In this episode of Nappy Leaks we wanted to give everyone an overview, a jumping-off point to start learning about cloth nappies. We just scratch the surface on a lot of topics and most of them we have more in-depth episodes on if you want to learn more. But if you’re interested in using cloth and don’t know where to start, this episode is for you!
The ladies discuss how many nappies you’ll need depending on your child’s age and how often you wash. They also talk about how to wash modern cloth nappies. Vicki and Vashti also do a brief overview of the advantages and disadvantages of different nappies by type. As well as some resources to learn more about cloth nappies.
Vicki Simpson is the outgoing President of the Australian Nappy Association and has been advocating for and selling cloth nappies in Australia for over 15 years. She is the owner, creator and Chief Nappy Nerd here at Bubblebubs. Vashti Wadwell is the outgoing Member Secretary of the Australian Nappy Association and is the owner of Australia’s first bricks and mortar nappy store, Nest Nappies, in Brisbane, Australia. Both Vicki and Vashti have used cloth nappies for more than a decade each over three children and turned their passion into a business.
Transcript: Quick Start Cloth Nappies
Andrew: How you doing Vashti?
Vashti: Good thanks Andrew, how are you?
Andrew: Yes. Excellent and we already know how you’re doing Vicki, but you want to put a brave face on for everybody at home?
Vicki: I’m all good.
Andrew: You good?
Vicki: I’m all good.
Andrew: Excellent. So… podcast reviews, thank you everybody for podcast reviews. We now have a rating of 5.0.
Andrew: Can’t get better.
Vashti: That’s awesome.
Vicki: Well if it went to 11 you would.
Andrew: It went to 11.
Vicki: Do you know what? Our audience will not get that. They’re all too young.
Andrew: I think maybe, maybe. What movie do they have to watch?
Vicki: Oh my gosh, even you don’t get it. Spinal Tap.
Andrew: Oh. No, I couldn’t remember the name of the band.
Vicki: Oh okay.
Andrew: Spinal Tap, yeah. Because it goes up to 11.
Vicki: It does.
Andrew: Yes, actually funny-
Vicki: It goes one louder.
Andrew: I’ve actually never seen the movie. I’ve only ever seen the ad. Because it’s in the ad.
Vicki: Yeah, the movie’s pretty crap.
Vashti: Never seen the movie.
Vicki: I was married to a drummer. So-
Vashti: There you go.
Vicki: You know.
Andrew: You had to watch it all the time.
Vicki: So yes. It didn’t go to 10, it went to 11. It went one louder.
Andrew: Sure. [inaudible 00:01:28]
Vicki: I think that’s the only joke in the whole movie that is worth repeating.
Andrew: It’s actually… well I watched that and thought… I watched the trailer and thought, “Yeah, all the good jokes were in the trailer.”
Vicki: Yeah, they were.
Andrew: Don’t need to watch the movie.
Vicki: Yeah. It pretty much went downhill from there.
Vashti: Never seen it. Couldn’t tell you.
Andrew: And also we’re ranking number 46. We’ve-
Vicki: No you’re not.
Andrew: Yeah. We’re ranking 46.
Vicki: No we’re not.
Andrew: Yeah we are.
Vicki: It’s number 47, go on.
Andrew: We’re… because we changed our category. We’re now… instead of just being in kids and family, we are kids and family, parenting.
Andrew: So our ranking went to 46.
Andrew: Out of 47. And we also broke our record number of plays in November as well.
Vashti: Oh that’s awesome.
Andrew: Thank you very, very much to everybody listening.
Vashti: Thank you.
Andrew: Really appreciate it. We do… well I work hard on the podcast. Vicki and Vashti just turn up.
Vashti: I love it. I got lots of people coming into the shop telling me what an awesome podcast it is and how much they’ve enjoyed listening, and they walk in and I’ll start talking to them and they’re like, “This is so weird hearing your voice in person.”
Vicki: I don’t get that because I don’t people.
Vashti: No, you don’t people.
Andrew: No people. No. Well you did at the Perth Expo. We got fangirled by people at the Perth Expo.
Vashti: It’s weird.
Vicki: It is, yeah. Yeah it is, it’s really weird because I’m just a normal person.
Vicki: And… you know? Yeah.
Andrew: Well for me, it’s not the first person I’ve… first time I’ve been fangirled because I did the… when I did the [inaudible 00:03:02] cartoon… whenever I was at Star Trek conventions, I got invited as a guest [crosstalk 00:03:08]
Vashti: And you got fangirled?
Andrew: Well people coming up to me asking for my signature, so yeah. That’s pretty cool. But this is just way different.
Vashti: It is really different and it’s really weird, but it’s really lovely to see the effect that the podcast has on people and the fact that people are… parents are getting something out of it. It’s not just moms, I’ve had dads talked to me about it as well, because their partner has started listening to the podcast in the car and the dads have started really enjoying it. I have kids as soon as I start talking to them, their face lights up. It’s like they recognise my voice or something like that. Yeah. So it’s… but the response we get in the shop is really positive. Everyone gets something out of the podcast and they really enjoy listening to it, which I mean, that’s why we do it.
Vicki: So to spread that cloth nappy love a little bit more.
Andrew: That’s right. Speaking of cloth nappies, just give you a quick update on Vicki’s secret project. Vicki’s secret project. I saw the second prototype.
Vicki: Are you going to give a peek?
Vashti: Are you giving a peek?
Vicki: We’ll have a little peep shall we?
Andrew: Vicki’s secret project has… so you’re the second prototype, how did the second prototype go?
Vicki: Oh no, we’re in production now.
Andrew: It passed? So you’re in production?
Vicki: I don’t know that we’ll get them out with… the rush now is to try and get them into… get them finished before Chinese New Year.
