May 27, 2024
postpartum pads

15 Best Postpartum Pads: Buyer’s Guide and Unbiased Reviews

Childbirth is an amazing miracle in every mother’s life. This incredible experience, however, is not without its challenges. One challenge that not many people talk about is the bleeding that usually comes after giving birth.

Whether you’ve had a vaginal or cesarean delivery, your period after birth may be heavier than usual or a little different from your periods before getting pregnant. It’s going to take some time before everything returns to normal so, in the meantime, you need a reliable brand of pads to help you along the way.

Here, you’ll find 15 of the best postpartum pads that you can buy today. I’ve reviewed the strengths and weaknesses of these pads. In addition, I will talk about the following related topics.

  • Product Details (Including advantages and disadvantages)
  • Benefits of Postpartum Pads
  • Buyer’s Guide to the Best Postpartum Pads
  • Tips for Postpartum Recovery
  • Postpartum Survival Kit
  • Other Ways to Help with Postpartum Bleeding

I will also answer some frequently asked questions.

  • What is Postpartum Bleeding?
  • Who needs postpartum pads?
  • When should I start using postpartum pads?
  • Which maternity pads should I use while I am healing postpartum?
  • How many pads will I need?

Without further ado, here’s my guide to the best postpartum pads!

Top 15 Best Postpartum Pads

  1. Poise Incontinence Pads, Original Design, Ultimate Absorbency
  2. Always Discreet Incontinence & Postpartum Underwear for Women
  3. Rael 100% Organic Cotton Menstrual Overnight Pads
  4. Always Maxi Overnight Feminine Pads with Wings
  5. TENA Intimates Overnight Pads
  6. Always Radiant Feminine Pads for Women
  7. TENA Incontinence Underwear for Women
  8. Depend Silhouette Incontinence Underwear for Women
  9. TUCKS Medicated Cooling Pads
  10. Natracare Maternity Pads
  11. ORGANYC Hypoallergenic 100% Organic Cotton Pads Night Wings
  12. Heart Felt Sanitary Reusable Cloth Menstrual Pads
  13. Always Infinity Feminine Pads for Women
  14. Dutchess Cloth Menstrual Pads – Bamboo Reusable Sanitary Napkins
  15. Seventh Generation Maxi Pads, Overnight with wings, Free & Clear

1. Poise Incontinence Pads, Original Design, Ultimate Absorbency – Editor’s Choice: Best Seller & Best Incontinence Postpartum Pads

These pads are originally designed to control incontinence in women. Recently, they are being widely used for postpartum periods. This is no coincidence though as the pads’ strong absorbent powers make them perfect for the kind of heavy bleeding that women sometimes experience after giving birth.

These pads are 16 inches long so you can be confident that you’ll have full coverage even during sleep, making Poise incontinence pads great for overnight use. Poise takes pride at having some of the most absorbent pads available to women today. Its so-called Absorb-Loc Core keeps the wetness away from the sides so you can be sure there are no leaks.

Considering that most new moms struggle not only with the heavy menstrual flow but also accidental leaks and discharge, these pads are actually two or three-in-one deals that cover all your needs down there. This is trusted by many women as postpartum pads that keep them dry all day and night.

  • Unscented
  • Feels soft
  • Wide back
  • Strong and reliable
  • Great for postpartum period and incontinence
  • Bulky and uncomfortable for some

2. Always Discreet Incontinence & Postpartum Underwear for Women

As the name suggests, Always Discreet Incontinence Underwear is manufactured as a discreet way of protecting women against bladder leakage and bleeding. It’s comparable to adult diapers because of its design as padded underwear, but many mommies who try it swear that this underwear is better during the first days of postpartum bleeding than menstrual pads.

It’s designed to hug your curves so you don’t have to worry about fit while you’re on the go. It’s also common for new moms to have some difficulty controlling their bladders at some point, and this underwear is good at absorbing leaks and keeping you dry. It has odor-lock technology for additional leak protection.

  • Absorbs well
  • Can add pads for more protection
  • Comfier than thick menstrual pads
  • Leak protection
  • Elastic bands
  • Wearing a diaper-like underwear
  • Has strong fragrance

3. Rael 100% Organic Cotton Menstrual Overnight Pads – Best Organic Postpartum Pads

Rael 100% Organic Cotton Cover is made from non-GMO cotton grown in Texas. Just like any pad of this caliber, this is super absorbent because it’s designed with a leak-locking core and leak-blocker side panels that prevent stains in your pants, leaving you feeling free all day and night.

