All our reusable menstrual products are made to a high standard of love and care in the UK. They are made individually by hand, and sometimes carry the quirks of uniqueness! But they are all top quality and beautiful, made with only the best fabrics. The price reflects the quality.Your HYF washable pads should last you many years. If they don't, then we would like to know about it. We hope you enjoy using them as you honour your own flow.
Which Absorbency Do I Need?
This is a hard question to answer, so I have come up with a rough way for you to gauge which sized pad you'll need for which days. Here it is:
Mini pads - will take spotting for up to a whole day. Also happy with that dark gloopy gungie flow at the start and end of a period (sorry for graphical descriptions!)
Regular pads - will take a steady light flow for up to 4 hours, or 2-3 lighter splurges
Maxi pads - will take a steady flow for up to 4 hours, or 3-4 heavier splurges
Slim Mega pads - will take more flow than a Maxi, simply because there is more fabric there.
Mega pads - are for those of us who don't believe there is a pad on this planet which can cope with their flow! They can cope with a really heavy flow for up to 3 hours.
Night pads - these are designed to catch trickle leaks that happen when you lie down and run off the end of a normal pad. They are totally brilliant, but are not thick enough for a very heavy night flow. (Contact me to make a thicker version)
Basically, the more fabric there is, the more absorbent the pad. Remember also that the bamboo pads are the most absorbent.
Sizing of the pads Mini-Long, Regular-Long - which do I need?
The bigger the woman the bigger the pad needed, quite simply!
If you are in the range of the smaller dress sizes (UK size 8, 10, 12) you will need the normal sized pads (Mini, Regular, Maxi, Night).
If you are in the range of a larger dress sizes (UK size 14, 16) you will need the 'long' pads (Mini-long, Regular-long) What can happen with a pad that is too short, is that it will move about in your knickers. Also, your flow may miss the pad, which we don't want of course! You will be more comfortable with the longer pads.
If you are in the bigger trouser size (UK size 18 and above) you will need the 'x-long' pads (mini x-long, Regular x-long, Slim Mega). These pads will feel just right for you, anything smaller will just shift around, feel uncomfortable and prabably you'll miss the pad too.
Remember - One Size Does NOT Fit All
A thought about wool vs. PUL
Wool is delightful and totally breathable and lovely. It will suit you for many hours at a time if you have a steady flow, but if you have sudden heavy splurges, then perhaps PUL is your answer, as it is completely waterproof! Having said that, wool backed pads can cope with heavy flow, for a shorter time. I find this question a little difficult, as I have a very light flow myself, only stretching to a couple of maxi pads on 1 day, but I make wool backed Mega pads because my customers have asked me to, and I sell a lot of them . So I'm guessing they work! One more thing to remember is that wool does have that magic quality of allowing moisture to evaporate off it, so your pad does actually relieve itself of some of the liquid. PUL pads cannot do this.
Caring For Your Pads
All Honour Your Flow pads are pre-washed and ready to use. When you do wash them, as far as the fabrics are concerned, they can all be washed up to 60', although the PUL in the Maxis, Megas and Nights would prefer 40'. Personally I have washed mine at all different temperatures to see what happens, and to be honest, I don't see much difference between washing at 30', 40' and 60'. But there is something else you should know about washing cloth menstrual pads, and that is the nature of heating blood. As blood is a protein, it can set with heating (like the white of an egg when you cook it), so there is actually reason to wash low rather than high. And of course, you already know, that's better for the environment too.
Never use fabric conditioners in your laundry! Not only are they full of nasty chemicals which are bad for your liver, but they reduce the absorbancy of cloth pads.
Washing your WOOL BACKED PADS - All these can be washed at 40' with no shrinkage. You can actually wash most of the wool ones at 60'. The item description tells you if you can wash at 40' or 60'. If you do ever have a shrinkage situation after washing you will have to pull them back into shape while they are wet, and there may be some permanent shrinkage. Wool backed pads can be tumble dried in a cool dryer. A hot setting will cause some shrinkage on the 40' pads. Personnaly I wash my pads hot and dry them hot too, and they are fine! Nearly all the current HYF wool pads are washable up to 60'
Washing your cloth tampons
You will need to wash your tampons before first use. They are perfectly happy at 60'. In terms of washing powders, I would recommend an Eco powder like Bio-D or Ecover or even Soap Nuts, as these won't contain the harsh chemicals that some of the main stream powders contain. Because they are worn internally you do need to consider what you might be absorbing.
Never Used Cloth Menstrual Pads Before? How To Get Started
As we make different styles - the rounds and the slims - how will you know which you'll like best? Well, we can't tell you, but probably the only way to find out is to buy 1 slim and 1 round design and see which one suits you best. Most women can happily use either style, but some women do only get on with either one or the other. At first we thought it might be to do with the size of the woman, her hips, pubic bone, etc., but it doesn't seem to be! So, the best thing to do is try one of each. The Slim pads seem to suit more women :-)
Remember - you don't have to buy a whole load of pads today! (Tempting though it may be) You can try one or two now, and once you know which shape you like best and which thickness, then build up your stash. Some women like to buy a whole pile in one go, others buy one or two at a time, integrating them in with disposables, until they have enough to use all cloth menstrual pads.