Andrew: Yeah, because Chinese New year is like… they just shut down, don’t they?
Vicki: They do.
Vashti: For a month?
Vicki: A month.
Andrew: It’s not just a day.
Vicki: It’s only two weeks, but some people leave before Chinese New Year to go home, because a lot of people actually travel back. Even if they leave, because our factories are in rural areas, you know? They generally live in the area, but they will go back like my… on my biggest contacts will travel I think it’s 16 hours back to his hometown. So he goes and sees his mom and all of that sort of thing. So there’s a lot of travelling you’ve ever seen.
Vicki: I’ve seen some pictures of the highways of 15 lane highways that are just… one of them, six days it took to actually clear the highway.
Andrew: We almost made the train late when we were [inaudible 00:05:40]
Vicki: When we lost our suitcase full of candies. It was like, [inaudible 00:05:43] thousands of dollars worth of [inaudible 00:05:46] and I can’t find my suitcase, because it just got pushed into a different carriage.
Andrew: To be fair, we had six suitcases.
Andrew: We lost track of one.
Vicki: No, no, no we had five.
Vicki: Because someone had the bright idea that travelling to China with five people would mean that you could have five-
Vashti: Full size suitcase.
Vicki: Full size suitcases full.
Vashti: And then carry on bags too.
Vicki: And our packs because they had all their stuff in their backpacks plus carry on.
Andrew: Just for the listeners at home, that was not my idea.
Vicki: You know, I didn’t really take into consideration that we have a seven year old.
Vashti: Are you throwing-
Vicki: A six year old.
Vashti: Your wife under the train here Andrew?
Andrew: And bus or whatever else comes along the road.
Vicki: But anyway, they do. They travel and then it takes them a little while to come back and then some don’t come back. So it actually takes them quite awhile to get-
Andrew: Production going again.
Vicki: Yeah, yeah because some people just go, “You know what? My mom’s sick,” or “I managed to find a job close to home.” Or they kind of… you know what it’s like when you go home for Christmas, it’s either one of two things. You’re either really miss the family thing, or you’re like, “Please get me the hell out of here. I can’t get home fast enough.” So I’m sure it’s the same sort of thing in China and yeah, sometimes it does take a long time to-
Andrew: Are they going to be manufactured before Chinese New Year?
Vicki: Fingers crossed. The fabric is there, so we’re actually making them out of… we had an excess of fabric. So we always generally have a bolt or two of fabric leftover from our limited edition runs, and I’ll often just get a message and say, “Well what do you want to make these up into? Do you want to make them to candies? Do you want to make them into pods? Do you want to… what do you want to do with them?” And this time, I said… actually the limited edition range that just came out, except for the Christmas prints, so there’s about seven bolts of fabric there. I said, “No, let’s hang onto these because we’re so close to producing this.”
Vicki: And the new range, which the samples for that arrived today. I said, and they’ve cut that whole production as well. I’ve said that fabric as well hang onto it and we’re going to release, so that will probably be seven and nine is 15 prints, in this new product.
Vashti: Gee thanks Vicki.
Andrew: New thing, excellent. Yeah, we have space in the warehouse. Actually-
Vicki: They’re little.
Andrew: The warehouse next door’s coming up in January [inaudible 00:08:10] take that ad now too.
Vicki: No, you can just draw up a couple halls. That’s not practical. They don’t have the actual practical, so we don’t need the office space. We need the warehouse space.
Andrew: Yeah, they don’t have a very big warehouse.
Vicki: Yeah. I don’t know if I’ve got the space on the shelf. They’re little.
Andrew: You just got a bigger shop.
Vashti: I know, and it’s full.
Andrew: You need a bigger shop, do you?
Vashti: I need a bigger shop. No, I’m not getting a bigger shop. It’s so awesome though, we’ve actually had-
Andrew: That’s just a… oh no, I can’t actually say that that’s just one part of them, because then that gives away-
Vashti: Yeah. You just gave up-
Andrew: I don’t know whether both parts will actually be [inaudible 00:08:43]
Vashti: But no, we’ve just had our lounge room booked out for Saturday afternoon from another business. So-
Andrew: Oh really?
Vashti: Starting in February. Yeah, there’s another business that’s going to be doing classes in our lounge room.
Andrew: What sort of classes?
Vashti: Oh, I don’t know if I can give that away yet.
Andrew: Is this a pyramid scheme? Someone started a pyramid scheme.
Vicki: It doesn’t go out until what?
Vashti: January? Oh okay. Well all these go into plan, because the booking has been made. We have a hypnobirther that will be running courses out of our lounge room starting February and in the off wakes from the hypnobirthing class, she’ll be running first aid for kids classes and things like that.
Vashti: Yeah, so every Saturday afternoon… on the stage, they’ll be a class in the lounge room.
Vicki: Don’t mind me, I actually forgot to pay my staff. So I’m going to sit here and talk and actually pay you guys. Sorry.
Andrew: It’s Tuesday. You haven’t paid it yet?
Vicki: No, they’re supposed to get paid on a Monday.
Andrew: I’m sorry, it’s Wednesday because we always publish on a Wednesday.
Vicki: Yes, it’s… no, that makes me look even worse.
Andrew: It’s Wednesday. Did you like your Christmas presents?
Vicki: Thank you for Osko, instant payments.
Vashti: I have-
Vicki: That’s all I can say-
Vashti: Osko is pretty cool.
Andrew: All right, onto today’s subject. Today’s subject is how to get started in cloth nappies? Now, we had some requests of people asking for a quick way to get the information they need to get started with cloth. So that’s what this episode’s going to be. We’re not going to in-depth on a lot of things. We got plenty other episodes that are in depth into these subjects, but we’re just going to touch on everything. Give you some basic information.
Andrew: So the first thing we’re going to start with is how many do you need?
