‘period.’ has its second season at BATS Theatre the 19th-23rd of March as part of the New Zealand Fringe 2019. In preparation Amy, founder of Ephemeral Theatre and writer of ‘period.’, is trying out some of the products featured in the performance! Hannahpad sent us three pads for ‘period.’ and three pads for Amy to try*. Check out her experience!

Auckland Art Gallery was exhibiting “Collective Women: Feminist Art Archives from the 1970s to the 1990s”. I was bleeding in the Auckland Art Gallery’s bright black bathroom preparing to try Hannahpads for the first time. The second wave feminists would be proud—historians you can correct me if I am wrong.

I clipped a medium Hannahpad to my black high-waisted briefs and felt for the first time how seriously soft reusable organic cotton pads can be! I checked in the mirror whether or not the slight bulk was visible—it was not. When I was younger, I feared people would see the bulge of the single-use pads and mock me for wearing a nappy but I’ve realised clothing is a marvellous thing. There is nothing a snug pair of underwear, a pair of jeans, or a pair of baggy pants can’t conceal—if you want them too. The medium Hannahpad felt thicker than the ultra-thin pads I used to wear but they were not visible and to be honest, so extremely comfortable, for pads, that I couldn’t care less.

I wore the Medium organic cotton pad from 12:30noon – 8:00pm that night. I was staying at a family friends house but fortunately, the room had a wee en-suite. I found a large plastic laundry bowl and soaked my pads in there, in the en-suite, for the five days we were away from home.

I only used the large cloth pad for sleeping. It offered great coverage—front to back, perfect for restless sleepers. Now… I have the odd ability to overflow my menstrual cups during the night and always sleep on a folded towel and with a single use liner in (yes, yes, sorry I’ll go buy more cloth pad liners). And, when I used single-use night pads I frequently woke with leaks out the side of my underwear, through the towel, and onto the sheet forcing me to sigh and make that wet-feeling-period-walk to the bathroom.

I wasn’t going to risk it! Especially since I was staying at someone else’s house. I slept on a towel and hoped for the best. Well! I was blown away. No blotches on the towel. Not a single spec! Yes, there was some leakage from the absorbent liner through to the seams of the cloth pad but it hadn’t gone elsewhere. From 10:00pm to 7:30am the following morning the Hannahpad kept my sheets clean!

For Day two I was out of medium pads to trial—they take approx. 24 hours to dry in direct sunlight—so I used a menstrual cup with a small Hannahpad as back up. It came in handy… needless to say, the menstrual cup trial did not go well… the review for that will be coming out soon.

Over December 2018 and January 2019, I am thrilled to say I enjoyed trialling Hannahpads for the first time, actually, it was my first time trying any reusable cloth pad! The pads never ‘spun-around’ like I have heard people experience, they are still a brilliant beige, and despite the occasional wet sensation that comes from wearing pads of any sort I really liked managing my period with these organic cotton cloth pads.

Instructions for a Freshie:

  1. Wash your new Hannahpads on a hot machine wash, medium spin, with Hannahpad recommended soap—something organic and non-whitening.
  2. Dry them in direct sunlight until completely dry, approx. 16 hours on a mild day.
  3. Store your pads in a cloth bag or in a drawer until you need them.
  4. Enjoy the soft comfort of your Hannahpad while menstruating for 4-8 hours—or until the blood stops neatly soaking away dry.
  5. Either rinse and soak immediately if at home or fold up and store in a wet bag.
  6. Rinse as soon as possible in cold water. Let running water absorb through the whole pad, fold the ends together so the bloody side is facing down towards the sink and squeeze. Repeat until the water runs clear or a dark red/brown.
    NOTE: Refrain from scrubbing the organic cotton or rubbing the organic cotton against itself as this will cause pilling.
  7. Soap up with a Hannahpad recommended soap bar and then rinse (Step 6).
  8. Fill a large laundry bowl with cold water and lay the pad in the water print side up a.k.a facedown.
  9. Soak for 24 hours changing the water every 12 hours or when the water goes murky.
  10. Rinse in cold water and then machine wash on cold, medium spin, with a Hannahpad recommended laundry powder or soap shavings.
    NOTE: You could happily let the soaked and rinsed pads sit for a day until you have a stockpile of cloth pads ready to machine wash.
  11. Dry with the absorbent cloth side of the pad in direct sunlight for 24 hours for maximum sun-whitening potential!

Be patient! Your beautiful Hannahpads will keep their organic cotton white colour if you are patient.

*This is not a paid review.


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