All About Cloth Nappies | Nappy Maintenance | New to Cloth

Getting Started

Getting started can be daunting. Once you have been using reusables for awhile you will wonder what the hesitation was about. You don’t need to commit to reusables every day on day 1. In fact many people just use reusables part time. Once you choose the type of nappy it is easy. Have some fun looking at the different nappies on offer. There are some very cute modern cloth nappies available.

Why Choose Cloth?

  • Using Cloth will save money. The average baby will use 6500 to 10,000 nappies from birth to potty training. Whereas just 24 reusables nappies will take your baby from birth to potty training full time. Even the most expensive reusables nappies will be cheaper than the thousands of dollars spent on disposables.
  • Cloth is better for the environment. Disposable nappies take approx. 200 - 550 years to decompose in landfills. Every disposable nappy that has been made still exists.
  • Cloth has more natural materials with less chemicals and possible harmful materials than disposables. Disposables are filled with absorbent materials that have chemicals that could possibly cause your child harm. Many parents find their children are more prone to rash in disposables. Modern Cloth Nappies use modern easy to care for materials such as bamboo, hemp or cotton. They are easy to wash, easy to put on and safer to baby’s skin than disposables.
  • Cloth looks and feels better – The fabrics tend to be softer to baby skin and cloth nappies come in many different gorgeous prints and colours.

How many do I need?

This will depend on whether you are using nappies full time / part time or occasionally. Based on a washing cycle of every 2-3 days then a set of 24 nappies should be sufficient to enable full time use of reusable nappies. In those 24, you will need 3-4 very absorbent nappies for night use. Ideally some of these nappies will be quick drying. Quick drying nappies are either less absorbent or you have spare inserts or boosters

It is generally recommended for:

  • Occasional Use – 6 Nappies – If flats or prefolds then include 2 nappy covers.
  • Part Time Use – 12 Nappies – If flats or prefolds then include 4 nappy covers.
  • Full Time Use – 24 Nappies – If flats or prefolds then include 6 nappy covers.

What do I need to get started?

  • Nappy set – Quantity depends on type, sized or OSFM nappies, washing frequency, full time or part time usage, no of spare boosters.
  • Bucket with lid - To store the dirty nappies in.
  • Covers - if using flats or prefolds then approx. 6 covers to 24 flats or prefolds for full time usage is recommended.
  • Snappis or plastic grips – fastners only required if using flats and prefolds.
  • Wetbag – A waterproof bag for holding used nappies. This is preferable for when changing out and about however not necessary as an old plastic shppping bag will suffice.
  • Night Nappy – One of your nappy set needs to be absorbent enough to cater for heavier wetting overnight as your baby gets older. This can be done by using addional inserts for certain nappy types.
  • Choosing your Nappy Stash

    The key decisions are:

    1. How much do I want to spend? The costs of different nappy types, brands and materials vary greatly. Flats are generally cheaper than pocket nappies.
    2. Preference for sized or one size fits most Note You will require more sized nappies than OSFM’s and thus sized increase the costs. However for smaller babies and newborns OSFM’s can be quite bulky.
    3. Does my nappy need to be grandparents or carer friendly? If yes then a simpler to put on nappy such as a pocket or all in one nappy would be more suitable.
    4. What nappy type do I prefer– flat, prefold, fitted, all in one, all in two or pocket. Pockets have become very popular as they are both quick drying and easy to put on.
    5. Do you prefer natural fabrics or stay dry materials next to baby’s skin?
    6. How many children will be wearing these nappies? If you have several children using them then you will benefit from getting durable nappies with additional boosters.

    There are some advantages having the same nappy type and brand as all inserts are interchangeable and it is easy to explain to other caregivers what to do. Having a range of types will enable you to take advantage of the pros of a number of nappy types for different situations.

    Tip –Take advantage of some of the trial packs to try a few different types before deciding what your nappy stash will be made of. Busybaby offers a mixed brand pocket nappy trial pack (link) alternatively look at nappy packages and get a great deal. (link)