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'It all started with a selfish motive,' says Sankari, a woman entrepreneur who manufactures and sells herbal sanitary napkins (biodegradable). At the beginning, I started making these pads for myself and my close friend and relatives. says the Pozhichalur resident Sankari, who quit her job at an MNC, but later found a vocation manufacturing these napkins.

The entrepreneur who operates from her residence-cum-manufacturing unit employs women from neighbourhood. Unlike other sanitary napkins, these are absolutely plastic-free and made of pure cotton. Above all, the napkins are layered with medicinal herbs that help one maintain good health and hygiene.

Excerpts from her interview

Q: What sparked a thought in you to manufacture herbal napkins?
A: Our generation was the first to use sanitary napkins and for more than a decade we have been using this and only now we have developed awareness about the ill effects of the sanitary pads. But what can be the best alternative for these napkins? That is when I thought about making disposable sanitary napkins, with no harmful chemicals, but with herbal ingredients, The herbal ingredients in this product will help maintain intimate hygiene

Q: How it all Started?
A: To be honest, it all started with a selfish motive. I started making these pads for myself, close friends and relatives. after I thought, why not take this to a bigger level? So, me and my husband, invested some money and i made a few pads all by myself. I approached a few shops that exclusively sell organics products and gave them a few samples. I was surprised, that even before I reached home, I received orders from them. From January 2017. I started making these pads for personal use and from June, I started it as a business and in November I registered the product.

Q: How is it different from others?
A: It is a laboratory certified and a registered product. The napkins are stuffed with cotton and an absorption pad in which we apply powdered herbs like neem and tulsi. Neither the napkin nor the package contains any plastic. Unlike the other products that are available today, Malar Herbal Napkins, does no harm to health. It acts a natural disinfectant and adds to health of the users.

Q: How do you market your products?
A: We don't take any special efforts to market our products. Our customers, who have experienced the comfort and benefits of the products tent to share their experiences with their sisters and friends. It is the word of mouth that gives us more customers. I am very proud that all my customers are supportive and loyal.