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Stinky Cloth pads-- What to do?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
My husband has been complaining that our pads ( my dd and mine) really stink. At first I thought it was just him, but I just finished washing a bunch and they smelled somewhat like cooked broccoli coming out of the dryer. I have dried them in the sun, and they still smell funky.
Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get the stink out? I believe they got that way when left in the soaking pail for too long.

Thanks ladies!!
post #2 of 19
Hmmm... doesn't sound very pleasant. If you assume they got that way from being in the soaking pail too long the problem should be bacteria / protein, right?
I think I would try soaking them in a vinegar solution and then washing them again but maybe someone else around here has a better solution?
post #3 of 19
i rinse mine really well after use and then spray them thoroughly with hydrogen peroxide. hp "eats" protein (bacteria, blood, etc.,.).

since yours already are funky, i would get a bucket, and depending on how many pads you're dealing with, dump 1-2 large bottles of hp, then add hot or boiling water to cover. soak overnight, then wash on hot. if they still smell, you could soak them in bac-out or a similar natural enzyme. i would use 1/8 cup bac-out to 1 gallon water.

hth!
post #4 of 19
Have you considered traditional menstrual care? It would either reduce or eliminate your need for pads.

It's very hard to keep cloth pads scrupulously clean. Blood and uterine tissue is hard to remove from fabric - especially several layers of fabric sewn together.
post #5 of 19
I would try peroxide too. I think that would work well!
post #6 of 19
I wash them with my cloth diapers using either BacOut, Borax, or a combo of both. Your choice of soap may also have something to do with it. DH bought some different soap, and boy did everything stink! Not the clothes, but the pads & dipes were AWFUL! I had to strip a million times & it still sorta smells funny.
post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by KweenKrunch View Post
Have you considered traditional menstrual care? It would either reduce or eliminate your need for pads.
More info, please?
post #8 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by plum tree View Post
More info, please?
Yes, I am very curious too now. What is traditional menstrual care and how does it reduce need for pads?
Thanks!

Jen
post #9 of 19
I don't soak mine at all, I just toss them as in the hamper and wash in hot water. Everything washes right out. But I use my Diva cup if i'm going to be out all day, and usually free bleed at night, so my pads are not super saturated. They usually just have a clump of CM and blood on the surface that I can wipe off with TP when I use the toilet, plus I rinse out the whole vag area with the shower head to loosen anything that has built up during the day.
post #10 of 19
I never had a problem with pads, but my dd's diapers stunk like funky coffee for the longest time. Nothing helped until I switched to Tide. Not my favorite, but I was using bleach because it was so bad.

Good luck.
post #11 of 19
I didn't use a wet pail. Seems a good way for bacteria to have a frenzy to me.
post #12 of 19
How often do you wash them? I wash mine every day almost and that seems to help a lot. I just throw them in with whatever other laundry I am doing that day. I have never had any issue with staining.

The thought of pads sitting soaking oogs me out.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by onelilguysmommy View Post
I didn't use a wet pail. Seems a good way for bacteria to have a frenzy to me.
I agree. I use mine as a backup for my Diva Cup. I rinse them under cold running water, squeeze out the extra water, and hang to dry until laundry day. I do a cold rinse, and SUPER HOT wash, then hang in the sun to dry. I've been using mine for almost 7 years, and no stinky issues here.
post #14 of 19
I started out soaking them all together in a pail as I used them (rinsed them out first) and that led to the stinkiness that you describe. It took several hot water washes with vinegar in the place of softener to get the smell out.
Nowadays each time I use one I put it in a covered pail with water and put on a new one. When it's time to change the new one I take the old one out of the pail, rinse it thoroughly in cool water, and hang it up to dry in our bathroom. Then I dump out the old water, rinse out the pail, and put the next pad to soak. When the pads are dry I put them in a bag to wait until I am going to wash sheets or towels (I wash those on hot, with vinegar). No stink with this method. You just have to not let them sit for that long. I change my pads maybe 3 times a day so they are usually not soaking for more than 6-10 hours at most.
post #15 of 19
Sorry it's taken me so long to get back on this...

Traditional menstrual care is something I am very passionate about. Basically it involves symbolic seclusion during one's Moon Time. Obviously as SAHMs we can't totally separate ourselves, but there is time each day for reflection and collection of moon blood (especially during the first 2-3 days.)

When you are out of seclusion, traditional menstrual care can mean anything from using cloth rags to just frequent changes of underwear. You would be surprised at how little you bleed when you stop using pads/absorbent inserts. After the first few months, periods are often only a couple of days long and not very heavy at all. This is due to the absence of the toxins in pads/inserts and the time spent collecting the Moon Fluids, usually in the morning.

PM me if you need more info!
post #16 of 19
I know when my diapers got stinky, a good boiling in my utility pot always worked.
post #17 of 19
I do not use a soaking pail. That's how I funked up and ruined my first set of cloth pads. I throw mine in with our cloth tp and wash it all with DS diapers and covers.
post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by KweenKrunch View Post
Sorry it's taken me so long to get back on this...

Traditional menstrual care is something I am very passionate about. Basically it involves symbolic seclusion during one's Moon Time. Obviously as SAHMs we can't totally separate ourselves, but there is time each day for reflection and collection of moon blood (especially during the first 2-3 days.)

When you are out of seclusion, traditional menstrual care can mean anything from using cloth rags to just frequent changes of underwear. You would be surprised at how little you bleed when you stop using pads/absorbent inserts. After the first few months, periods are often only a couple of days long and not very heavy at all. This is due to the absence of the toxins in pads/inserts and the time spent collecting the Moon Fluids, usually in the morning.

PM me if you need more info!
How do you collect the "Moon Fluids"?
post #19 of 19
Try adding several drops of tea tree oil or grapefruit seed extract in the wash to disinfect.

I don't soak them, I throw them in a wet bag and do a cold rinse followed by a hot wash with gse and don't have any stink.
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