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How to Use Cloth Pads

Are you up for an eco swap that is better for you AND your wallet? Have you considered switching to cloth pads but aren't sure where to start? In this article we cover the benefits and how-to's of using reusable pads. 

cloth menstrual pads

Why switch to cloth pads?

Artificial fragrances, adhesives, and chemical gels are just a handful of the contents in many disposable pads. These extra ingredients can cause irritation and even increased cramping while menstruating. In contrast, Thirsties pads have layers of 100% GOTS-certified organic cotton backed with a waterproof lining. We have customers who switched to reusable pads after struggling with severe cramping and even intense burning sensation with disposable pads. Reusable menstrual pads are simply better for your body. 

What do you need to use cloth pads?

How many cloth pads you need and what size (liner, regular, or super) works best will vary depending on the length of your cycle, intensity of flow, and what other menstrual devices you're using. For full-time pad usage most prefer to change their pad each time they use the restroom which is about every 1.5 to 3 hours. Most need a more absorbent pad at night. So 18 to 24 daytime pads plus 2 to 4 nighttime pads is a good collection for most. We recommend washing in the middle of your cycle so you can essentially double the number of pads you have. 

If using cloth pads as a back up for menstrual discs or cups you'll only need around 10. You probably don't need a lot of absorbency so liners or regular pads should cover it. Cloth pads are also great for incontinence so it's good to have them on hand even between your cycles.

You'll also need a place to store your used cloth pads before you wash them. Thirsties wet bags are perfect for this! Use a clutch bag for your cloth pads when you're out and about. Store used cloth pads in a wet bag or mini wet bag until you're ready to wash them. If you're cloth diapering you can simply throw them in with your little one's diapers.

How to use cloth pads?

Cloth pads are easy to use and more comfortable than throw-away pads. Simply wash once before first use. Snap the reusable pad into your undies. Remove and replace with a new cloth pad after you preferred wear-time. Place the used cloth pad in a waterproof bag until you're ready to wash them. Follow these steps to wash your reusable menstrual pads:

  1. Prewash
  2. Hot Wash with a mainstream Detergent
  3. Hang Dry or Machine Dry on Low
A common question is, what about staining? With a good detergent and hot water taking care of most stain issues, some stains can occur. Sunning your pads, or using Shout stain remover is perfectly safe, and will keep them stain free as long as you have them. You can also rinse your pads with cold water immediately after use to help prevent staining. 
Once clean and dry your cloth pads are ready to reuse. Say good-bye to emergency runs to the store and hello to a product that's good for you and the planet! Thirsties Menstrual Pads are available in Two Packs or a Sampler 3 Pack. If you've tried Thirsties cloth pads we'd love to hear your feedback. Thanks for reading and happy eco-friendly living!


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