Nappuccino - Advice on using Real Nappies

Are you interested in using real nappies or just finding out what these are or what they look like? Natter about nappies+coffee = nappuccino! Come along to our Nappuccinos held with the sling library in Dorking where we have a Surrey County Council Free Trial kit to show you the options and discuss practicalities of using real nappies.


The Surrey county council website has more information on how to go about borrowing a free trial kit there are 24 in Surrey, 2 held in Dorking.

Why choose reusable nappies? There are lots of reasons that people choose to use reusable nappies. Here are some of them: Disposable nappies are costly to the environment,... • Every day in the UK around 8,000,000 disposable nappies are used and thrown away. • A child in nappies for two-and-a-half years will use approximately 6,000 disposable nappies (based on 6-7 nappies per day) compared to a child in cloth nappies who will re-use 24-50 nappies. • It still isn't known how long it takes for a disposable nappy to break down completely but it is possible that every one ever made still exists and will be around for hundreds of years. • Disposable nappies use 90 times the amount of renewable resources (e.g. wood pulp) and 8 times the amount of non-regenerable resources (e.g. one cup of crude oil is needed to make one disposable nappy). • At least four-and-a-half trees are needed to produce the disposable nappies for one child. ...are costly for the community, • The council tax payer pays 10p to dispose of every £1's-worth of disposable nappies. This amounts to £40,000,000 each year nationally. ...and costly for parents • Disposable nappies for one baby in nappies for two-and-a-half years will cost between £703 (cheapest brands) and £1,104 (dearest brands). • Reusable nappies cost from as little as £200 for modern shaped nappies including the costs of the nappies, accessories, washing agents, energy and allowing £150 wear and tear on a washing machine. • Reusable nappies usually last for more than one baby so can work out very much cheaper in the long run. Reusable nappies are gentle to your baby... • Reusable nappies do not contain super-absorbent gels, deodorants or chemicals. • They are made from the same fabrics as everyday clothes and give parents control over what they put next to their baby's sensitive and absorbent skin. • Research has shown that babies using reusable nappies are NOT more likely to get nappy rash. ... are easy to use and care for • Reusable nappies really are easy to care for- take soiled nappy off, shake solids into the loo, put the nappy in dry bucket with lid (lined with nappy mesh bag). On wash day put whole mesh bag into machine and put on rinse cycle, then wash at 60ºC (or 40ºC) with 1/4 of the usual amount of detergent- tumble or hang dry. • Using reusable nappies will mean an extra load of washing every two-three days- truly unnoticeable compared to the other washing babies and young children produce! Types of nappies? There are 4 main types of nappy: AIO = All in one nappy For convenience and ease of use look no further than all-in-one nappies. A waterproof cover is attached to an absorbent layer and most come with a choice of either poppers or Velcro fastenings Pocket The Pocket nappy combines the absorbency and quick drying qualities of a Flat nappy with the convenience of an All-in-One nappy. The pocket nappy is a shaped nappy which allows you to separate the absorbent part to aid quick drying Two-parters or Shaped nappies Easy to use, there is no folding required as the nappy is already shaped to fit your baby, just like a disposable but a little more versatile as they fasten with poppers or Velcro, can be made of varying fabrics and also need a waterproof outer called a wrap to protect clothing etc Flat Nappies Flat nappies are so called as they start out as piece of flat, absorbent material which is folded and combined with a waterproof wrap. Flat nappies are the cheapest way to use real Nappies and are very easy to wash and dry. It is often possible to use just one size and they can be easily adjusted to the body shape of your baby. There are two main types of Flat Nappy: Terry Squares and Prefolds. A prefold is a rectangular nappy which folds into a pad before slotting into a waterproof cover, without the use of a separate fastening. As the prefold nappy does not need to be folded around the hips they are very slim fitting and the folding required is very straightforward. Prefolds are available in cotton, microfibre, bamboo and organic fabrics; are cheap to buy and quick to dry. Most prefolds come in different sizes which you can buy as your baby grows, but birth-to-potty styles are also available. These have extra booster pads and a multi sized water proof wrap. It is also possible to buy varieties where the prefold poppers into the wrap, or sits in a cradle, making them a more secure fit. You can also buy disposable inserts for some of these which can be useful. Terry squares are still incredibly popular and now available in a range of colours, plain white, or even unbleached, organic cotton or bamboo. Once you get the hang of the folds, terry squares are a doddle. Cheap to buy, quick to dry and so versatile you’ll be using them for years and years all around the house as floor cloths or dusters! Once folded, Terry Squares will need to be fastened, pins are still available but most parents choose plastic grips such as Nappy Nippas. They also need covering with a waterproof wrap but as these won't need changing every time you will only need about 6 - 8 of each size. Most parents also use