Its unique design allows maximum airflow down there so you don’t have to feel damp and uncomfortable even in days of heavy flow. Most importantly, it’s biodegradable so you don’t have to worry about adding up to the piles of trash that take years to biodegrade.  Its all-natural ingredients are good for your skin so you won’t be getting any rashes if you happen to have sensitive skin. The bottom line is this is a product that gives you all you need in a pad without harming the environment.

  • All-natural, organic product
  • Super absorbent
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Expensive
  • Fewer pads in a pack than other brands

4. Always Maxi Overnight Feminine Pads with Wings

Always Maxi Overnight Feminine Pads are the most suitable for the extra heavy flow women experience after delivery. If you’d like the extra protection of an overnight pad during the daytime, this is the one for you.

These pads have a raised core that helps protect you from leaks and hugs your body in a way that other flat pads can’t. They are about 15 inches long so you can be confident that you are well-covered from front to back—particularly from its extra-wide back. During these days when you’re exhausted from breastfeeding and taking care of your baby, you’ll want to just sleep on your back without worry—something that you can do with Always Maxi Overnight Pads.

These pads stay quietly in place, so you can also use them during your daytime activities with your baby. They’re thicker than other pads, but this is exactly what you’ll need in your postpartum pad.

  • Better sleep even in heavy days
  • Odor-free
  • Maximum coverage, no leaks
  • Back is extra wide
  • Its thickness

5. TENA Intimates Overnight Pads

These pads are specially designed for incontinence so you can be sure that they protect against leaks and absorb fluids better than regular maxi pads. They have elastic barriers that prevent leakage while providing maximum comfort during heavy-flow days.

If you’re worried about unwanted smells, TENA incontinence pads have a specific pH balance that neutralizes strong odor instead of just masking it. TENA Intimates Overnight Pads are thinner than other TENA products but they remain super absorbent due to their unique microbead technology that absorbs urine and other fluids up to 3 times their weight. This means they’re comfortable to wear during the day without worrying about leaks.

  • Can be used discreetly
  • Good for heavy flow and night use
  • Extra-long design
  • Comfortable to use
  • Elastic barriers for leaks
  • Some don’t like thinner pads

6. Always Radiant Feminine Pads for Women – Budget Choice

Always Radiant Feminine Pads have 10 times more absorption than other pads. Their absorption capacity is definitely useful for days when bleeding is heavier than usual. If you worry about bad smell during these days, then these pads are just perfect because it has a pleasant smell that eliminates bad odor.

For extra protection, these pads have four wings with two wings on both sides. This ensures that your pad stays in place and gives you maximum coverage. Its one-of-a-kind FlexFoam core conforms to your shape and keeps you protected for up to 8 hours. They also feel light so you’ll barely notice you’re wearing them.

  • Additional wings
  • Very absorbent
  • Leak-free and odor-free
  • High-capacity, yet lightweight
  • Each pack has 40 pads
  • Wings are prone to bunching up

7. TENA Incontinence Underwear for Women

The TENA Incontinence Underwear is a popular choice among women who want postpartum pads that stay securely in place whatever they do all day. Its body-hugging design eliminates common period problems like leaks and pant stains.

It’s designed with a wider fit so it’s great for most body types. It’s also wider between the legs so you know it works double time to prevent leaks from happening. You’ll also enjoy its soft, cloth-like material that makes it comfortable to wear all day. It comes in two sizes: a 29-inch waist and a 40-inch waist.

If regular sanitary pads make you worry and check yourself every few minutes, then underwear pads like this are perfect for you. They give maximum protection and, not to mean, they go well with your pants. You can wear them at work and when you’re out and about all day. Did I also mention that they’re reusable? You’ll save the money that you’re spending now on disposable pads.

  • Super absorbent
  • Maximum coverage
  • Snug fit
  • Odor-protected
  • Affordable
  • Bands are not as elastic as expected
  • You need to be sure about the size you’re buying

8. Depend Silhouette Incontinence Underwear for Women

The Depend Silhouette Incontinence Underwear is a stylish addition to the selection of underwear-style pads available today. This particular brand offers a breathable, cotton-like fabric that makes Depend comfortable to wear overnight and in the daytime.

