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Cloth Postpartum Pads: A Pad-by-Pad Review

Cloth postpartum pad reviews

My BFF, Adrienne, gave birth to her fourth baby in early August, and was the lucky Mama to test all of the pads in this review. I plan on using these same pads when I eventually have another baby, but I decided I would be a much better PP Pad Party hostess if I didn’t also have a newborn to deal with!

The pads are listed in alphabetical order. She encountered no leaks with any of her pads.

Here’s the full line up, from largest to smallest:

Postpartumpadparty Line Up

 

Cotton Candy Eco Cloth

Cotton Candy Eco Cloth

Pad description: Cotton Candy Eco Cloth pads are topped with fun, high quality cotton woven fabrics, contain heavy bamboo fleece and/or flannel absorbent cores, and are backed with a complementary coloured soft, water resistant micro-fleece. They are fastened with poly resin KAM snaps. All fabrics have been washed and dried prior to construction to minimize shrinkage and to prep absorbent materials. CCEC washes & dries all of the HOBF (absorbent core material) 2-3 times before sewing, but it’ll get more and more thirsty for up to TEN hot washes!) Since CCEC pads don’t have a PUL layer hidden, this will ensure pads are at their comfiest, with tons of breathability and no leaks!

Pad specifications: size: 13″ | absorbency: POSTPARTUM/OVERNIGHT | core contains: 4 layers heavy organic bamboo fleece

Pad review: The Cotton Candy Eco Cloth pad was the first one Adrienne received while she was still pregnant, and I think how pretty is was helped ease her concerns about embarking on the beaver canoe journey with me. (Inside joke… ask her husband!) I prepped the pad for her (because I’m an awesome friend), and CCEC recommends avoiding using the dryer, or at least only drying on low, so as not to cause the pad to lose shape (although they are pre-shrunk). I definitely noticed that it takes a while to hang dry (at least 24 hours) and was still a bit damp after a low dryer cycle. Even without having washed it 10 times (about how long it takes for maximum absorbency), Adrienne didn’t experience any leaks. She found that, compared to some of the others, this one didn’t fade after washing and really held its shape nicely. She would definitely buy more CCEC pads for her stash!

About Cotton Candy Eco Cloth: CCEC is based in Niagara Falls, ON, and officially had their first store stocking April 1st/14 (no foolin’!). Owner Jenna’s experience with disposable postpartum “boat” pads was her inspiration to launch CCEC, and advocate for cloth pad education & usage. Cloth pads are absolutely a life-changing switch, for women’s comfort, safety, reproductive empowerment, and for the sake of our planet. You can read Maman Loup’s CCEC review here.

GladRags

glad rags

Pad description: Color Night/Postpartum Pad | GladRags holders are made out of comfortable cotton flannel fitted with a snap and “envelope” for the inserts. GladRags inserts consist of super-absorbent terry cloth and flannel for maximum protection. GladRags’ Night Pads are longer and wider to provide more coverage while you sleep. In addition to extra coverage, the night holder contains a layer of ultra-absorbent terry cloth. The Night Pad can also be used as a postpartum pad or for heavy flow during the day. (Tip: Freeze the inserts for soothing relief postpartum!)
Each Night Pad includes:
1 Night Holder (approximately 14″ long and 3″ wide at the middle)
2 Inserts

Here’s a picture from their website showing what the “inserts” look like when tucked in the pad:

Pad review: Adrienne really liked the hour glass shape of the Gladrags pad (its my preferred pad shape, too). On its own, she found the pad to be quite trim an still absorbent without even adding the boosters. Adding the boosters, especially both of them, made it too thick for her liking, and the bulk created by using both inserts made it too uncomfortable for sitting. The length of this pad made it great for the early days when she actually got to stay in bed. This pad held up well after multiple washes.

About GladRags: From their website: “Inspired by the simple utility, earth-friendliness, and comfort of cloth diapers, GladRags was founded in 1993 in Portland, Oregon. It began as a home-based business that quickly outgrew the extra bedroom and moved to its own building.  Today, GladRags is still a small company but with a big presence, promoting positive attitudes toward menstruation and making the environment a safer, cleaner place.”

