wearing a maxi pad

Maxi Pads: Everything You Need to Know

Some questions never go away, whether it’s your first or hundredth period or menstrual flow. For many, it’s all about maxi pads – with or without wings. Many people, young and old alike, have hundreds of questions about maxi pads, what it is, when to use them, their absorbency, etc.

Going around the internet from one page to another can be stressful – we can agree on that. This is why I have created this carefully curated article to answer all of your questions about maxi pads, when to use them, how to use them, and which is better for you between maxi pads with wings and without, etc.

The good part is you can skip to your question and pick the answer using the easy navigation tool below. But I recommend reading through if you want to learn as much as possible on this topic.

Let’s get started with the basics.

What are Maxi Pads?

Maxi pads are also called Super pads, depending on where you live. These pads are like your regular menstrual pads but with a larger absorbency. They are useful for women at the start of their menstrual flow or those experiencing heavy flow.

Maxi or super pads offer you the protection you need from period leaks, especially when experiencing a heavy flow. They also help you save time, money, and the stress of changing out your regular sanitary pads every one to two hours due to heavy flow.

What are Maxi Pads Used For?

Maxi pads are larger absorbency pads used for collecting menstrual flow. These pads give you improved confidence, especially when experiencing a heavy menstrual flow or bleeding. They are available in two major types; maxi pads with wings and maxi pads without wings.

Why Do Maxi Pads Have Wings?

Maxi pads with wings are designed with a small flap on either side of the rectangular pad. The flaps, known as wings, are there for optimal hold, increased protection against leakage, and to prevent slips and slides.

Not everybody chooses maxi pads with wings. Some users love their maxi pads without wings. Winged maxi pads are recommended when you’re wearing loose-fitting underwear. The wings clip to the outer area of the underwear’s crotch area to prevent displacement.

Maxi pads without wings are perfect for tight-fitting underwear as you can be sure the underwear will hold it perfectly in place throughout the use period.

How To Choose your Maxi Pads

There’s no simple way to choose your maxi pad, especially when faced with many options like the Always maxi pads with wings, Kotex pads, etc. Individual preferences also play an important role in your final selection. So, how do you choose the perfect maxi pad for your period needs?

Consider the following factors;

Good absorbency

Maxi pads are expected to have a larger absorbency than regular pads. However, the absorbency rate differs from one brand to another. A good way to select the perfect option would be to read reviews from past customers about absorbency. You’d be amazed at how open and detailed people can be in the review sections of these products.

Length and flow  

Maxi pads, like every other sanitary pad, are classified as Day or Night. The Day maxi pads are often shorter, ranging between 17cm and 25cm, while the Night pads are often longer at about 35cm or more. You’re better off using the Night pads if you intend to wear your maxi pads overnight. You may also choose overnight pads with wings for better comfort and confidence.

Overnight maxi pads also have other added features like a wide hip guard to protect you in your sleep while preventing back leakages when lying down. Some products, like the always overnight pads with wings, come with side gathers to fit your body contour and prevent side leakage.

Material comfort

The material comfort of your maxi pad will determine whether you like or love it. Some maxi pads are softer and more comfortable than others. You may need to read reviews on top brands or try out a few to get a feel of what’s most comfortable for you.

Note that you can develop allergic reactions from using maxi pads too. The allergic reaction may take the form of boils, rashes, or other skin irritation. This may be due to the chemical in the product or from wearing your maxi pad a little longer than you should. If using an overnight pad, ensure they are removed first thing in the morning.

sanitary pad

How long can you wear a maxi pad?

Wondering how often you should change your maxi pads? You can wear your pad for as long as 6 to 8 hours, depending on the heaviness of your flow. However, you should change it every 3 to 4 hours during heavy flows and for personal hygiene purposes.

Please note that you may need to change your maxi pads more frequently if you’re experiencing a heavier flow. Contact your medical service provider if you’re changing your maxi pad every hour or two.

Can you be allergic to maxi pads?

Yes, you can be allergic to maxi pads. Although this is rare, you may develop symptoms like boils, rashes, or other skin irritations from wearing a maxi pad. Sometimes, wearing your maxi pads for too long can irritate your skin.

It is important to change your pad every 3 to 4 hours or at most six hours to prevent skin irritation and promote personal hygiene, especially for reproductive health.

Do maxi pads absorb more?

Yes. Maxi pads are designed for higher absorbency, making them a perfect choice for heavy menstrual flow. They are recommended for people with a heavier-than-normal period or at the start of your period when the flow is heaviest.

How many pads are normal for a period per day?

Period flow varies from person to person. Depending on your flow, one to three normal-sized pads are normal for heavier flows. The number of pads used will decrease as your period flow thins out. Overall, one to seven normal-sized pads per period are normal.

Can wearing maxi pads cause irritation?

Yes, wearing maxi pads can cause skin irritation, although it is rare. Some of the common symptoms of irritation and allergic reaction to maxi pads or regular pads include;

  • Bumps, sores, lesions, or blisters on or around the crotch area
  • Itching or burning sensations in the crotch area
  • Redness, inflammation, or irritation
  • Thickening of the affected skin
  • Skin discoloration ranging from red, pink, or yellow
  • Genital discharge
  • Pelvic pain
  • Painful intercourse following using a menstrual pad

Can you wear maxi pads in water?

It is not advisable to swim with a pad on during your period. Sanitary pads are made from absorbent materials that soak up liquid fast. When submerged in water, your sanitary pad can take up water, causing it to fill up completely and lowering its effectiveness.

If you do insist on swimming with a pad on, some precautions you can take include;

  • Wear a pad to accommodate your flow, preferably a maxi pad
  • Take extra precaution to hold your pad firmly in place or choose maxi pads with wings
  • Change your pad frequently for hygiene, comfort, and better absorbency.

Why do maxi pads smell?

Commercial menstrual pads, including maxi pads, prevent airflow to the genitals, which prevents the menstrual blood from drying fully. The snug fit to the crotch area also causes sweating which mixes with the blood to create a warm, moist environment for bacteria to act. The result of the blood, sweat, and pH mix may cause your sanitary pad to smell differently.

You should contact a medical professional if your period blood has a strange odor.

Why are maxi pads so uncomfortable?

You may feel strange or uncomfortable wearing a maxi pad or any pad during your first few periods. This strange feeling will subside as you get used to the experience. However, you should try other menstrual pads or sanitation towels if the awkward or uncomfortable feeling persists after months of use.

What is the biggest maxi pads available?

There are a few options when looking for the biggest maxi pads. Some top options include the Always overnight pads with wings, Kotex pads, Poise overnight pads, and Tena overnight pads.

Can I bring maxi pads on a plane?

Yes, you can bring your maxi pad and other sanitary products, including sanitary pads, tampons, and menstrual cups, onto a plane. It is recommended to carry these items in your carry-on or hand luggage for easy access to them during your flight.

Do maxi pads expire

Maxi pads and other sanitary pads do not expire as long as they are stored in a cool, dry place. Ensure that all your sanitary pads and products are kept safe and avoid breaking the product seal if not to be used.

Got any more questions about Maxi pads? Fill the contact box below and we’ll get in touch with you as quickly as possible.

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