws a pretty annoying wrench into your own plans of sweet cocktails and bikini sessions, but it doesn’t have to. Sure, you’ll have to deal with a few annoyances along the way, but here are some ways to ensure you still have the most epic vacation possible even during your period.
#1 Take bloat friendly clothing
This is a good rule of thumb for all vacations, but especially important if you’re expecting Aunt Flow. Light, flowy clothing that makes you look and feel amazing will give you that boost in confidence in your body. You’re on vacation and you deserve to feel and look your best no matter what other plans your body has for you. With cramps, bloating, and possibly the heat wherever you are, you don’t want to be in tight-fitting clothes. Go for leggings or yoga pants. Also, avoid the obvious such as white bottoms.
It is best to wear a swimsuit with bottoms that provide a bit more coverage. In other words, string bikinis might not be a good choice! Choose a swimsuit that is also not super tight, as you might be bloated. If you are concerned about leakage, choose a dark-colored bathing suit or wear waterproof shorts over your bottoms.
#2 Carry wet wipes
Accidents happen. Even if you have the foolproof menstrual cup, you don’t want to find yourself covered in blood in a public restroom with no way to clean yourself up.
Part of dealing with your period on vacation is being prepared. And let us tell you, some wet wipes come in REAL HANDY. They are also good to have around in case travel tummy strikes.
Become a pro at dealing with your period on vacation. Always pack your wet wipes. Carry them (or baby wipes) for when you change. Also bring a handy sanitizer with you to make sure your hands are clean.
#3 Plan your days wisely
If at all possible, plan your trip to maximize your comfort. This will depend on how you normally feel on your period. For example, if you know the first day of menstruation tends to be very rough, do not plan any adventurous activities on that day. Avoid strenuous hikes or excessively long walks. Going to a sauna where you must remove your swimsuit is also not a great option. Instead, use your first period days to do short walks around your area, go to movies, or do other less active things.
Not all vacations offer this flexibility. There are other things you usually can control, however, like how much sleep you get. If you feel extra tired on your period, try to sleep earlier and/or later if possible.
#4 Stay hydrated
When you are out and about, especially in the heat, it is important to drink plenty of clear liquids like filtered water. 2.2 Liters (9 cups) of fluids is the daily recommendation for women. If you are outside in heat, you might need to increase your water intake.
Bring a reusable water bottle for plane rides, day trips, or car rides.
Be sure to drink plenty of water while flying. Know that the humidity in the cabin can drop to 20%, which can make you feel dehydrated.
#5 Give yourself more rest
Don’t force yourself if you can’t handle the pain. Take a break, sit down, go for a siesta. While you’re at it, why not go for a hot shower for some relief. Or just fill up a water bottle with hot water and place it over your abdomen.
If you are not feeling well and don’t want to go in the water, consider sunbathing. Remember to wear sunscreen! Relaxing in a chair might be the best thing for any menstrual cramps.
Whatever decision you make on how you deal with your period while on your vacation, one fact remains the same: you need to be prepared. So whether you’re using pads, tampons, or the cup, keep some of these in mind!