When Was the First Sanitary Napkin Developed?


Quick Answer

The modern concept of a sanitary napkin was first developed in the 19th century by French nurses, who composed bandages of wood pulp, an idea that was then used for sanitary napkins. Commercially, sanitary napkins became available in the late 19th century.

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Full Answer

The first sanitary napkin on the market was the Southball pad. In the United States, the first such product was Lister's Towels, made by Johnson & Johnson. Sanitary napkins became more popular in the 1920s when Johnson & Johnson changed the name to Nupak as it was less embarrassing for women to ask for it. Before the development of sanitary napkins, women generally placed anything they were able to find in their underwear, from old rags to rabbit fur to wool, to absorb the blood.

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