What are reusable nursing pads?
Nursing pads are highly absorbent round bra inserts which pose a triple threat:
- They absorb leaking milk from (super common) engorged breasts, preventing a mess and sometimes a bit of embarrassment in public;
- They offer a soft cushion for sore nipples, and;
- They keep us warm (we do live in Canada, after all).
We've all been there amiright?!
Finding local reusable nursing pads
Finding quality reusable nursing pads for the Mom Friends postpartum care kits was very serendipitous. We source local products for our kits as much as possible and in this case a quick Etsy search led us to the jackpot!
Karen Stoyles is a local holistic nutritionist and mother who lovingly cuts and sews each highly absorbent organic cotton-bamboo velour (yes, JLo style velour) pad under the brand The F Wrap (which stands for Feminine Washable Reusable Absorbent Pad). When we first met Karen over coffee it was immediately clear that she is really passionate about supporting women during pregnancy and postpartum. We are thrilled to be able to include The F Wrap reusable nursing pads in our kits to spread the word and support a local mom and her family. We have also heard from several moms that the pads in their kits were the softest and most durable they had encountered.
We asked Karen a bit about her own experience becoming a mother and launching her services and products:
What called you to support women during pregnancy and postpartum through nutrition and nursing pads?
The most meaningful and profound time in my life was during my own pregnancy and those first few months after giving birth to my daughter. I can't even describe it in words. It not only changed my life, but who I am as a person. I knew then that I was not only taking care of myself and my own body but the life of this baby inside of me. I became an RHN (Registered Holistic Nutritionist) around the same time that I became pregnant, so this personal journey is why I chose to specialize in pregnancy and babies.
How did you get into sewing nursing pads?
I started making cloth pads 2 years ago. The nursing pads are especially meaningful to me because I absolutely loved my nursing experience and the nursing pads I used at the time. I really enjoy bringing cloth nursing pads to market in particular because I want women to know that cloth can be comfortable, affordable and a healthier alternative to disposable products. Plus, they come in fun and cute prints too!
What advice do you have for first-time moms who intend to breastfeed?
Breastfeeding can be difficult so I wanted to say that if anyone reading this is trying and struggling I strongly urge you to reach out to a health professional you know and trust.
Nursing pads are easy to use: Insert the softer velour side of the pad into your bra against your nipple when you are experiencing soreness and/or leakage. You can use them when you’re going out and before bed when you might (hopefully possibly) get a few hours of sleep in a row - and thus fill up with milk again. While most women will have occasional leakage, for those of us with fire hydrant breasts nursing pads can be a 24/7 must-have.
How do I wash reusable nursing pads?
The F Wrap nursing pads in your kits are machine washable at any temperature, so you can throw them into the machine with the gazillion other receiving blankets and spit-up soaked clothes during those first weeks. They can be placed in the dryer, although Karen recommends naturally drying your pads by laying flat or hanging in order to keep them looking newer longer. One caution: Don’t use fabric softener or bleach. This will decrease the absorbency of your pads.