Natracare Ultra, Ultra Extra, and Maxi Pads Review [Staff Tested]

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Written by Leigh Matthews, BA Hons, H.Dip. NT


Leigh Matthews, BA Hons, H.Dip. NT

Sustainability Expert

Leigh Matthews is a sustainability expert and long time vegan. Her work on solar policy has been published in Canada's National Observer.


Natracare pads are all totally free of chlorine bleach, perfumes, rayon, plastics, and other synthetics. They are instead made with natural materials that are at least 90 percent biodegradable, including plant cellulose and organic cotton.

Our Rating: 5/5 (See: How Leaf Score is calculated)

Leaf Score
Table of Contents
  1. Product Highlights
  2. Overview
  3. Natracare vs. Organyc vs. Seventh Generation

Product Highlights

  • Breathable, soft, and comfortable to use
  • Ideal for those with sensitive skin
  • Made with natural materials that are at least 90 percent biodegradable
Country of Origin:Sweden
Materials:Pads: Certified organic cotton, ecologically-certified cellulose pulp, non-GMO cornstarch, non-toxic glue.
Wrappers: Compostable cellulose, compostable starch film.
Soil Association 
Vegetarian Society approved as vegan-friendly
Life-cycle assessment: EPD (Environmental Product Declaration)
Nordic Ecolabel 


Thanks to the natural materials, Natracare pads are breathable, soft, and comfortable to use and don’t have that plasticky feel or sound common to conventional pads. They are especially loved by people with sensitive skin and the Ultra range are slimline and discrete while providing excellent absorbency and coverage. For night-time use and heavier bleeding, the Ultra Extra range and Maxi Pads, particularly the long pads with wings, are recommended. 

The Ultra and Ultra Extra pads are individually wrapped for convenience, with the wraps made of biodegradable materials. The Maxi Pads are thick, long, cushioned pads (without wings) that provide effective absorption and a great fit. These pads have a long strip of glue along the back to ensure they stay in place and are provided without wrappers.

Natracare state that their products are 95-100 percent biodegradable and always compostable. They use over 99 percent biodegradable and compostable plant cellulose instead of super absorbent polymers, and they have a robust environmental and ethical policy, which can be found here. Natracare are the best of the best for disposable period pads (and tampons), having led the way for decades to make this industry up its game when it comes to personal and environmental health.

Here’s a selection of the range, with bulk-buying options to help you save money:

Ultra (regular absorbency): 4 x 14-pack (56 pads) (View on Amazon)

Ultra (super absorbency with wings): 2 x 12-pack (24 pads) (View on Amazon)

Ultra (super absorbency, long, with wings): 12 x 10-pack (120 pads) (View on Amazon)

Ultra (super absorbency without wings): 12 x 12-pack (144 pads) (View on Amazon)

Ultra Extra (super double absorbency with wings): 3 x 10-pack (30 pads) (View on Amazon)

Natracare vs. Organyc vs. Seventh Generation

Natracare’s key competitors are Organyc and Seventh Generation, who do many of the same things as Natracare and, for the most part, just as well. Natracare are the leaders in this field, though, having been around the longest and with the best track record of following through on their environmental and health promises. They are very transparent in their business practices and actively work to support sustainability. This includes keeping packaging to a minimum, which may mean some individuals prefer the wrapped Seventh Generation pads (View on Amazon) over the unwrapped Maxi Pads and some of the pantyliners from Natracare.

Natracare pads are the only vegan-certified pads with all the other important eco credentials. The company was the first to measure the complete life-cycle of their menstrual pads. The EPD (Environmental Product Declaration) independently measures the carbon life-cycle analysis of a single Natracare pad, verifying the lower impact of these pads, from creation and transport, use and disposal.

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