Starting cloth nappies can seem really overwhelming, there are so many brands, where do I start? Which is the best? Snaps or Velcro? Microfibre, Bamboo, Hemp? What does it all mean? Don't panic, we're here to help, and here to make it as simple as possible. If you need any assistance at all with starting, or you're still confused - please don't hesitate to reach out via our contact page, or via social media.
I am wanting to use cloth nappies, where do I start?
The best place to start is to do just that, start! Buy a nappy, put it on, and go. We advise that you start with a couple of different brands and styles of nappy so that you can see what works for you and your little one as each baby is different. If you are unsure which brands might suit your babe, or where to start, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We are always happy to help.
I feel very overwhelmed by the thought of using cloth nappies, help!?
Start with just one nappy, one day a week and go from there.Trialling a few nappies to see what you like is a good place to start, so you don't buy lots of nappies you won't end up using. We recommend building your collection consciously, and buy only what works for you. You don't have to buy 20-30 nappies all at once to start with, if you don't want to or can't afford to.
Do I need to do cloth full time?
Definitely not! There are so many options for using cloth nappies, and using a mix of both disposables and cloth can be a great place to start. Only want to do cloth at home? That's cool! Only want to do cloth one day a week? That's totally fine, too! If you're feeling overwhelmed by the washing side of things, make sure you check out our washing guide here.
Figure out what works for you and go with it. If you want to start cloth full time straight away, that's also great! We definitely recommend trialling a few different types before going all in though, as often you'll find certain nappies or brands might not fit your babe the best, and what works for your friend, might not work for you! In saying that - cloth nappies have great resale value and there are a few different buy & sell groups on Facebook where you can sell any that don't work for you.
There are no rules, and remember that even one cloth nappy a day saves 365 nappies from landfill a year. You are amazing for even considering using cloth nappies to help our planet, deciding to start is one of the hardest parts!
I'm confused by the different types of cloth nappies, how do I know which one will work best for us?
We stock a range of different nappies here at Mom. All of our nappies are either 'All in two' (AI2) or pocket nappies, and some even double as both! Learn more about these below.
The nappies also have different closures - snaps or velcro, and there are benefits to both. Snaps often last a little longer, but velcro is very forgiving for getting a good fit. Velcro are also the most similar to a disposable nappy, so grandparents and child care centres often find these the easiest to fit, meaning less leaks.
Most of our nappies are convertible & 'one size fits most' to last your babe until they are toddlers. Each nappy does have a slightly different weight range, so be sure to check on the product listing. Some fit down to as small as 2.9kg, and others up to 20kg - giving you incredible longevity out of your purchase!
Our nappies all have varying features that set them apart from each other, some have inner gussets, some outer gussets, some come with hemp inserts, others with bamboo or bamboo/cotton inserts. Check out all of our different nappies here, and let us know if you have any questions.
We also have a small range of newborn nappies & covers. These can be used from birth and even fit premature babies. Our newborn nappies have snap-in inserts that can be snapped out and the shell reused if not wet or soiled. Again, this reduces the number of nappies that you need, making it a cost-effective way to cloth nappy your newborn.
What is an 'All in Two' AI2 nappy?
As the name suggests, there are two parts to this nappy. the shell and the insert. With an AI2 nappy, the shell can be reused through multiple nappy changes providing it isn't soiled or soaking wet. The inserts snap in and snap out, making these super easy to use & reuse.
What is a pocket nappy?
This is when the insert is stuffed into a lined pocket inside the nappy. This means that the insert isn't directly against baby's skin, but a stay dry or athletic wicking jersey layer is instead. Unlike the AI2 option, the shell cannot be reused through multiple changes when the inserts are stuffed into the pocket.
What are the different insert types, and which is better?
At Mom, all of our nappies feature 'natural fibre' inserts. This means the inserts are incredibly absorbent, and won't leach micro plastics when washing. We don't stock any nappies that contain microfibre for this reason. All of our nappies are ready to go, and shouldn't need additional absorbency unless you want to use them overnight, so although the initial cost may be higher initially, you will likely save money in the long run!
So what's the difference between the different types of inserts?
Bamboo or Bamboo cotton is a moderate absorbency insert. It can hold a moderate amount of liquid, and absorbs liquid relatively quickly - more so once it has been washed a few times. Two bamboo or bamboo cotton inserts, or a bamboo insert paired with a hemp insert, make for an incredibly absorbent combination.
Hemp is a very absorbent insert, although much slower to absorb. Hemp almost always needs to be paired with a bamboo or bamboo cotton insert to ensure the nappy isn't 'flooded' - this is when the insert can't absorb quick enough and liquid leaks out of the nappy. Hemp is a more sustainable and organically grown fibre and creates a more natural and unprocessed fabric. It is also a durable fabric. Hemp is a great addition to night nappies as it can hold a huge amount of liquid. Hemp inserts are great for converting a 'day nappy' to a 'night nappy', and is an affordable way to do so.
What do I need to get started?
There aren't many things you need to get started, except a baby and a nappy! But here are a few things that definitely make life a little bit easier.
1. A wet bag (or five!), these are super helpful for storing clean or used cloth nappies in when you're out and about. A double pocket wet bag means you can store clean nappies & clothes in one pocket, and dirty in the other. These are handy even if you're not using cloth for storing wet clothes, medicines, toys and just generally organising your life!
2. A dry pail - any basket will do, as long as it has holes and good air flow.
3. A good wash routine, check out our wash routine advice here. Clean cloth nappies is another great website for washing advice.
4. If your baby is on solid food, a scrubbing brush is helpful for cleaning poop off your nappies.
5. Cloth wipes - these are a really easy, affordable swap. Store these in a mini wet bag when out and about, or next to the change table for easy nappy changes.
How many nappies do I need?
This varies depending on the age of your baby, and also whether you are planning to use cloth nappies full time or not. We recommend roughly the following, based on a main wash every third day - if you plan on washing less often, a few extra nappies would be helpful.
- 10 to 14 cloth nappies is enough for part-time use of 2-3 per day.
- 16 to 24 cloth nappies is enough for full-time day use of 4-6 per day.
- 24 to 30 cloth nappies is enough to use full time, day and night. Once your baby starts sleeping longer stretches at night, you may require specific night nappies for optimum absorbency.
After you've tried a few nappies to see what you like, you can build your stash from there. Work out roughly how often you are changing your baby and whether you will be using cloth nappies part-time or full-time and you'll soon figure out how many nappies you need.
If you're working, or have more than one child (or you're just a busy mama!) giving yourself a grace day with the washing can be really helpful. If every now and then you wash on day 4 instead of day 3, having enough nappies as a back up can be great to make sure you don't run out.
If you have any questions at all about starting cloth nappies, please don't hesitate to reach out - we are always happy to help!