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Period blood colour meanings: What your blood can tell you about your cycle

Every period is different.

Some of us get serious cramps. Some of us don’t.

Some of us suffer from back pain. Some of us don’t.

Some of us use tampons. Some of us use pads. And some of us use menstrual cups.

We could go on, but we think you get the idea!

At Fempowered, we’re all about embracing the fact that everybody does periods differently. That’s why we leave you in complete control of choosing which products and absorbency levels you want in your subscription box. They are 100% customisable.

However, whilst most of us know that some bleed more than others and that cycles can vary, one thing that doesn’t get talked about often is blood colour. But there’s actually a huge variance in the tones that you might see! Tuning into the colour of your menstrual blood and understanding what it could mean about your body is a brilliant way to better understand your cycle.

The phrase “knowledge from within” has never been so true.

What period blood colours can mean

Before we dive into what different menstrual blood colours can mean about your body, it’s important to know that if you’ve experienced any changes to your period that are not normal to you, you should consult your doctor. This blog post is not intended as medical advice, but as a way to help you get in tune with your flow.

Grey or black period blood

Grey or black blood is most common at the start or end of a period. It is typically oxidized, which makes it darker. If you see black blood, it is usually simply older blood that has taken longer to leave the body.

Brown or dark red period blood

Extremely similar to black blood, brown is most often just older blood. It typically occurs at the start and end of a period.

Vibrant red period blood

Bright red blood is the freshest! This could be why you experience your period getting darker as it progresses, though there is also nothing wrong with having bright red blood throughout.

Pink period blood

The NHS indicates the pink period blood is common on lighter days of your cycle.

Orange period blood

Less common, orange period blood is likely nothing to worry about and could be a sign of a light bleed. However, it could indicate an infection of some kind or an STD. We’d recommend talking to your doctor just to make sure!

What about period consistency?

It’s also a good idea to get used to what kind of consistency is normal for you and your period, to help you stay in tune with your body.

Clotting

Clotting is when you have blobs in your menstrual blood that are more gel-like than liquid. It is more common to experience on the heavier days of your period or can be a sign that you have a heavy flow. The NHS suggests that you may suffer from heavy periods if you pass clots that are bigger than a 10 pence piece. Check out their information on clots.

Jelly-like

A jelly-like period is often a sign that your blood has mixed with cervical mucus, which is completely and totally normal.

Watery

This usually indicates a lighter flow, or the tapering off of your period.

Not only are periods different between people, but your period may change colour and consistency within a single cycle. It’s therefore important to get used to what your period blood looks like, from first to last day. It may be helpful to make a note of these changes in a period tracker (we have a whole post on our favourite cycle apps here)!

Where did we get our stats and facts from?

The NHS: What causes bleeding between periods?

Medical News Today: Period blood chart

The NHS: Heavy periods

Women’s Health Mag: ​What Your Period Blood Consistency Means About Your Health

October 09, 2020 — Team Fempowered

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