Your complete guide on how to use reusable nappies

Your complete guide on how to use reusable nappies

So you’ve decided to ditch the disposables and make the move to reusable nappies? Or you’re on the fence? We get it. You’re worried about convenience, absorption, washing... and just how much effort it will be.

It’s time to rethink what you know about cloth nappies – white terry, safety pins and scrubbing - because we’ve made them easier, better and cleverer, to make sustainable living simpler. Because parenthood is anything but.

In this complete guide, we’ll take you through how to use reusable nappies, while addressing any burning questions you may have. It’s a change you can truly feel good about. It’s better for your baby, better for the planet, and better for your budget!

1. Getting started

What are reusable nappies?

Reusable nappies, also known as cloth nappies, are your eco-friendly and cost-effective alternatives to single-use disposables. They contain multiple layers of washable absorbent material that lock fluid away and prevent leaks.

How many reusable nappies do I need?

To work out how many cloth nappies you’ll need, you’ll have to decide how often you want to use them:

  • Part-time use (2-3 per day): 8 to 12 Modibodi reusable nappies
  • Full-time day use (4-6 per day): 12 to 24 Modibodi reusable nappies
  • Full-time day and night use: (6-8 per day): 24 to 30 Modibodi reusable nappies

    This calculation assumes a washing load every second day, with a few spare nappies so you’ll never be caught short.

    Having a selection of boosters will also help you get the most from your nappy stash. These handy items are used in combination with a cloth nappy to ‘boost’ its absorbency. 

    To spread the cost of your nappy stash over a period of time, many people start buying reusable nappies bit by bit during pregnancy or popping them onto their wishlist for a baby shower or new baby gift register (after all, you can only have so many musical mobiles). And remember, once you have your stash, there will be no more late-night dashes to the supermarket for disposables.

    From what age can you start using reusable nappies?

    Our One Size Fits Most design has been tested to fit babies that weight from 5kg to 18kg and can be easily adjusted as they grow.

    2. Fitting and changing reusable nappies

    How to fold a cloth nappy

    Our reusable nappy has a simple all-in-one design (like a disposable nappy) which makes it super easy to use. Here’s how it’s done:

    1. Adjust: Shorten the nappy and tighten it at the legs by snapping the press studs together for the perfect fit.
    2. Protect: Lay the nappy open flat. If using a booster/s or liner for added protection, place these on top.
    3. Fit: Lay your baby on the open nappy, ensuring the bottom is positioned with enough coverage at the back. Pull the front panel up to sit just below the belly button. Adjust the tabs to close.
    4. Check: Ensure the lining is flat against the body and the leg elastics are comfortably sitting in your baby’s underwear line with no gaps. Check that the waistband and elastics are snug but not too tight, especially when your baby is sitting.

    How does your sizing work?

    We’ve kept things simple with a One Size Fits Most design which has been tested to fit babies from 5kg to 18kg. The adjustable fit, thanks to the press studs and hook and loop tape, means the nappy can grow with baby, and you can hand it down to any future siblings, family or friends.

    How often do I need to change the reusable nappy?

    The recommendation for changing reusable nappies is the same as for changing disposable nappies. Change before or after each feed (every few hours), or as soon as the nappy has been soiled. A fresh nappy for overnight and again when baby wakes up in the morning are also a good idea.

    3. Essential equipment

    • Dry pail

    While you’re waiting to wash your nappies, we recommend ‘dry pailing’ your reusable nappies. Wondering what that is? Basically it means rinsing or scraping any solids from soiled nappies then popping them, and any wet nappies, into a ‘dry pail’. This is just a storage basket with holes for air flow. An old-school laundry basket (with or without a lid) will do the job because you can wipe it clean, it won’t rust, and you can keep using it long after baby’s out of nappies. It’s not like they’ll never soil their undies...!

    • Reusable nappy bag

    Wet bags are our number one recommendation for any cloth nappy family. They make transporting cloth nappies simple and smell-free when you’re out and about.

    • Clothes line

    To hang our reusable nappies to dry you’ll need an outdoor clothes line, or a portable clothes horse if you’re in an apartment, drying on the balcony or for rainy days. To make sure your nappies last, please don’t tumble dry.

    4. Dealing with leaks

    If you find your reusable nappy is leaking, there are two likely causes to consider:

    1. How often you change: If your nappy and/or booster is saturated at change time, or there are leaks, try changing your baby more frequently, or add an additional booster. You can use up to two at a time with our Reusable Nappy design.
    2. Fit: If your nappy’s lining or inserted booster is dry or just damp and the nappy is leaking, you’ve likely got a fit issue. Try adjusting the press studs and hook and loop fasteners for a more secure fit, and check that the nappy leg elastics aren’t tucked up or twisted.

    Perhaps the most daunting part of using reusable nappies is when it comes down to cleaning and washing them. Don’t worry, it’s way easier than you think. Check out our guide on how to wash reusable nappies to see how it’s done.

    So, are you ready to give it a go? Browse our cute and colourful Reusable Nappy range now and make a change you can feel good about.

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