She is Deepanjali Dalmia from Delhi. A Columbia University graduate in Economics and Psychology, she left her lucrative job as a financial consultant at Ernst & Young (New York) in 2015 only with the intention of starting something on her own in the personal hygiene sector. Her family thought that she would launch her own soap or detergent brand. Little did her family members knew that she wanted to create her own organic eco-friendly sanitary pad brand for all India women.
When she quit her job in 2015, she knew from the beginning that she will have to overcome many challenges. But, she was clear in one thing that once her product was launched, it would fill the huge gap that is seen in the menstrual hygiene segment. After 2 years of dedication and hard work, she finally set up her entrepreneurial firm “Heyday” in September 2017. It is a manufacturing firm which produces organic, eco-friendly sanitary pads for women. She is just 26 years old. At this young age, she had to fight against many society taboos to set up her organic firm and it was not so easy.
Deepanjali says, “I strongly believe that we have two homes — our bodies and the environment — and we must take care of both”.
Problems of present-day commercially available sanitary pads
While we keep on encouraging young girls and women to use sanitary pads during those 5 days in a month for personal hygiene, many of us are not aware of the ill-effects associated with these sanitary pads in our health and society. Usually women choose pad on the basis of comfort and price.
- Most commercially available napkins have a highly absorbent core which is actually been absorbed in chlorine bleach and other chemicals. This usually causes discomfort, skin rashes, yeast infections.
- Prolonged use of such pads can lead to UTI, pelvic inflammatory disease, cervical cancer, and impaired fertility.
- The sanitary pads available in the Indian market (most brands) do not disclose the pH range. Usually these products are the rejected products by government regulations in the US or Europe.
- When it comes to disposal of sanitary pads, it also has its drawbacks. These pads have almost 90% plastic cover with super-absorbent polymers and non-woven plastic components, and hence they are non-biodegradable. Most of these are wrapped in paper and thrown away. These get accumulated and create a landfill of toxin materials and breeding ground of bacteria. The rag pickers who pick up these stuff also get affected.
- Even incineration is a problem as burning of the used pads releases chemicals which cause pollution.
How is Heyday different from other commercially available pads?
Heyday is manufactured at facilities in China and Finland. The pads are produced in 12 production lines. A specialized technology is used to make sure that the ingredients used are organic and biodegradable. The napkin cover is made from natural plant-based fibers, which takes years to develop. Plus, the cover has the perfect absorption capacity along with anti-bacterial properties.
Deepanjali says, “A lot of thought and care has gone into producing a superior-quality and safe finished product”.
- Heyday sanitary pad is made of bamboo and corn fiber and hence biodegradable.
- Bamboo fiber with antibacterial properties helps in proper absorbing and the corn starch provides the softness of the pads for comfort.
- There is no plastic component.
- The pads are highly absorbent and healthy.
- The Heyday pads can easily be disposed off without harming the environment.
- Last but not the least, these are affordably priced.