When you think of cloth nappies, you think old school with the white terry flats and safety pins – just like I was in when I was a baby. How things have changed!
I first found out about modern cloth nappies when Cal broke out in a hideous bum rash, and to let his sweet cheeks recover, I put him into terry towel flats until it went away. Apart from looking very cute with his little fluffy bum, its actually easier and more environmentally friendly to use them. Did you know that 3800 disposable nappies in one year at a cost of $1000, can equal to a set of 24 cloth nappies, for $500 and can last 1-3 years? I think I know which one I would chose! Which is why I set out on our cloth journey late last year.
I started with some flats & PUL covers part time during the day, as they were what I knew best, and I actually found Cal liked them a lot. I pre-prepared the folding so all I needed to do was put it on Cal and we were ready to go. The washing part was easy, there’s nothing different you need to do than how you would do your regular washing. Most people would think they are messier than disposables. Yes, they can be, but being a mum, I’m used to getting vomit and poo on me. Just today Cal coughed and vomited in my eyes. I kid you not.
It was after more browsing on the interwebs that I found out about these MCN’s or Modern Cloth Nappies as the abbreviation stands for. They look exactly like a disposable in shape, come in pretty colors and patterns, and fasten with snaps or velcro. There’s literally a TON of them around and you can get them cheaply for about $12-15 dollars each, or $20-$30 for the more expensive ones. I’ve trialled a few and my favourites are clear.
Terry Flats/Cotton Flats:
I get all excited about flats, I don’t know why, but they are just so much fun! I love the folding, its very therapeutic to me, and I just find that Cal’s bum is huge and fluffy and I just want to snuggle him forever! I’ve experimented with different folds, so I know what works for Cal to get the most out of absorbency, and I can add extra boosters in there if needed. I also love the covers for them, they are just bright and fun, so it makes changing an exciting time.
MCN’s – AIO/AI2:
My favourites out of MCN’s are AIO (All in one) and my AI2 (All in twos). AIO are exactly what it is, a cloth nappy that is basically as easy as putting a disposable on. The cover, absorbency pads, lining are all sewn together so it makes for easy changing. Disadvantages is that they take longer to dry. AI2’s have a detachable absorbency pads so you can remove the dirty pad and replace with a new one which is still easy but you do have to snap them back in after washing before using.
I have a few favourite brands that I purchase from, and they are lovely people to shop through. I find that Baby Beehinds are my go to nappy brand as they are just such great quality and a pleasure to deal with. For our next baby I am planning on buying an entire set so I can have a fluffy newborn as well! I also have some Bubblebubs which I impressed with the waist snaps as they fasten front to back so you can create the perfect fit around legs and waist separately, which is perfect because Cal can sometimes be an odd shape! But its up to the individual on what nappy suits best for them and bub.
I did try pocket nappies, which is a pocket in-between the cover and the lining so you can add pads in to cater for your child’s needs. They are okay as a fill in, but they take FORVER to stuff the inserts back in, and I found these didn’t really seem to make Cal comfortable or sit well. So they are my backups.
For anyone thinking that using cloth nappies is going to create extra work with cleaning, they aren’t. It’s surprisingly easy and it takes no more time than if you were doing a regular wash. I wash any nappies I have every second day, hang them up and viola! Done! Its actually the only time I like doing washing because I love seeing cute nappies hanging on the line! Haha
Im interested to use cloth straight up after our next baby, as I didn’t start using cloth part time until Cal was about 4 months old. Which isn’t too bad, I knew his poo schedule and it was easy to guess when he would go, so that was helpful to avoid big messes! But I also know how many disposables we went through in the first few months…our bin literally was full every week just from nappies alone! I figure a little bit of extra work washing can not only be good for baby’s bottoms, but also our wallets, our bin, and the environment. We may only use disposables at night and when we go out, but its a start! And I’m happy that we can make a positive change to help reduce the tons of crap (literally) that goes to landfill.
If you’re interested in giving cloth a go, many online stores have trial packs you can buy so you can test them out before you buy a whole set which I found very helpful. Especially if you are looking for sized nappies, so you can be sure they fit properly. I’ll place a list of the stores and links I use below.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about one of my favourite hobbies (ahah) and I encourage anyone who’s willing to give them a go. You won’t regret it!