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This topic is for discussing nappies. If you want to buy or sell reusable nappies, please use our For Sale/Wanted boards.

Will I actually use reusable nappies?

(50 Posts)
laweaselmys Wed 13-Aug-08 14:45:10

Have been checking out the classic mumsnet threads, and one was about things you always thought you'd do when you'd have DC's and then didn't.

Frequently mentioned were resuable nappies, and how they never got used because they were inconvenient.

In order to save money I have been thinking very seriously about getting reusable nappies for my DC when he is born (lol, not till march but need time to stay on look out for cheap second hand ones etc) but if I'm genuinely not going to use them, it would waste more money by buying them and not using them...

So in all seriousness, from people who've tried it and succeed and those who've failed, just how time consuming and inconvenient is it??

We don't have a tumble dryer and so would need to buy quite a few of each size for winter months to make up for slow drying times, how many extra washing loads do you really do? (currently do 3 per week, would expect this to go up with DC arrival anyway, was expecting once a day?) Also will probably only be able to be a SAHM for first 6 months, and will then be having to use quite a lot of childcare (possibly as much as 7-6 on weekdays) if I can't work out a way to get around work situ before then. What would nursery do, faced with reusable nappies? Would I have to buy disposables for when DC at nursery?

Sorry loads of questions. I just don't want to waste money if it won't work, but really want it to work as can't get over how massive a sum £7000 a year on disposable nappies is!

Indith Wed 13-Aug-08 14:53:10

Yes you will use them because they are fab

If you get something quick drying then you don't need too many. I lived in a flat, just had a small airer when ds was born in December and had 20 fluffles which was loads. Traditional squares dry quickly as does anything microfibre based or stuff like pocket nappies as you separate the "stuffing" fromt he nappy to dry.

Don't think it is more time consuming, stick into nappy bucket, no need to soak then bung in machine. At first I washed a lot but it quickly goes down and you sort your routine out a bit.

A good creche/child minder/nursery will be happy to use cloth.

ilovemydog Wed 13-Aug-08 14:57:02

To be honest, childminders/DH/DP/mil prefer the all in one that is exactly like a disposable, ime.

Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of reusables which comes with its own language too!

lauraloola Wed 13-Aug-08 15:07:04

I bought reusables for my 9 week old dd about a month ago in a bid to save money and only really use them when we are at home.

I bought Bambino Mio ones where you put the nappy and liners into the wrap. I am now looking at getting all in one reusables for her next size. Dp wont change her reusable nappies as he thinks they are too complicated hmm

I would definitly recommend getting a few different trial packs before you commit. You can check for size, ease of use and how quickly they dry as you dont have a tumble dryer and the weather is awful! I wash mine every other day on a seperate nappy wash. I wash her clothes on the day I dont do the nappy wash!

wastingmyeducation Wed 13-Aug-08 15:14:21

We used disposables for the first month and then introduced reusables over the next month. Had I not been recovering from CS and resultant anemia we would have started sooner.
I do a nappy wash every second day, and as I use muslins, if I hang them up at night, they are dry by morning. When we move onto the terries, it will probably take a little longer.
There is more to do with a reuasable, in that I have to fold it, etc. and also the maintenance of washing, but now that we're into it it's no bother at all, and of course we don't run out of nappies and have to dash to the shops, and we have much fewer leaks.


CuppaTeaJanice Wed 13-Aug-08 15:16:06

I tried them and found them quite leaky with liquidy breastmilk-poo. We're going to try again when he's on solids. They're supposed to be good before toilet training as baby gets used to the wet feeling.

Also found the gussets so ridiculously wide that baby was doing the splits!

£7000 a year? I bought 2 packs of disposables from Sainsbury's when they had a third off. They've lasted over a month and cost £9.

laweaselmys Wed 13-Aug-08 15:28:32

supposedly that's the average for the first year. I read it in a book and not online so asumed it was checked and true. Now I'm wondering... have seen a figure of half that on BBC website. But still 3500 is still a lot of money to spend on something your baby poos in.

Fennel Wed 13-Aug-08 15:31:31

All our nurseries and childminders have been fine with reusable nappies. Some of them (the ones who've been on recent courses about such things) have been positively enthusiastic.

We used them with 3 dc, the same nappies. We really didn't find it that hard, compared to many other things to do with parenting or trying to be green.

bythepowerofgreyskull Wed 13-Aug-08 15:35:22

we used resuables for both boys, we started using them on day 3-4 after the meconium had turned to chicken korma.
I feel that if we hadn't started doing it early on we would have stuck with disposables.

