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Shelf life of sanitary pads

Updated February 21, 2017

Menstruation is a natural part of growing up for young women. There are two main products to assist in hygiene: sanitary pads or napkins, and tampons.

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Expiration Date

Unlike food products, sanitary pads do not have an expiration date. Kotex explains, "as a paper product they do not 'go bad' and can be used indefinitely." As a result, you will not find a "best before" or "sell before" date on the packaging.


To maintain the quality, store sanitary pads in a cool, dry place. Keep them out of direct sunlight. Heat and humidity can cause potential problems.

Product Problems

Many sanitary pads come individually wrapped. If you buy them in bulk and they change colour, this will not affect the quality. Exposure to excessive heat may weaken the adhesive on the back of the pad; you can substitute safety pins to hold it in place. If the product gets wet or otherwise damaged, discard it.

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About the Author

Tanya Gulliver

Based in Toronto, Tanya Gulliver has been writing professionally for more than 20 years. She is pursuing a doctorate in environmental studies focusing on catastrophic disasters. She was first published as a pre-teen, co-writing a weekly events column for her local paper where her goal was to frequently mention her friends and family in the paper.

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