Sometimes, an ostomy wrap isn’t the best solution for keeping your ostomy pouch secure and concealed, so I was excited when I came across the company Joeies. They offer a product line specifically designed for ostomates, and I requested their Eh Ok Mate as part of a future project.
Joeies was kind enough to send one, and here’s my full review.
About The Eh Ok Mates
The Eh Ok Mates is one of several ostomy support garments sold by the Canadian company Joeies. The founder of Joeies, Brandee Appeldoorn, started the company during her time with an ileostomy due to Ulcerative Colitis.
The Eh Ok Mates is a garment that can be used to support and conceal your ostomy pouch. It’s custom made, so it doesn’t matter if you have an ileostomy, urostomy or colostomy; you can also have one made to accommodate two stomas.
Wicking fabric is used to make this product, and that will help to keep moisture off your skin. This is an important feature if you’re wearing this product for exercise, but it will also come in handy during the hot, humid summer months.
The wide band used for this garment is non-adjustable, but it does stretch in all directions to allow for pouch expansion and different body shapes. You will be asked to measure your abdomen, at the same level as your stoma, before placing an order.
While the garment does feature two elastic bands that stretch a bit (one on the top and bottom), it’s important not to get one that’s too tight.
When I received this product, I didn’t expect that I’d be gaining weight before doing the review, so it did get a bit tight as I grew into it. If you are underweight and have recently had ostomy surgery, I would recommend you wait until your weight has normalized before measuring yourself for this garment.
Because this garment has an open-ended pocket, you can easily empty your pouch without the need to remove the garment. The opening is also designed in a way that keeps your pouch outlet hidden and out-of-the-way.
Currently, the garment is available in solid black, white or mocha. I’d love to eventually see patterns offered in the future, but as most ostomates will be wearing this under their clothes, there’s likely little demand for this request.
Wearing an Eh Ok Mates
There’s nothing complicated about putting on this garment, but some people may need to adjust the pocket opening to fit their flange. To this, you simply cut along the seam lines until your flange comes through without difficulties. You do want to make sure you don’t cut too much, and keep in mind that different appliance brands will have different flange sizes, so test the fit before cutting.
Once the garment is around your abdomen, you simply feed the bottom of your pouch through the hole leading into the pocket and adjust the opening around your flange. With floating flanges, (like the Hollister New Image products), I like to make sure that the garment material goes under the flange (as shown in the video).
I wear large pouches (12″), so the bottom of the pouch will hang down enough to easily empty it, but you can roll up the pocket to empty smaller pouches, too.
I found that like with other support garments, including wraps, the Eh Ok Mates reduced my pouches capacity. For colostomates with an inactive stoma, this won’t cause any inconvenience, but if you have a high-output stoma or an ileostomy, be prepared to empty your pouch more often.
At the time of this writing (Jan 27, 2017), an Eh Ok Mates garment costs CDN$79 + postage; there is no extra charge to make a double stoma opening.
Shipping costs are CDN$9.99 in North America, and international delivery is available for CDN$15 flat rate, which is really great.
Unfortunately, like other ostomy accessories, the Eh Ok Mates are likely not going to be covered by your insurance provider. Because garments like this are meant to last many years, a permanent ostomate will find that the out-of-pocket expense is often more than justified.
If you’re looking for a garment that keeps your pouch secure and close to your skin, but you’ve been disappointed by what ostomy wraps offer, you’ll probably want to check out the Eh Ok Mates by Joeies. Keeping in mind that a product like this will reduce your pouch capacity, it’s still a product that I’ve found comfortable to wear all day.
Keeping in mind that a product like this will reduce your pouch capacity, it’s still a product that I’ve found comfortable to wear all day.