The 11 Best Period Underwear of 2022

Thinx's Air Hiphugger is breathable and absorbs a good amount of period blood

We independently research, test, review, and recommend the best products. Healthcare professionals review articles for medical accuracy. Learn more about our process. If you buy something through our links, we may earn a commission.

Best Period Panties

Verywell / Sabrina Jiang

People with periods no longer have to rely solely on pads and tampons to manage their periods. Beyond being excellent alternatives to traditional menstrual products, period panties are environmentally friendly and comfortable. Plus, "they are thick enough to hold menstrual blood and can be less obtrusive than wearing a pad or tampon or menstrual cup,” says Leena Nathan, MD, obstetrician-gynecologist at UCLA Health Westlake Village. 

Reviewed & Approved

We recommend Thinx's Air Hiphugger as the best overall because it's breathable, lightweight, and holds a good amount of period blood. We also like Bambody's Leak Proof Hipster as an absorbent, budget-friendly buy.

Period panties can also help "people who have sensory issues and can’t really tolerate wearing a pad or tampon,” says Andrea Zuckerman, MD, Chief of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology at Tufts Medical Center. Whether you are choosing the underwear for environmental, comfort, or other reasons, Dr. Zuckerman says it's important to look at the “absorbency rating” of each product. “It should be one that is as absorbent as they need for their heaviest period,” she continues.

We researched dozens of period panties and evaluated them for fit, absorbency, feel, materials, and price.

Here are the best period panties on the market.

Best Overall: Thinx Air Hiphugger

4.8
Thinx Air Hiphugger
Courtesy of Thinx.
Pros
  • Breathable fabric

  • Absorbent

  • Large size range

Cons
  • Thin waistband

  • Expensive

Thinx is one brand that has revolutionized the period underwear market with its wide range of panties that are fit for every woman and every type of period, which is why we made the Thinx Air Hiphugger our best overall pick. It's breathable, lightweight, and capable of holding a moderate amount of menstrual blood. 

The company makes it easy for the consumer to determine if the absorbency of this product will work best for them because it details how much blood the underwear holds in comparison to tampons, pads, and menstrual cups. The Thinx Air Hiphugger can hold about two regular tampons' worth of menstrual blood before needing to be changed, and won't leave you with panty lines despite a hip hugger cut.

Material: 78% polyamide and 22% elastane | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XXS-4XL

What the Experts Say

“Environmentally period panties are great because they are less waste compared to pads and tampons, and they are a reusable product so people can just wash the underwear and use it again.” — Dr. Zuckerman

Best Budget: Bambody Leak Proof Hipster

Bambody Leak Proof Hipster

Courtesy of Bambody

Pros
  • Affordable

  • Color options

  • Non-bulky

Cons
  • Tight waistband

Budgeting for multiple pairs of period underwear to last you through your menstrual flow can be pricey, but there are a variety of products on the market that can fit your budget. We like Bambody Leak Proof Hipster because it's affordable and is available in packs, so you can get the most for your money.

The underwear comes in a hipster style that feels comfortable and cute all at once. Each pair is made with a bamboo material that feels silky smooth against the skin. They also hold about two regular tampons' worth of menstrual blood so, depending on your flow, you can wear them throughout the day without any worry of leakage. With a variety of colors and sizes, the product makes a great addition to anyone’s menstrual product lineup.

Material: Bamboo and spandex blend | Fit: Can run small | Sizes Available: XXS-2XL

Best for Heavy Flow: Modibodi Sensual Hi-Waist Bikini

Modibodi Sensual Heavy Absorbency
Courtesy of Modibodi.
Pros
  • High absorbency

  • Non-bulky fit

  • Comfortable fabric

Cons
  • Long drying time after washing

Let’s be honest, period underwear for light to moderate flow days is not helpful when you’re experiencing your heaviest flow. But Modibodi’s Sensual Hi-Waist Bikini solves this problem by holding up to four regular tampons' worth of blood before needing to be changed. This makes the underwear our favorite option for sleeping at night or when you’re experiencing your heaviest flow. 

