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Troubleshooting Your Reusable Pads

While reusable pads are easy to use, you may run into the occasional situation where you need a little bit of help to navigate a pain point. Most commonly, it may involve washing or fit. Below you'll find answers to the most common difficulties people run into. Of course, you are always welcome and encouraged to reach out to us anytime using the contact form at the bottom of every page and we can give you some more hands on help.

girl with pink hair resting chin hand thinking troubleshooting your reusable pads with teal pad icon in corner on pink background

Washing Issues with Reusable Pads

Your pads are staining

Beyond our suggested care routine, we have a couple of suggestions when your pads aren't coming as sparkly clean as you'd like.  Firstly, the sun. The sun is one of the best stain removers there is!  Put your pads in direct sunlight for a few hours and watch the magic! Secondly, you may wish to go to a routine where you rinse your pads right away after use or where you do a continuous soak. For instructions on how to do these, check out the alternative washing methods blog post here.

Your pads smell icky and you are using them for your period

This generally happens if pads have been left to soak too long.  You can try rinsing several times and then washing.  If they still hang onto the smell, you may want to try a bleach soak.  Use a disinfecting bleach which has 5.25% sodium hypochlorite. Add 1 Tablespoon bleach to 1 gallon of cold water. Soak for only 30 minutes and rinse with hot water, then wash and dry as usual. (Bleach soaks are also recommended to sanitize your pads if you have used them while you had a yeast infection.)

Your pads smell icky and you are using them for bladder incontinence

Occasionally, women will find that their pads start to hang onto a urine smell after washing. This has a very simple and economical fix.  Before washing a batch of pads, simple soak them in a tub of water with a tablespoon or so of baking soda for about 15 minutes.  This will neutralize the smell of urine. Wash and dry as usual.

Your pads don't seem as absorbent as before

This generally happens if your pads have been exposed to fabric softener.  Fabric softener is not recommended, as it coats fibers and reduces absorbency. To remove fabric softener, you will need to do a process called 'stripping'.  Add 1 tsp each of borax, washing soda and calgon to a gallon of hot water. Stir to dissolve and add clean pads, soaking for a few hours or overnight. Wash in cold water without detergent and then do a bleach soak as in the solution just above this one.

Your pads have a bleached out looking spot in the middle

Normal, healthy vaginal discharge can react sometimes with the dyes in the fabric (though we don't see this very often with cotton spandex prints) and leave a discoloured spot that looks like it has been bleached out.  This is unavoidable for some women and does not represent anything wrong.

You're tired of hunting for your pads after a wash and/or dry cycle 

We have a great idea for you!  We suggest a zippered mesh wash bag. You can toss all your pads into it through both the washer and, if you like, the dryer and your pads will be simple to find.

Fit Problems with Cloth Pads

Your pads shift around

The absolute hands-down, bar-none, straight-up most important thing to stop your pads from shifting is snug underwear.  We can't stress this enough.  Without a sticky strip literally gluing your pad in place, reusable pads rely on other things.  Amie Pads have a snap, a fuzzy side that grips and good wing coverage to keep your pad in place, but if you are wearing your well-loved and not-so-form-fitting undies, any pad will slip.

- from front to back
Okay, with that out of the way, if your pads are slipping from front to back, you may benefit from a longer pad. A longer pad tends to stay in place a little more easily than a short one.

 - from side to side
If your pads are slipping from side to side, you may be wearing undies that are a little more narrow in the crotch width than standard undies. If this is the case, you may benefit from adding a second snap which will allow you to cinch your pad in a little snugger across the crotch. A second snap can be added to any pad, at no charge, by leaving us a note at the checkout. 

Reusable Pads are Leaking

You keep bleeding off your pad

Whether it is over the front or the back, or over the sides, leaky pads are zero-fun. Here are a few things to check:

  • Absorbency: this is the simplest answer. Is the absorbency adequate? Are you trying to use a light pad on day 2 of a cycle and it just isn't cutting it? Try going up an absorbency level or changing your pad more frequently
  • Fit: if you are wearing non-snug undies or your pad itself it not working for you, you may need to swap out your undies for some new snug ones or go up to a longer-length pad. You can check out the fit issues in the section above
  • Gushing: Do you have an intense flow (or if you are using your pads for bladder leaks, are you having sudden, intense bursts of leakage)? Even with the most absorbent pads, sometimes flow is too quick for a pad to keep up. If this the the case, we strongly suggest trying an Interlabial pad. These little pads are worn externally, between the labia, and work to slow down flow and direct it to the centre of the pad
  • Non-Centred Flow Pattern: Because everyone's anatomy is different, you may find your flow goes toward the back of the pad, leaving the centre and the front almost unused or, more commonly, you may flow toward the front. In either case, an Interlabial pad will be your new BFF. It will not only slow down flow, but it will direct it to the centre of the pad, eliminating the need for special front or back flow pads

Other problems we haven't addressed? 

Please reach out anytime using the contact form at the bottom of every page.  We want you to be successful at using reusable pads and for it to be easy and enjoyable.  We are here to help!