How do you apply your bag? (Hoping to avoid leaks)


Hi friends ,

how do you apply your bags? Standing up, sitting down, laying down? 

I’ve been doing it standing and have constantly had leaks. Wondering if applying it sitting will help. 

Morning glory

I have tried all the above. I prefer standing up.  I use a mirror that sits on the vanity for a close view.

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Sitting down.  The Hollister rep told me that was the way I should do it in order to get the best seal.  I still have occasional leaks tho.

Reply to Kas


what products do you use? Do you use the ring?

Reply to JustMeRLB

I use Hollister 2 piece and a ring.  Part of my stoma is below the skin and the other 1/2 sticks up, so I sometimes get a leak at the shrunken part.  Probable revision next month to fix that

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

I use a Hollister 1 piece and an Adapt barrier ring. Apply the barrier ring to the wafer, warm it all up with a hairdryer, then apply it all at once while standing up. Once I have it applied, I go lay down and hold my hands over it for 5-10 minutes varying my hand positions to make sure the pressure/heat from my hands is spread out over the whole sticky area. 


Could it be the bags just not suitable for you, and it's time to try something else to solve the problem?

Standing up mostly, it's just trial and error finding out which way is best for you


Hi Just,

  I've only ever done it standing up, but the only thing that matters is that your skin is stretched naturally in the position you're in most of the time, without being overstretched or bunched up.  Your barrier needs as flat a surface as possible to get a good seal against.  Where are your leaks originating from?


Reply to w30bob

They are coming form when I sit … the barrier bubbles and pulls away from my skin in a few spots. 

Reply to Ben38

I’ve tried about 5 different products, same thing

Reply to AlexT

Same here, but when I sit, my tummy makes it bubble up… :/ 


Hi Just,

  Ok, I hear ya.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm assuming you have skin folds in the area of your stoma........and that when you sit up they become pronounced.  In that case you don't have a ton of options, as you're asking a semi-rigid barrier to move and flex in ways it simply can't.   If you don't have skin folds, but more a mound or bubble where your stoma is you might want to try something like a Sensura Mio Convex Flip.  If that doesn't help I'd give the folks at Nu-Hope Labs a call, they cater to ostomy folks with special needs.  Lastly I'd just throw out that since your barrier is lifting, anything to keep pressure on it would help.  They make a whole range of belts for such things.........I'm thinking specifically of a wider hernia-type belt that fully encircles the stoma and puts even pressure all the way around the barrier.  They're usually elastic or spandex and pretty comfortable.  Let us know how you make out.




Major consideration - - - gravity ( it wins in the end ).
My procedure is always 1st thing in the a.m.  when my stoma is usually inactive (ileostomy).  
I ready my supplies and place on my bed.  Then I head to the bathroom and remove my bag and shower totally naked so stoma and surrounding area is very clean and skin is warm.  I then lay on the bed slightly propped up with a pillow against the headboard.  This allows gravity to make my belly area very near flat and smooth for application of all products.  Once placed, I lay my hand over warming it for about 2 minutes.  I do this bag change routinely every other day.  jb

Reply to JustMeRLB

Is your wax ring surrounded by tape at the edge - I had a bad leak once with an appliance that only had the wax as the seal - that was very early on in my stoma life and I did not realize it needed some help like tape - lesson learned.    I now use one that  has very strong tape all away around it.  jb

Reply to JustMeRLB

Is your wax ring surrounded by tape at the edge - I had a bad leak once with an appliance that only had the wax as the seal - that was very early on in my stoma life and I did not realize it needed some help like tape - lesson learned.    I now use one that  has very strong tape all the way around it.  jb


I had an ileostomy for 4 months before being converted to a colostomy. I fought leaks ALL THE TIME for the first few weeks of having the ileostomy. The biggest thing that was recommended to me was to try convex wafers. (I use Hollister 2-piece bags, and the Eakin Cohesive wax rings). The convex barrier flange/wafer did help, as my stomach isn’t the flattest, especially when sitting. But I did find that using the convex barrier flange, and warming the wax ring with a hair dryer before applying, and then holding the whole thing in place firmly for at least 60 seconds helped me to get a good seal. But I also use a skin barrier spray and I make sure that it is good and dry before applying. I also have to shave the area as I’m a pretty hairy dude. But if the area was even a little wet, I wouldn’t get a good seal. While learning all this, I changed my bag 4 times in one night once. That was the absolute worst and I thought I was going to lose it. But i eventually got it sorted out to where I could make it at least 4 or 5 days, if not a solid week. Now with the same practice with a colostomy instead, I almost never have to change before a week. But at that point, the thing is just so worn out and gross, it’s time anyway. Haha


Best of luck with the continued learning process! Our bodies change, and we have to change with them. But it’s doable! 


Always standing, tried it laying down, that was hopeless, tried it sitting once, no issues but I just stand.


Just standing facing the toilet bowl and using a mirror on top of the cistern. Works for me, but we are all different. Regards IGGIE