menu icon

Menstruation Sustainability Prize

Organic Reusable Cloth Pads for Circular Economy and Access to Sustainable Menstruation for All

Eco Femme


The project involves, a product–Eco Femme’s organically certified reusable cloth pads–designed to provide a healthy option for our bodies and the Earth with a production model based on the principles of reduce, reuse, and recycle. Moreover, Eco Femme as a women-led social enterprise from Tamil Nadu, India, is also an innovative design from the organisational perspective of circular economy. Eco Femme’s cloth pads are stitched by local women tailors whose livelihood, and well-being are closely tied to its ecosystem. More importantly, the profit generated through the sales of Eco Femme’s cloth pads are reinvested in their menstrual health education and pad distribution programs for women and girls from low-income backgrounds across India.

Detailed explanation of the submitted project or idea.

Eco Femme was founded in 2010 in Auroville (a UNESCO-recognized intentional community in Tamil Nadu state) by Kathy Walkling and Jessamijn Miedema who started by producing, applying, and selling washable menstrual pads within Auroville. The aim was to produce pads that are both affordable and free of plastic. Today Eco Femme has retailers over 25 countries around the world and more than 60 grassroots and NGO partners across India. All commercially sold pads are organically certified under The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and Eco Femme has been the first in the sector to have this certification for their eco-friendly pads. One cloth pad produced by Eco Femme can be washed 75 times or 3 -5 years, depending on how frequently a pad is used from the time of purchasing. By 2022, Eco Femme has distributed over 1 million cloth pads which consequently saved more than 75 million single use disposable pads from reaching landfills. Eco Femme is a pioneer in menstrual education in India. Every year, Eco Femme continues to enable women and girls to make informed decisions about their menstrual health through their non-profit programs.


Comments from Judges

Amorpol Huvanandana

Co-founder of Moreloop

Menstruation Sustainability Prize

Although I have seen similar ideas in other countries, I think that Eco Femme has created the largest impact I have witnessed so far, with over 1 million cloth pads distributed. Bravo!

They have also generated multiple social contributions through their work, such as improving labor and education. I believe this idea is very difficult to execute well, so I profoundly admire Kathy Walkling and Jessamijn Miedema, who have been working on this business for the past 12 years. Congratulations, you guys are amazing.

See All Winners

Join and contact

Interested in exploring circular design with us? It all starts right here!