It has leg elastics that prevent leaks down there, and it comes in varying shapes and colors. There are small/medium sizes with 28 to 40-inch waist and large/XL sizes with 38 to 50-inch waist. Make sure to select the right size for you. You can also choose between black, beige, and purple briefs.

It’s free of latex, lotion, and fragrance so it won’t irritate you if you’re sensitive to them. The only thing is it’s rather expensive for disposable underwear, but if you’re someone who wants maximum comfort and a great-fitting postpartum pad, then the cost can be worth it. You can look at it as feminine briefs for your postpartum period.

  • Stylish feminine design
  • Super absorbent
  • Really snug fit
  • Breathable
  • Elastic waistband
  • Disposable
  • Expensive
  • Maybe ill-fitting if you choose the wrong size

9. TUCKS Medicated Cooling Pads – Best for Swelling & Pain Relief

Tucks Medicated Pads are the best cooling pads for postpartum use. Although they are originally designed for hemorrhoid treatment, its main ingredient is perfect for the kind of swelling and pain that women experience after giving birth. It’s made from witch hazel, which is a plant known for its healing properties. It relieves the itching, burning, and discomfort associated with the tearing and stitches of vaginal delivery.

These are not meant to absorb blood, however, so you’ll have to wear them with a blood-absorbent postpartum pad. Still, these pads are post-natal essentials that you need to prepare before your due date. You’ll thank us later.

If you have sensitive skin, these pads are hypoallergenic, dye-free, and pH-balanced so they won’t irritate your skin. What’s more is they’re biodegradable so disposing of them doesn’t harm the environment. Help speed up your recovery with these medicated pads.

  • Excellent soothing relief
  • Good for hemorrhoids and tears
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Flushable
  • Immediate relief
  • Relief is short-term if discontinued use
  • Has alcohol

10. Natracare Maternity Pads

Natracare Maternity Pads are organic pads designed for new mothers. They’re made from soft organic cotton and doesn’t use any plastic so it’s 100% biodegradable and compostable.

Unlike other organic pads that are thinly made, Natracare pads are thick enough to absorb a lot of moisture and keep you feeling dry and clean. This way, you won’t be suffering from any rashes or skin irritations common with other pads. With its lightweight and soft cotton cover, you’ll feel like you’re wearing a wisp of cloud—exactly what you need while you’re healing postpartum.

  • Certified organic
  • Longer and larger than other pads
  • Soft and thick material
  • Eco-friendly
  • Doesn’t have wings
  • Slightly expensive

11. ORGANYC Hypoallergenic 100% Organic Cotton Pads Night Wings

Yet another organic pad is Organyc, free from harmful chemicals and made from 100% organic cotton. Just like other organic pads, it’s biodegradable, compostable, and hypoallergenic.

It doesn’t use chlorine in bleaching, so it doesn’t irritate your skin, making it safe for skin-to-skin contact. If you’re worried that it’ll move while you go about your day, the good news is it has wings to keep it securely in place.

Another feature that makes it good for your skin is its highly breathable cotton cover. It doesn’t cause irritation down there. This is perfect for you if non-organic feminine or postpartum pads irritate your sensitive skin.

  • Hypoallergenic
  • Zero harmful chemicals
  • Great for sensitive skin
  • Biodegradable
  • Expensive
  • Only 10 pads per box

12. Heart Felt Sanitary Reusable Cloth Menstrual Pads – Best Cloth Postpartum Pads

Another budget-friendly choice is to buy reusable cloth pads. Heart Felt Sanitary Reusable Cloth Menstrual Pads are made from organic bamboo materials, so they are all-natural and environmentally friendly.

They absorb postpartum period really well, and its charcoal-colored cover prevents stains from appearing in your pads. Its natural craftsmanship prevents allergic skin reactions, so they’re great for women with sensitive skin.

They feel so soft and can be used for several hours even during your heaviest flow. Many women who want to reduce their carbon footprint choose reusable pads like Heart Felt. It may be slightly more expensive than regular pads when you buy them for the first time, but they can save you thousands of money in the long run.

