Mom Clothing_: Reusable Menstrual Pads

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Saturday, April 19, 2008 | 1 comments
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Gladrags reusable menstrual padsThanks to Angela for this Frugal Baby Tip!

I've only used the Glad Rags, but I can tell you what I know about them.

They're made of a heavy kind of flannel which we here in the Northwest call 'Logger flannel' (this is the same stuff L.L. Bean makes their heavy flannel shirts out of). It's not terrifically absorbent, but for a woman with a light flow, they work all right.

The wings keep the pad from sliding around in your underwear, and also protect your underwear as they do on the disposable pads. I change them as often as I would change disposable pads. I find them more comfortable for longer than the disposable pads - no chafing. I'll want to switch to them as soon as possible after my twins are born, as soon as the lochia flow slows down, but they're just not absorbent enough to handle the first several days IME.

I toss mine into the diaper pail with the diapers (I use a wet-pail system, so they soak that way), and wash them with the diapers too. Sometimes the diapers get stains from the pads, but these stains have washed out in subsequent washes.

I bought a bunch of Glad Rags at my local health food store, but not enough. Didn't want to pay that much for any more. So I had some flannel scraps (I make, or any rate used to make, hooded costume-type capes/cloaks out of this same flannel, and I have boxes full of scraps) and made myself a few more, setting snaps into the wings with a hammer-type snap setter. These work just as well even if they're not as neat and pretty.

I actually recommend this if you're handy with a sewing machine - buy one Glad Rag, make a pattern from it, buy a yard or two of your preferred flannel (think how many you could make from a single yard of 60" wide fabric?) - serged edges would look professional, but an ordinary zigzag works just fine - and fraying zigzagged edges actually feel softer to me than non-fraying serged edges. I prefer a dark print, plaid, or solid flannel though, because white or cream-colored pads stain permanently. I wouldn't mind making some from other fabrics - twill, or birdseye - and seeing if they absorbed more, and washed as well.

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About Catherine: I have been writing my Frugal Baby Tips since 1982, when I was a young divorced mom of two - for my baby product company, Born to Love. I am now mom to three grown up sons, and a grandma - and happily married to a wonderful man. We have rescued two little dogs, Denny and Dexter - and a rescue cat, Bella.

Taking care of baby and mom needs naturally, does not have to cost a whole lot of money! Money-saving tips on diapering, diaper washing, safety, sling and baby carriers, toys, clothing, nursing, menstrual needs, traveling with kids, and more!

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  1. DJ says:

    Hi there, I have wanted to try cloth pads but was afraid they would be bulky. I will check out glad rags. Thanks

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