The Lowdown: Cloth Nappies
Did you know we predominantly used cloth nappies? Some of you might have realised this, especially when you saw my laundry and it was 90% inserts and 10% clothes.
Before Chloe was born (our eldest), we decided to invest in cloth nappies. We were both working full time at that point, so could afford the start up cost – which wasn’t cheap. About $500 for a full set that went from newborn to toddler years. We bought Honey Child nappies – sadly they’re not made anymore.
Since then, some of the nappies have deteriorated through use, so we’ve replaced them with cheapies from The Baby Factory and they’re just as good in my opinion.
WHY WE CHOSE CLOTH
My husband and I try to do our part for the environment. We’re not perfect by any means, but using cloth nappies over disposables, was one way we could help. Although the cost up front was a lot, long term we saved money. Sure we had more laundry to do, but there was less going into the landfills.
WHAT DO WE DO WITH CLOTH
Spray, soak, wash. Repeat. ALWAYS dispose of the poos down the toilet (you should be doing this even if you’re using disposables because it’s really bad for the environment AND our health if faeces go into a landfill). If there’s leftover on the cloth nappy, then we used a tap (with our finger over it slightly to turn it into a bit of a sprayer) to wash it down. We then soaked the nappies overnight, and then wash in the normal wash. We never separated our cloth nappies out.
DID WE USE DISPOSABLES?
Heck yes we did. On days when I struggled to (what felt like) breathe, I used disposables so that I didn’t have to worry about the extra washing. We also used them throughout the night as we found our cloth were starting to leak. We also used disposables for the first 2 weeks of each child’s life – until their bowel movements became more regular and less runny.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CLOTH AND DISPOSABLES
The biggest difference is the cost: long term it’s cheaper with cloth nappies. The second biggest difference is the environment factor – you’re not adding to a landfill. You should be putting excess solids in the toilet regardless of whether or not you use disposables or cloth – so that’s exactly the same. However you do more washing.
WHAT ABOUT WIPES?
We used flannels. We specially bought a whole heap of cheap flannels of a specific colour and only used those – they were our nappy flannels. Each time we needed them, we’d get a new flannel, use it and then rinse off / soak overnight with the nappies. Because we already did a daily wash, it was no biggie to add to the wash.
As I said above, cloth nappies can be expensive to start with, but you don’t HAVE to buy them all at once. You can suddenly decide one day “I think I’m going to start building my cloth nappy collection” – and each week buy one new cloth nappy. You can build it up slowly rather than all at once like we did – remember we had double income and no kids!
I think we had about 20 cloth nappies at our disposal – 10 for the day, 10 for the next day. Because we did a load of washing each day, it meant we were replacing them anyway. As the kids got older obviously we didn’t need as many anymore.
The washing factor for us didn’t make a difference – we had to wash baby clothes every day anyway, so from day 1 we started doing daily washes. Adding nappies into it really didn’t make any difference and after a week it did get easier and we got into a routine.
IDGAF if you use disposables or cloth, however I do get asked a lot to share that I used cloth nappies. It’s not something I publicly announced as I didn’t want to make any parent feel down about using disposables. Believe me when I say – what you do is your business ?
If you’d like to find out more information about cloth nappies, head over to the Nappy Heaven. It’s a website full of information around sizes, types of cloth nappies, ways to buy, etc etc.