Where does the name Kotex® come from?

The Kotex® trademark was derived from the words "cotton texture". We wanted a product name that was short, easy to say and easy to remember.

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When were Kotex® feminine pads invented?

In hospitals and first aid stations during World War I, Kimberly-Clark's cellulose wadding often replaced cotton which was in short supply. Through the ingenuity of army nurses, the wadding was adapted for menstrual purposes. In 1920 it was introduced as Kimberly-Clark's first consumer product.

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What materials are used to make your pads and tampons?

Our pads and liners are made mostly of wood cellulose fibers -- the same raw materials paper is made from. (We "fluff" these fibres to make the material absorbent and soft.) The outer cover and the moisture-proof shields are made with a moisture-proof plastic such as polypropylene or polyethylene, to help minimize leakage. Our tampons have an absorbent core made up 100% of viscose fibres and a non-woven cover.

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How do I know which product is right?

Every woman's needs are different and this will be a personal choice. To make it easier for you to choose, we have developed a product to fit most every need. The Our Products section will give you an overview of all the products we make. Check it out and find out what pads, tampons and liners are just right for you. And remember that your choice may depend on your flow, your level of physical activity, your chosen outfit and even your mood!

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Which pads are best for teens?

Choosing the "right" pad is really a matter of personal preference; it's not determined by age. However, many teens do prefer to use ultra thin pads, because they're thinner and more discreet than maxi (thick) pads.

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How often do I need to change my pad?

Usually every four to six hours should be fine, but the exact timing will depend on your flow. If you are flowing heavily, you might need to change more often. Just keep an eye on the pad (when it is almost saturated, it's time to change). However, even if you are flowing lightly you should still change frequently for cleanliness.

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How do I dispose of a used pad, liner, or tampon?

Wrap them in a wrapper or toilet paper and put them in the rubbish bin. Some products may be flushed down the toilet; check the disposal information on the product package to be sure.

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What are tampons, and how do I use them?

Tampons are small rolls of absorbent material that are inserted into the vagina to absorb menstrual flow. They come in different absorbencies for varying flows and you should use the minimum absorbency necessary to manage your menstrual flow on a given day. Using a tampon is easy once you get used to it, but it may require some practice. The key is to relax; if you're tense, insertion (and even removal) can become more difficult. Once relaxed, you push a tampon into your vagina, angling the tampon up and toward the small of your back (as your vagina slopes backwards). Always make sure you push the tampon high enough as otherwise it might feel uncomfortable (though make sure you leave the string outside of the body). If inserted correctly, you should not be able to feel a thing! You remove a tampon by pulling on the attached string, which has been left hanging outside the body. It is important to change your tampon at least every four to eight hours.

Please read the usage instructions on the tampon package or on the leaflet inside the pack before using tampons. These will give detailed information on how to use tampons (including insertion and removal) and on Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS), an extremely rare but serious disease that has been associated with tampon usage.

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When can I start using tampons?

Whenever you feel comfortable doing so! You might need to practice a few times and may want to start with a smaller tampon to make it easier.

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Can I leave my tampon in all day if I'm having a very light flow?

Absolutely NOT! Regardless of your flow, tampons should be changed at least every four to eight hours, depending on your needs. In general, it is also a good idea to use the lightest-absorbency tampon you can get away with and change it often--at least every four to eight hours.

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Can I wear a tampon at night?

Yes. However, you must make sure you wear it for a maximum of 8 hours (i.e. a good option is to insert a fresh tampon before you go to bed and change it as soon as you get up in the morning). Otherwise you could try wearing a pad.

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If I use a tampon, will I still be a virgin?

If you've never had sexual intercourse, then yes, you are still a virgin, regardless of whether or not you've used a tampon. A virgin is someone who hasn't had sexual intercourse. Using a tampon may rupture your hymen, which is also ruptured the first time a woman has sexual intercourse. However, the former is NOT common. But contrary to myth, a hymen is not an indicator of virginity. Plenty of virgins have barely-noticeable hymens and non-virgins may even have intact, though stretched, hymens.

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I have heard that tampons contain dioxin. Is that true?

Dioxin is found throughout the environment in trace amounts. Common sources of dioxin include combustion and incineration, industrial processes, and soil and river sediments. Dioxin can also be a by-product of certain bleaching processes, such as chlorine bleaching. By contrast, materials used in KOTEX® tampons are bleached using Elemental Chlorine Free (ECF) processes which significantly minimize the potential for dioxin formation during bleaching. Using extremely sensitive analytical studies, independent laboratories are unable to find any dioxin created by the bleaching process in KOTEX® tampons. These tests measure amounts as low as one-half part per trillion. To put this into perspective, one part per trillion is equivalent to one drop of water in over 11 million gallons.

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Is there any truth to the rumour that asbestos is added to tampons?

We cannot speak for everyone but at no time, either past or present, have our products contained asbestos.

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Please note that the contents of this section are for informational purposes only, and are not intended as medical advice or as a substitute to your doctor's advice. For medical care and advice, you should consult your doctor on a regular basis. If you have any problem which concerns you, consult your doctor immediately.

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