How to wear your pads
The most important thing to success in wearing your washable menstrual pads is Snug Fitting Knickers! The pads popper into your knickers, and if your knickers are snug, they don't move. If your knickers are too loose then the pads may slip about. Honour Your Flow cloth pads come in different widths, so it's best to bear this in mind. For instance, a 2" wide mini pad will not sit right in knickers with a very wide 4" gusset. Consider investing in some 'period knickers' which you know are a good snug fit and have the gusset width that fits the size of pad you like best. eg. if you are a size 10, then knickers with a 2 1/2" gusset will be good for you.
Women sometimes come to us and ask 'which way up do you wear the pads?' Well, always with the quilting stitching on the top. Always with the label on the back!
Here are some of the Top Tips customers have shared with us. Please do mail us your own ideas... firstname.lastname@example.org
* If you have a very heavy flow, and are concerned that your pad might leak, simply wear 2 pads one on top of the other. You could also wear one pad slightly behind the other. It works! Also you can always contact Honour Your Flow and ask for thicker pads to be made for you.
* If you're wearing a short summer dress and don't want anyone to see your beautiful cloth pad, wear another pair of knickers over the top. (Over your first pair of knickers with the pad in, not over the top of your dress!!)
About the Fabrics
All the fabrics that Honour Your Flow cloth menstrual products are made from are the best quality we can find. Most of the pads are made from organic, and as many as possible, Fairtrade fabrics. All the fabrics next to your skin are natural fibres. We believe this is very important, as it makes wearing your washable menstrual products cool and comfortable, with none of the unpleasant symptoms that have been associated with disposables. You don't get burning, itching or thrush during your period when you use natural fabrics. Some women (enough to take notice of) report lighter bleeding and less pain when they use cloth menstrual pads. You can probably find out more about this subject by doing a Google search.
bamboo fleece - we think this is the ultimate fabric for cloth menstrual pads! It is more absorbant than cotton, anti-bacterial and reduces the smell of your pads.Wow! It's composition is 70% oeko tex bamboo and 30% organic cotton.
bamboo velour - unbelievably soft, you will want to stroke your velour pads till moontime!! (Don't believe me?) The same benefits as the fleece. This is a good thick fabric 80% oeko tex bamboo and 20% cotton.
organic cotton fleece - this is a lovely fabric and comes, via Greenfibres, from a Fairtrade company in Egypt.
why the polyester fleece? - well because it does a great job of holding moisture in the pads. It's not organic or even natural, but it is breathable. It is what we call moisture resistant. This means it will leak if you wring it out or squeeze it hard, but otherwise it keeps blood inside the body of the pad. We mainly only use it on mini pads, regulars and night angels.
what is PUL anyway? - it's PolyUrethane Laminated onto polyester. It's what they use for nappy wraps, and it is very waterproof!
"I just placed another order for some bamboo fleece pads and just wanted to drop you a message saying that I am madly in love with them! they are absolutely beautiful. My moontime is a pleasure now! I am using them along with sea pearls and am so super happy!" (Starr)
"I wanted to thank you for the pads I bought at the beginning of the month, they are really fantastic! I finally got the chance to try them out this week and I love them. There will be no going back to disposables! I bought a couple of other makes of pad from other sites and I can honestly say that the quality of finish on your pads is higher than the others. Your pads are really lovely and so well made. " (Diane, Glasgow)
“I just tried your pads ! Not only are they beautiful, but they are also soft, easy to wash and they stay in place ! Thank you very much.” (Switcher, France)
"just to let you know we had the little parcel a couple of days ago and omg we were so happy with the contents! they are gorgeous! we love the tie dyed ones to bits! lol... my niece was over the 'moon' lol with them! and we loved the way they were presented with the little cotton 'ribbon' bows.....and thank you so very much for the little bags ...you are so kind...they shall be really useful and I think the idea of being able to put the pads into a string laundry bag is fab! particularly for pre teens like my niece who might feel quite awkward about washing the pads ..." (Rose, Swansea)
"I have had more chances to use them and it has really changed my life. I don't get the same soreness, hotness or agonising cramps. They wash beautifully and look and feel as good as new every time. The very large night time pad (that looks like a whale!) is just brilliant - so comfortable, yet not bulky, and you feel safe in bed wearing it.Also, can I say that the pretty designs mean I can go to bed wearing your pads without feeling self-conscious in front of my husband - they are so pretty. " (Lynn, York)
“Thank you, thankyou, thank you! They are lovely - so soft & comfortable and I love the attention to detail - like the coloured poppers,the tie dye patterns, the coloured thread to tie them together, the tiny stitiching, the SOFTness! They are beautifully made - I love them! I once planned to make my own, but that was over a year ago, so I came to the conclusion it was best to find an expert - you! (Marla, Weymouth)
"I have bought a range of these pads and highly recommend them. They are really well made and wonderfully soft next to the skin, they wash really well, and they keep their shape and softness in spite of being (in my case) washed to death! I notice too that I no longer suffer from embarrassing itching or or odour thanks to the natural fabrics that allow the body to breathe." (Christine, Newcastle)