Last Updated: Oct 18, 2021 @ 10:33 am.

What are the best nursing pads? We tested 9 different disposable nursing pads, checking for comfort and absorbency. Here are the winners.

FYI: We are Baby Bargains, the #1 online resource for baby gear reviews that are honest and independent. For nursing moms, we've spent 20+ years researching and testing nursing pads, breast pumps, milk storage bags and a whole host of accessories. The goal: making nursing moms more successful. Good news! We don't take money or freebies from the brands we review. Baby Bargains is 100% reader supported.


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Best Overall Nursing Pad

Comfortable and absorbent
The champ in our testings! Loved the waterproof lining and overall comfort. Big enough to work for larger moms. Caveat: sometimes the adhesive doesn't work.
$23.99

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Best Overall Nursing Pad: Lansinoh Stay Dry Disposable Nursing Pads

Our top pick for nursing pads is Lansinoh’s Stay Dry Disposable Nursing Pads. These pads strike the right balance between absorbency and thickness—the waterproof lining absorbs enough liquid for most moms, while not being too thick. They’re made of “fluffy pulp” or paper and a super absorbent polymer both of which are non toxic and safe if accidentally ingested. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Super comfortable.

• Large enough to work on bigger moms.

• Affordable.

What Needs Work

• Adhesive could be better. These pads can get bunched up in a bra, since the adhesive doesn’t stick as well as other brands.

• May irritate moms who are super sensitive. This is a minority of folks, but it can be an issue for some.

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Best for Leakage Protection

Flexible leak guard = no edge leaks
These pads were very absorbent and great for occasional leaks. Critics say they are thicker and bulkier than the competition. Adhesive works well—but can leave residue behind.
$10.99

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Best for Leakage Protection: Medela Safe & Dry Ultra Thin Disposable Nursing Pads

Every nursing mom is different and we know a good number of folks just need a thinner pad for low to moderate leakage. In that case, we’d recommend Medela’s Safe & Dry pads. These are “ultra thin” but still get the job done. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Adhesive works well. As we mentioned, the adhesive with our top pick, Lansinoh was underwhelming. So if you need a pad to stay put, Medela is a better choice.

 Flexible leak guard prevents leaks from the side of the pad. This was impressive in our testing.

• Affordable. And super absorbent.

What Needs Work

• Bulkier than expected. A few critics note although these pads are supposed to be ultra thin, they were bulkier than folks expected. We see that point, but still would recommend them.

• Adhesive sometimes worked too well. We see reports that the pad can leave adhesive on your bra.

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Best Stay-In-Place Pad

Adhesive worked better than others
These thicker pads were very soft and stayed put better than others we tested. Critics say they are a bit bulky. Somewhat pricey compared to other brands.
$13.99

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Best Stay-In-Place Pad: Hey Mama Disposable Nursing Pads

While we love our top pick for nursing pads (Lansinoh), these pads do have one shortcoming: poor adhesive means they don’t stay in place. While that isn’t an issue for every mom, if you find you need something that is absorbent AND stays in place, we’d recommend Hey Mama’s nursing pads. Here’s more:

What We Liked

• Excellent adhesive. And unlike other brands we tested, the adhesive doesn’t come off on your bra.

• Very absorbent.

• Soft.

What’s Needs Work

• Bulky. These thicker pads hold more liquid but the downside is they are more bulky than others we tested.

• A bit pricey.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability. When we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money. 

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!

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