The period panty, which is high-waisted with a stylish lace trim, uses a longer gusset that extends from the back of the underwear all the way to the front. This helps the underwear catch and hold more menstrual blood without causing leaks.

Modibodi uses a bamboo and polyester blend to create breathable and silky underwear that feels good against the skin. So wearing the underwear is not only a comfortable experience, but also a carefree one.

Material: 95% Bamboo Viscose and 5% Spandex | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XS-6XL

What the Experts Say

“If your period is very heavy, make sure to see your doctor to rule out any major problems such as fibroids, endometriosis, or a hormonal issue such as PCOS.  Don't just keep changing your period panties.” Nicole Williams, MD, a gynecologist with the Gynecology Institute of Chicago

Best Thong: Knix Leakproof Thong

Knix Leakproof Thong

Knix

Pros
  • Wide color range

  • Stretchy, flexible feel

  • Hideable shape

Cons
  • Thong doesn't hold as much fluid as other styles

  • Thong style may be uncomfortable for some

Using period panties doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice the style of underwear you prefer. The Knix Leakproof Thong absorbs about one teaspoon of menstrual blood per wear, or about one tampon's worth, so it works perfectly for those lighter days toward the end of your cycle. Additionally, you can wear the thong with a tampon so it provides backup coverage on days when the flow is heavier. 

The fabric—made with lycra and nylon—creates a comfortable but snug fit midway up the waist so you feel secure all day long. Besides being comfortable, the thong is also machine washable, so it is easy to clean in between wears. 

Material: 77% Nylon and 23% Lycra Xtra Life | Fit: Can run small | Sizes Available: XS-4XL

Best Full-Coverage: Dear Kate Nellie Brief Full

Dear Kate Nellie Brief
Courtesy of Dear Kate.
Pros
  • Full-coverage fit

  • Highly absorbent

  • Multiple colors

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Visible seams

Comfort and coverage are key when shopping for period panties. The Dear Kate Nellie Brief offers full coverage from front to back for anyone looking to feel maximum support. The panties are high-waisted with a classic leg line that covers a majority of the upper thigh. Additionally, there are three layers of nylon and lycra fabric to protect against leakage all day long.

The full-coverage briefs can hold up to two tampons' worth of menstrual blood per wear. After wearing, all you have to do is machine wash the briefs on cold before tumble drying them on low. Then the briefs are ready to wear for your next cycle. They're slightly more expensive than some of the other options on our list, but their coverage and absorbency make them worth the splurge.

Material: 76% Nylon, 24% Lycra, 90% Micro polyester, and 10% Elastane (lining) | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XS-3X

Best Extra-Stretchy: Ruby Love Extra Stretch Period Underwear

Ruby Love Period Underwear Bikini Extra Stretch
Courtesy of Ruby Love.
Pros
  • Made of stretchy spandex blend

  • Multiple colors

  • Holds 2.5 tampons' worth of fluid

Cons
  • Visible seams

  • Only available in brief style

The best underwear is the kind that stretches easily over every curve and then settles comfortably against the skin. Ruby Love Extra Stretch Period Underwear does all that while absorbing more than two tampons' worth of menstrual blood. 

The brand promises that the underwear, which is made of 82% ITY knit blend and 18% spandex, is 100% leak-proof. It can be worn alone on light to moderate days of your period flow, or you can pair the underwear with a pad or tampon to create an extra layer of protection on the heavier days. 

Besides being a comfortable fit, the underwear also comes in an expansive size range to fit a variety of bodies.

Material: 82% ITY knit blend and 18% spandex | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XS-3XL

Best for Sleep: Bambody Overnight Period Panties

Bambody Overnight Period Panties

Courtesy of Amazon

Pros
  • Highly absorbent

  • Breathable fabric

  • Stretchy, flexible feel

Cons
  • Visible seams

  • May be too thick for some

Leaks should not be a concern when sleeping, which is why the Bambody Overnight Period Panties make for a great addition to your nighttime routine when you're on your period. The combination of bamboo rayon, cotton, and spandex creates a comfortable pair of underwear that holds up to two tampons' worth of menstrual blood. Just put a pair on before bedtime and the leak-proof design should carry you through until the next day without any spots or leaks.

