Grayson in cloth nappy

Cloth nappies

First time momFirst time mom, Amber is just a beautiful human inside & out. Her little boy, Grayson, was born about 2 weeks after my Grayson. Not only is Amber a mom, but also a dietician with her own private practise in Port Elizabeth. She is also studying to be a lactation consultant. Talk about a powerhouse! She shares honestly & openly about all things motherhood. I adore following her & Grayson as they navigate this journey together. I hope her guest post about using cloth nappies helps you or someone you know. Enjoy

As a first-time mom, everything is overwhelming. One of the things that I personally found overwhelming was the choice between cloth VS disposable nappies. I KNEW that I wanted to use cloth nappies, but for me it was fear of the unknown. I had been gifted a whole set of cloth nappies, but I waited until our boy was 4 months before I started using them, because I was scared of doing it wrong… isn’t that every first-time mom’s fear about EVERYTHING?

Don’t worry, I’m not a cloth nappy guru that’s here to try and convert you. There are enough websites for that. I’m a mom that uses cloth nappies that’s here to give a little insight into our experience. Perhaps this might help someone make their decision and feel a little less overwhelmed than I did.

To cloth or not to cloth

Why did we choose cloth nappies?

Our main reasons for choosing cloth nappies were to help reduce landfill waste, to save money in the long run, and to always have nappies available. If you’ve ever googled cloth nappies and seen the prices you’re probably wondering how on earth you save money? Well, our cloth nappy collection of 30 nappies cost roughly R3000. Cloth nappies are adjustable and can be used from 5-16kg which will keep us until our son is potty trained (let’s assume 24 months). If we had used disposables from 4 months to 24 months, average 6 nappies a day, average R3.00 per nappy = R10800. We are saving ourselves R8000 in the long run.

The convenience of always having nappies available was also a big one for me. I hate going to the shops unnecessarily and could just picture myself opening the cupboard looking for a nappy and not realizing I had used the last one earlier that day! It also helps to not have to fork out money every month and rather have that once-off expense of purchasing the cloth nappies at the beginning.

To cloth or not to clothWhy I felt scared and overwhelmed to start

When my son was a newborn I made the mistake of joining a group on Facebook that is specifically for cloth nappies. Don’t get me wrong, there was a lot of helpful information and I’m sure it helps many parents, but it just wasn’t for me. I started seeing all these weird abbreviations and moms posting their wash routines and it was all so overwhelming. What I had pictured cloth nappies to be, was not what I saw there. This made it seem that cloth nappies were a science and that I had BETTER do more research otherwise I was going to do it all wrong. So, I kept the cloth nappies packed away for another few months.

Fast forward a few months, I called my sister in law to come over and give me a cloth nappy “demo” and I decided to go onto the website of the brand of cloth nappies that we have, and all the information I needed was on their website, all simplified and put in a way that was so easy to read. I gave it a go, and here we are 10 months later, wishing we had started sooner! We are blessed to have been gifted a set of 30 cloth nappies, so we only wash once every 5 days or so. But you can start with less and build up your stash as you go.

A (very brief) cloth nappy summary

Everyone wants to know how it works, so here’s my summary for you:

  1. Put cloth diaper on
  2. If it’s a wet nappy- we take apart and put into a bucket with a lid
  3. Grayson in cloth nappyIf it’s a poop nappy- we take apart and shake contents into toilet, put it into the same bucket with a lid
  4. Wash nappies when bucket is full/only a few nappies left
  5. Put on a rinse and spin cycle, followed by a long cold wash
  6. We use Omo washing liquid (NB. No softener- we found this out the hard way)
  7. Hang on washing line, inside facing out as sun takes out stains

If you want more information on cloth diapers, I would suggest finding a cloth mom and getting her to talk you through it and to show you in person, if possible.

I’m just here to tell you that using and washing cloth nappies is NOT as scary or as overwhelming as they may seem. Honestly, the hardest part is probably having to choose between all the adorable prints!

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