- The Bettii Pod Ltd, founded in 2021 by CEO Elaine Galston, is a start-up dedicated to normalising and destigmatising periods while promoting sustainable menstrual practices with the aim of encouraging more women to move faster to reusables, converting from single use, disposables which can be up to 90% plastic, cannot be recycled and devastate the environment.
- The company's innovative solution to address the challenges faced by users of reusable menstrual products, was to develop a menstrual cup/disc washer for installation within toilet cubicles of various public locations, such as offices, gyms, cinemas, airports, tourist attractions and other public spaces.
- Menstrual blood has recently been discovered to be rich in health markers for such conditions as endometriosis; PCOS; ovarian, cervical and endometrial cancers and fertility issues. This is giving rise to the “at-home” and “collect and send to lab” testing of menstrual blood for these conditions. The ideal collection vessels for the blood testing are menstrual cups and discs. By making it easier for women to adopt cups and discs, the Company hopes to enable women to take advantage of this potentially life-saving emerging market.
- Interface connected The Bettii Pod Ltd with West College Scotland to develop the world's first menstrual cup washer and sanitiser which involved extensive research, design, compliance with regulations, and the creation of a prototype.
- The collaboration between The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland represents a ground-breaking effort to revolutionise menstrual care, promote sustainability, enable at home health testing and address societal challenges such as period poverty, lack of healthcare accessibility for women and environmentalism by improving access to sanitation facilities.
West College Scotland
Environmental and Forestry
Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals
The Bettii Pod Ltd – Revolutionising Menstrual Care
The Bettii Pod Ltd, founded in 2021 by CEO Elaine Galston, is a start-up dedicated to normalising and destigmatising periods while promoting sustainable menstrual practices and enabling access to the testing of menstrual blood for key female focused health concerns. Focused on creating an away-from-home infrastructure for the management of reusable sanitary wear, the company aims to address challenges faced by users of reusable menstrual products, specifically the lack of facilities for cleaning and sanitising menstrual cups and discs in away-from-home environments.
1.8 billion people have periods, leading to 100 billion soiled single use period products being disposed of every year. These products are over 90% plastic and take over 500 years to decompose. The planet cannot support this. Reusables is the largest growth sector in the menstrual market with an estimated 64 million menstrual cups sold per annum with a 56% growth prediction.
The primary challenge being addressed by The Bettii Pod Ltd relates to the absence of convenient facilities for cleaning reusable menstrual cups in public spaces, an issue deemed such an obstacle that it was raised by the UN in a 2021 report which implored governments across the world to consider how to enable access to water within female toilets for menstrual cup cleaning. This obstacle, together with the lack of awareness and understanding of menstrual reusables, hinders the widespread adoption of sustainable menstrual products, affecting issues such as period poverty, environmental sustainability and at-home health testing adoption.
Currently menstrual cup users either do not clean their cup or use bottled water and/or disposable wipes which is not good for health, for the environment or practical. Over 23% drop their cup down the toilet or on the floor. The intended purpose of the Bettii product is to support sustainable menstrual practices, enabling eco-friendly menstrual product adoption and mitigating health concerns related to inadequate washing facilities. This gives potential users confidence to adopt cost saving reusables thereby helping eradicate period poverty and enabling access to the market for at-home testing of menstrual blood for key health concerns.
The company’s innovative solution was to develop an installable menstrual cup washer and sanitiser within toilet cubicles of various public locations, such as offices, gyms, cinemas, stadiums, airports, tourist attractions and other public infrastructures.
Interface introduced The Bettii Pod Ltd, together with their designers Fearsome Ltd, to West College Scotland and with the help of Innovation Voucher Funding, the project to develop the world’s first menstrual cup washer and sanitiser for away-from-home environments was born. The collaboration involved extensive research, design, review of key, potentially limiting regulations, and the creation of a lab-based prototype.
The project looked at designing an installable sanitary washer, identifying related infrastructure requirements, and developing installation training. The outcome of the initial phase is the process design of a sanitary menstrual cup washer with the potential for global installation.
The partnership utilised the technical expertise of the College and active engagement from Bettii Pod’s product development team to design a prototype and toolkit, laying the foundation for commercial viability. The academic team’s support filled crucial gaps in electrical and plumbing expertise, providing insights into design alterations’ impact on sustainability and compliance with standards. This collaborative effort ensures the product’s alignment with industry standards and efficient installation requirements.
The support from the technical academic staff became invaluable providing crucial insights into the entire design process, from the conceptual stage to compliance and manufacturing. Their expertise was particularly beneficial in assessing how design alterations could positively impact sustainability, with a specific focus on Ingress Protection (IP) which determines the different degrees of protection of the enclosures of electrical and electronic equipment against external elements, IK rating which is defined in international standards and indicates a product’s resistance to mechanical impact, and Water Regulations Approval Scheme (WRAS) compliance.
This unique contribution filled a critical gap in Bettii Pod’s capabilities, ensuring that the product design would meet the necessary standards and considerations for long-term success. The academic team’s input was instrumental in addressing challenges that could not be sourced elsewhere or managed internally, highlighting the pivotal role they played in the development of the project.
The lab prototype was developed, eradicating key operational and installation barriers giving the Company much needed assurance as to the commercial applicability of their innovation.
This product boasts a pioneering design that sets it apart as the first of its kind, addressing a critical gap in the market with no comparable alternatives currently available. Full market analysis and proof of concept have now been completed. The lab-based prototype is finalised with patents to be registered in early 2025.
The collaboration between The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland represents a ground-breaking effort to revolutionize menstrual care, promote sustainability, and address societal period, reusables and health challenges. By combining industry expertise with academic insights, the partnership has created a pioneering product with significant potential for societal and environmental impact. Ongoing collaboration will ensure a successful development and integration of the product into the market, emphasizing a commitment to innovation, standards compliance, and mutual success.
The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland continue to work together to develop and introduce the product to the marketplace.
- Supports sustainable menstrual practices
- Offers an eco-friendly menstrual choice
- Addresses period poverty by improving access to sanitation facilities
- Mitigates health concerns related to inadequate washing facilities
- Enables uptake of potentially life saving at-home health testing of menstrual blood
- Patent to be registered in 2025
- Collaboration between The Bettii Pod Ltd and West College Scotland is ongoing to finalise and bring the product to market.