Vicki: 24 to 30 depending on how often you wash, and climate and [crosstalk 00:10:32]
Andrew: Well actually-
Vicki: And things like that.
Andrew: I’m going to refine that question a little bit. How many do you need if you wash everyday?
Vicki: Oh, you can get away with probably 20, 24?
Andrew: 20? Okay. What if you wash every second day?
Vashti: 30 to 36 for a newborn.
Vashti: I like to…
Vicki: It also depends if-
Vicki: You’re using flats. The dry almost straight out of-
Vashti: Or all in one’s.
Vicki: [crosstalk 00:10:57] it was on flat. Yeah.
Vashti: In a cold environment versus a hot, dry environment versus a humid environment. So cold-
Vicki: And Vashti always has way more than me.
Vicki: I had… when Abby was born, I had 18 all in one’s going through the dryer and I was managing to wash every night, and when I bumped that up to 24, that was perfect for me.
Andrew: We didn’t finish with 18 though did we?
Andrew: We had a bit more than that.
Vicki: See, you can get by with 18 to 24 nappies. If you’re washing everyday and you’re using your clothes dryer and stuff like that. That sort of gives you a day to two days worth of nappies. If you want to give yourself a little bit more time and line dry and stuff like that, two and a half to three days is a better number.
Vashti: So working out how many nappies your child uses per day, so a new born with use more nappies than an 18 month old.
Andrew: Okay, so how many nappies does a newborn use every day?
Vashti: About 10 to 12.
Andrew: And total?
Vicki: Well by the time they’re six months, you’re down to about six to eight. By the time they’re 12 months, you’re down to about four a day.
Vicki: Plus a night nappy.
Andrew: I’ve got down here, what if you wash every third day? Is that feasible? Can you do that?
Vicki: You can. Okay you can absolutely. I used to wash once a week at sometime, but you need to be aware of the cons that come with that. So the longer you leave ammonia in your nappies, the faster they’re going to degrade. So while absolutely, you can wash every third day, even doing a daily pre-rinse is still not washing your nappies. So if you’re wanting to wash every third day, 100% you’re able to do that, but don’t expect them to be in the same condition as if you washed every two days. So as long as you adjust your expectations, yeah absolutely. We’re not the nappy police.
Vashti: There is no nappy police.
Andrew: There’s no nappy police?
Vicki: No. I’m sure… there’s perceptions out there that there are nappy police, but really no.
Vashti: No one is going to jump out of the cupboard and say, “Shame on you. You’re doing that wrong.”
Andrew: So there’s no Facebook group that says, “We’re the nappy police.”
Andrew: No? Okay. Can you wash more than three days apart?
Vashti: Once again, if your expectations are realistic-
Vicki: Okay, do you remember those bugs?
Andrew: Oh, the ecosystem that used to be developing in the bottom of the nappy bucket? Yeah.
Vicki: That’s what happens when you start to go through. Do you remember… okay, look I’m well out of nappies now, so I can be honest here. Do you remember the pile of poopy nappies at the toilet, because we used to fight over who used to have to… back in the day before we had the little squirt?
Vicki: Over who would have to scrap off the poopy, yeah.
Andrew: Yeah and then-
Vicki: Flies like them. That’s all I’m going to say.
Andrew: And then it became an urgent thing, because we had to get to them before the dog did.
Vicki: No, do you know what? That was such a blessing.
Vashti: That the dog got to it? It meant that you didn’t have to do it?
Vicki: [crosstalk 00:13:59]
Andrew: Yeah, it was like… yeah.
Vicki: They’re now licked clean and you know what? That sounds gross.
Vashti: Oh, my stomach just turned.
Vicki: Can I tell you, when you… this is about being real.
Vicki: I mean, sure you can pretend that, “Oh, I’m this Instagram mom and I have this…” reality, sometimes you just don’t want to deal with poop.
Vashti: Who wants to deal… everyone [crosstalk 00:14:24] with poop.
Vicki: You just go… thank you. You’re disgusting. Don’t you dare… this is why dogs never lick my kid’s faces ever.
Vashti: Because they use their tongue as toilet paper.
Andrew: Just so you know too, that dog now it’s still getting it’s fair share because we have cats.
Vicki: Oh my gosh he does. He cleans the kitty litter.
Andrew: He cleans the kitty litter now.
Vicki: Far out. You’re going to say something else then.
Andrew: With the little crystals stuck to it and everything.
Vashti: Oh yuck.
Vicki: Yeah. [crosstalk 00:14:57] look, dog’s are gross, but when you consider the benefits… yeah also, dog’s are excellent once your baby starts solids as well, because well our dogs learned very, very quickly to sit underneath the highchair.
Vicki: You know what? If it says you having to sweep up, and the food isn’t going to waste. This is my-
Vashti: My cat’s used to sit under the highchair. Yep.
Vashti: Dogs are generally outside because we have big dogs, and so they didn’t have to sit under the high chair, they could actually eat straight off the highchair. We had a Great Dane.
Vicki: Yeah, that’s a huge dog.
Vashti: Yeah. She stole a chicken breast off the back element of the stove without even standing up.
Vicki: You know what? Am I allowed to actually say the word on air that I call the kitten? That I call kidney?
Andrew: Kidney? Yeah.
Vicki: Okay. Our cat is a…
Andrew: Oh that word.
Vashti: [crosstalk 00:15:58] say it.
Vicki: He seriously, up on that bench. You cannot turn your back from prepping school lunches where you’ve got your bowl of diced up chicken or whatever, and you’re giving the kids chicken. You turn around to some strawberries out of the fridge, the cat is freaking eating the chicken. He’s such… you can beep it, I don’t care.
Vashti: He’s a donkey hole.
Vicki: He is-
Andrew: Considered it beeped.
