7 Tips To Clean Your Fabric Menstrual Pads

7 Tips to Clean Your Fabric Menstrual Pads

Fabric menstrual pads are an excellent, eco-friendly alternative to single-use menstrual pads. After all, single-use pads end up in our already overflowing landfills after being used once. However, fabric period pads can be used repeatedly, often for years, before needing replacement. 

Instead of tossing your period pads after using them, you’ll wash them and wear them again. One of the critical questions surrounding the switch to cloth period pads is how to clean your fabric menstrual pads. The good news is that it’s pretty easy to clean reusable menstrual pads. 

Let’s look at the most commonly asked questions, like when to wash them? How to handle menstruation odor? And whether you should soak your pads? Menstrual pads are cost-effective and environmentally friendly, but they do require some extra attention to keep them fresh and clean before each use.  

Should I hand wash my pads or run them through the washing machine?

Whether you wash your pads by hand or run them through the washing machine, it all comes down to personal preference. 

But before you do either, we recommend briefly soaking your pad with the used side down in cold water to prevent blood stains. Avoid soaking them in hot water, as this would cause the blood stains to set instead of coming out. After soaking your pad in cold water for about 30 minutes, rinse it out (also in cold water) until the water runs clear.

If you hand wash your pads, avoid using a brush. Instead, you’ll want to rub the fabric against itself to wash out stains. A harsh-bristled brush could mess up the texture of your menstrual fabric pads. Of course, you’ll want to continue using cold water to hand wash your pads.

If you run your pads through the washing machine, you’ll want to select a 40′ Celsius cycle. 

Once you’ve washed your pads, pull and stretch them back to their original shape, so they don’t dry in an awkward form or shrink, a problem associated with cotton pads. 

Should I air dry or machine dry my pads?

It’s also a personal preference as to whether you air dry or machine dry your fabric menstrual pads. If you air-dry your pads, make sure it’s in the sun, as this will help them last longer. On a cloudy day, your best bet is to tumble dry your pads on low heat. 

Should I use fabric softener on my pads?

Use fabric softener on your fabric menstrual pads to keep them smelling clean and fresh. However, fabric softener isn’t good for your reusable menstrual pads as it decreases the pad’s absorbency by causing the fabric to repel liquid instead of absorbing it.

An alternative solution is to add a tablespoon of vinegar to the water. This will have the same effect without decreasing the effectiveness of the pad. 

How often should I wash my pads?

It’s a good idea to wash your reusable pads every two to four days. This is often enough to prevent them from getting soiled and keep them sanitary. If you suddenly find yourself with a stained pad, wash it sooner rather than later to prevent bacteria from resting on the pad.

How do I get the odor out of my pads?

The trick to keeping odor out of your pads is to only soak them face down for 30 minutes in cold water. Soaking them for longer will cause them to smell musty. 

If, after washing your pads, they have an odor, soak them in clean, warm water for a few minutes – five to ten at the most. Add vinegar or baking soda to the water, and then rewash them. 

Should I soak my pads?

Whatever you do, don’t soak your pads overnight. While many clothing items can be safely soaked for hours, reusable pads are different. As mentioned earlier, soaking them for a very long time can cause your pads to smell musty, and soaking them in hot water would set blood stains instead of lifting them out as cold water will. 

Keep soaking your pads for 30 minutes in cold water to keep odor out and freshness in. 

Can I wash my pads with other clothes?

You might imagine a sinkful of pads or a tiny wash cycle just for them. And while this is possible, it’s not necessary. On the other hand, having a sink full of them makes sense if you’re hand-washing your reusable pads. 

But washing machines can carry a lot of clothes, making them ideal for washing your pads with other clothing items. The exception is if your pad(s) are very stained. Washing them with other clothes could result in blood stains transferring to those clothes, so you’ll want to dedicate a wash cycle solely to those pads. 

Just be sure to set the cycle to 40 degrees Celsius. And before you switch them over to the dryer, pull the pads back to their original shape to prevent them from drying in an awkward form. 

Get Your Fabric for Reusable Pads from ProSoftPUL Fabrics

Reusable menstrual pads are a great alternative to disposable pads, and making your cloth pads for periods is the best way to ensure that you get precisely what you want.

We recommend making your pads with three or four layers for maximum protection. We recommend a wicking uppermost layer, an absorbent core layer, a waterproof/water-resistant layer, or an all-in-one absorbent and waterproof fabric

These fabrics make it easy to transition from single-use pads to reusable ones. You’re taking one more step to save the planet by reducing your carbon footprint, and you’ll save money in the long run since reusable pads can last for years. 

Get started with some 4×4 swatches of our fabrics to test and find the ones that work best for you. Then, order by the yard to make your own fabric menstrual pads that you can reuse repeatedly. Get started today at our sister site, Wazoodle.

Visit Wazoodle Fabrics (Worldwide)
Visit Cuddle Plush Fabrics (UK & Europe)
Visit Milpoint (France & Europe)

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