Hip Huggers

HH post partum pad

Pad description: Postpartum/heavy flow/overnight pad | Middle has 2 layers microfiber, top layer charcoal bamboo fleece, back layer PUL. Wings have 2 snap settings.

Pad review: Being made overseas and imported by Hip Huggers, this pad is by far the absolute cheapest in our review stash. Adrienne liked the stay-dry feel of the bamboo charcoal fleece layer, and found the PUL backing reassured her that she would be leak free on longer outings. While too wide for a normal menstrual cycle, this pad (the widest in our stash) made her feel like she was truly protected during those early days. (Trust me, she was already going on outings when her baby was a few days old.) The downside of the PUL backing is that it is very warm, which is particularly noticeable to a new Mom during a Montreal summer.

About Hip Huggers: Angela is based in Victoria, BC. With the birth of her newest little Hip Hugger, she put her postpartum pads to the test! You can learn more about Angela and Hip Huggers in my profile.

Janine’s Place

janine's place

 

Pad description: 17” postpartum pad. Made with one layer of fleece on the back, layers of bamboo fleece in the core, an additional layer of bamboo fleece that extends fully into the wings, and topped with organic jersey in a fun print. Comes with two snaps to be fully adjustable. Measurements: 17” Long, 2.5-3” Snapped

Pad review: Perhaps the most ringing endorsement of the absorbency of this pad was that, after having her water break seconds before hopping into a friend’s brand new car, she wore this pad all the way to the birthing centre. (Who needs to sit on a towel when you have a Janine’s Place pad?!) The pad was drenched when she arrived, but her own car seat and pants were dry. The Janine’s Place pad is best suited for those first few days of heavy flow and ample time lying in bed. It’s definitely too bulky to be worn out of the house, but, like my Janine’s Place overnight pads, (which I love) it’s not meant to be subtle! This pad is the longest one in our review stash, and the most reliable for bedtime/bed-rest.

About Janine’s Place: Janine is located in Woodstock, Ontario and haarecently added mama cloth to her already established sewing repertoire. She also makes a variety of wool products, including cloth diaper soakers, teethers and adorable slippers for the whole family.

Lunapads*

Luna pad

Pad description: Postpartum Pads & Inserts are each 14″ (35.5cm) long and approximately 2.5″ (6.5cm) wide when snapped / folded. Pad Base: 2 Layer, 100% cotton flannel base topped with an absorbent panel made of 2 layers of 100% cotton fleece, and 1 layer of PUL to prevent soaking through. Nickel-free, Silver-plated brass single snap fastening. Insert: 2 layers of 100% cotton fleece.

Pad review: Adrienne thought her Lunapad was the cutest of the lot, with its sweet little elephant print! As is the nature of flannel, that part of the pad did fade significantly. She also found the ric rac ribbon that holds the insert in place got somewhat deformed after washing. It is only in hindsight that Adrienne and I realized she was wearing her Lunapad upside down. You’re actually supposed to wear them with the ric rac ribbon facing up, allowing you to swap out your insert without changing the whole pad. (It’s like an AI2, but for Mama Cloth!) Even wearing it upside down, she didn’t have any issues with leaks. In fact, with the ric rac ribbon and insert under the pad, she didn’t experience the shifting that I’ve seen mentioned in some cloth pad forums. She found the rectangular insert to be extremely absorbent. I have never tried a cloth pad that uses an insert system, so I’m going to give Adrienne’s Lunapad a try overnight during my next cycle and report back, this time wearing it the right way round!



About LunaPads: Jennifer from Lunapads tells me, “Lunapads International is a women-owned and operated social mission-based business based in Vancouver, Canada. Our goal is to help individuals have healthier and more positive experiences of their menstrual cycles, and by extension, their bodies overall. Lunapads’ mission is to create more positive and informed relationships between menstruators, their bodies and the Earth. We embrace a global perspective, in terms of wellbeing and empowerment for women and girls, as well as toward our responsibility with respect to sustainability.”