  • Reusable and washable
  • Odor-protected and stain-free
  • Good for the environment
  • Super absorbent
  • Not suitable for form-fitting clothing like denim pants
  • Might be a hassle to wash

13. Always Infinity Feminine Pads for Women

The Always Infinity Feminine Pads are lighter and thinner than other pads but just as absorbent. They come in sizes 2 and 4 with size 4 being almost 12 inches long, broad enough for sleeping or lying on your back.

You’ll have plenty of pads on stock when you buy the size 2 at 32 counts per pack. You don’t want to run out of pads especially on heavy days. Its foam material molds to your curves and you can even use their ‘My Fit’ size chart to choose the best Always pad according to your unique flow and panty size.

This particular brand is heavy duty in terms of absorption but thin enough not to be noticeable. This is ideal for daytime use and for girls who want something that supports them well without being bulky.

  • Comfortable to wear
  • Barely noticeable
  • Super absorbent
  • Not long enough for overnight use
  • Shorter wings

14. Dutchess Cloth Menstrual Pads

The Dutchess Cloth Menstrual Pads and Bamboo Reusable Sanitary Napkins are made from all-natural materials. The first thing you’ll notice is the soft cover made with bamboo fiber, which absorbs fluids really well and keeps you stain-free all day. They’re also great for overnight protection and even during your heavy-flow days.

Just like other cloth pads, these are environmentally friendly and do not use harmful chemicals. They can be reused as many times as you’d like because they’re machine washable. The double charcoal bamboo layers also hide stains pretty well so you don’t have to worry about your cloth pad looking dirty over time. Just make sure that you clean them well after every use to avoid bacteria build-up.

Cloth pads are generally more expensive than disposable pads, but that’s just because you don’t have to buy a new set for a long while. You’ll get your money back in no time with this eco-friendly investment. They’re also great for your regular periods after your postpartum periods.

  • Soft and comfortable to wear
  • Sustainable and environmentally friendly
  • Anti-bad odor
  • No harmful chemicals
  • Machine washable
  • Not as breathable as other pads
  • May move out of place when not properly secured

15. Seventh Generation Maxi Pads, Overnight with wings, Free & Clear – Best Maxi Postpartum Pads

Maxi pads are great when you’re having your regular period and even greater when you’re dealing with postpartum bleeding. Particularly, the Seventh Generation Overnight Maxi Pads are tried and tested when it comes to absorbing discharge and protecting you against leaks.

These pads are free from unwanted fragrance, dye, and chlorine so you know they’re free from irritants usually found in other pads. They’re also made of chlorine-free cotton that makes them comfortable and safe to wear during the day and especially at night.

They have a unique PureFit design that molds to your body shape for added comfort and a non-slip adhesive to keep it all securely in place while you go about your busy day. Using maxi pads is especially recommended when you have a heavy flow and might not be able to change pads often.

  • Has wings
  • Super absorbent
  • Good for day and overnight use
  • Long and broad coverage
  • Affordable
  • Free from common irritants
  • Some find it bulky
  • Chlorine-free but not organic

What is Postpartum Bleeding?

It’s normal to expect bleeding and some type of vaginal discharge after giving birth through vaginal or cesarean delivery. Your body has to get rid of the excess blood and tissue that formed in your uterine lining during pregnancy.

Usually, the first bleeding right after delivery is heavier and may be clotted. This happens in the first few weeks until lochia appears. Lochia is a vaginal discharge that lasts for around 6 weeks and ranges in color from creamy white to red. After lochia, your regular period will most likely return unless you continue breastfeeding, which is known to delay your period.

Because of the heavy bleeding that can be expected in the first weeks of your postpartum period, it’s better for you to use postpartum pads in the form of maxi pads, cloth pads, incontinence underwear, or maternity pads. They will be able to handle the heavy flow and unpredictable bleeding cycles associated with your post-delivery healing process. Tampons and regular sanitary pads are not recommended during this time.


Benefits of Postpartum Pads

You’ll need something that you can trust to handle your postpartum bleeding. There are several benefits associated with using postpartum pads that you need to consider if you’re still thinking twice about buying these pads:

1. They can handle heavy bleeding.

It’s not unusual for new mothers to experience heavy bleeding in the days or weeks after they deliver their babies. You might even experience the heaviest flow of your life during this time. As such, you need heavy-duty pads that can handle postpartum bleeding while protecting you from leaks and stains. This is exactly what postpartum pads will do for you, plus other benefits.

