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Guide to Reusable Pads: Part 1

Updated on December 24, 2015
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What are they?

They are pads that you use during your period cycle that you wash and use again. There are various ways to wash them and keep them clean but right now this article is going to focus on acquiring them.


How Many?

The amount of pads you purchase depends on your personal budget. I would determine this by whether or not you are going to go all out and buy all of your pads at once OR buy and build slowly.

If you choose to purchase all of the pads you need I would calculate this by how many days your period is. Of those days how many times do you typically change your pad? Once you determine that number simply multiply it by the amount of days your period lasts. There is your answer.

Here is a simple math equation:

X*Y=Z

X= Number of pads used in a day

Y= Number of days your period lasts

Z= Number of pads you need to buy

If you choose to slowly build your stash I would recommend buying the heavy absorbency pads first and spreading out your purchases so that you’re not spending too much money at once. I have 10 pads now and that is based on a year and a half of building my stash. It works out because that is the perfect amount for my period so my buying pads has slowed down.

When I first began this journey I would buy two to three pads at the same time every time I bought new ones. Now I haven’t bought a pad in about 3 months and I only use my reusable pads.


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Absorbency Differences?

There are different absorbency levels just like normal disposable pads that you see in the supermarket. They use the same names as well. Sometimes the seller of the pad will say Maxi and sometimes the seller will simply say heavy. Other times you will see overnight used.

The first pads you buy will be testing the waters of what you think your absorbency is on the reusable pad scale. Sometimes women end up having to use postpartum period pads for heavy or overnight use. Sometimes your period may be lighter then you think.

When I started purchasing pads I bought heavy pads only because that way I was set for heavy days and light days.

Length and Size?

The length can really play a factor depending on what kind of period you have. The heavier the absorbency typically the longer the pad is. The lighter the absorbency the shorter it is. Make sure to double check what the length for the heavy pad is when you purchase so that you are comfortable on your period.

The width also plays a factor depending on the size of your thighs and your sitting habits. Make sure when testing your pads keep all of this in mind so that you can make a smarter purchase the next time around.

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Where Do I Purchase?

There are many different sites to explore that have reusable pads. It is like a whole new world on the internet. I will list one retail store and one Etsy shop that I prefer.

GladRags.com - a website that has a variety of pads, liners, and even period panties.

Yurtcraft - an Etsy shop.

Each of these stores have their benefits, though I personally prefer Yurtcraft. The reason being is that she has such a variety with her pads and she also has the length that I love for heavy days.

If you continue to search on Etsy you can find pad kits to build your stash at once but they are more expensive.

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Required Accesories?

You will need a wet bag to store pads that are dirty. If you cannot buy a wetbag then using a plastic bag will do.

I have a wet/dry bag that has a bag for dry pads and also for dirty ones. I would highly recommend getting one of those if you do plan on purchasing a wet bag.

You will need a bucket of some sort for soaking, washing, or pre-treating your pads.

You will need stain remover. I use Resolve Gold and it works charms. I have also used peroxide to remove stains in the past from underwear so that will work as a stain remover too.

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    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 23 months ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi I never heard of reusable pads and washing them, and it does sound like a whole new world. I don't think I would like to go through the bother of doing the washing, but I did use regular diapers with my kids. It would be a way to save money. Thanks for the heads up. Blessings, Audrey