Mama Cloth

MamaCloth.Review.Product

 

Pad description: Reusable Pad Wrappers: Made from water/odour resistant PUL Fabric. Great for keeping clean/soiled Mama Cloth contained on the go.

100% Cotton Pocket Pads: Great for postpartum, overnights, or heavy days. Made from 100% Cotton Flannel (outer shell), Inserts are made from Cotton Fleece (Hemp Inserts are also available).

Organic Bamboo Velour/Hemp/PUL Backed Pad: This All-In-One pad is SUPER thin but offers absorbency for heavy days. Made from Organic Bamboo Velour (layer touching the skin), Hemp Fleece (Zorb Layer), PUL Backed (for leak protection).

Pad review: Although she found both of the pads from Mama Cloth lost some of their shape after washing, she still found them to perform really well. Something she discovered with the “all-in-one” pad was that she doesn’t love bamboo velour as a top-layer on her pads postpartum. As she put it, sometimes postpartum fluids can be slimy, and of all the absorbent fabrics, the bamboo velour was the least effective at dealing with that sliminess. The “pocket pad” is designed to be able to put a booster both on top and underneath. She found the booster on top shifted too much, but liked the booster underneath (like when she was using her Lunapad upside down!).

About Mama Cloth: Meg tells me, “Hi, I’m Meg! Owner/Operator of Mama Cloth Boutique based out of Ajax, ON. Canada. EST: 2012. After cloth diapering my little one I made the switch to Mama Cloth myself. Since then, cloth has become a huge part of our household! We have switched to many alternatives such as Cosmetic pads, Baby Wipes, Cloth Diapers, Kitchen Cloth & Mama Cloth! I love that we are saving money, reducing waste, and protecting our bodies from harmful chemicals!”

NatraCare*

Natracare

Pad description: Natracare Maternity pads are extra-long and comfortably padded to give confident and secure protection for the natural blood loss experienced after giving birth. The soft, fluffy, absorbent core, made from totally chlorine free pulp, quickly absorbs and locks away the fluid so that the soft, certified organic 100% cotton cover allows your skin to breath whilst at the same time keeping you dry and free from contact with synthetic materials.

Pad review: So, no, Natracare pads aren’t cloth pads. However, we wanted to include a safe, organic, disposable alternative for those not willing to take the plunge into reusables. While traditional pads are full of many unsavory ingredients, including known toxins, Natracare pads are a disposable I’d be willing to try for postpartum (I’ve used their tampons and other pad styles). Adrienne and I were both surprised to discover that Natracare’s New Mother pads don’t have wings. She also found them to be quite thick, as she put it, like “1970s pads.” Without the magical-blue-liquid-absorbing-polymers, Natracare pads probably have to compensate in thickness. I’d prefer to wear a thicker Natracare pad than Kotex, Always and friends, but I do think wings are a necessity on postpartum pads.

About NatraCare: From their website: “Natracare stands for more than just organic and natural products. We are an award winning, ethical company committed to offering organic and natural solutions for personal health care that leave a soft footprint on the earth. For all of our feminine hygiene and baby care products, we use only organic and natural materials that meet the highest organic, environmental and biodegradable standards, sourced from raw material producers that manage and monitor resources respectfully and share our principles.”

Öko Créations

oko

 

Pad description: Heavy flow reusable pad | Made with three layers of absorbent hemp fibre and a breathable waterproof layer, these pads are longer than our regular pads and have two pairs of wings that attach around your underwear. The wings hold the pad in place and make it extremely well suited for nighttime as well as daytime heavy flow or for light bladder leakages. 11 inches long, 3 inches wide.