Vicki: Oh my gosh, he is terrible and the thing is I thought, “Oh okay, it’s the chairs.” So he’s jumping up on the… because that’s what the dogs used to do. We found out that the dogs would jump up on the chairs and they’d be able to get up on [crosstalk 00:16:46]
Vashti: Oh really?
Vicki: Yes. And so we thought the cat… no, we can actually… the cat can jump-
Vicki: From the bottom rod up to the top. It’s like how… so you know-
Andrew: It’s a cat. Cats can jump.
Vicki: I know, he needs a new home. But he’s our… forever. Forever.
Andrew: Lots of beeps in that conversation.
Vicki: I know right?
Andrew: So I did actually make notes for toddlers, how many nappies you need for toddlers, but we kind of answered that, didn’t we?
Vashti: Yeah. About three to four a day normally. Depends-
Andrew: I’m sorry. I mean… oh yeah, for a toddler.
Vicki: And it also depends if you’ve got a highly pooping toddler.
Vicki: There are some toddlers that just poop and poop and poop and poop, and then there are man type toddlers that just go once a day.
Vicki: At the same time.
Vashti: My… yeah.
Andrew: [crosstalk 00:17:34] used to poop when the nappy hit the bum.
Vashti: Yeah, my kid’s were prolific pooers, all the way through.
Vicki: No, my… no, we were once a dayers.
Vashti: No. We were three to four pooey nappies a day. All the way through.
Andrew: Okay, let’s move onto fabrics. Which is the more absorbent? Natural fibres or microfibers?
Vashti: Your natural fibre, but your microfiber will dry, or your synthetic fibres will dry a lot quicker.
Andrew: Don’t go ahead in the outline.
Andrew: Jumping ahead.
Vashti: I haven’t seen the outline. I don’t know what we’re talking about.
Vicki: You’re saying that nobody actually prepares us.
Vashti: Yeah. Andrew prepares himself, we just rock up. We’re the smooth sultry tones.
Andrew: Okay. So name three-
Vicki: [crosstalk 00:18:23] is the talent.
Andrew: Not on me, I don’t call you the talent on here.
Vicki: Don’t you?
Andrew: No. We got to beep, beep, beep, beep, beep. So name three advantages of microfibers.
Vicki: I don’t like microfibers, so I’m not going to…
Vashti: Synthetic fibres-
Vicki: It absorbs quickly.
Vashti: It absorbs quickly. It’s fast drying and it wears a lot better than natural fibres.
Vicki: I actually have a tactile objection to microfiber. I hate the spider feeling.
Vicki: I just cannot… I can’t-
Vashti: It catches on every little scale of your skin.
Andrew: Is it cheaper? It’s a cheaper fabric?
Vashti: Oh yeah. Yeah.
Vicki: Much cheaper.
Vashti: Super cheap. It’s synthetic.
Andrew: So it’s derived from plastic, isn’t that right?
Vicki: No. Well polyester is… is polyester a plastic? Should I Google that? While I’m paying people. I still haven’t paid people because I can’t log into the bank.
Andrew: Okay so name three disadvantages of microfibers.
Vicki: It sticks to your fingers.
Vicki: It’s like a sponge. It’s stinky.
Vashti: It is very prone to pressure leaks. So while it absorbs quickly, it doesn’t hold onto the moisture very well. It’s a synthetic, so it’s a polymer. So it’s not natural. It doesn’t break down and it sheds microplastics every time you wash it.
Andrew: Okay. So give me three advantages of a natural fibre.
Vicki: Bamboo, hemp and cotton.
Andrew: No. Three advantages [crosstalk 00:20:07]
Vicki: Oh okay.
Vashti: Well bamboo, hemp and cotton. No. It holds onto moisture a lot better.
Vicki: Naturally dries.
Vashti: Yeah. Derived-
Vicki: Notice I use the word derive.
Vashti: Derived. Naturally.
Andrew: Didn’t I say disadvantages?
Vicki: No. You said advantages.
Andrew: Oh, advantages. Okay.
Andrew: Keep going.
Vashti: It’s better for the environment because it will actually breakdown and compost, and stuff like that.
Vicki: If you compost it.
Vicki: Pretty much, you put it into landfill, it will stay in landfill though.
Andrew: Well everything stays in landfill, because there’s no bugs down there.
Vicki: There’s no bacteria. There’s no wildlife. Sorry, no bacteria, no water, no air.
Vashti: No light.
Vicki: Yeah. So if you are using eco-disposables, I hate to tell you.
Vashti: If you’re putting them in your bin, they’re not breaking down.
Vicki: You’re just wasting your money, unless you’re actually going to compost them yourself.
Vashti: There is an eco-disposable company that has organised, they’ve got certain collections where they can pick up from your house or something.
Vicki: Oh really? That’s pretty cool.
Vashti: Yeah. So they’ve… been around for a few years, but they’re just starting to really get a lot of traction just recently.
Vicki: I think if you want to use disposables, but you don’t like the whole plastic thing, so you want to go the eco-disposable. Well for starters, you’re paying a lot more for them. So I think you’re already quite committed to that cause. You really do need to take it that next step though.
Vicki: To actually get the advantage, so you’ve got to pull them apart.
Vashti: So the little plastic sticky tabs need to come off because they don’t biodegrade, because they are plastic and there is a… I don’t know, I haven’t looked at them enough, but I would assume that the outer layer is still a form of plastic as well.
Vicki: Having said that, those beads are awesome water holders and great in your garden. So… and however, just make sure I suppose you do a PH test, you’re not putting too much urea-
Vicki: Into your garden, because you can kill all your plants, but as a water… that’s what the water saving crystals are made from .
Vashti: There’s some worm farms as well that like the contents from disposable nappies.
Vashti: So… well the eco-disposable nappies.
