Sharing the fluffy love

 
I love reusable nappies. I have posted about them on countless occasions, not because I think that everyone should use them but because I think that everyone should have the option to use them if they wish. There are so many myths out there about reusable nappies (some of which I have tried to dispel on this blog) and so I think that if I can show people how great they are then people will have the information to make the right decision for them.

With that in mind it is a great feeling when someone tells you that they want to give reusables a go! It has happened twice recently and I think it’s fantastic! 

My cousin and his wife have recently been blessed with a beautiful little girl. When she was pregnant, Mrs W said to me that she was interested in using reusable nappies. One of the things that put her off was the cost however. I have posted on here before about how there are some cheaper ways to cloth nappy and so I passed on some tips (hopefully in a helpful way and not in a ram my opinion down your throat way). I was also in a position to be able to pass on some nappies, preloved but great condition, so that they had the option of trying them out before they invested. Now if Mrs W had turned around and said to me that reusables weren’t for them after all then so be it. They are not for everyone but I wanted them to have the option of trying them if they wanted to. A few days after their daughters arrival I was sent a photograph of her in a reusable nappy. She looked adorable and I was so proud! Mrs W recently said to me that they don’t use them exclusively but that she does try to use them when at home. That’s great! Parenting is hard work and you have to do what is best for you and your family. If that works for you then I say well done and enjoy.  

Isabelle looking gorgeous in a reusable nappy at only a few days old


Another friend of mine also contacted me recently asking for some advice on reusables. Again I tried to be as helpful as possible and point her in the direction of useful information. She is now expanding her nappy stash and getting to grips with reusables. I hope it doesn’t become too addictive for her (it easily happens).

I really am so pleased that I have been able to help two people enjoy the world of cloth nappies. I am no expert but if I can use my experiences to help and pass on information which could be useful then I’m glad. I am more than happy to help anyone navigate the, sometimes confusing, beginners world of reusable nappies if I can. The world needs fluffy love!

How did you first discover reusables?

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Newborn cloth stash – what’s in yours?

  

I have used cloth nappies with baby boy since he was about 3 months old. We went straight to using birth to potty nappies in the day and fitted nappies at night with a birth to potty wrap. I therefore have no experience of using cloth nappies with a newborn. With baby number 2 on the way I have decided that I definitely want to use cloth nappies from birth this time but I don’t really know what I need.

I have started a little newborn stash already with a purchase of 3 tots bots teenyfits. They are tiny and so cute. I am fully aware though that these will probably last me all of 5 hours! I need more!! Never having used them from birth I am just at a loss as to what to buy. 

I am hoping to breastfeed (it didn’t go to plan last time so I am keeping an open mind but will be trying) and so need great containment along with looking cute. This will be a winter baby and so nappies that dry quickly are a must. Lastly I am on a serious budget so they need to be cheap, cheap cheap! Not too much to ask really.

I am therefore sending out a heartfelt plea to other cloth bumming parents out there – please give me any advice you have! What newborn nappies should I use? Where is the best place to buy from?

Advice welcome!

Rub a dub dub – reusable nappy wash routine

  

So as a user of reusable nappies (well baby boy really not me) I am a member of several online forums. The question that pops up on these forums the most is what is the best way to wash reusable nappies. I have decided therefore to write a short post about my washing routine. It will be short because frankly there isn’t much to it and is really is quite simple. It may not be the best way or the recommended way but we have had not problems with it so far. Here goes:

Step 1: Undo zip of wet bag containing dirty nappies (we prefer these to buckets but it’s personal preference) and put it into the washing machine.

Step 2: Set washing machine on a cold rinse.

Step 3: Once rinse has finished add one scoop of powder and one scoop of Mio fresh to the drawer and set washing machine on a 40 degree cycle with an extra rinse at the end (I use baby and toddler setting).

Step 4: when cycle has finished hang nappies to dry on either line or airer depending on the weather.

It really is that simple. On occasion I will do a 60 degree wash instead of a 40 but only if I feel the nappies are in serious need of a deep clean or if baby boy has been a bit off colour.

So there you have it. My simple washing routine that works for us.

Do you do it differently? Do you have any tips?

Image credit – http://www.fill-your-pants.com/washingnappies.html 

Reusables – easy, peasy, lemon squeazy!



I wouldn’t know where to begin with cloth nappies – a phrase heard all too often when discussing reusables with non users. So let’s talk modern cloth nappies and actually how easy they are to use.

Myth No.4 – cloth nappies are complicated

I first have to admit that when I first looked into using cloth nappies I did find it a little bit daunting. There were so many different types and brands. I however was convinced that reusables were the way forward for us and so instead of being put off, it just meant that a bit of research was necessary before our adventure began. In order to help those who do not enjoy spending hours on the Internet looking at cloth nappies (I can’t understand it but I have been told that there are such people) I have decided to put together a small guide to a few of the different nappy types.