2. They help monitor the state of your health.

It’s not advisable to use tampons or menstrual cups during your postpartum period. Using them puts you at risk of toxic shock syndrome and other possible infections. Postpartum pads, on the other hand, are placed outside your body, so they’re generally safer.

Using pads also makes it easier to monitor your level of blood loss. You can expect some heavy bleeding and occasional blood clots, but your pads will also warn you if anything is not normal. For example, large clots or very heavy bleeding can be a sign of a serious health problem like postpartum hemorrhage (PPH). This will need immediate medical attention.

3. They provide extra cushioning.

Postpartum pads are generally thicker than regular pads so they offer thick and soft cushioning for your sensitive perineum which is still a little raw from childbirth. This gives you added comfort during your healing process instead of your genital area brushing against rough underwear.


Buyer’s Guide to the Best Postpartum Pads

Every woman’s postpartum experience is unique. As a general rule, you should choose your maternity pads based on your own needs and unique experience. To help you, here are some features you should look for in postpartum pads and some tips when buying them:

1. Buy different kinds of pads.

It’s important to stock up on different types of pads as the days go by and your needs change. In the beginning, it’s common to experience heavy bleeding so I’d suggest having a stash of overnight pads to manage the heavy in the first few weeks.

After this period or when you notice your flow is getting lighter, you’ll need thinner pads. You can even use panty liners when the bleeding subsides later on.

2. Check the ingredients.

Consider the type of material used in your choice of pads. There are regular postpartum pads that have some chemicals like chlorine in them, while there are cloth and organic pads that are slightly more expensive but are made from eco-friendly raw materials. Cloth and organic pads also pose lower risks of allergic reactions because they are hypoallergenic.

3. Choose between disposable and reusable pads.

These are the two main types of maternity pads to choose from. Many mothers like the convenience of using disposable pads, but these are also the pads that use some chemicals. If you tend to be allergic to mass-produced, cheaper brands, maybe it’s time to switch to reusable cloth pads.

Cloth pads are safer for your skin and definitely better for the environment. They are also a good investment as you’ll save a lot of money by not buying stacks of regular pads that can easily accumulate once you experience heavier bleeding.

Of course, you can also have both according to the time and place you use them. If you’re at home, it’s easier to use reusable cloth pads, which are machine washable. You might want to use disposable pads when you’re outdoors and traveling.

4. Absorption is key.

This one requires a little trial and error. As you try out different pads, you’ll see which brands are more absorbent than others and which one will offer the driest experience. Truly absorbent feminine products cause less irritation and feel clean and dry. Often, thicker pads are more absorptive and will require fewer changes.

5. Go for the softest pads.

After giving birth, expect your genital area to be tender for the first few weeks. You need to help this area heal faster by not irritating it with the type of coarse material found in regular feminine pads. Choose your pads soft and thick to get the best level of comfort during this healing process.

6. Select the right size.

Size is also directly related to your level of comfort during the postpartum period. You’ll need bigger pads for heavy-flow days and thinner, smaller pads for lighter days. Some, like underwear pads, require precision in terms of size as it can spell the difference between enjoying the comfort of the feminine briefs and wasting time and money with the wrong size.

Some brands have size charts to help you choose, so take advantage of such tools.

7. It’s better with wings.

Some women have a great distaste for winged pads, but they can be a lifesaver during your postpartum days. Wings give extra support to your pads and keep them securely in place. This prevents unwanted leaks and stains on your clothing, especially if you’re a mom who has to run errands outside or go to work during the day.

8. Think scented (or maybe not).

Because of the sometimes strong smell associated with your period, you may be thinking you need equally strong scented pads to mask the smell. However, manufacturers might use foreign chemicals to create these scents, which are the usual suspects for severe skin allergies from using pads.

Your safest bet is to buy unscented maternity pads or pads with all-natural odor protection to avoid developing allergies.


Tips for Postpartum Recovery

After giving birth, the uterus is recovering from a tear where the placenta used to be attached. This leads to the shedding and heavy bleeding that women experience postpartum.