Vicki: Yeah. So if that is the path that you’re wanting to go down, just be aware, it’s about the whole, the full education that “Okay, I’m paying more. It’s eco-disposable, so when I put this in the bin, it’s not as bad.” Yeah it is.
Vicki: So yeah.
Andrew: So name three disadvantages of natural fibres.
Vicki: Slow drying, expensive and…
Vashti: Depending on which fibre. I mean, cotton isn’t really environmentally friendly in the growing process.
Vicki: And bamboo’s not-
Vashti: Bamboo’s not [crosstalk 00:23:00]
Vicki: Production process.
Vashti: Yeah. So yeah-
Vicki: Again, that’s education.
Andrew: Okay cool. So in 15 seconds, describe a all in one cloth nappy.
Vicki: Exactly same as a disposable except you wash it.
Andrew: That’s perfect, and three advantages of an all in one?
Vicki: Quick, easy, one piece.
Andrew: Okay. Three disadvantages?
Vicki: Slow drying.
Vashti: One piece.
Vicki: One piece.
Vashti: You’ve got to wash the whole thing every time.
Vicki: Yeah, yeah. That’ll do.
Andrew: Okay cool.
Vicki: Clearly we had a list in front of us.
Andrew: I’ve got a list, but you guys-
Andrew: You guys keep saying, so I don’t have to say anything. In less than 15 seconds, describe an all in two.
Vicki: A nappy and a shell in two pieces.
Vicki: So an insert that snaps inside a shell.
Andrew: Okay, so it comes apart for easy washing and cleaning. Name-
Vicki: Hang on. Whose explaining this?
Vashti: [crosstalk 00:24:13] asking questions, not actually giving the answer.
Andrew: I’m filling in the gaps.
Vicki: He’s filling in the gaps, because it’s the only product he knows.
Andrew: Three disadvantages of an all in two.
Vicki: You got to snap them together.
Vicki: I don’t know.
Andrew: Yeah, I only had one thing.
Vashti: Oh really? Can you [crosstalk 00:24:37] It takes… yeah.
Vicki: Oh okay. No, the insert can move in an all in two. If you actually don’t put the nappy on firmly, so if you don’t pull the insert up nice and firm, the insert can move in an all in two, which makes it a little bit harder to… which can cause a little bit of bunching in the…
Vashti: And channelling of the way-
Vashti: The way it can go… roll off the side, if it’s not put on firmly. The way it can roll on-
Vicki: Yeah, and it’s the insert-
Vashti: Off the side.
Vicki: That needs to be pulled up nice and firm.
Andrew: Okay. Three advantages of an all in two.
Vashti: Fast drying. Little bit more cost effective, because you can have extra inserts.
Vicki: Yeah, you can actually swap out the inserts.
Andrew: They come in beautiful colours.
Vicki: Do you know what? Once together they’re an all in one.
Vicki: Once put together, they’re like an all in one. So simple.
Andrew: Cool. In less than 15 seconds, describe a fitted cloth nappy.
Vicki: Fully absorbent.
Vicki: Shaped. Yep.
Vashti: Totally flat.
Vicki: Yeah. A shaped nappy that’s fully absorbent and easily boostable. Oh, that’s actually an advantage isn’t it?
Andrew: Yes, you’ve read ahead. So three disadvantages of a fitted nappy.
Vicki: Two parts, actually, that’s an advantage and a disadvantage. It’s a two part system.
Vashti: Because you’ve got the absorbency of the nappy and then you’ve got to put a shell over the top.
Vicki: A cover over the top, and another disadvantage is the whole thing gets wet.
Vashti: I actually don’t have that many disadvantages for a fitted, they’re my favourite nappy in the whole world.
Andrew: Okay. Well three advantages of a fitted.
Vashti: Easy to boost.
Vicki: Generally a better fit. You’ve got… because you’ve got two layers of protection.
Vashti: Yeah, so if something escapes the nappy, the cover’s going to contain it. If you’re choosing to use it without a cover, it’s a lot more breathable. So it’s great on hot days when you’re just hanging around in nothing but a nappy, because you get a lot more breathability.
Andrew: A bit kidly, but leave a little wet mark he sits though wouldn’t he?
Vicki: Yeah. Once… yeah, you do need to be aware of that.
Andrew: Like a snail.
Vicki: Yeah, but if you’re playing outside… okay, so let’s say they’re playing outside in a paddle pool or something like that, it doesn’t matter. At least they’ve got the nappy on and it’s not like a swim nappy where you actually have to change if they pee it. Sorry, if they poop it. What else Vashti?
Vashti: [crosstalk 00:27:08] to change it.
Vicki: You do. You know what I mean. They can just go play out in the yard, play under the sprinkler and all of that sort of stuff, and it’s…
Vashti: Play in the sand pit and stuff like that, still have lots of breathability, but everything’s contained.
Andrew: Cool. Okay, so in less than 15 seconds, describe prefolds.
Vashti: A flap without the origami.
Andrew: That’s impressive. You guys are really good at describing stuff. I’m so glad I have you on. Three disadvantages of a flap. Sorry, of a prefold.
Vicki: The extra work, so you do actually have to fold it. Actually, you miss… or no, we didn’t get to advantages. That’s really the only disadvantage is the extra step, and it’s a two part system as well.
Andrew: Okay, and advantages?
Vicki: It’s a two part system.
Vashti: With the disadvantages, let’s say it can be a little bit trickier to get a snug fit on a prefold.
Vicki: That’s right, yeah, because it’s not-
Vashti: There’s no elastic-
Vashti: Around the legs or anything like that, so you really do have to work on making sure you get the gusset right, and stuff like that.
Vicki: But if you got a good fitting cover-
Vicki: Don’t catch anything.
