|LANACare wool nursing pads -- soft, absorbent and reusable!|
Some people never need nursing pads. Some people only need nursing pads for the first few weeks or months. I, on the other hand, am an over-producer. I have a very fast letdown that can be triggered by the thought, "when was the last time I fed the baby?" I leak a lot and I have to wear nursing pads the entire time I'm nursing. With my first child, that was 20 months.
Part 1: Lansinoh Junkie
I used Lansinoh nursing pads the entire 20 months that I nursed my first child. They worked quite well, except when they shifted around (I don't like using the adhesive), which resulted in occasional leaking. They are definitely absorbent (like disposable diapers). But I felt bad about using them. I wanted something more natural against my skin where my baby nursed. Something reusable. Something that didn't result in thousands of tiny pieces of plastic I had to keep track of and try to remember to take to a recycling center. So when I got pregnant with my second child, I decided to try reusable pads.
Part 2: Reusable Nursing Pads Debacle
I liked the idea of wool pads because wool doesn't feel clammy and damp even when it is wet, and because wool is naturally antibacterial and antifungal. I read about wool nursing pads on the Green Baby Guide, but I was scared off by the price of the LANACare wool pads they reviewed. Later I saw that my favorite cloth diaper store Jillian's Drawers sold a few less expensive kinds of wool pads. So I invested in Imse Vimse wool/silk pads and Little Beetle organic wool pads as well as some cotton and fleece/PUL pads (no longer available, as far as I can tell).
None of them worked for me. With my second child, I was going through 3 or 4 shirts in a single day, even when I used wool and cotton pads stacked together (for extra absorption). I didn't have enough bras to keep up with the soaking. So I gave up for a while and tried again a few months later. And then I gave up again. I told myself, I'll try again when I night-wean (which, at 17 months, I still haven't done).
Part 3: At Long Last, Sweet Success
Then LANACare sent me a pair of their Medium 7" Ekstra wool nursing pads (along with an original and softline pair of the mini size pads for extra absorption). As soon as I opened the package, I knew that these pads had promise. They were larger, softer, thicker, and more absorbent (plusher) than my other wool pads. After a few days, I liked the pads they sent me for free so much I turned around and bought another pair immediately. I've used them for several months now, and feel so relieved to have found a green solution to my frequent leaking.
At first I was surprised by how large they are (the LANACare Medium is larger than other pads' large size), but that helps keep them in place and contain any leaks, and also makes them less noticeable (no circle bulls-eye on your breast because the edge of the circle is against your torso). I love them especially at night (which is when my Lansinoh pads most often failed me). They are quite bulky, which I definitely could do without seeing as I'm already a D+ while nursing, but most of the time it doesn't matter. When I need a more discreet pad, I'll use a Lansinoh pad on occasion. Although I know from experience that the Ekstra pads are absorbent enough to handle my letdown on my opposite side when I'm nursing, I do use 1 or 2 cotton pads I already own to absorb the letdown when I remember (I just slip them between my breast and the pad when I sit down to nurse in the glider) so that I don't have to change/clean the wool pads as often. You should also know that you have to clean wool pads differently. It's not a big deal, but you can read about it HERE.
In short, I highly recommend LANACare Soft Pure Woolen Breastfeeding Pads. If you are a heavy leaker like me, their Ekstra pads might be the only nursing pad made of natural materials that will work for you. They are significantly more expensive ($21 and up) than other wool pads (Imse Vimse, Little Beetle), but I think they are the best made and so very soft. If you need pads as long as I do, or nurse more than one child, they will most definitely save you money too. Treat yourself (or a friend) to these breastfeeding pads if you can!
To read more about your other breastfeeding pad options, click HERE to read a roundup by Green Baby Guide.
Full disclosure: Danish Wool Delight sent me free of cost the following pairs of LANACare breastfeeding pads to facilitate this review: one pair of Medium Ekstra pads, one pair of mini original pads, and one pair of mini softline pads.