Cloth Nappy FAQ

What style should I choose?

When you are first starting out it can be a little overwhelming deciding which is the best nappy for you as there are many different styles and brands to choose from. What works for one family may not work for yours, it really just comes down to personal preference.

When first starting out we recommend trialing a few different styles and brands and then building your stash from there.


Can I start from birth?

Yes of course! You can use cloth nappies even on the tiniest of newborn babies. A newborn goes through around 500 nappies in the first 6 weeks of their life so using cloth from birth makes great economic sense. Newborn nappies also have great resell value as they are generally in great condition so you are able to recoup most of your money pack.

Read - 5 Reasons to Start Cloth Nappies from Birth 

Can I just use them at home?

Yes of course, full time or part time it all counts and there are no rules!

Is it hard to use cloth nappies out + about?

There is often a belief that using cloth nappies outside of the home is going to be hard but it is actually really easy. Plus they are so much more bomb-proof compared to disposable nappies which means less poo explosions and clothing changes.
The key to using reusables out and about are wet bags!

Read - How to use reusable nappies on the go

How many nappies do I need?

This is entirely up to you and depends on whether you want to use cloth full time/part time, how often you want to wash, and the style of nappy as some take a little longer to dry if you are not using a dryer. 

Newborn babies will go through approx 12 nappy changes a day whereas older babies will go through approx 6-8 nappies a day so if you are washing every 2-3 days you need enough to last a couple of days (we recommend no longer than 3 days between washing).

You may want to consider having a few more handy for back up in case some are taking longer to dry or your baby uses more nappies on average. On the other hand, you may get away with less if you are washing every day or tumble drying inserts.

An approximate number for the newborn stage is 30+
An approximate amount for over 5 months over is 20-25
(Enough to cover 2-3 days before washing)

What are cloth nappies made from?

Modern cloth nappies are generally made from an absorbent material such as cotton, bamboo or hemp and then a polyester and polyurethane outer layer to provide water-resistance.

Can I use them at night time?

Yes you can absolutely use cloth nappies at night time!

Some babies can use a day nappy with a little added absorbency at night but some babies will be heavier wetters and need more absorbency so will find a dedicated night nappy a better option.

What do I do with the poo?

This is a common worry amongst those considering using reusable nappies but once you get started you realise how much you will be touching poo with a newborn anyway.  If your baby is on a milk only diet you don’t have to do anything with poo as you can put the nappy straight into the washing machine.

Once your baby is on solids the poo is less water soluble so it is better to get rid of the majority of the poo prior to washing your nappies.

  • Some poo will just roll/shake off into the toilet
  • Some people use a bidet hose that attaches to your toilet
  • Some people hold the nappy in the toilet and flush
  • You can use disposable or reusable nappy liners
  • A silicone scrubbing brush works really well if they need a scrub

Dealing with poo when out and about

  • Roll poo up in nappy and store in a wetbag until you get home
  • Plop into a toilet if you are close to one
  • Use disposable liners when out

Do I have to soak nappies?

This is a big NO from us!

This used to be the old method of dealing with nappies and is not necessary these days. We do not recommend soaking/wet pailing nappies because:

  • It poses a drowning risk
  • Soaking can degrade fabrics over time
  • It creates a breeding ground for bacteria

We recommend that you store dirty nappies in a ‘dry pail’ prior to washing.

What is a dry pail?

A dry pail is any laundry basket with holes in it for maximum air flow. The more air flow the better when it comes to a good dry pail. Air flow helps to evaporate the water out of urine which minimises ammonia build up.

We do NOT recommend rinsing wee nappies prior to storing in dry pail. Just throw nappies right in there - easy!

How do I wash them?

Nappies are very dirty laundry so they need to be effectively cleaned in order to prevent problems happening such as degradation of materials or rashes.
We recommend a 2 step wash system consisting of a prewash and then a main or second wash.

Download our washing guide here

What about stains?

If you are following a good wash routine stains shouldn’t be a problem. However if you do get some stains there are plenty of ways to overcome this and it is usually means a simple tweak to your washing routine

Tips for pretreating stains:

  • Use a bit of Sard Soap 
  • Silicone scrubbing brushes are great for scrubbing poo
  • Make sure you are washing in 40° - 60° cycles
  • Make sure you are using good quality detergent (Like Persil)
  • Use a disposable or reusable nappy liner
  • Use a laundry booster in the prewash

Can I use the drier?

Yes! Natural fibre inserts such as bamboo, cotton and hemp can be tumble dried.

We don’t recommend tumble drying nappy shells, covers, wool covers or anything containing PUL such as wetbags. These dry very quickly on the line.

How do I use nappies at the hospital?

If you would like to use cloth from birth or at the hospital this is absolutely achievable!

  • Take at least 2-3 wetbags to store dirty nappies in
  • Ask your partner/hubby/grandies or friend to take nappies home
  • Don’t leave nappies unwashed for more than 2 days

I have tried cloth nappies before but they leaked! 

There are two main reasons cloth nappies can leak:

  1. The fit is not right
  2. Not enough absorbency

See our guide for troubleshooting leaks
Download Fit and Washing Quick Guide

Help Im feeling overwhelmed!

We understand! When you first start to use cloth nappies it can quickly become overwhelming, there seems to be a lot of information, styles, brands and reviewers, facebook groups out there! 

The best way is to just start! Grab a couple of nappies you like the look of and go from there, you will find your groove very quickly, we promise!

We are here to help you get started with cloth nappies so please get in touch with us if you have any questions or would like to chat about getting started.

Email hello@tushie.co.nz or chat to us on Messenger or Instagram @tushiestore

 

 

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