Andrew: Okay. In 15 describes a flat.
Vashti: A square material.
Andrew: Easy. Okay, if it’s a square material, how do you put it on?
Vashti: You fold it.
Andrew: Oh you fold it? Okay.
Vicki: Don’t ask me.
Andrew: What? We’ve got videos of you putting one on.
Vashti: We’ve got videos of me teaching you how to do it.
Vicki: Yeah, you think that’s something.
Andrew: Didn’t sink in. Three disadvantages of flat.
Vashti: They take time. You got to do the origami. You’ve got to learn the folds.
Vicki: They’re not [crosstalk 00:29:00] friendly.
Vashti: Yeah. They’re not always the easiest to fit as well.
Andrew: And the folds are specifically for different problems too, aren’t they?
Vashti: They can be.
Andrew: You’re going to have a couple of folds in your arsenal?
Vashti: Not necessarily. Most people can get away with one fold, but is nice to know a couple.
Vicki: If you want to know that fold, I know it. It’s the only one I do know.
Vashti: Which one, the bat wing?
Vashti: I thought you did a [inaudible 00:29:24] fold as well, the angel wing. You can’t remember that one?
Vashti: There you go.
Andrew: Never plays the video that’s why. So disadvantages of a flat.
Andrew: I did that.
Vashti: Just did that.
Andrew: Three advantages of a flat.
Vashti: Can be used from birth through to toilet training. It’s quick drying. It’s easy wash.
Andrew: And then you wash your car with it.
Vashti: Goes and goes. Mine is still going 14 years later.
Andrew: Not on babies though.
Vashti: No, no babies anymore. No babies from this little black duck.
Andrew: More babies coming?
Vashti: No. Have to rely on Heidi and Sonya for that.
Andrew: Oh okay. We’ve got Jenna for that.
Vashti: Yeah, you’ve got Jenna. Maybe Karen. Can we convince Karen.
Vicki: I doubt it.
Andrew: I don’t know. We can send her an email. We’d offer an [inaudible 00:30:19] bonus.
Vicki: I don’t think that poor girl has had a piece of gluten for three years.
Vashti: No, she hasn’t.
Vicki: Or a coffee, or anything I think… yeah. I think you’d be hard pressed to push Karen.
Vashti: Well you just had a get together. At nest, we don’t get together very often, because we all work different days, but we had a get together on the weekend, and I did say to, “Heidi, are you done yet?” And she goes, “No, I’m not done.”
Andrew: Wow, how many’s Heidi got?
Andrew: Two. Oh okay.
Vashti: Yeah. So…
Andrew: My bother’s got four.
Vicki: Well at the birthday party, Hailey said that she wasn’t done.
Vicki: That shocked you.
Vashti: No. I know that she’s always wanted a big family, just… I don’t know. I thought… yeah. I thought she was done.
Vicki: [crosstalk 00:31:16] was it?
Vashti: Yeah. So… for those listening at home, Vicki is getting into short bread.
Andrew: Is it good?
Vashti: Big short bread. Yeah, I had a short bread on the weekend.
Vicki: I made them on the weekend and then gave them to my mom.
Vicki: It’s in beautiful… because it’s Christmas, even though this is after Christmas, but-
Andrew: This is January.
Vicki: Yeah whatever.
Andrew: This is just Happy New Year this is.
Vicki: Yeah, but see, I made pistachio and orange.
Vashti: Oh yum.
Vicki: They were so nice and I gave them all to my mom, because I was too… I had Gabriel and mom, and I showed him how to… made them together and then we gifted them, and wrote a card and all that sort of stuff. Then I go to the bakery to go get some lunch, and they’ve got shortbread there and I’m like, “They look nice.” But they had chocolate chip shortbread and I’m like, “Who has chocolate chips in shortbread?” For starters, it’s white chocolate chips and cranberries, and then they and walnuts and cherries, and I was like, “Oh, that sounds really nice.” And they tell me they [inaudible 00:32:19] cherries.
Vashti: Oh yuck.
Vicki: I’m like, “It’s December, you can get real cherries.” And who puts [inaudible 00:32:25] cherries in a shortbread?
Andrew: Well at the risk of turning into a cooking show, what’s a blase…
Vashti: A glossy-
Vicki: Glossy cherry.
Andrew: Glossy cherry?
Vashti: They’re the…
Andrew: So dogs going to love them.
Vicki: They’re awful.
Vashti: Oh the beeps from this episode are going to be amazing.
Vicki: They are just awful.
Vashti: They’re those candied cherries in the packet.
Vicki: That they put on top of fake cupcakes and stuff like that.
Vashti: Yeah, and [crosstalk 00:33:03] the ones, you put them on top of an ice cream float, or a banana split.
Vicki: They’re the equivalent of like a sultana, but as a cherry.
Andrew: Oh okay.
Vashti: And they’re all… they’re coming in this sticky syrup stuff.
Vicki: They’re disgusting.
Andrew: Okie dokie, let’s move on.
Andrew: Let’s move onto washing. Who does the washing? The machine or the person?
Vashti: The machine.
Andrew: Machine does all the work?
Vashti: Yeah, you just got to throw it in the machine and press a few buttons, and add some detergent. The machine does all the work.
Andrew: So washing routine… so a good washing routine is what? You rinse off the solids?
Vashti: Yeah, once the solids are out of the nappy, and in the toilet where poo belongs, and you have a full load, so a full load is about having your machine about two thirds to three quarters full. If you don’t-
Vicki: I feel like it depends on the cycle, because we got a new machine and my cotton cycle I can do… so I’ve got a 10 kilo washer. Who reads the instruction book? Me. Who would have thought I’m not one of those people read instructions, but you can do… so it’s a nine kilo washer. Nine kilos on a cotton cycle, but if we do the eco whatever cycle, or the automatic cycle, maximum we can do is four kilos.