During this time, it’s also normal to experience cramps as your body contracts and prevents the tear from getting worse and bleeding excessively. Here are some tips to help you in your recovery and hopefully make things a little bit better every day:

1. Pay attention to the amount of bleeding you experience.

Physical exertion may lead to an increase in blood flow. This is a sign that you need to slow down and rest.

2. Be aware of excessive bleeding.

Even during the first few days post-delivery, it’s not normal to soak a maxi pad within one hour. If this happens, you need to consult your doctor right away.

3. It shouldn’t smell.

Even if blood flow is a little heavy during your postpartum period, this blood shouldn’t have a foul smell. Similarly, your vagina and maternity pad shouldn’t smell bad. If either of them does, then it could be an infection. You need to seek the care of your doctor.

4. If possible, opt out of hospital maternity pads.

They often have a rough texture and are, therefore, uncomfortable.

5. Change your disposable pads two to three times a day or as often as necessary.

6. Never use tampons and menstrual cups.

In general, don’t put anything inside the vagina to avoid infection. It also helps speed up your recovery.

7. Keep a stash of 100 or more postpartum pads.

There isn’t a magic number, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Prepare as many pads as you can before your due date. You don’t want to run out of them when the time comes.

8. For cloth pads, think about the frequency of washing you intend to do.

If you want to limit the number of machine or hand-washing that you have to do, you can prepare 3-4 cloth pads in a day. If you’re not bothered by a pile of cloth pads to wash or if you want to remain dry all day, prepare 6-10 pads in a day.

Postpartum Survival Kit

Aside from postpartum pads, there are other essentials that you can prepare before your due date. They should have a designated corner or cabinet in your home where you can easily access these products after your delivery.

If we haven’t stressed it enough, the first few days and weeks after giving birth are challenging to say the least. You’ll need all the help and the products that you can get. Here’s a list of items that you can include in your postpartum survival kit:

1. Peri Bottle

This special bottle allows you to apply water gently to the sensitive area down there. This is especially helpful if you have stitches. Using rough toilet paper is not recommended as it can mess up your stitches. You can also buy wet wipes.

2. Maternity Underwear

Wearing large panties gives you the extra comfort and legroom that you need in the first few days of your postpartum recovery. Choose undies that offer full coverage while still breathable. This is especially important when using bulky postpartum pads.

3. Hemorrhoid Cream

Whether we like it or not, it’s pretty common to develop a hemorrhoid problem after giving birth. This adds to the pain and burden of your postpartum healing process.

To relieve the swelling, buy a hemorrhoid cream in advance. Believe me, you’ll want it handy when you start feeling the tenderness down there. One popular remedy is witch hazel for its soothing effect on hemorrhoids.

4. Bath Herbs

A warm bath has a therapeutic effect on your mind and body. Adding sea salt and medicinal herbs to your bath aids in the healing process some more. Buy them in advance as it will be hard to make a run for it after.

5. Breastfeeding Gear

This can be included in your hospital bag, but you’ll mostly use this at home. Get ready with your nipple cream, nipple pads, and lotion as they are breastfeeding essentials. You’ll also need a reliable nursing bra.

6. Self-Care

You’ll heal faster if you’re relaxed and you feel good about yourself. Pre-select your go-to relaxation item or method and prepare them if possible. Personally, I like lighting scented candles while taking a warm, milky bath and listening to Whitney Houston. But that’s just me. Store whatever it is that makes you happy. You’ll need it.

7. Laxatives

Last but not the least, you might have problems moving your bowels, so make sure you have laxatives on hand.

After collecting your postpartum essentials, store them in the bathroom where you’ll use them the most.


Other Ways to Help with Postpartum Bleeding

Postpartum bleeding is unavoidable but there are natural ways to control the amount of bleeding that you have to endure. Here are some of them:

1. Breastfeed your baby.

This is the best way to reduce the bleeding during your postpartum days. Breastfeeding releases the love hormone called oxytocin, which causes your uterus to contract more and heal faster.

2. Build your iron supply.

Low iron in your body results in increased bleeding. Eating enough meat and/or iron-rich food helps compensate for iron deficiency. You may also take iron supplements if necessary.

3. Urinate as much as you can.

This makes your uterus less tender and results in less bleeding. Peeing also prevents urinary tract infections. This is why you need to pee within 8 hours after your delivery.