a nappy liner for convenience. There are video clips online to show you folds. Many people have a mix of nappies you don’t have to have all the same brand or even type, different nappies work for different babies. Types of Inserts Microfibre Cotton Bamboo Hemp These are large and fill the entire pocket or area being used in, boosters can also be made of any of these fabrics and are smaller and are aimed to go in between layers so are not as bulky. Hemp is very absorbent but is a slow absorber and takes a while to dry whereas microfibre doesn’t hold that much but is quick absorbing and dries very quickly. Often it can take a while of playing with combinations of inserts to get it right. Nappies at night may well be very bulky in order to not leak especially if still feeding but not changing during the night Free Trial Kits If you live in Surrey you can access a Real Nappy trial kit, completely free of charge! Test a whole range of Real Nappy types and styles at home, on your baby and make the best decision on which nappy to use. There are 24 trial kits available in Surrey and each one holds everything you need to road test Real Nappies on your baby. There are a range of Real Nappy types including flat nappies, shaped nappies, pocket and all-in-one nappies. We also include waterproof wraps, flushable and washable liners, washable wipes, nappy soak, wet bags, a laundry mesh and a nappy bucket. We are unable to guarantee a specific brand of nappy but all of the main types will be covered and so you will be able to make an informed choice based on the trial. When is the best time to have a trial? This will really depend on personal preference and demand on the kits but most people, particularly if it is their first baby, like to get comfortable at home with their baby before trialing Real Nappies. The kits contain nappies that are suitable from about 4 weeks up to around 12 months and due to demands on the kit we will only be able to let you borrow the kit once your baby is born, but you are welcome to register your interest prior to the birth and your nearest trial kit host will take a note of your contact details and due date so that they are able to see when you might need the kit. How do I get a Kit? The kit will be lent out to you for three weeks and it is a good idea to make sure you have time to get the most out of the trial period, although using Real Nappies isn't difficult, as with anything new you do have to make some adaptations and you want to make sure that you are able to try all the different types, you might be surprised by the type you end up choosing. All you need to do is ring Go Real free of charge on 0800 328 81751 or email We will then put you in touch with your nearest trial kit host. Alternatively you can find the one closest to you using the map online and give them a call directly. You will need to arrange to pick up the trial kit from the host and when you meet up they will arrange a time for you to bring back the kit. Once your trial is completed Go Real will contact you to get some feedback on how you found the service and to find out whether you intend to use Real Nappies. Real Nappy Top Tips A nappy bucket is essential, one with a tight fitting lid and also 2 mesh bags, one for the bucket and the other for when that one is in the wash! Don’t give up, it can take be a bit of trial and error with reusable nappies as you find out what works for you and your baby. Don’t go online to their nappies are far too lovely and nice and soon you will have spent the cost savings! (mai is wearing one on the front cover) you will be annoyed when your little one poos in such a lovely nappy! Do research the topic it helps keeps errors and mistakes to a minimum. Do expect leaks, disposables do too. A good wetbag is essential for getting out and about, its like a swimbag to store nappies. Once mine are washed and dried I make up all my nappies takes less than 10 mins and saves me doing it every time I need a nappy. Also makes it easier for daddy lol!! Don’t bother with paper liners until poos are remotely solid. (depends on type of nappy used really didn’t work in the ones I used) Vest extenders, these are a god-send! Real nappies make for lovely squidgy fat bums and most modern clothes are made to fit over disposables which are much slimmer, the vest extenders mean you don’t have to use the next size up body suits etc which are then too big everywhere else! Cost around a fiver online from various retailers. Zoë, Dorking If using stuffable nappies, assemble them in advance so that they are ready to go when needed. Keep spare inserts/muslin in your changing bag, in case you don't have enough nappies, you can always restuff a wet nappy and reuse it as a temporary measure. Some liners are washable/reusable and keep some spare in your changing bag. Preserve the aplix (velcro) by fastening the nappy before washing. If you rinse your nappies in the washing machine first, you can wash the rest of the household washing with them. It is best to try a few different types of nappies, before committing to a system, as there are loads to choose from and some may suit better than others depending on your personal preferences. If the costs seem high and you are not sure whether you want to commit, some websites will sell you new real nappies for you to try and if they don't work you can return them for a partial refund. You can also pick up bargains on the same websites where the nappies have been returned or have a minor defect that can be repaired. There is no reason why you can't use a combination of real and disposable nappies. Samantha, Dorking