Just a quick introduction to some useful products for English-speaking, non-Chinese-speaking women who are new to Taiwan.
When I first arrived in Taiwan, the only tampons available were OBs. They’re still here.
I guess there must be women on the planet who use OBs because they have been around for a while. But I couldn’t figure out the difference between an OB tampon and sticking a dry, balled up sock in my vagina.
That awkward and useless. Yup.
Taiwan now has these Japanese tampons everywhere. I buy the dark blue box. They are supposed to be for night/heavy flow, but they don’t seem as heavy-duty as the American “supers”. They are kind of expensive, though. This box has — tampons and it costs NT$398. That’s a pretty standard price at all the stores, so if you see them on sale, stock up!
I just use them during the day, so that makes a box last longer. I haven’t slept with a tampon in since I saw some news stories about what toxic shock syndrome can do to you, and just how fast it can get to you.
(I tried a Diva Cup before…I think it was too big…I’d like to try it again…)
The green ones are also okay, but only the blue ones come in the big box.
The light blue ones are useless. They are like Q-tip sized. I’m pretty sure if I stuck one of those in my vagina, it would fall out if I sneezed.
There are also these tampons, but they seem kind of generic and cheap. The ones I buy are Japanese. Japanese companies make good products. I can only read a little of what’s on the box, so it’s hard to make informed choices.
There are also lots of other pads and pantyliners. Check these ones out: you can smell these beads before you buy because the pantyliners are scented. Look how many options there are!
Look at this pretty package from Korea:
I think most women here still use pads most of the time. I think pads are super uncomfortable when it’s hot and humid outside, but to each her own. At least you can buy them in bulk for pretty cheap. Just make sure you check the measurements. Some of these are basically diaper-sized. “That can quite a disappointmnet if you were expecting something smaller,” she said.
Also wanted to add this PS about Chinese Olympian Fu Yuanhui mentioning that she was on her period. I do know some Taiwanese women who are very open and chill about discussing their periods, so I thought it was just a cultural thing. But nope, Chinese women were surprised by her revelation, too, and also very supportive. But check this out:
Eight decades after tampons first went on sale in the United States, a deep-rooted cultural resistance and inadequate sex education in China are blamed for the fact that only 2% of Chinese women use them, according to one recent study.
China’s first domestically produced tampon – named Crimson Jade Cool – is set to go on sale soon with the businessman behind the initiative planning to target sport centres for sales.
omg crimson jade