All in one



All in one nappies are the closest to disposables. They have a waterproof outer layer and an absorbent layer sewn in. They can come in birth to potty or sized from small to large. They are designed to be extremely simple – just add a liner if required and put the nappy on your child. Simple. There are a few drawbacks however to all in one nappies. Some people find that they have moderate absorbency as not all brands allow for additional boosting if needed. They also only have one layer against leaks (I have never really found that a problem) and so some people find them slightly less reliable than a nappy with separate wrap. Finally the whole nappy needs to be washed each time. Some examples of all in one nappies are bumgenius freetimes and elementals and blueberry basix. Some nappies such as tots bots easyfit and bambino mio miosolos are sold as all in ones but I actually find them to be a cross between an all in one and a pocket nappy as the absorbent soaker is seen in at one end but still needs to be stuffed into a pocket. These have the advantage of being able to boost with extra layers if necessary.

All in twos

All in two nappies have a waterproof outer wrap with the absorbent layer usually fixed in with snaps. This makes it easy to take apart to wash (and decreases drying time) but also means, depending on the brand, that you could reuse the outer wrap at some nappy changes by just changing the absorbent layer. Some brands make disposable inserts – perfect for holidays. Again though they often only have a one layer barrier against leaks. Some all in two nappies include Close pop ins and Grobia hybrids.

Pocket nappies



Pocket nappies are just that, nappies with a pocket. The waterproof outer has a pocket into which the absorbent layer is stuffed. These have the advantage that they can be boosted as much or as little as necessary. Just like all in ones the whole nappy needs to be changed each time although the separate boosters mean that drying time is reduced. There are a lot of different brands making pocket nappies. Bumgenius V4’s are a popular branded nappy but a lot of the so called Internet cheapies are pocket nappies.

Two part systems



These are usually a fitted nappy (bamboo or cotton) with a waterproof wrap over the top. These nappies are especially good for night as the whole nappy is absorbent. Also the fact that they have the two parts makes them excellent at containing leaks. They can be bulky though which is why a lot of people prefer to only use them at night. Tots bots bamboozles and little lamb are a couple of examples of 2 part systems.

So there you have it. My very basic guide to modern cloth nappies. I’m sure that I have missed things out and maybe not quite explained things as well as I could have but it is a start if you are new to the world of cloth.

Do you have anything further that you could add?

Image Credit – http://www.darlingsdownunder.com.au; http://www.ecoaction.com.au; http://www.cleangreennappy.co.uk; http://www.naturalnursery.co.uk; http://tobygoesbananas.co.uk

I can’t afford to use cloth nappies, can I?

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I have been speaking to a few people recently about reusable nappies and when asked why they decided not to try them there is a common answer: they are too expensive. This week then it is my mission to show how inexpensive cloth nappies can be.

Myth No. 3 – Cloth Nappies are expensive

Going real saves money for both parents and our communities. For every year a baby is in nappies, he or she will need nearly 2,000 nappy changes. With potty training averaging at two and a half years, that is nearly 5,000 nappies per child!

At an average cost of 16p per disposable, between them parents in England and Wales are spending approximately half a billion pounds on disposable nappies every year.

Recent research by Go Real shows that parents can save anything from £150 to over a £1000 over the lifetime of using nappies, depending on their choice of nappies- those are huge savings for cash-strapped families. (And those savings stack up even further when nappies are used on a second- and a third child…)

http://www.goreal.org.uk/why

I actually agree with this statement but cloth nappies can be expensive. If you were to buy a whole stash of branded and custom nappies then of course you are going to spend a lot of money. Similarly, if you were to buy more nappies than you really needed (ahem might be guilty of this myself) then again it can be expensive.

However, cloth nappies don’t have to break the bank. The majority of my stash are what are affectionately known as ‘internet cheapies’. They are pocket nappies which cost around £4 each including inserts. You can get deals on bulk lots and can choose from amazing patterns. As I said, these are the ones we have most of. We then have a few varieties of the branded nappies like tots bots, bumgenius, bambino mio and close pop ins. I find that this system works well for us. The branded nappies were not all purchased brand new either. There is a huge and profitable preloved market. Facebook has groups dedicated to the sale of preloved cloth nappies as do websites such as babycentre. You can pick up brand new and euc (excellent used condition) cloth nappies for good prices. One Facebook page (https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1543623025896312) finds the best current deals so you don’t miss out on a bargain. Although I must warn you – beware the limited edition! If you fall into that trap you may as well remortgage the house and sell your children to buy the nappies. Think that a tots bots royal flush sold for almost £200 on eBay recently and you get the picture!

There are ways to do it even cheaper as well. Good old fashioned terry squares and some nice wraps don’t cost the earth and are still very popular even with modern cloth nappies on the market. Local selling pages and sites often have some good deals come up so it’s a good idea to have a quick look once in a while if you are trying to build a stash on a budget.

To really keep costs down try not to buy more than you really need. It is advised that a stash of around 24 nappies will be enough to cloth full time for 1 child. I have about 40 in my stash. I could definitely manage on less but I like having more so that I don’t run out if I get behind on the washing!!

If you are smart, look for deals and don’t need a full branded stash then you really can cloth nappy on a budget.

Have you clothed on a budget? Do you have any tips?

Image credit – http://materialmama.co.uk/advice