Advice for reusable nappies(41 Posts)
I’m looking for advice on reusable nappies please. Our first child is due and I really don’t want to be putting 10(ish?) nappies a day in to the landfill.
I went on the nappy lady but I’m still confused.
Can anybody suggest a good brand and if they used the reusable inserts?
I’m not sure what information you’d need but we live in a flat without radiators so everything gets dried on a clothes horse or in the garden when it’s summer. We do have a drier we could use if needed.
Please help a confused first time mum to be!
Fuzzibunz one size nappies are great. They have elasticated leg holes and rarely leak, provided you put either a cotton on bamboo insert in too. They're on sale atm for £4.99 each which is very cheap for reusables without scrimping on quality.
You can get the inserts from amazon (bamboo are more expensive than cotton but apparently more absorbant. They're supposed to be produced in a more environmentally friendly manner too but they can go a bit stiff ooh erhh).
When washing I use bio D powder (non-bio and liquid detergents are said to damage the nappies) and bambino mio - Miofresh - nappy cleanser (a more ecologically-friendly version of nappy san). I wash them on 50 and there's been no damage after 18 months using them but apparently the miofresh sanitises them even at 30? Personally I wouldn't go below 40 because at 30 mine didn't wash properly. The inserts will stain but that doesnt doesn't mean they're not clean, it's just the nature of reusables.
I used reusable with ds3. It was great. It can be a little hit and miss finding out which brand/style suits your baby but once you’ve got into the routine you’re away!
There are lots of smaller sizes that come up second hand in decent condition and is a cheap way to road test different brands.
If you’re short on drying space I’d probably try pocket nappies for day time as they are quick to dry. The nighttime ones take longer (much thicker and absorbent), but they can go in dryer (tots bots and mother ease). Thinking about it, I had a couple of ‘teddies’ made fibre so super quick drying and mega fluffy and soft. I used that with two bamboo boosters (just one when they’re younger) and a mother ease airflow over the top and never had leaks overnight even as a toddler.
What else would you like to know?
We have 24 nappies (went through more in the early days and it means you can have some in the washer, some drying and some to go on). Make sure you have 15+ inserts too, we use 2 at night so he doesn't leak through but honestly leaking can be an issue at night so you may need to look into other options. Maybe throwaways for night? People says pampers night nappies are good.
It might also be a good idea to get a few reusable nappy bags (for if you use them when out and about). I didn't find they smelt too bad, even with poos, but you can always alternate reusables and throwaways. We use throwaways on very hot days and the grandparents prefer them when babysitting.
They do other sizes of fuzzibunz but the onesize will fit from birth on the tightest setting and they will last right through to nappy training. Hope this helps and feel free to ask any other questions. I was lost at first but it soon becomes second nature.
Drunken unicorn, thanks for the info re. night nappies. Might look into those. Drying is an issue with having no garden but we could use the dryer.
Look to see if there is a nappy library near you. I rented a pack with a variety of types. This meant I was able to find what suited us.
We used miosolos which are and all in one nappy. Also a few little blooms which are pickets. I'd probably go more pocket than all in one if we have another baby.
It is quite trial and error as to which nappies suit your baby and your needs the best. Which is annoying when you want to buy in advance. I've also found things have changed a lot as my dc has grown. For us, cheap pocket nappies such as Alva and little and blooms are great. I now have to boost them with two inserts but rarely get leaks. We also have -
Totsbots all in ones - I love the fit but find them very leaky now my dc is older unless heavily boosted.
Bumgenius freetimes and elementals - zero leaks here but not a great fit on my dc.
Bambino miosolo - fit great and no leaks, but many people don't rate them.
I've also tried two part systems but the inner shaped nappy can take a while to dry depending on material. But great for over night. People also recommend terries or Muslins with a wrap for young babies which I can imagine would dry quickly.
We bought a lot second hand so have been able to try a variety.
Washing wise I tend to wash every 2 days. Storing the nappies dry in a nappy bucket. I do a rinse and then a long wash followed by an extra rinse. The sun is brilliant for getting out stains. We dry mostly on those socktopus peg things. Anything that has pul cannot go in the drier as it will ruin the waterproofing. I think they also recommend not putting anything with elastics on too high a heat.