Material: 95% bamboo and 5% spandex | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XXS-6XL

Best Cotton: Thinx Organic Cotton Period Underwear

Thinx Cotton Bikini
Courtesy of Package Free Shop.
Pros
  • Comfortable material

  • Easy to wash

  • High absorbency

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Limited styles available

Cotton is a very breathable fabric, so it makes sense that you would want to try period panties made of the material. Thinx Organic Cotton Period Underwear is a little more expensive than some other period panties, but the 95% organic cotton material might make it worth the price.

The underwear can hold up to three tampons' worth of menstrual blood per wear, making it one of the more absorbent options on the market. Additionally, the bikini-cut of the panty helps you feel secure without feeling too full-coverage. These panties are also machine-washable, so it is easy to wash the pair and get them ready for the next time you’re on your cycle.

Material: 95% Organic cotton and 5% elastane | Fit: Can run small | Sizes Available: XXS-3XL

Best Lingerie-Style: Neione Sensation Period Panties

Neione Sensation Period Panties
Pros
  • Affordable

  • Lace gives stylish appearance

  • Absorbent

Cons
  • Non-breathable fabric

Who says period underwear can’t be sexy? The Naione Sensation Period Panties don’t sacrifice style with their functional design. This hipster underwear is made of bamboo and cotton that is capable of absorbing about two tampons' worth of menstrual blood, and is decorated with a comfortable lace design on the edges. 

Although the underwear focuses more on style elements compared to other types of period panties on the market, you don't need to be concerned about any leaks. The absorbent material extends from front to back and is fitted to prevent any concerns of leaks throughout the day.

Material: Rayon, Bamboo Viscose, Spandex | Fit: Can run small | Sizes Available: XS-4X

Best for Working Out: Proof Leakproof Hipster Underwear

Proof Hipster
Courtesy of Proof.
Pros
  • Highly absorbent

  • Comfortable fit

  • Curbs odors

Cons
  • Visible seams

  • Limited styles available

Working out while being on your period should not come with concerns of any leaks between squats. The Proof Leakproof Hipster Underwear boasts extended coverage from front to back to address concerns of any leaks. These panties can hold up to five tampons' worth of menstrual blood, making them an optimal pair to use while working out. 

Proof developed a multi-layer Leak-Loc system for its underwear, which makes it capable of holding a high amount of menstrual blood. It works by drawing moisture, both menstrual blood and sweat, away from the body while keeping you odor-free throughout your workout.

Material: 75% Nylon 25% Spandex | Fit: True to size | Sizes Available: XS-3XL

Best Boyshort Style: Victoria's Secret Pink Period Panty Shortie

4.2
Victoria's Secret Pink Period Panty Shortie
Pros
  • Stretchy, breathable fabric

  • Holds 3 tampon's worth of fluid

  • Comfortable boyshort style

Cons
  • Can ride up the leg, making for an awkward fit

When you're on your period, your top two priorities are most likely comfort and coverage. The Victoria's Secret Pink Period Panty Shortie checks both of those boxes with its boyshort-style fit that keeps you feeling covered for hours. These panties can hold up to three tampon's worth of fluid, so they're great for both heavy and medium flow days. Plus, their boxer brief fit provides extra protection around the legs, helping to prevent any potential leakage.

While these panties are stretchy, breathable, and comfortable for almost any user, you may want to note that the longer short cut has a tendency to ride up, which may make for an awkward fit under certain clothes.

Material: 76% Nylon, 24% Elastane | Fit: Boyshort/boxer brief style | Sizes Available: XXS-XXL

Final Verdict

If you’re looking for all-around period underwear that you can wear for most activities and throughout your period flow, we recommend trying the Thinx Air Hiphuggger (view at Thinx). For heavier flow days, we recommend trying the Modibodi Sensual Hi-Waist Bikini (view at Modibodi) because it will give you optimal coverage all day long without any concerns about leaks.

What to Look for in a Period Panty

Absorbency 

You should take into consideration your menstrual flow and pick out a period pantry accordingly. Just like tampons, menstrual underwear is offered in a variety of absorbency options. And, if you are going to purchase more than one pair, you should consider picking out a variety. 

