My Experience With Cloth Pads

Eco Femme cloth pads full cycle kitI recently had my first period cycle entirely using cloth pads, I have had two others previously alternating between disposable and cloth pads. During this specific period with cloth pads in my bathroom one day I happened to look at my yellow dustbin. I had no sanitary napkins to dispose this time. There would be no dogs on the streets tearing them apart and leaving the red dipped blood cotton pieces strewn on the street floor. You may ask why on the street, yes we have a dumping space outside our place with dustbins of ours and our neighbours. And despite my wrapping each used pad with an old sheet of newspaper, packing them into a plastic bag, and disposing them into the dustbin in the yard which is cleared on a “daily basis”, the dogs manage to sniff them, and rip them apart. Oh yes if you are thinking, it is a disgusting sight. Perhaps they mistake them for food. And I am responsible for making that happen, oh I so don’t want to get into that.

Well I am glad and relieved to know that besides maintaining a clean and hygienic street for both humans and animals, I didn’t contribute to heaps and piles of non-degradable waste piling away.

On a more personal level, by the third day of wearing sanitary napkins, Stayfree; which despite having a cotton layer on the top, I would consistently get rashes. My bums would be red and full of them and it would be painful even to move. These cloth napkins feel natural on my skin, like cotton cloth hugging my skin. And they have brought that down the rashes drastically and so has applying the Himalaya antiseptic cream. Perhaps years of using these disposable sanitary napkins has taken a toll on my skin. I am still considering which doctor to consult on it, after a checkup with a Gynaecologist who referred me to a skin specialist, the latter prescribed antibiotics, and I missed a dose, and I don’t want to consider taking allopathy again.

On the front of taking care of the cloth sanitary napkins, they need to be washed with regular washing soap or powder and yes dried well. And something that seemed new to me initially is washing away my blood, which now I am accepting of. It could take a 3-4 mins to wash and rinse out the blood, or if in a rush and with a private bathroom, you could perhaps roll up or fold the napkin and keep it in a bucket or your earlier sanitary napkin dustbin for a few hours until you can wash it. And then you can rinse out the bucket or the dustbin.

I need to ensure that my panty is tight and that the pad doesn’t get folded while I am putting it on. I did not have staining issues and also noticed a lighter flow of my blood. I have them in different sizes from Eco-femme and they serve well for heavy and light flow. Also they come in interesting colours and are fun to use. I am yet to try it out while I am travelling and I am certain I would like to give that a try. However, I am concerned that I would need to ensure that there’s sufficient sunlight for it to dry well, to safeguard from any infections; and it may be difficult to do in the rainy season and during winters.

Despite challenges of keeping it dry and having to travelling with it, I am happy with the shift and I would definitely recommend other women to try it and if you find it more comforting, to make the shift.

Read here about how to store your cloth pads.

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