Pad review: Öko was initially reluctant to let Adrienne test their heavy flow/long pad for her postpartum phase since it is not designed to be a postpartum pad. I assured them that she would take that into consideration, but that I really wanted to include them since Öko makes my hands-down favourite cloth pads in terms of comfort and reliability. Turns out, I’m very glad I talked them into it: the two Öko pads were Adrienne’s favourite day-time pads after the initial, super-heavy bleeding subsided. They’ll be staples in her stash when her regular cycle returns, like they already are in mine. The hemp/cotton blend top fiber provides a natural layer with a staydry feel, and the two sets of wings mean the pad stays put. The pad is also very thin, and was suitable even under leggings. (I wear their liners every day under yoga pants and leggings, and the heavy flow pad isn’t substantially thicker!) Their pads aren’t PUL backed, but rather have a thin, breathable but waterproof layer, which makes them leakproof but not too hot. If Öko were to create a true postpartum pad, Adrienne figures the only changes that would be necessary would be a slightly longer and wider design.

About Öko Creations: From their website: “Since August 2009, Öko Creations has been designing, manufacturing and distributing environmentally-friendly textile products for the whole family. Marie-Noël and Melanie Beetz, sisters with strong ecological and humanitarian values, are at the heart of this family business. Their unique experiences in textile design,  health sciences and travel, combined with a childhood steeped in the smells of fabrics and the whir of sewing machines, led them to this path of entrepreneurship in the field of textile manufacturing.”

Occupied Mind Creations

occupied mind creations PPPP

Pad description: 14″ cotton velour postpartum pad (heavy bamboo fleece absorbency, hidden waterproof PUL, fleece backing), two snaps to adjust fit.

Pad review: Adrienne adored the shape and size of her OMC pad for the immediate postpartum phase. The pad was comfortable, but what Adrienne discovered was that as far as top fabrics go, she is not a huge fan of velour. OMC makes pads with a variety of top fabrics, so this didn’t hold her back from recommending the design, since the fit was great as was the comfort. The velour fabric, she found, didn’t absorb the “slimy” (non-blood) discharge associated with postpartum excretions (this discussion was a fun part of our interview, by the way) the way flannel and hemp/cotton did, so in the future she would opt for a different top fabric.

About Occupied Mind Creations: Alicia tells me, “OMC is based in Dryden, Ontario. I’ve been in business for about 3 years. I didn’t start using cloth pads until about 6 months postpartum, but if I have more kids, I will definitely be using reusable ones! I make cloth pads in a variety of absorbancies, lengths and top fabrics to meet your needs. Custom orders are always welcome!”

Pretty Eco Intimates

pretty eco intimates

 

Pad description: 12.5″ Heavy Overnight/Postartum Pad in a ‘Sirens of the sea’ print. 100% cotton top, 2 layers of absorbent organic hemp fleece, backed in dyed fleece. When snapped, the gusset measures 3″ with an additional snap at 2.5″ for a snugger fit.

Pad review: This pad became known, in Adrienne’s household, as the “stripper” pad, because when she first saw it, she didn’t realize it was a mermaid, and thought it was a stipper on a pole. This brought us to discuss what designs are appropriate on cloth menstrual products. I have an awesome pad with RCMP on it… but every time I change it… they look wounded. Same goes for little miss Stripper/Mermaid. The pad is gorgeous when it’s clean… and of course pads aren’t supposed to be gorgeous when they’re soiled, but any design that features human or human-fish hybrids just looks kinda freaky! That said, Pretty Eco Intimates has tons of other gorgeous top fabrics if you share Adrienne and my fear of a zombie apocalypse. The long and wide back part of this pad made it excellent for her (albeit short) period of bed rest. When not lying down, she found the gusset to be a bit narrower than she would’ve liked for postpartum bleeding, as she preferred the pads with a more uniformly wide centre portion.

About Pretty Eco Intimates: Natalia tells me: “I started my business selling pads in October 2012. I had started using cloth pads myself once my period returned 11 months postpartum. I won my first pad in a Facebook giveaway and there’s no going back to yucky disposable pads & tampons! I decided that I’d love to make and sell and advocate cloth & cups. My business has grown quickly and steadily over the last 8 months I’m very blessed.”

