sanitary pads 9

Your guide to cotton sanitary pads

So if you don’t know by now, I make cotton sanitary pads along with my car buckets and sweary hoops. Loads of you want to know about how they work and what’s in them so I’ve written this guide. Ready? Here we go…

Re-useable sanitary pads? Why would I use THOSE?

  • Well, after the initial payment you don’t have to buy pads for several years.  You save a pile of money and a lot of faffing about in the tampon aisle at Asda;
  • It helps the environment because your footprint is smaller and your disposable pads aren’t in landfill;
  • You can thumb your nose at government by never again paying the tampon tax (huzzah!);
  • You’ll be supporting the women who run the small businesses that make pads;
  • You’ll have unique pads to suit you rather than the one-size-fits-all style;
  • You can have a party in your pants with your fave prints and colourways.

So how do you make your sanitary pads?

At their very basic – for light periods or as security against mooncup accidents – they have a cotton print outer fabric. Inside is a double layer of the softest flannelette and a hidden core of layered terry towelling, all stitched to be thin. The heavier your periods, the more layers I add to the core and I add a waterproof layer that’s incorporated into the wings. I can make the pads as long, short, wide, narrow or as protective as you fancy. Tell me what type of periods you have and what your preferred pads are and I’ll make them for you.

How do they stay in place?

No one wants their pad to fall out while roller-blading in hot pants so all of mine have wings. These have covered poppers which snap into place underneath your gusset but I can also make them with Velcro too. It’s up to you (oh, and don’t forget to wear close-fitting knickers while using them).

Are your pads any good for heavy flow.

Hell yes! If you’re prone to ruining a sofa when you cough, I’ll make extra long pads with a monster (yet thin) hidden core and a waterproof layer.

How do I know what type of pad to buy?

Start with your fave disposables. Tell me what type they are or give me the measurements and your cotton pads can be the same. Alternatively, tell me what type of periods you have and I’ll work it out from there.

Can I choose the prints on my pads?

Of course! I have a selection of cotton prints especially for pads but if none of them grab you I’ll give you links to trusted online fabric retailers, you can pick your fave prints and I’ll order them in, often at no extra cost (unless you want to bleed onto the rarest shantung silk at which point all bets are off).

How do I wash the pads?

As soon as you remove the pad, pop it in cold water (NOT hot water because this helps set the stains into the fabric). Lots of women have a little nappy bucket and replace the cold water daily until the pads go in the wash. If you want to add a natural stain remover, go for it but it’s not necessary. You can put the pads in with a normal wash but if this makes you shudder put them in a cycle of their own. The pads will clean up perfectly at the usual 30c degree wash with your normal washing powder. Don’t use fabric softener though. Your foof doesn’t need to smell spring fresh. Oh, and DO NOT put them in your tumble dryer, especially if they have a waterproof layer. Hang them in the fresh air or dry them indoors naturally instead.

What if I want a really particular type of pad, one I can’t see on your website? Can you make it?

Too right I can. Just tell me exactly what you want and in as great a detail as you can. BOOM!

How much do your pads cost?

They are £10 – £12 a pop depending on whether they are for light, medium or heavy periods. Additional materials for heavy periods, such as waterproof layers, nudge up the price a little. The price won’t change, though, if you simply want a slightly different design of pad.

How many do I need?

That varies depending on your period and how often you change or wash your pads. Most women need up to 10 and they’ll last anything up to 7 years. You can start with one or two in conjunction with your usual disposables, phasing out the shop-bought pads as you grow your collection. Just buy in more as you become more familiar with what suits your period. I can make just one pad or entire sets of 6 or 10 (or more!) and I’ll keep a template of your preferred pad in case you order again in the future.

What happens to my used pads when I’m out n about?

Some women improvise with plastic bags but I’ll happily make you a wet-bag, in your fave water-resistant fabric, to keep your used pads safe. I can make them as drawstring bags or little envelope bags with zips. They’ll be small enough to keep in your handbag because they’re made to carry just one or two used pads, meaning they’re discrete too.

Can I use these for urinary incontinence?

For light leaks, yes. There is no reason why these pads won’t protect you against trampoline jumping or shrieking at the telly. If you tell me that you want them for urinary incontinence I’ll include a waterproof layer as standard and make the front end of the pad longer, where the protection is needed the most. However, if you have anything other than light leakage please use pads especially for that purpose.

How do I order them?

Email me directly at [email protected] or message me directly on my Facebook page at We can chat about what you want, I’ll then price it all up and you can decide whether to go ahead with the order. Take all the time you need!

So, is that everything? If not, and I’ve forgotten something, SHOUT. Message me at [email protected] and I’ll be ready to help.