There's some great Facebook groups which have helped me loads. And also many areas have a nappy library which are great for advice. Some councils also have loan kits or money off vouchers. Sadly mine doesn't anymore.
We use reusables.
My favourites are the Motherease Wizard Unos, but there was a worldwide shortage of those recently. I don't know if you can buy them anymore. I also love Bumgenius Freetime AIO.
These are good for older babies. For smaller babies, I really like bambooty basics AIOs. They are fairly cheap and we loved them. Another good cheaper option are the Bambino Mio Solos, but make sure you properly prewash them, AT LEAST three times. Otherwise you will get leaks and will think it's a faulty nappy.
Night time nappies, we always used Tots Bots stretchies, with either a morherease or bumgenius wrap on top, but these aren't very effective anymore as DS is almost 2yo and a heavy wetter. We now use the Wizard Unos with hemp boosters.
I think you need to try out a few tbh, which is quite difficult, as you also really want to build up a bit of a stash! But once you have the baby, it's a bit like having a wardrobe, so you can tweak, sell on, buy more etc. It will work out cheaper than disposables even if you have to sell and replace some.
Seconding everything DrunkenUnicorn said. We used Thirsties Duo Wrap - Snap.
It does help to get a small selection of a couple of styles first, to figure out what works best for you. But honestly, it only really works if you go "all in", which can be pricy up front. you will save a lot of money, and help the environment, in the long run!
1) enough diapers and diaper covers to not have to be doing laundry every day.
2) a bin with a lid (we used a normal tall kitchen bin)
3) two strong diaper bags to line it (search for "diaper/nappy pail liner bag"). One on and one in the wash is enough.
4) a waterproof zip up bag to put wet diapers in while you are out the house.
We also used flannels instead of wet wipes, which actually worked really well. I brought a big stack of cheap flannels and a couple of small plastic bowls, which I set up next to the changing mat. One plastic bowl was filled with warm water before each change. Then: Take off the dirty nappy and put it in the second empty bowl. Dip the flannel in the bowl of water, and used it to properly wash his bottom. Put the dirty flannels straight into the diaper pail to wash with the diapers. Then used a clean dry flannel to dry him off, and put a new clean diaper on. Once he's all done, take the bowl with the dirty diaper into the bathroom and shake any poo off into the toilet. Put the diaper into the diaper pail. All done!
The thing to remember too is that you don't have to be fanatical about it. When we went traveling we used disposables. We had emergency disposables in the car or in the diaper bag, just in case. And when he got older and was really soaking the bed at night, we put him in a disposable covered by a cloth diaper and a diaper cover.
I used tots bots with my first and they were really easy. Used a disposable liner and chucked into washing machine every couple of days. 60deg wash with non bio and a little bit of napisan and all was good. Mainly dried on an airer.
They didn't fit my second child as well, and I had more of an issue getting stuff dry by then with 4 of us, so I did use disposables as I didn't want to buy again.
I would advise buying a few different types and seeing what suits your baby before buying a load. If they work for you and you've got room to dry them they are really easy tbh.
Thank you all so much, it’s almost like there’s too many options!
I will go on my local Facebook selling groups and see if anyone is selling any, that way I can try some and buy more if they fit well etc.
So am I right I understanding that babies tend to get wetter nappies at night? Is that just because they’re not changed as often? I’m hoping that because I’ve never had the convenience of disposables it won’t be too much of a learning curve!
Def get some second hand ones. You might have a nappy library near you. Also some councils do grants/money off cloth nappies.
I prefer two part with nappy and seperate cover but everyone has their own preference.
I lined mine with fleece liners (I cut up a cheap blanket from ikea) as stops staining and keeps baby bums dry. I also used then as wipes. I used to rinse mine in the toilet then shove in a net in a bucket then sling net in washing with tiny bit of non bio powder and extra rinse.
They get wetter at night because they aren't changed as much, exactly. In the very early days, that won't make as much difference as they obviously don't tend to sleep through the night.
Tbh, I think you should decide on what type you want to use; all in one (easiest but can be pricey and you need to find the brands which fit your baby best, but tbh, I've tried a few and they've all been fine), pocket nappy, prefolds / terriers, too parters etc. Then buy or borrow a few.
If you are having a hospital birth then you need to decide what to do in hospital as lots of people (like me) choose to use disposables till they are at home, as obviously you won't have access to a washing machine or nappy pail etc. But I imagine it's doable if you want to use reusables there if you plan it well.
