Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Cloth Nappy Clinic - Beginners Guide

Hello, I am Kelly and I'm one of Beebies' two Cloth Nappy Experts. Each fortnight, Debs & I will be sharing our tips and tricks and answering all of your fluffy bum questions. 

Cloth nappies, pretty scary when you've never used them. With so many different brands and types it's hard to know where to start. Hopefully this post will give you enough knowledge to to be able to pick a few nappies to try. If I've missed anything that you specifically want to know, then please leave me a comment below. 

Nappy Brands
This like food, is down to personal preference. Most brands stock most nappy types so it's just a case of finding what works for you. We use a mix of about six nappy brands regularly but own many more. 

Nappy Type
Now this is where people get confused, but bear with me because it's honestly easy :-) 
Pocket nappies are super easy to use. They come with either one or two inserts that literally just get stuffed in the nappy pocket. Some brands open at the front but most, like the Baba & Boo Range at Beebies, open at the back. 
Pirate Pocket Nappy from the Baba & Boo range.
AIO stands for an all in one nappy, this is a nappy where you have no separate inserts or cover to worry about. 
AI2 is an all in two nappy, normally this means that the booster comes unattached. This can make drying easier. 
Two part nappy, some nappies need a separate wrap to make them watertight. These are ofter referred to as "two parters" they make fantastic night nappies, some use during the day but they are a lot bulkier then other fitted nappies.  
Hybrid. This is a nappy shaped like a fitted but requires no wrap. 
Terry nappies. Yes you can still buy these and are very cheep, they need a wrap. 
Prefold. Similar to terries, these you fold into a nappy shape and also need a wrap. 

Nappy Size
You can buy them in either sized, so newborn, size one and two etc. small, medium, large doping on the brand. Or you can buy what's known as BTP, which stands for birth to potty. In my experience they don't fit from birth, they start fitting at around 8 weeks depending on the size of baby. But these are a great way of keeping costs down as you don't need to buy the next size up. They will have a set of popper on the front which you use to make the nappy larger or smaller. 

People often get confused between the two. A booster absorbs urine, a liner lets urine through but catches poo. You can get boosters in a mix of materials including microfibre, cotton, bamboo, hemp and charcoal. Liners can be either disposable, or made from fleece. Personally I love fleece as it keeps the baby completely dry, you wash these with the nappies and reuse. 

How do you wash them?
You'll need either a dedicated nappy bin or bag to keep the dirty ones in, and a wetbag to use when out and about. Chuck the dirty nappies in the bin/bag until ready to wash. Before baby is weaned poo will come off easily using the shower head over the toilet, once weaned it tends to just roll off! 
So no poo goes Into the machine, I know people always ask about this! Breast milk poo can go straight in the machine if you like, I personally rinsed them all down the loo first. I was every two days, how often you wash can depend on how many nappies you own or how big your bucket is. 
You never use fabric conditioner as this will reduce their absorbency, and you only use half the recommended dose of powder. You can use bio or non bio, that's personal preference but it must be powder unless using a dedicated nappy liquid. Always do a cold rinse before washing to help lift stains, I then wash all mine on a 40 degree wash using a nappy sanitiser. If I didn't use a sanitiser I would wash at 60.

So there you have it, all the basics on how to choose the right cloth nappy for you. 

Don't forget to pop any questions you might have below and we'll try to answer them in the next Cloth Nappy Clinic. For live support, tweet @beebiesbabystor with #clothnappyclinic and we'll get back to you asap.  

Catch up soon x 

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