Good luck, even if you only use them for 6 months full time and then part time once child is in childcare then it is better for the planet. smile

laweaselmys Wed 13-Aug-08 15:39:42

I was thinking about getting totsbots, as I liked the disposable nappy shape to them... but actually lots of trial ones seems like a good idea as far as checking out drying times goes.

ChairmumMiaow Wed 13-Aug-08 15:45:30

We used them partime from about 6 weeks, the full time from about 3 months - it was just a case of getting used to them.

I find my reusables (tots bots and nature babies) brilliant. We've found them way less leaky than disposables. The bamboo ones take a while to try, the terry ones would dry in a day and night or less depending on the weather, and the micro-terry ones probably overnight. They'll all dry much quicker than that out on the line on a reasonably warm or breezy day. However there are a lot to chose from and it can get confusing.

We have local nappacino mornings where you can go and look at the various types, and there are sometimes mums like me who come along for a few extras/accessories to chat to. Alternatively if you can find a local cloth nappy retailer, they'll often come to visit to talk through the options (ours will)

If you're more worried about ease of changing, go for an all in one. These are more expensive but the ones I have seem do come apart well, so should dry pretty well. Otherwise, as recommended I'd say try a stuffable type.

They are worth the extra washing and drying effort - although we don't often do separate nappy washes as we only have 12 plus nighttime stuffables, so need to get them through quickly (and we do tumble dry when we can't put them on the line)

LazyLinePainterJane Wed 13-Aug-08 15:53:44

IN terms of drying, I use Tots Bots Fluffles and they are almost dry when they come out of the machine. I have never tumbled with reusables.

BigBadMousey Wed 13-Aug-08 17:04:26

Not time consuming at all - no idea why people say that. I have 3DCs under 4 and 2 are in cloth so I don't have much time for fiddling about when we are in a rush to get out the door for example. Washing wise, it is just an extra two loads a week and they are easy to hang out on the line (unless endless numbers of baby socks!)

I don't find it an inconvenience at all either, you just get into a routine. In fact, I find using disposables MORE inconvenient. DD1 was disposable reared and we were always running out and/or having to struggle around Boots to buy bumper packs when they were on 3 for 2 (then she'd outgrow them suddenly and I'd have loads left over - in fact DS used some of DD1's newborn nappies!).

We don't tumble dry - for DS I use a combination of different types of nappies - terry squares, pocket nappies and microfibre nappies which dry very quickly, some cotton which have average drying time and some bamboo which take longer to dry - it works very well. With DD2 I use hemp nappies - they take ages to dry but I bought 20 for a very good price second hand.

I do 2-3 nappy washes per week with 2 in cloth (DS's nappies often go in with his clothes wash). When your DC arrives you probably will go up to one load a day anyway as you suggest.

My nursery have used every type of cloth nappy I have given them and believe me I have tried them all!

£7000 on disposables per year shock - how many DCs are you having? More like £450 per year for premium brands - but it varies depending on your DC (my DS is a very heavy wetter and has to be changed hourly if he is in disposables.)

I cna honestly say that every time my DS in is disposables they leak, if you get the right nappy for your DC (not as hard as it may seem) then you will not get leaks. With DD1 I used to get really *** off with changing her entire outfit every time she pooed (when she was young) - you get leaks right up their back, all over their clothes and often all over what they were lying on or sitting in - now that is time consuming when it comes to laundry (taking the cover off your average bouncy chair when you are sleep deprived aint fun - putting it back on is worse!)

You will have to get used to your DC having a bigger bottom, you might have to be a bit more picky with jeans but dungarees, dresses, jogging bottoms and certain brands of normal trousers will fit over even the bulkiest nappy. The nappy will also hold your babies legs in a far better position than a disposable will and they will have padding for falls when it comes to learning to walk.

There are nappy advisors who offer their services for free,cheap trial schemes and financial incentives out thee to help you make the best decision for you and your family smile

BigBadMousey Wed 13-Aug-08 17:09:12

*unlike endless numbers of baby socks! (not unless)

4andnotout Wed 13-Aug-08 17:12:03

I use cloth full time and only ever use disposables when we go abroad. I only do a couple of nappy washes a week and either line dry/airer dry or very rarely tumble. I use mainly btp pockets during the day and fingers crossed they will fit dd4 when she arrives in october. Reusables come into their own today as dd3 has diarrhea and has had 7 nappies since this morning with no leaks! shock

MatNanPlus Wed 13-Aug-08 17:17:15

I am using Bambino Mio with current 5.5m charge, been using them since 11wks and have found them great only a few leaks (breast fed runny pooh) in 3 months - less than when using dispies before hand, they contain well and without the liner are great for the swimming pool

i have experimented with the folding of the liner and fold that rolling the sides and folding over a little at the top front and back contain even the most explosive liquid

Am intrigued by the fluffles mentioned tho so may get some just because.

