Adventures of a Free-From Clothbum Mum!

Cloth nappies, dairy-free living, reviews and parental ramblings!

So – how do I use my nappies on a daily basis? Using and Washing!

on January 2, 2012

Cloth nappies are really easy to use. I promise! Gone are the days of standing over a pan as you boil up your terry nappies and then slave over them to get them clean. Cloth nappies really don’t involve all the hard work that people think they do and are very easy to get your head around!

I store my nappies on the bottom two layers of my changing unit in those fabric Ikea baskets that you can get. I have them organised into sections – night nappies, day nappies, good ones for going out and ones that are better for home, as well as an area for wraps.

Each nappy is put together so it’s ready to be picked up, put on and used. You can just use the nappies as they are but I line mine. You can use various types of liners and they do different jobs. Paper liners catch a lot of poo which means that you can take these off after use and flush away the contents. Some liners are flushable but I don’t dare risk doing that due to my decrepit plumbing (I mean the house, not me!!!) Fleece or minky liners help to draw moisture away from the baby and keeps them dry, a bit like disposables do. They are great but if you have a very very heavy wetter then sometime they can repel a stream of urine and bounce it back to the legs where you’ll get leaking. It’s all a bit of trial and error to find the combination that suits you.

I actually use both. I have a fleece liner inside my nappies that’s wrapped in a paper one so that most of the poo gets caught on that. When I change my son, I take off the old nappy – get rid of any poo and put on a new one. Simple. The used nappy gets put in a lidded nappy pail that is lined with a mesh laundry bag and has a few drops of tea tree oil in the bottom to keep it smelling nice and sweet. I don’t soak. At all. This is called dry-pailing.

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Some people prefer to use wetbags instead of pails and you can get some lovely ones, such as the coveted Monkeyfoot ones, Rumperooz, Itti Bitti and the Smartipants Smartpail. There are many others out there. At the moment I prefer my pails, but I may change once I get a toddler who can take off lids but can’t work zips! My pail is a large Junior Joy one, which holds a lot. I made the mistake of buying the Mothercare pail. It’s tiny and doesn’t hold enough nappies for my liking. It’d be a good one, though, if you were using systems like the Bumgenius flip where you have less bulky nappies.

Nappy pails - Mothercare one on the left and Junior Joy one on the right. Both are lined with mesh laundry bags to make taking the nappies to the machine really simple!

I make sure that I separate out all the components of the nappy before it goes into the pail. This means that when I get a full nappy bucket, all I have to do is pull the mesh bag out of the pail (it has a drawstring so that I can carry it down to the washing machine). I then open up the bag, shake the contents out into the machine and wash em. It’s really that easy! I wash about twice a week as I have a good sized nappy stash but smaller stashes will require more frequent washing.

To actually wash them, I use about half of the usual amount of non-bio that I would usually use for a wash and then add a scoop of sanitising powder and a couple of drops of tea tree oil in the conditioner section. You can get many different types of sanitiser but I use Miofresh. I’ve heard great things about Rockin Green and im going to get some soon to try out. It comes in hard and soft water versions and as my water is the hardest on the planet, it sounds like the way forward! Napisan is the traditional one but it can destroy the waterproofness of PUL so only use that when washing terries, prefolds or fitteds. I then put the nappies on a 40 or 60 wash with a pre-wash to help get out any stains. That usually takes about 2 hrs. Never use fabric conditioner with your nappies as it builds and stops them being absorbant.

Drying is also pretty easy. I’m lucky in that I have a plug-in, heated airer that I got from Lakeland a while back. So, I put the nappies out on there and they’re usually dry in the morning. But you can tumble dry them or dry on airers or racks. microfleece is much quicker at drying and bamboo/hemp takes much longer. I don’t tumble dry my wraps as this can also muck up their waterproofness.

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Then, once they’re dry, I sit in front of my fav TV shows (quite into Warehouse 13 at the moment) and put them all back together, get them lined, and then they’re ready to go again. It’s actually quite relaxing sitting there, doing it. I really enjoy it – probably because it’s a calming, repetitive task that doesn;t involve me thinking much or running around doing a million mummy things at once!

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4 responses to “So – how do I use my nappies on a daily basis? Using and Washing!

  1. […] blogged about this in the past HERE and HERE but in a nutshell, I find using cloth nappies so […]

  2. […] how do you wash them? I’ve written a blogpost about it HERE but it’s just so […]

  3. […] days worth, then just chuck them into the washing machine. I wash mine at 60 with a prewash (see my washing post) and I use sanitising […]

  4. […] only are cloth nappies so much more economical , eco-friendly and effortless , they are also immensely […]

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