March 6, 2010

Mama is Wearing Cloth Too! – Reusable Menstrual Pads

As an aspiring eco-warrior, I was using cloth for many years before I was cloth diapering my babies...yes, cloth menstrual pads. There are usually two reactions when I talk about this to people - some are freaked out and use words such as 'yuck', 'gross', 'eeewwwww!', whilst the other group are either already doing the same thing or at least intrigued to find out more. To all of the above I want to share a few reasons why using cloth menstrual pads is great for our own health as women and for the well being of the planet.

Less Waste
Of course as any cloth diaper user knows, using cloth keeps unbiodegradeable waste out of the landfill. The same logic applies to menstrual pads and is probably even more important since we women can be using menstrual pads for about 40 years and will generate up to 300lbs of waste if only using disposables. So to give the planet and future generations a break it simply makes sense to use cloth pads.

Less leaks
Cloth pads come in contoured, fitted shapes with wings and everything modern! Cloth pads are very absorbent and since they are less likely to shift, ruffle and leak, they provide assured and gentle comfort whilst wearing.

More Economical
Just like with diapers, once you invest in your initial stash you are in for free ride! It's then a joy each month to happily skip past the sanitary aisle in the supermarket and spend your cash on something far more enjoyable instead.

Chemical Free
With manufacturers increasingly keen to tempt us women into using the latest super thin pads with extra absorbency, you have to wonder about the type of gels and chemicals that are being used to achieve this feat. Similarly tampons that are bleached white, contain dioxins which is a dangerous chemical wherever it is found, much less for it being allowed so up close and personal! You can keep those chemicals and risks out of your undies by opting for cloth instead.

Pretty Things in your Panties!
Cloth pads are not just eco and functional – they are also fashionable! Okay no-one else is really going to see them, but it is a personal joy to replace a dull old disposable with a pretty designed pad!

So there you have it – just a few reasons why cloth has my vote for me as well as my baby. Happy 'moon-time' my sisters!


I'm intrigued, but haven't had a chance to try any as I've been pregnant or breastfeeding (or both) for more than four years now. Someday I'll give them a try!

I echo everything Terri said...I LOVE cloth pads and my Diva cup. I don't think I'll ever use anything else.

I just stumbled upon your post and was curious as to how all the cute colors and prints hold up against staining?

Whether they stain depends on type of fabric and on whether you're able to wet them down with cold water right after use. Polyester doesn't stain often, if at all (Happy Heinys are polyester fleece). Natural fabrics like cotton, hemp, and bamboo (all of the other brands we carry) are mostly stain-free if you can run cold water over them right after using. I don't really rinse them, just dampen them down real quick to prevent the stain from setting. Then when I wash them, everything pretty much washes right out.

My only issue with trying them is that I'm worried about them sliding around and causing leaks. How well do they stay put?