We got 24 next size liners and 20 wraps ( mix of M,L,XL) on ebay for less than the cost of the wraps alone retail, but it took 4 weeks so give yourself time.

LazyLinePainterJane Wed 13-Aug-08 17:44:41

The worst thing about disposables is that horrid chemically smell that they have!

4andnotout Wed 13-Aug-08 17:53:06

Oh yes i forget how much disposables smell in the morning, dd2 called dd3 the polecat when we were on hols as she stank their room out!

IzzyWizzyletsgetbusy Wed 13-Aug-08 18:17:33

we meant to use cloth nappies with ds, made the mistake of buying a great big set of the same type, then because it didn't suit his shape and leaked, gave up after a few months and went back to disposables.

when dd came along I tried just getting one or two each of several different types, trying them out, selling on the ones that didn't suit and buying more of the ones that did. She's (just) 2 now and we've been using them since she was about a week old with no hassle and no problems!

So definitely try out a few different types so you find one that works for you. We use a mixture of two-parters with wraps (Tots flexitots or bamboozles - my preference) and pockets/AIOs (mainly Bumgenius and Modern Baby Pop-ins - dh's preference). The Tots Bots do take ages to dry if you don't tumble, but the Bumgenius are brilliant becuase the inner comes out to dry and is microfibre anyway so not too slow.

Re childcare: we've sent several different types to nursery and they've always managed fine (I think we've had 2 leaks in 2 years where nappy not put on properly), although I have to say I try to send Bumgenius and Modern Baby because they go on just like a disposable - easy peasy.

If you really want to save money, switch to reusable wipes too - we didn't for about 6 months and were spending a fortune on disposable ones.

ilovemydog Wed 13-Aug-08 18:31:44

hijack: izzy - how does it work with reusable wipes? How do you keep them wet? And just chuck into nappy pail?

4andnotout Wed 13-Aug-08 18:43:16

I use reusable wipes, i soak them in a mix overnight wring them out and keep them in a tupperware box in the nursery and a little plastic box in the nappy bag. Then just chuck them in the dry pail (makes it smell fresh too!) and wash with the nappies

alardi Wed 13-Aug-08 18:52:50

£6-£8 per week on disps (ask around, that's typical), means 50x6 (or x8) per year, or just £300 (£400) a year. Don't know where those figures of £3500 or £7000 come from!!!

I am a happy clothie who never had a tumble dryer, but I would say that people who don't get on with reusables really can't handle the wee, or dividing their time up into that many more tiny jobs with a baby who wants to be in your arms 24/7. Not criticising, just my observations. If you aren't great at multi-tasking with screaming kids in background in first place, or you don't baby wear, may not be for you.

BigBadMousey Wed 13-Aug-08 18:54:07

ilovemydog I just keep my reusable wipes dry then when I need one I just put it under a warm tap. I used to make up solutions, soak the wipes in it and then store them in a tub but the DCs prefer them warm! smile

ilovemydog Wed 13-Aug-08 19:02:35

Hmmm - suppose I could use a booster as a wipe?

How old is your baby big bad? I may have something you could be interested in... No cost. CAT me if interested....

HensMum Wed 13-Aug-08 19:04:35

With reusable wipes, I just keep a stack plus container of water next to the changing table. I use one to wipe and one to dry. You'll need lots and lots of reusable wipes.

I honestly find reusable nappies really easy. I chuck them in a dry bucket and do a wash about every two days. Wipes get washed with the nappies. I tumble when the weather's bad (like today!) or if we're running out and need nappies urgently. We used disposables for two weeks when the washing machine broke and I didn't find that to be any easier, other than I didn't have to change his nappy so frequently. But still had to buy nappies, empty the bin every day and put up with the smell of nappies in his room - at least with reusables, when it gets stinky, you can just put a load of washing on!

I use, and really like, pre-folds. I use Cotton Bottoms which have now been discontinued but you might be able to get hold of some somewhere. They are essentially a thick cotton pad which you fold and put in a wrap. They are quick to dry and less bulky than shaped nappies so I don't have any problems finding clothes to fit over them. Lots of people hate them though.

Definitely get a few different kinds to try out before you commit.

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