Each period is different, just as each individual is different. Some people have heavier flows and some have shorter periods. Regardless of flow or duration, it is important to find a pad that fits your body and lifestyle. To avoid irritation, search for pads made sustainably while being organic and chemical free. In pursuit of the best menstrual pad, consider its level of absorbency, adjustable features and lack of toxic chemicals.
If you are looking for an absorbent pad that provides comfort and discreteness without irritation, L. Organic Cotton Pads are the top choice.
Commercials don't always tell you the long list of ingredients in menstrual pads. Organic cotton pads are free of chlorine, pesticides and other synthetic dyes. Not only can these substances irritate the skin, but they can make periods more painful than they already are. The product itself as well as the online description will list whether it is organic or not. If you are unsure, check the list of ingredients to make sure the pad does not contain chlorine or pesticides.
Just because a pad was sustainably produced does not mean it is organic or eco-friendly. Typically, sustainably sourced pads are eco-friendly and organic. Pads can harm your body and the environment if sourced with harmful pesticides. Pads that truly are eco-friendly are made with biodegradable ingredients and sustainably packaged. When buying pads online and in-store, the description will state if the manufacturer uses sustainable ingredients or not. Look up any ingredients listed of which you are unsure.
If you tend to have a heavy flow, avoid thin or ultra-thin absorbent pads for the first couple of days of your period as this will not be enough protection. Start at greater levels of absorbency and adjust as your flow decreases. If you have a light flow, consider starting with pantyliners. If these do the trick, there is no need for a thin or regular pad. If your period is regular, wear regular pads until you feel as though a pantyliner will provide enough absorbency.
Thin: These pads are close to pantyliners in level of absorbency and are very lightweight. Light pads are perfect for those who have little to no flow during the entirety of their period.
Regular: These pads are less bulky and typically more comfortable than heavier pads, but do not last as long. Wearing these for longer than one or two hours is risky for those with heavy flows. These may be too large for those with a light flow.
Super: These pads are great starting points for individuals with heavy flows but are too bulky for those who have light flows. They can be worn for multiple hours, even during the heaviest hours, and are almost the same size as regular pads but with less absorbency.
Plus: You can use this style of pad overnight regardless of flow for added protection while you sleep. Plus-sized pads usually are very thick and hard to hide under clothing. The more movement, the more these pads do not stay in place.
Look for products that feature wings. These are unfoldable, sticking sides of the pad that prevent blood from leaking onto the underwear or farther. If you have a light period, you still should consider wings to keep blood from leaking to the sides and onto your clothes.
Some products claim to have leak-locking technology to trap and hold blood as well as trap odor. You can wear these menstrual pads for longer periods on average. When buying these products, check if the product contains petroleum-based chemicals rather than naturally sourced ingredients to make this feature possible. Look for pads that use layers of organic wicking to prevent leaks. Consider this feature regardless of your level of flow.
The length of a menstrual pad depends on your body type and how light or heavy your flow is. If you have a heavier flow, purchase pads that have extended length. Although these are more bulky, uncomfortable and harder to conceal, they provide more support for the first few days of your period. If you have a light flow, you likely can get by with just a pantyliner or a menstrual pad that does not feature an extended length.
The least expensive pads cost $3-$6. These often are less sustainable and contain synthetic dyes. Mid-range pads are $7-$10 and provide good absorbency, come in several sizes and have an option for wings. However, if you want a menstrual pad with the best features that is nontoxic, a package typically costs $11-$20.
A. When purchasing pads for on-the-go use, consider a small pack of pantyliners. If you have a larger place to store a heavier style of pads, put individual pads there. One convenient place to store any type of pad besides in a purse or bag is in the glove compartment of your car. Make sure you take them out in the summer when the heat is extreme.
A. Plant-based pads are better for a person’s health as well as the environment. With natural fibers such as banana, organic cotton, bamboo and jute, SAP is replaced by the cellulose-based hydrogel. These pads are comfortable and have a reduced carbon footprint.
What you need to know: This menstrual pad is made with organic cotton and includes over 40 pads per pack. They come in sizes for all levels of flow.
What you’ll love: L. pads do not contain chlorine bleach, pesticides, fragrances or dyes. For every L. product you purchase, one is made accessible to a person who needs it.
What you should consider: This pad is said to stick to skin instead of cloth in some cases.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
What you need to know: This pad is gynecologist tested, hypoallergenic and made for sensitive skin. The product uses no-slip technology to adhere to underwear effectively.
What you’ll love: Free & Clear Maxi Pads are made without fragrances, deodorants or chlorine processing, and safely trap fluid away from the skin for comfortable and reliable protection.
What you should consider: This product has been reviewed as bunching up and being less effective when a user is highly active.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
What you need to know: This product is absorbent for all levels of flow and is designed with a leak-locker top and side panel to prevent overflowing. It is hypoallergenic and dermatologist tested to be suitable for all skin types.
What you’ll love: Rael pads are natural and made with 100% organic, OCS certified, non-GMO Texas cotton grown without toxins, pesticides or synthetic chemicals. This product comes in multiple sizes.
What you should consider: Not many pads are included in the bundle for the price.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon.
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Logan DeLoye writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.