People with periods should consider the “amount of flow on your heaviest day as well as if you have clots, which may sit on the panty and not be absorbed as well,” says Dr. Williams. “Some of my patients will wear a tampon or cup and also wear a period panty as a backup.” Dr. Williams suggests testing the absorbency of the undergarments throughout their period to determine if the product works best for their personal needs.

Style

As with any undergarment, there are a variety of styles and fits available. Do you prefer a boyshort over a brief? Do you prefer more coverage or less? Or an athletic look over something more streamlined? These are all questions you should ask yourself before you start your search. 

Once you’ve answered the questions, another important consideration is the type of material that can aid in the comfort and style of the undergarment. “They are made with a variety of natural and synthetic fabrics depending on the company,” says Sarah Yamaguchi, MD, a board-certified gynecologist with DTLA Gynecology in Los Angeles. ”The outer shell is made from the same material of normal underwear but the moisture-wicking and absorbent layer depends on the brand.” Ultimately, she recommends people find a pair that fits their comfort level and needs. 

Price 

While most period panties tend to be on the expensive side, there are some exceptions. It’s important to keep in mind that period panties are not disposable. You will wear them over and over every month—and think about all the money you will save on tampons!

But Dr. Yamaguchi does recommend having at least one backup pair if choosing to use period panties, which can add to the price. “Women might want to have a backup pair with them just in case and change them on the early side as opposed to waiting until they are leaking,” she says. Some period panties come in bundles, which can help make them more cost-effective. 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do period panties work?

    How exactly period panties work largely depends on the company because each brand uses different types of material to get similar results. “It appears that period panties have many layers of absorbent material which seem to wick away any fluid and keep it inside the panty,” Dr. Williams says. The outer layer of the panty will most likely be made of material similar to what someone is used to wearing with their normal undergarments. The inner portion, on the other hand, is usually made of other material to help absorb and store a woman’s period flow. “They work like normal disposable pads in that they have several layers to trap and hold menstrual blood but they can be washed and reused,” Dr. Yamaguchi says.

  • Can period panties replace pads?

    Period panties replacing the need for pads will largely depend on someone’s specific period flow and how heavy it can get. “While it is unlikely that period panties can replace a pad on your heaviest day, they will probably work pretty well for the tapering off days,” Dr. Williams says. But periods can differ depending on the woman. So for some, period panties would likely replace the need for menstrual pads, cups, and tampons. “If you're a moderate kind of woman, you may be able to wear period panties your entire flow,” Dr. Williams says.

    While they won't replace pads entirely, they can help those who just started their period and aren't ready to transition to other period products. “It is a great option for adolescents who may not feel comfortable with inserting a tampon or menstrual cup and don't want to deal with the hassle of wearing a pad,” Dr. Nathan says. 

  • How often should you change your period panties?

    The duration someone wears the undergarments will again likely depend on how heavy their flow is and what day they're on within their period. “While many of the manufacturers say between eight-12 hours, I advise my patients to change their period panties to their level of comfort,” Dr. Williams says. “If you have a light flow, you may wear them like normal underwear, up to an entire day. If your flow is heavier, you may need a spare pair or two.”

    On heavier days, period panties can also be paired with a tampon or pad to last longer throughout the day. “If women know that they can have a heavy flow and need to change their pads or tampons every four to six hours or sooner, it would be a good idea to use a pad or tampon in addition to the period panties,” Dr. Nathan says. 

  • How long can you wear period underwear?

    How long one pair of period underwear lasts depends on your flow each day. The panties come in different flow levels, and if your flow is lighter, one pair of underwear may last eight hours or more. With a heavier flow, you may need to change your period underwear a few times throughout the day.

Why Trust Verywell Health

As a seasoned health writer, Danielle Zoellner knows the importance of finding just the right product to fit your medical needs. Throughout her career, Danielle has interviewed a variety of experts in the medical and health fields while reviewing dozens of products. Her experience and knowledge in the field work together to help readers like yourself find the best products for your daily life.

1 Source
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Planned Parenthood. How do I use tampons, pads, period underwear, and menstrual cups?