4. Herbal therapy.

Ask your doctor about possible herbal options that can help ease postpartum bleeding. Some known herbs that can do this are witch hazel, cotton root bark, and raspberry leaves.

5. Avoid blood thinners.

Over the counter drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen are blood thinners. They cause you to bleed longer if taken during your postpartum days.


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who needs postpartum pads?

Postpartum pads are necessary for both vaginal and cesarean births. Vaginal deliveries, for one, are commonly linked to postpartum discomfort. An estimated half of these deliveries require stitching, which makes it more uncomfortable for mothers.

With this issue, postpartum pads are used not just to absorb bleeding but to provide a soft cushion to hopefully ease the discomfort from these wounds. Women who undergo c-section still experience postpartum bleeding even if they didn’t deliver vaginally because they experience the same shedding of the uterus.

2. When should I start using postpartum pads?

Most likely, you’ll need pads immediately after giving birth. You may experience discharge as soon as you can walk to the bathroom. The hospitals will give you free thick pads, but they aren’t as comfy as the ones you can buy online. Being prepared with your own pads can make the experience better for you.

3. Which maternity pads should I use while I am healing postpartum?

This is not an easy question to answer as it greatly depends on your personal preference. For me, the best postpartum pads are soft and thick and stay securely in place, so I prefer those with wings. If possible, I would also go for organic pads made from organic cotton or layered with bamboo.

When wearing postpartum pads (even organic ones), it’s important to wear large and breathable underwear. Figure out the ideal pads that will give you the maximum level of comfort even in your heaviest days.

4. How many pads will I need?

Don’t wear one pad for too long. You may have to change your pads 4 to 10 times each day. This means you might consume up two packs of disposable pads weekly. If you’re thinking of trying out reusable ones, you may have to buy around 20 pads, good for 2-3 days. These should be enough to alternate your washable pads.

5. How do I use a postpartum pad?

They’re quite simple. Disposable pads are placed in your underwear. Preferably, these pads should have wings to stick them to your underwear. Once they’re soaked (or after you’ve worn them for 2 or 3 hours, whichever comes first), dispose of the pads.

As for reusable cloth paths, they’re usually easy to clip onto your underwear as they have button snaps. Once full, replace the cloth pad with another and find time to wash and dry them. Most cloth pads are machine washable so it’s easier.

If you notice that your pads are easily soaked in just one hour, you should talk with your doctor for any possible problems.

6. How long will I need pads?

You’ll need them for as long as you’re dealing with some kind of discharge. In some cases, women start wearing pads as early as labor to contain some of the fluids. Many others start using them at the hospital after delivery.

After about six weeks, the bleeding and lochia discharge eventually subside and your normal period returns. Ideally, you should have enough supplies until this six-week period ends.



There are so many options when it comes to postpartum pads that it can get overwhelming sometimes. We hope that our list helps you decide on the best pad for you. Our opinions aside, always consider your specific situation when choosing your pads.

Most new moms experience postpartum bleeding for 4-6 weeks. It might be the same for you, or it might be totally different. What’s important is for you to put your comfort and needs first. Remember that you don’t have to put up with pads that are one size too small or pads that are almost perfect but too expensive. There’s always a pad out there that will be just perfect.

Interestingly, some of the best postpartum pads are those not originally designed as sanitary pads. With the unique requirements of your postpartum days, the possibilities are almost endless. The natural absorbency and thickness of an incontinence pad, for example, makes it ideal for absorbing the heaviest of flows. So don’t close your doors on any pad just because it doesn’t say ‘postpartum’ in the package. You never really know what will work for you until you try.


  1. Brusie, Chaunie. “What to Expect from Your First Period After Pregnancy.” Healthline. Last modified February 28, 2018.
  2. “Witch Hazel.” Webmd. Accessed January 2, 2019.
  3. Timmons, Jessica. “Get the Facts: Why You’ll Need Maxi Pads Postpartum.” Healthline. Last modified March 4, 2016.


Helen is the founder and chief creative officer of ParentsList. Helen is a mom of three, two boys and a girl, her youngest. She’s a stay-at-home mom who just happens to love writing on the side. She loves spending time with her children, especially on warm, cozy Sunday afternoons when everyone’s just relaxed and enjoying each other’s company.

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