Those with especially heavy periods can't just pick any random pads off the shelf and call it a day — especially when it comes to nighttime use. Luckily, the
best overnight pads for a heavy flow are pushing the boundaries of moisture capacity and how long they are comfortable to wear, and buyers are seriously grateful.
If you're wondering
how long overnight pads should last, it really depends on the person — but ideally, no one should have to get up in the middle of the night to switch out their sanitary napkins. There are pads that can handle eight hours of heavy flow, and these are the brands and styles you should look for.
Next, you'll also want to find a pad that has more coverage. During the day, a smaller option may cut it, but at night, you're horizontal and likely changing positions. As a result, the blood will probably go wherever gravity takes it, so a pad with a larger surface area can help to minimize leaks. (For those who seemingly leak no matter what, a
large-capacity menstrual cup is definitely worth looking into.)
Finally, most of the best overnight pads have wings to keep them in place. If you're vehemently opposed, there
are options without — but any shift-resistant features are usually for the best, especially if you tend to toss and turn during the night.
If you have an
especially heavy period flow, these four nighttime pads — and a set of absorbent underwear — are optimized to prevent leaks and last you until morning.
The Overall Best Nighttime Menstrual Pads
Pros: There are countless reasons why Rael's overnight pads have a 4.6-star rating. For one, they meet Organic Content Standards, and are skin-friendly and non-GMO. For another, they're made from super absorbent cotton that offers hours of protection. Finally, these pads are large (13 inches long, 3 inches wide) and have double wing adhesive to keep them in place — all while remaining comfortable and breathable. Cons: At nearly a dollar a pad, these aren't cheap. Some reviewers also wish they were a bit more flexible. Reviewers say: "I’ve never used overnight pads before that didn’t leak.... They’re amazing and so comfortable. I️ don’t feel gross or sticky throughout the night, and I️ can sleep without worrying about leaking. They’re so plush and soft," which is "very different from conventional pads."
The Best Budget-Friendly Overnight Pick
Pros: If you're looking for the deal of the century, look no further than Stayfree's Super maxi pads. Thanks to the low price tag and bulk packaging, these come in at just 10 cents a pad — but according to reviewers, they don't skimp on protection. They're made with four walls and 18 anti-leak channels to keep you dry for up to 10 hours. They also work to neutralize odors and are made with a no-shift bottom adhesive, so if you want to skip the wings, these are your best bet. Cons: Some reviewers noted that they moved during the night, so these might not be the best pick for someone who tosses and turns. Reviewers say: "These pads are soft, absorbent, and very, very thick... not the kind of pad I prefer during the day, but fantastic for overnight," one reviewer says. Another writes, "These are more comfortable than other brands I have used and were absorbent enough to get me through many hours. I never leaked through."
The Best Reusable Pads For Nighttime
Pros: In recent years, there has been a return to eco-friendly, washable period options that save money and prevent unnecessary waste. Wegreeco's reusable menstrual pads are especially great for heavy flows and overnight use. The charcoal bamboo layers are extremely absorbent and work to neutralize odor, while the long design gives you optimal coverage. They even snap onto your underwear to help prevent slipping, and they're easy to wash in the machine so they'll be almost just like new for your next cycle. Cons: Since you have to wash them, they're not the most time-savvy option. They're also not ideal for people who get squeamish about blood. Reviewers say: "I've tried a range of reusable menstrual pads over the years," one reviewer says, but these top them all when it comes to heavy days. "The first few times I used these, I thought maybe I'd had a light flow and didn't realize it because they worked so well. Then I rinsed out the pad and saw that I had had a heavy flow after all and these pads were just that great at handling it. They're easy to use, easy to clean, and they do their job fantastically."
The Best Thin Overnight Pads
Pros: Even though they're thin, flexible, and non-bulky, these Always Pure And Clean pads can handle moderate to heavy flows overnight. They use absorbent materials, including wood cellulose, to keep you dry and clean-feeling — not to mention, they're made without chlorine bleach and dyes, so they're suitable for sensitive skin. This pick also has wings and a wider design to catch leaks while you move in your sleep. Cons: Some say the stickiness on the backside might be a little too good. Reviewers say: "I like how these are thin but long, and they have wings so they catch everything. Good for heavy and medium flow days and overnight," says one reviewer who "will be repurchasing" because these pads "hold just as much" as bulkier options.
Also Great: Period Panties For Heavy Flow Backup
For those with especially heavy flows, or if you just move a lot in your sleep, a good pair of period panties can help ease the mind and protect the sheets.
Funcy menstrual panties are made with three layers of absorbent, leak-resistant cellulose fiber. That — paired with the full-coverage design and breathable, comfy fit — makes them a favorite among reviewers. In fact, many have come back to buy another set because they're "super useful" and "awesome at stopping leaks." Best of all, you can wash and reuse them many times over because they're "very durable." Available sizes: Small – XX-Large Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.