Someone suggested I did a nappy update on how we’re getting on with reusable nappies and I thought it was a great idea, as a lot has changed since we first started using them (see my original article here) and they have become far more second nature now. And with the COVID-19, it has really hit me how great it is that we never have to panic buy nappies.
What I would firstly say is that it’s never too late to try reusable nappies or pants. In fact, toilet training or age 2 up is probably the perfect time to give them a go! Most nappies are made from birth to potty training, toddlers nappies generally don’t get as full so there’s less worry about leaks and they’re more likely to understand when their nappy is wet so (hopefully) could be easier to toilet train.
I think there is definitely some sort of consensus that you have to buy 30 reusable nappies off the bat and go straight into only using reusables as soon as you make the choice. This certainly isn’t the case, just buying one will be so helpful to the environment and will allow you to build up your confidence with using them. My tip? Try putting your child in them at home for a couple of hours between dinner and bathtime, you’ll save at least one nappy from landfill which is brilliant.
Our preferred are the ‘all-in-one’ nappies, as they’re simple and work just like a disposeable. We use Bambino Mio a lot (and Aldi often do good deals on them). We usually add a booster pad to make them last longer. The Totsbots nappies with a wrap are the securest for leaks, but a bit more of a faff. And I’ve just discovered Peachi Baby and Little Lamb which are very cute!
Where are we with it? Well, nursery are totally onboard with them, to be honest we were scared to ask as didn’t want them to feel any pressure but they offered and it has been great! We have about 15 now in rotation, sometimes we don’t have any spare if I’m behind on my washing/drying but we use disposeables in that case. We drop her off in a reusable with three spare nappies, booster pads, a zip washbag and liners (we tried without but nursery wanted to keep using disposeable liners to catch most of the poo – not ideal as it’s still disposeable but it helps with cleaning and they’re happier). We are given the bag back at the end of the day and they go in the wash. Yes, we often have to clean poo off her nappies when we get home, but we’ve been baby free all day so it’s not exactly a challenge – I do it next to her whilst she’s in the bath!
We only use Cheeky Wipes at home, which we love and again, are a great way to dip your toe into reusable baby items! I have the plastic tub for them and I use camomile essential oil in the tub to keep them smelling fresh. We also use muslins still for dribble and spillages etc too.
I must admit, we had a few leaks at nursery for a while, they can’t keep such a close eye on leaks, I suppose – but I also think this was mainly due to the fact Peggy was still bum shuffling and adding a lot of pressure onto the nappies. Now she is walking it makes a huge difference to how many clothes changes she goes through.
We rarely buy disposeables now, maybe 1 pack once a month? We still use at night and if grandparents babysit. Although the cost of reusables at first seems steep, the cost per wear makes them a much more cost effective product (I love Peachi Baby’s fact sheets on cost per wear and how many disposeable nappies you save by buying theirs) and obvously the earlier you start or the more kids you have, the cost lowers. And there is a huge secondhand market for them, too.
Our summer holiday last year was the best time for disposeables, Peggy mainly wore a resuable nappy and t-shirt in the day (the sea was too cold so she didn’t really go in the water, but we have reusable swim nappies for our next holiday).
Curently, we are trying to change Peggy into towelling training pants when we’re at home to get her used to be able to pull them down ready for toilet training.
The feeling that I get from saving nappies from landfill over the last 1.5 years has been amazing and now, if we have another child, we will know what to do and will save even more. And do you know what’s more exhausting than washing nappies? Being asked to justify reusable nappies all the time. ‘But how do you deal with the poo’? ‘I heard that washing them all the time is worse for the environment’, ‘Don’t they take ages to dry?’, ‘The idea is just gross’. It’s not up to me to defend reusable nappies, it’s up to the individual to decide what’s better. I know I’m doing something good.
So that’s my recap, if you’re new to this or want further info then please see my original post here, which has further links and info on vouchers you can claim from local councils, too. Or look to The Nappy Lady for advice (I found their videos on how to wash them etc extremely useful).