 

* Denotes an affiliate link, I earn a commission via purchases made!





58 responses to “Cloth Postpartum Pads: A Pad-by-Pad Review”

  1. Mylène Bélanger

    since you love them so much and they seem great: Öko Créations

  2. Stephanie

    I’m most excited about gladrags. I’ve heard of them but never been able to try them myself!

  3. victoria W

    I actually really like the one with the elephant print as far as shape and sizing go, would love to try it but can’t tell which brand it is?

  4. tiffany

    I really like the mama cloth and the occupied mind creation. Those would be the first I would try.

  5. jen mort

    i have no preference but i like the pink ones seems like theres less chance of staining

  6. Catherine

    Cotton Candy Eco Cloth would be the one I would be most interested in trying.

  7. Mary R

    I am most excited to try Lunapads, I like the shape and the print was fun!

  8. Christina Dill

    I would love to try the Pretty Eco Intimates 🙂

  9. Amber L

    I am excited to try Pretty Eco intimates.

  10. Norma

    Hip Huggers look more like the type of pad I often wear. I like that one.

    1. Allison

      Do you know where they can be purchased?

      1. Lindsay

        This post is 7 years old so to be honest I don’t know if Hip Huggers is still in business.

  11. Melanie Cain

    I want to try the hip hugger and lunapads! 🙂

  12. Melissa Ostrihon

    I’m excited to support a local mama so Cotton Candy Eco Cloth. 🙂

  13. crystal

    Janies

  14. Amanda Austin

    I think that I would prefer the Oko creations the most of all of these, because of the waterproof backing, natural fibres and the design. I also would use it for overnight and heavy, since I’m not pregnant now. Even though I only use cloth, I’m glad you included the NatraCare. For the first few days postpartum it is easier to have a few disposables on hand, especially if in the hospital.

  15. Christina Swenson

    I am most excited to try the Janine’s Place. It is so long! It seems like it would be the best for bedtime use.

  16. Laura Thiele

    I would most love to try (too indesicive to pick just one) the cotton candy and luna pads

  17. Cheryl W

    There are several but the top three I am most interested in trying would be Gladrags, Mama Cloth and Oko.

  18. The Pretty Eco Intimates or Occupied Mind Creations I can’t decide.

  19. Monica Nicholson

    I think I would really like to try Oko Creations. It looks like it’s breathable which is really what I’m looking for.

  20. Leela R.

    I’m most interested in trying Janine’s Place pads.

  21. Mel

    Based on the reviews I am most interested in trying Glad Rags because I like the option of adding boosters, followed by Oko.

  22. Dominica H.

    The Hiphuggers look good. I like that they have wings.

  23. DOmonique Crump

    Janine’s Place

  24. Bonnie L

    I’m excited about GladRags and Pretty Eco

  25. Hailey Hutchings

    I’m excited to try LunaPads and Janine’s! Janine’s for the first two days and Luna mixed in and after the first two days:-)

  26. Asleep12

    I would love to try the Öko Créations and the Cotton Candy Eco Cloth since those were the two Adrienne seemed to love the most.

  27. amanda townsend

    Im excited to try these products!

  28. Marian F.

    I’d love to try Oko creations, hopefully they’ll come out with a postpartum pad. I like how they have a waterproof backing.

  29. I would really like to try the LunaPads.

  30. Genevieve White

    I want to try Oko Creations!

  31. Rose M.

    My top 3 that I want to try in order from most want to try are the PEI, the Janine’s Place, then the Cotton Candy Eco Cloth. I need lots of length because of the way I bleed.

  32. Katy Emanuel

    Thanks for the detailed reviews. I am most excited to try Oko Creations as I like the fact that it is thinner for going out so no one would notice it.

  33. Amanda W-B

    I would love to try the Hip Huggers. I think I wouldn’t worry so much about leaks with them. I think the Luna Pads are cool too. I have never had a mama cloth with an insert.

  34. Chrissy B.

    I’d like to try Lunapads.