Vicki: And every different cycle had a different weight and I was like, “Oh.” So it’s not me, it’s the machine that sucks. As I shove as much in as I can. That’s all I do. I just… if it fits… it’s a bit like [inaudible 00:34:39] post, if it fits, it ships. If it fits, it washes.
Vashti: It washes.
Vicki: I don’t have some scientific kind of-
Vashti: There you go. I’m going to go and check out my machine, which is still broken by the way and our tradesman, so that’s now two and half weeks. By the time there’s-
Vicki: January, my god, how did you get through Christmas?
Vashti: By the time this airs, it should be well and truly fixed. But yeah, Mr. Nest ended up sending a rocket up the repair guys email this morning and got a phone call back within 10 minutes going, “So sorry. Yes, the part’s just been ordered. It’ll be here tomorrow and we’ll be out straightaway tomorrow to fix it.” So we’ll have the machine back and I won’t be sitting at the laundromat on a Saturday night.
Andrew: So you were-
Vashti: Okay. So yes, so once the solids are out, machine… check with your machine settings and what cycle you’re doing, but generally it’s about two thirds to three quarters a load, to get a good agitation for the amount of water that your machine will put in. The full amount of detergent as recommended by the brand of the detergent manufacturer that you’re using, and I would say do a prewash or a quick cycle, just to get rid of any floaties that are still hanging around and then back for a full cotton wash, once again, with the full amount of detergent to actually clean that. That prewash also means that when you’re doing that full cotton wash, that you’re not washing in poo soup.
Andrew: So the cotton wash also adds heat doesn’t it?
Vicki: Generally, cotton wash can be done hotter.
Vashti: It can.
Vicki: An eco wash isn’t that, sometimes the temperature sets at 40.
Vicki: Eco… sorry, cotton you can do up to 90. Should you do up to 90 on your nappies? Absolutely not. 60 is probably about the limit.
Vicki: Inserts are different, but-
Vashti: But I think it also depends on who you are… what you’re wanting to do. I always washed on cold, because that suited me.
Andrew: Your prewash on cold.
Vashti: No, I washed on cold.
Andrew: Oh you washed on cold?
Vashti: Yeah, with my top loader, it wasn’t even hooked up to a hot water tap and my front loader, I always set to a cold wash and I never, ever had any problems with my nappies. 40 to 60 degrees definitely going to clean them that little it better.
Vicki: It’s funny since we got into way more washing, I used to wash in cold as well.
Vicki: But clothes, my gosh, do they come out cleaner in 40 to 60.
Vicki: Without a shadow of a doubt, and my whites all go through as 90.
Vicki: Makes a massive difference to how clean… and in fact, you might not have seen it. Our… we’ve got a grade sixer, whose obviously going into high school next year, and bought her new uniforms, and my 15 year old does her own washing, and she chucks it all in together and all this sort of stuff, and I showed her, her white school uniforms versus the brand new one, and I’m actually about to go and wash them myself, and show her how to get whites white, and [inaudible 00:37:43] whites are so much cleaner when you wash them with… in a hot cycle.
Vicki: Without a doubt. I can do my own comparison. I haven’t got nappy inserts to strip and sanitise, but I can school uniforms.
Vashti: Oh school uniforms. [crosstalk 00:38:03] we used to have-
Vicki: That’s a whole other story.
Andrew: We still wash nappies. Every time we get a product up, we put it through the washing machine over and over and over again.
Vicki: No, that’s Jenna. I don’t do it. Have you not seen those samples that are sitting on my desk? That I have done nothing with.
Andrew: Because Jenna hasn’t come to work yet.
Vicki: No, because the loops pulled out of them, I’m like… so I didn’t even bother testing them any further than that.
Andrew: Oh, that was the…
Andrew: Other prototypes that are out for the other prototype that we’re still not allowed to talk about.
Vashti: No. I think if you’ve got a good machine and a good wash cycle, and a good detergent. It’s up to you. If you want to wash on cold, then wash on cold. If you get stains, stains are generally removed better at the temperature they went in at. So poo is going to go in at around about the 37 degree mark. So washing your nappies at around the 40 degree marks is definitely going to remove that stain a lot easier than a cold, or a hot wash will, but hot washes, no dramas as well. But there’s people out there who do nappies for environmental reasons and so don’t want to use hot water, because it isn’t as good for the environment.
Vicki: And this is where we always disagree. How environmentally friendly is it to use more detergent and use cold water, than it is to use less detergent an warm water? It’s six to one half [crosstalk 00:39:30] another. So it’s one of those things that you’ve got to work out for yourself really.
Andrew: Okay. Where’s the best place to buy nappies? Do you buy them direct? Do you buy them from retailers, from shops?
Vicki: I’m going to say direct. [crosstalk 00:39:45] direct.
Vashti: See, I’m going to say a retailer.
Vicki: What a silly question. Buy them from the place where you’re going to get the customer service that you want and need.
Andrew: Well you can get them from both.
Vicki: Well not necessarily. As a bigger brand ourselves, there are things that we can’t accommodate. We can’t combine orders. We can’t change a order easily, you know? So there are disadvantages with buying directly from a brand.
Vashti: It’s harder for you to go in and get a fitting from a brand.
Vicki: Yeah. Yeah.
Vashti: So whereas from a multi brand retailer like myself, who has a shop front, you can walk in with your baby and your nappies and say, “I’m having problems, can you help me fit them?” We can do that.
Andrew: What about secondhand? Is it safe to buy secondhand?
Vicki: Yeah. 100%.
Andrew: Cool. So newborn versus one size fits most…
Vicki: Advantages and disadvantages.
