Does Your Period Stop In Water?

Do you ever go swimming or jump in the bath on your period and think your period has stopped in water? Do you need to wear a tampon when you swim? Does period swimwear exist to prevent leaks? This blog post will debunk some myths about periods plus share some facts for your periods and water.

Top things to know about your period in water:
1. Your period doesn’t stop in water.
2. You can still swim when you have a period using period protection.
3. You won’t turn the pool red and you won’t be attacked by sharks.
woman in swimming pool on phone

Why Does Your Period Stop In Water?

The bottom line: no, your period doesn’t stop in water. Although it seems like you’ve stopped bleeding, you haven’t. Nor does swimming delay your period. Instead, your period may reduce in flow due to water pressure (aka buoyancy). The science behind it? Water creates more resistance than air, so when you’re swimming in a pool, in the ocean or relaxing in the bath, the pressure against the vagina’s opening (or genitals) can temporarily (note, temporarily) keep period blood from coming out. 

This can give you the effect that your period has stopped flowing, but in fact it’s just flowing out at a slower rate. Once you get out of the water and the pressure is gone, your flow is likely to return to normal.

Wear Period Protection in Water

As your period doesn’t completely stop, you will still need period protection while in water if you want to prevent having leaks. You will be pleased to hear that you don’t have to avoid the water altogether!

If you can’t or don’t want to use tampons or a menstrual cup, WUKA’s period swimwear is the best option for being in water on your period. They look just like normal swimwear, but they’re waterproof and period-proof. Perfect for your lighter flow days, WUKA’s period-proof swimsuit and bikini briefs both have super-absorbent leak-proof layers built in, making swimming on your period very easy. Period-friendly swimwear means no tampons required and, simple to wear and wash, good hygiene every time.

WUKA Period Swimsuit

WUKA’s Period Swimsuit is not only stylish; it has hidden, leak-proof layers built in to absorb your menstrual blood for all-in-one protection while swimming. It holds about 2 small tampons' worth of blood and is dark-coloured, so you don’t need to worry about stains - though this isn’t something to be embarrassed about! It’s water-repellent on the outside, period-absorbing on the inside.

woman wearing black swimsuit and smiling

WUKA Swim Bikini Briefs

If wearing a two-piece while swimming is more your style, WUKA Bikini Briefs also hold about 2 tampon’s worth and can be paired with your favourite bikini top. The bikini brief has a high leg cut, so you can even wear it underneath any other swimwear of your choice. Either way, you can feel good and look good in the water on your period.

woman wearing swim bikini briefs

If you’re into water sports, an important question often pondered is: can periods affect your performance in sports? Fédération Internationale De Natation (FINA), the international federation recognised by the International Olympic Committee for administering international competition in water sports, has a very strict set of rules regarding what can be worn by swim competitors. Participants must wear only one swimsuit in one or two pieces. Additional items like period pants under swimwear are not allowed, which is where period swimsuits can come in handy for competitive swimming on your period.

woman wearing a swimsuit swimming in ocean

Swimming On Your Period Myths

When it comes to swimming on your period, there are many, many menstruation myths out there. From period blood attracting sharks to your period stopping while in water, we think it’s important to bust these myths, reduce misinformation and know the facts. So, let’s go.

Your Period Stops

As we’ve already addressed, periods do not stop when you’re in water. Your flow may feel lighter due to counter water pressure, but will return to normal afterwards. So, if you’re planning to hit the beach or jump in the pool, you may want to wear a menstrual cup or period swimwear. Also, a cough or sneeze can cause period blood to surpass the pressure, especially if you have a heavier flow, so all the more reason to opt for period protection is free bleeding isn’t an option.

You Will Attract Sharks

Did your mum or grandma ever tell you not to swim in the ocean when on your period because they might attract sharks? This is a very common period myth, yet the simple answer is no: you will not attract sharks. Yes, they are attracted to the smell of blood and other smells too - like urine and bodily fluids - but there is no research to suggest that being on your period makes you more susceptible to shark attacks. Contrary to popular beliefs, sharks can not smell the small trace amount of period blood lost while swimming in the ocean. There are no recorded cases, so don’t worry! Swim away.

woman scubadiving in the sea

The Pool Will Turn Red

If you’re wearing the right period protection while swimming, the chances of leaking in the water are small. Some may opt for wearing a menstrual cup while swimming on your heavier flow days and, on your lighter flow days, you can wear your WUKA period-proof swimwear. Even if you do leak, the blood will simply dissipate, so the pool will not turn red and people are not likely to notice.

Swimming Increases Period Cramps

Low-intensity, aerobic exercise like swimming can actually relieve menstrual cramps and ease period aches and pains. Research shows that swimming may be exactly what you need to reduce your physical and psychological premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms. This will not shorten your cycle, but will hopefully make your time of the month more comfortable, which we think is a win. If swimming on your period isn’t your first choice, check out these 6 exercises to relieve period pain instead.

How Periods Pants Work

Period pants may look like normal underwear but they have the power to fully absorb your period and stop you from leaking. How period pants work is something we love talking about. The absorbent power comes from the special layers of material used in the gusset. The middle layers absorb and lock in the blood, whilst the outer, moisture-wicking layers keep you feeling secure and dry. They can last up to 2 years and they’re easy to wash and care for.

With WUKA Period Pants, the UK’s first reusable period pants, you can completely replace your disposable period products. Goodbye to pads and tampons!

three women wearing bikinis on beach

How Period Pants Protect You In Water

WUKA has created waterproof and period-proof swimwear in the form of a Period Swimsuit and Swim Bikini Brief, great for absorbing light flows in water. Disposable pads and pantyliners are not considered as good options as they absorb water and become ineffective. Low-absorbency tampons and menstrual cups are better options, but they can sometimes be fiddly, invasive and carry risks of toxic shock syndrome - not what you want to be thinking about when relaxing at the beach.

So, there you have it. You can swim on your period without worrying about leaks, red pools or shark attacks!

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