We used disposables for the first few weeks and eased our way into cloth; I used disposables when we were out or on holiday for a long time (and still used disposables at Glastonbury, ironically enough – didn't fancy sharing a tent with dirty nappies). I probably do an extra load of washing a week (I think I need to do a nappy load every four or five days) due to using cloth, so it is slightly more work, and you do get a bit more intimate with poo than you would with disposables, but I just find cloth so much nicer, I feel so guilty about the landfill issue and it's definitely cheaper. Jennie, Yahoo Editors Group It's never too late to try real nappies. I picked up 3 nappies/wraps up from a Nearly New Sale when my 2nd child was 5 months old - wasn't nearly as hard as I thought and within a month I'd changed over completely, buying most of them second hand. Sharon, Peterborough branch When you’re using real nappies it’s a lot easier to use ‘real’ wet wipes too – you can just throw them in the washing bag/bucket with the dirty nappy and don’t have to worry about disposing of a non-flushable wet wipe separately. I have an old Tupperware box that I keep mine in (about 30 small cloths – like small flannels) and use this recipe for the solution. I keep it in an old drinks bottle and top-up the wipes when they are getting dry. This is a soothing solution and is very gentle for tender bottoms! Cooled chamomile tea (I use 2 tea bags in about a pint of water) A tablespoon of olive oil or almond oil A few drops of lavender oil Shake all the ingredients together, splosh into wet wipe box, top-up as needed. Voila! Louise, Yahoo Editors Group Real nappies are stylish, comfortable and breathable (unlike disposables), save parents a fortune and don't contribute to landfill mountains. They are really easy to use and simple to wash. Why would anyone NOT want to use them?" Tips: - try a few different types before buying a full set - nappies suitable for daytime use won't necessarily be good nighttime nappies, so you might need a few different (more absorbent!) ones just for nights, or some extra boosters - do a cold rinse cycle first, then you can add the powder and any other laundry without it all coming out with a faint wee odour! Karin, York branch Use biodegradable disposable liners - means you can throw poo straight down the toilet with no scraping involved. If you use the wider liners, be careful not to have them sticking out the side of the wrap or they will wick the moisture straight to outside clothes. Ebay won't list second-hand nappies. Do a search on "used nappies UK" for a couple of sites set up specifically for this. Both individual nappies and birth to potty packs are available. Hang nappies on the line whenever you can - sunlight does a great job of bleaching any stains. Failing that, cotton and bamboo nappies can be dyed darker colours! Have nappies made from a selection of different materials. I love my cotton and bamboo nappies, but fleece and fluffy polyesters are brilliant when it is raining as they will dry inside in just a few hours. Sharon,Yahoo Editors Group Drying in the sunlight gets rid of 90% of stains, wash with 1/2 bottle of lemon juice to blitz the rest especially if tumble dried in. Frances with 2 boys aged 2 and 6 months both in washables Every cloth nappy you use is one less disposable in land fill, essentially don't feel you have to do it full time, or you are starting too late. I now have two in nappies so alternate when the washing gets too much. Hopefully as the newborn grows and/or the toddler potty trains we'll use less dispsosables. Different nappies suit different people (and babies) at different times, so either get a few to try - a variety pack - or beg/borrow/buy second hand before spending loads on a particular system. Also, as baby grows and circumstances change, you may like different nappies. Use cheap face flannels as wipes; I'm not as good as the previous poster. We just use plain water on our wipes - warm if they are lucky ;o) We use white for bums and coloured for hands/faces Rae, Yahoo Editors Group Fleecy liners good for sensitive skin (feels dry against the skin), but can't be used with nappy creams - just causes leakages. Washable wipes are brilliant - even if you're not doing nappies, great to use these as so much more effective at wiping than disposable baby wipes - on average only one wipe needed - maybe two for a bad poo, versus say 15 baby wipes!! I had a set for bum, and a different set for face (the latter we are still using after meals!) - can get them in different colours. The ones we liked best were fleece one side, and terry towelling the other. You can make up a couple of days worth of wipes in advance - mix some water, couple of drops of lavender oil and a squirt of baby-soap in a tupperware box, leave wipes soaking with lid on and just use as and when) Dry pailing less smelly and less hassle than using nappy solutions. Buy 'cut for cloth' clothes (e.g. from Frugi), particularly baby vests, or you'll never get clothes that fit well. Wearing clothes several sizes too big (to get them over the bigger nappy) 'kind of' works, but tightness over the nappy can again cause leakage, so it really is worth buying the custom-fit clothes if you can. I mainly picked things up in bargain pages of eco-baby websites, or second hand, as the cut for cloth clothes are usually more expensive than high street brands, however they tend to be better quality so last longer. Gayle, Dorking Where to get real nappies? Most mums shop online for these. The sites listed here are from recommendations or personal experience.