Below you’ll find a useful guide to help you figure out exactly what you need to get started with reusable nappies:
LIST OF ITEMS
- Nappies (average of 20 absorbent parts)
- Waterproof wraps (if using two-part reusable nappy system like shaped nappies or flat nappies. Usually recommended 1 waterproof wrap to 3-4 absorbent parts.)
- Liners (bio-degradable or washable)
- Bucket or wet bag (or both)
NAPPIES AND WATERPROOF WRAPS
The number of nappies you need depends on 1) whether you are going to use reusable nappies full-time or part-time and 2) the age of your baby when you start. Generally, for full-time use it is recommended that parents buy enough nappies for three days so that washing is only needed every two to three days. Below is a useful guide based on your baby’s age:
Baby aged 0-6 months: 18-25 nappies
Baby aged 6 months onwards: 15-20 nappies
The average number of 20 reusable nappies, is a useful guide and can be made up of 15 day-time nappies which are usually made of quicker drying materials and 5 night-time nappies made of more absorbent materials.
All reusable nappies are easy to put on. It’s just like putting on a disposable nappy, except you will be putting them in the washing machine instead of the bin. All-in-one nappies already have the waterproof layer and absorbent layer together. A shaped nappy and flat nappy, however, require a waterproof wrap to be placed on top of the absorbent nappy. Further details about the different types of reusable nappies can be found on our ‘what are reusable nappies’ page.
Boosters go inside reusable nappies to help increase their absorbency – for nighttime, on longer journeys, and if your child is a heavy wetter. Boosters are usually made of a natural, more absorbent material like hemp, bamboo or cotton. Some nappies already come with boosters attached.
While boosters help to increase absorbency, liners can be used to catch solid stools and prevent staining. Parents can choose to use bio-degradable paper liners, which are thrown in the waste bin. Not flushed. There are also washable fleece liners, which are useful for wicking moisture away from the baby’s bum, keeping your baby feeling dry and comfortable for longer. These are also particularly good for night-time or for long journeys.
When the nappies are wet or soiled they should be stored in a nappy bucket or wet bag. Some suppliers do sell their own bins with clips on, but you can use any bin that is good for keeping odours in. A bin can be lined with a mesh laundry bag, which is useful for lifting out the nappies from the bin to the washing machine. Wet bags are a useful item to have for at home and when using reusable nappies out and about.
We recommend starting your collection of reusable nappies with at least enough nappies for 24 hours use, this could be around 6 – 8 nappies or 10 – 12 nappies if your baby is under 6 months old. That way you can build up as you go taking a mix and match approach.
You may also like to use a laundry service. In London there are currently two reusable nappy laundry services that can provide a weekly delivery and collection of prefold flat nappies to your door. Further information can be found on our Laundry Service page.
Ready to get started? A list of reusable nappy suppliers, manufacturers and nappy laundry services that accept our reusable nappy voucher can be found on our Where to Buy page.