Monday, March 28, 2011

Wool Nursing Pads

This might have been the easiest project ever.

I considered knitting some, but this just seemed faster.  Of course it was!  All I had to do was cut out some circles.  What are they?  They're wool nursing pads!

I'm told when I start nursing, my breasts will be leaky.  There are cloth and disposible nursing pads out there but the internet (and a little instinct) told me that wool nursing pads will be much better.

Here are some facts I found about the benefits of using wool nursing pads:
  • Most women need only 2 pairs for the entire nursing period. When one pair feels wet, let it dry while wearing the second pair.
  • The nursing pads are prepped using Lanolin, similar to a wool diaper cover.  The Lanolin keeps the wool fresh and hygienic due to its fabulous cleansing properties.
  • The wool can absorb up to 40% of its weight without feeling wet.
  • When the pads do feel wet, they're warm, not cold and clammy as with cotton or disposable pads.
  • Your skin is kept dry and able to breathe, allowing sore nipples to heal.
  • When needed, wash by hand in lukewarm water with mild hair shampoo.
  • There is a new documentation that shows that putting a newly washed wool nursing pad in the microwave for 2 minutes removes all bacteria!
  • Apparently, wool nursing pads can be worn for days without needing to be washed. The breast milk and the lanolin in the wool will saponify, thus preserving the milk and keep it from smelling foul.”

There are some diy patterns out there:

For Shapely Nursing Pads 
For Flat Nursing Pads

I tried out the second pattern, which suggested sewing using zig-zag around the edge, to prevent fraying.  That didn't work so well for me, the edges of the nursing pad got all bumpy and uncomfortable.  No amount of blocking count make them lie flat again.

Since my wool is felted, I'm going to leave them as is.  They tuck right into a bra and can't really be seen at all. 

I found this sweater in my stash.  It was the perfect colour and is 100% lambswool (thanks Resweater for checking the wool content for me!).  It is also so, so, so soft!

Added bonus... Wool nursing pads cost upwards of $20 per pair (these ones from a local retailer are $27 and up, depending on what size you need)!  I'm sure I paid less than $5 for the sweater, and I cut out 6 pairs (and still have sweater left).  Awesome savings for me!


  1. I didn't try wool nursing pads, but this sounds awesome! Great blog post.

    I know there's a beautiful floral knit pattern on Ravlery, but when I was pregnant I hadn't tried lace yet and it was intimidating. I used cloth pads and they helped a lot. I had some velour pads I really liked.

  2. What a fantastic idea... I may have to try this, if I can get my act together!

  3. Great idea, something I'd never thought of or heard about. Thanks for sharing!

  4. I just stumbled upon your blog as I was googling diy wool breast pads... I was planning on doing some pads with a few layers of thin merino serged together. do you like your version of just one layer that is more felted? did these work well for you??

  5. How have these held up without sewing the edges? How do you wash them also? I am planning on lanolizing them the same as my wool diaper covers. Thanks!