  35. I’ve never tried any mama cloth although I’m dying to switch so I’d love to try them all but I like the sound of the GladRags with the extra inserts!

  36. Anna W

    They are all very beautiful, I would love to try the Mama Cloth pad.

  37. Delacey

    Well I just got in the mail a set of pads from Janine’s Place that I’m most excited to try, as for my next purchase I am seriously considering Öko Créations as you give it such rave reviews.

  38. Ashley F

    The Janine’s Place pads seem amazing for those first few days post partum when it’s really heavy. I would love to try them after I give birth next spring!

  39. Christina H

    I’m interested in trying the Oko pads. I like how thin and comfortable they sound while also being leakproof.

  40. Occupied Mind Creations or Janine’s Place pad

  41. kathy downey

    Pretty Eco Intimates I would chose these first

  42. Melinda W

    Which postpartum pad are you most interested in trying?
    Uh…. ALL of them!!

  43. It’s hard to pick one! I also love Mama Kloth designs- so pretty. I think i would be interested in trying Eco Cotton Candy, they sound very absorbent and comfy. I also like janine’s pads- perfect for the heaviest flow day or after having a baby lol.

  44. Breanne

    Lunapads or Oko Creations. I can’t decide which. The fact you both like Oko the best makes it so tempting but I do really like the idea of a PUL backing as I bleed so heavily.

  45. Rachel

    I’m most interested in the Cotton Candy Eco Cloth pad!

  46. Paula Ball

    These would be for my granddaughter so I’m not sure. I don’t want to ask her because it would be a surprise gift if I won. Their baby is due the last week of Nov. & so far she has six diapers & thinks that will be enough! It’s obvious this is her first (;-} she’ll figure it out.

  47. Devin M

    I am most interested in trying the Janine’s Place pad. It looks like it is the most absorbent and I need to feel confident that I won’t leak!

  48. Kathryn

    I want to try Janine’s Place pads!! I think the bigger the better for post partum!

  49. Lynn B

    Based on your reviews I would like to try Oko Creations the most. These are really helpful as I was thinking I would like to try soft velour or minky topped pads but after reading your reviews I see they don’t absorb the “slimy” bits so I would prefer to try other tops.

  50. Michelle Flaherty

    Ok Creations, because of the two sets of wings which sounds really secure. I have an issue with pads moving around so that one sounds awesome.

  51. megan

    Interested in the biggest one! I’m worried about coverage

  52. […] All of the heavy-flow and postpartum cloth pads I own (I have no idea how many I’ll need, so I will update that also when I get home!). I have a bunch that Adrienne reviewed during the PostPartumPadParty. […]

  53. […] designed for postpartum, but they are my absolute favourites, and were for Adrienne as well when she reviewed a variety of pads for the Postpartum Pad […]

  54. I’m sure my friend who just gave birth will love this post if she reads this. She’s not happy with the pads she’s using now especially that they’re disposable.

  55. Kim Keen

    Hi Lindsay,
    What was your experience like using cloth PP? I am just working on getting a stash organized. Did you use cloth in hospital? Would you recommend the longer ones for the immediate PP stage and while in bed. Right now the longest I have is 11 inches, but the seem pretty long already. I’m fairly petite and usually wear an xs or small. Thank you for the input.

    1. Lindsay

      Hey Kim!! I wrote a bit about it here: https://mamanloupsden.com/2015/09/25/oko-creations-makes-postpartum-comfy-and-waste-free/ I absolutely used cloth during my PP and brought it to the hospital. I used all the ones in this post in fact, and since I was running low, I also used prefolds from my daughter’s diapers!!!! The longer ones were definitely the best for the initial bleeding and while in bed. After that, it was Öko all the way. Send me an email or a message on FB and we can talk nitty gritty!

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Welcome to my Wolf Pack!

My name is Lindsay and I am a 40-year-old mama of four trying to live an eco-friendly, budget-friendly life! I am a substitute teacher and Child Passenger Safety technician in Calgary, Alberta. Join me on my adventures!

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