Vicki: Cost is really the big advantage of a one size system. However, if you’re having multiple children, that cost is then outweighed by the fact that you’re likely to have to do some maintenance, or replace them by the end of their life. So it can be a bit of a…
Andrew: So it puts [crosstalk 00:41:11]
Vicki: A false economy.
Andrew: Puts more pressure on the one size fits most.
Vicki: It does. Yeah, yeah. They’ve got a finite lifespan. So let’s say your nappies last… I don’t know, 300 washes. 300 uses. So that means… after three years, using that nappy every… what’s that, once a week. No.
Vashti: No. Every…
Vicki: Every three day. Whatever it is.
Vashti: Every three to four days.
Vicki: Someone do the math and tell me. I’m just not in a math [crosstalk 00:41:38]
Vashti: You got 365 days to a year.
Vashti: So if you’re using it for two and a half years, you’re probably using it [crosstalk 00:41:44]
Vicki: Every third day.
Vashti: Every third day.
Vicki: Every third day you’re using it, you’d expect at the end of that three years for it to be pretty much ready to give up the ghost. If that’s what it’s lifespan was. So having invested in newborn nappies, and taking those first four months out of the use of that nappy would actually drop it by about half. So then, you move onto your second child and you have the nappies in… much better [crosstalk 00:42:15]
Andrew: Especially if you have your second child early. Then you’ve got one of them in one size fits most, and one of them in newborns.
Vicki: I mean, the other… most of the… I suppose the whole fashion side depends why you do cloth. The whole fomo/consumerism around cloth nappies as well. If you do… I generally tend to be one sized. So you start off with a stash of 24, and you end up with a stash of 75 or something like that. That takes pressure off those nappies as well. So it really depends why you’re doing cloth. You also get a better fit with newborn nappies on a newborn baby.
Andrew: Okay. So some more resources would be Facebook groups. Vashti, you have a Facebook group.
Vashti: No, I don’t.
Andrew: You don’t?
Vashti: No, I have a Facebook page. I don’t have a Facebook group.
Andrew: Oh okay. Do you have a Facebook group Vicki?
Vicki: We do. It is… oh, this is going to sound very elitist, but it is a true VIP group, and… which means that you do actually have to be using our products to be in the group, and the reason I have set it up like that is because it’s very much a safe space. It’s a very… it’s even my safe space on Facebook, you know? A lot of groups can get really nasty, and very sanctimonious and what have you, and my group is not like that at all. So I’m really… I’m not particular. I’m really protective of that, so it is an invite only and you have to be a Bubblebubs user to-
Andrew: So how do you get an invite? After you bought something, you get an email?
Vicki: Yeah. You can actually… and purchases from retailers. Secondhand as well, but the whole group vibe is very much supportive and we don’t just talk about nappies. We can talk about anything. We can have a cloth versus breastfeeding debate and it’s not a debate. It’s just more support of your choices. Does that make sense?
Andrew: Yep. And of course, if you haven’t listened to the podcast, that would be this podcast. That would be a pretty good resource, right?
Vicki: Well that would be a bit of an oxymoron, wouldn’t it?
Andrew: Yeah, it would be an oxymoron if you’ve already listened to the last…
Vicki: Oh, can I do a Gabriel? Can I do a Gabriel?
Andrew: Sure, go for it.
Vicki: Can you like and subscribe? He has no idea what that actually means, but he watches so much YouTube, like Minecraft.
Andrew: And he says it when he records a movie, he says it at the end, even if he’s not going to put it up on YouTube.
Vicki: He doesn’t even a YouTube. He so wants a YouTube channel, but he doesn’t. He just… and if you liked this, could you like and subscribe?
Andrew: That’s right. But we’re doing a podcast. So it’s review and review. Review and five stars.
Vicki: No, you know what? If you don’t like it, you don’t have to give five stars.
Andrew: But we’ll ruin our record. We’ve got perfect 5.0.
Vicki: Yeah, does anybody ever believe that?
Andrew: Well yeah-
Vicki: I don’t.
Andrew: We’ve got some negative ones.
Vicki: Oh have we?
Vicki: Well how do you get 5.0 with a negative-
Andrew: Because fives outweigh the others.
Vicki: Oh okay. Well it should be like 4.9.
Andrew: It rounds up. It rounds up. We’re 4.99, so it rounds up to five.
Vicki: Oh okay. Yeah, see I don’t see negative reviews as a bad thing actually. I find… it’s not so much negative feedback, it’s constructive feedback. I really, really appreciate constructive feedback. How can you get better if you don’t know what you don’t know?
Andrew: Tell us what you really think.
Vicki: Well I just went and bought a pack of strawberries, right? And what do you do with strawberries? You turn them over and I looked at this pack of strawberries, and I’m like, “You know what? Every single person is going to do this and the poor shopkeeper’s not going to know why.” So I took it to him and I said, “There’s a big fat mouldy strawberry in here. Fix it.”
Vicki: You know? Yeah, if somebody has got constructive feedback, they’re welcome to approach us about it and let us know. Because you don’t know what you don’t know.
Andrew: True, another good resource of course is bricks and mortar stores. If there’s not a bricks and mortar store close to you, I know a couple-
Vicki: Open one.
Andrew: Yeah, open one.
Vicki: Open one.
Andrew: I know a couple of them that will Skype you. Nest Nappies will Skype you-
Vashti: We will.
Andrew: If you live in some… as long as you got internet access, she’ll Skype you and teach you over Skype. So there’s lots and lots of resources out there.
Vashti: We have a Skype session this weekend.
Andrew: That was two months ago.
Vashti: Yeah, it was. But we probably will have a Skype session that weekend too.
Andrew: Skype sessions every week people. Thank you Vashti.
Vashti: Thanks Andrew.
Andrew: Thank you Vicki.
Vashti: Thanks Andrew.
Andrew: Bye everybody.