In recent years, there has been a growing awareness of the environmental impact of disposable menstrual products. Many individuals are now making a switch to reusable menstrual pads as an eco-friendly and cost-effective alternative. Reusable sanitary pads are not only good for the planet but also for your wallet. However, if you're new to the world of reusable pads, you might have questions about how to use and care for them. In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through the steps of using and maintaining reusable sanitary pads.
Using Reusable Sanitary Pads: Step by Step
It’s easy to use reusable sanitary pads, and once you get the hang of it, you'll find it as convenient as disposable pads. Here's a step-by-step guide to using them:
Prepare Your Reusable Pad
Before using a reusable sanitary pad, it's essential to wash it at least once. This initial wash helps to improve the pad's absorbency and ensures it's clean for use. Most reusable pads come with washing instructions, so be sure to follow those guidelines. Additionally, choosing a pad made from natural and breathable materials, like organic cotton, can enhance your comfort during use.
Position the Pad
Once your reusable pad is prepared, it's time to position it in your underwear. The pad typically has wings with snaps that secure it in place. The soft, absorbent side faces up, while the waterproof or moisture-resistant side faces down. Ensure that the pad is centred and covers the necessary area to prevent leaks. Some pads also have different levels of absorbency, so consider using one that matches your flow.
Fasten the Snaps
Fold the wings of the pad around the crotch of your underwear and fasten the snaps. This will keep the pad securely in place during your day-to-day activities. The snaps are designed to be durable, ensuring that the pad stays put even during movement.
Wear Comfortable Underwear
Choose comfortable, snug-fitting underwear to hold the reusable pad in place. Avoid loose-fitting underwear that might allow the pad to shift. Opting for underwear with a wider gusset can provide additional support for the pad, reducing the risk of leaks.
Change as Needed
The frequency of changing your reusable pad will depend on your flow. Some people change them every 4-6 hours, while others may need to change more frequently on heavier flow days. It's essential to listen to your body and change your pad as needed to stay comfortable and prevent leaks. Keep in mind that reusable pads are designed for regular use throughout your cycle, making them suitable for both light and heavy flow days.
Remove and Store Used Pads
When it's time to change your reusable pad, carefully unfasten the snaps, remove the pad, and fold it in on itself with the soiled side facing in. Some reusable pads come with a waterproof pouch or a small wet bag that you can use to store used pads discreetly until you're ready to wash them. This thoughtful design feature ensures that you can manage your pads discreetly, even when you're on the go.
Rinse if Desired
Some people prefer to rinse their used pads under cold water before storing them, especially if they won't be washing them right away. This can help prevent stains and odours from setting in. While rinsing is optional, it can be particularly helpful when you're travelling or don't have immediate access to laundry facilities.
Caring for Your Reusable Sanitary Pads
Proper care and maintenance of your reusable cloth menstrual pads are crucial to ensure they remain hygienic and last a long time. Here's how to care for them:
Before washing your used pads, give them a quick pre-treatment to remove any excess blood. You can do this by rinsing them under cold water until the water runs clear. Pre-treatment is especially helpful for preserving the pad's appearance and preventing stubborn stains.
Check the manufacturer's washing instructions that come with your reusable pads. Most can be machine-washed in cold or warm water with mild detergent. Don’t use fabric softeners, as they can reduce the pad's absorbency. It's also recommended to wash them separately from other laundry to prevent staining. Using an eco-friendly and fragrance-free detergent is a good choice, as it minimises the risk of skin irritation.
Storing Used Pads
If you can't wash your used pads right away, store them in a waterproof pouch or a wet bag. Avoid leaving them in direct sunlight or in a hot, humid environment, as this can cause odours and bacteria to develop. Keeping a small wet bag in your purse or backpack allows you to manage used pads discreetly and hygienically.
After washing, you can either air-dry your reusable pads by hanging them or lay them flat, or use a low-heat setting in the dryer. Avoid high heat, as it can damage the waterproof layer and elastic components. Additionally, line drying your pads in the sunlight can help naturally disinfect and freshen them, thanks to the sun's UV rays.
If you notice any stains after washing, you can try treating them with hydrogen peroxide or a stain remover before washing them again. Gently scrubbing the stained area with a soft-bristle brush can help lift stubborn stains. Remember that quick action is key to successful stain removal, so address stains promptly.
With proper care, the Reusable Sanitary Pads (Set of 6) can last for several years, making them a cost-effective and eco-friendly choice. However, over time, the absorbency of the pad may decrease, and you may need to replace them. Keep an eye on the condition of your pads, and if you notice signs of wear and tear, consider investing in a new set to maintain their effectiveness and comfort.
Making the switch to reusable sanitary pads is a small yet impactful step toward reducing waste and living a more sustainable lifestyle. By following these steps for proper use and care, you can enjoy the comfort and convenience of reusable pads while contributing to a cleaner environment. Remember that every small change counts, and your choice to embrace reusable menstrual products are a positive step forward for both you and the planet. Taking care of your reusable pads ensures they remain reliable and comfortable throughout their extended lifespan, making it a win-win for you and Mother Earth.
Keep an eye out for forthcoming, in-depth insights and guidance on minimizing waste and embracing a sustainable lifestyle.