My knowledge is very out of date now (children are 16 and 19!). I used Motherease and Tots Bots for mine. At night I used terry squares and a wool wrap when they were older because they had fewer nappy changes at night so they get wetter. The wool wraps were perfect for that.
To get started I would highly recommend terry squares. They're cheap, easy to wash and dry quickly. I'd recommend getting 10-20 of them (depends how quickly you can get things dry) and 3 wraps just to try it all out. I bought fleece that I cut up to make liners (not sure if that's the done thing now). IKEA flannels to use as wipes. Two buckets to put the dirty nappies in. One wet nappy bag for out and about and you'll be set.
Terry squares are not so easy once the baby is on the move and doesn't want to lie down for nappy changes. At this point you could move on to the all in ones or stuffable wraps. The beauty of the terry squares is that you can continue to use them for boosting the other nappies. I've still got a huge supply that I'm using to this day for washing the floor.
I would only plan for the first stage. Don't try and furnish yourself with nappies now for every stage. You will probably end up having to tweak your stash a bit. I have found that anyway.
I used tots bots when tiny then mother-ease one size for rest of the time with airflow cover but think they have been replaced by wizard uno
It's a minefield!
We used muslins and wraps at first.then moved in to pocket nappies with Terry and bamboo boosters.
Check out nappy libraries near you.
Also check your local council who may send you a trial pack to play with.
Facebook has groups like Cloth Bum Mums which will give you plenty of advice.
The thing to do is go in with an open mind and give it a go
Also lots of clothes struggle to go over cloth nappies so buy bigger sizes. Leggings are adorable - I got special boy ones that had lovely designs on them
Look on the Baba and Boo website, and also ask to join their “Hangout” if you are on Facebook. A lady called Jane Shaw wrote a blog post for them recently about how complicated reusables can be made to seem.
They’re really not as hard as the endless choice on the internet makes out!
Aaargh! I really disagree with pp saying “it’s a minefield”! How not to encourage others to use cloth...
We also used terries when one of mine was teeny and they are fab! When they start sleeping more at night though, you might need to switch to a shaped nappy at night time and then we found we just couldn't use them when ours got big enough to crawl away! So we gave them away.
I use gnappies where the outer is reusable then you put a biodegradable pad inside (which you can compost if you fancy, but it degrades in 30 days so not contributing to landfill). To me that was the best compromise as I couldn't go full reusable (though gnappies also do reusable inner pads).
Look on ebay as people sell second hand ones cheaply. I wish I'd bought them second hand too as we sent quite a lot getting it all new.
In terms of numbers I have 12 which I find is doable.
I used to advise on cloth nappies, but my DDs are now 20 & 18 so my knowledge is a bit dated.
Your drying set-up is ok but that will dictate what you get. Some of the nappies others have mentioned are thick & absorbent, but will therefore take longer to dry. If you are happy to use the tumble drier, that's not a problem.
In your position, I would contact your local council to see if they have a library or discount scheme. I originally set the one up here and see leaflets every now & again so I know it's still running. Some NCT groups have nappy advisors or people who are happy to talk to newbie mums so it's worth asking there.
I used to advise people to get a selection in the first size to see what you like and get on with. Babies tend to grow out of them quite quickly. I love the suggestion of terries on a newborn because they are cheap and they dry quickly. Get a couple of decent wraps (outers) and you're sorted. I wouldn't advise on all-in-ones if you don't have lots of outdoor drying space. They take ages to dry and you aren't meant to tumble them as it wrecks the waterproofing. Pocket nappies are great as you can put as much stuffing in as you need, but then separate it all out for washing/drying. Our terries came back into use as night nappies inside pocket wraps.
There isn't a "best" nappy - if there was, there would be no competition. It's all about finding the system that works best for you, your baby and lifestyle. When you have those days when all you seem to do is change them, remember that every cloth one you use is one disposable fewer in landfill. Feel free to ask by PM if you want.
@Entschuldigung; I'm coming to the end of my stash of terry squares for floorcloths/paint rags etc, but my younger child turned 37 a couple of months ago so they've been very good value.
Terry squares can be folded in different ways so were used from the newborn stage onwards; not sure I could remember the necessary origami skills now though...
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