With the enormous impact waste is having on the environment, and the ability to save money, there really is no time like the present to start using modern cloth nappies, no matter the age of your child. Guest blogger Haylee, kindly shared her story from thinking about using cloth to finally putting on her daughter’s first cloth nappy at 19 months. Haylee, like Sara, Molly and Renee from our previous blog on late starters to cloth, all have one thing in common – they reached out for support. From friends to online communities and us here at Bubblebubs, these families were all able to gain the knowledge and support to successfully use cloth nappies on their older babies.
Haylee and Amelia’s Story
Reusable nappies were something I wanted to do when Amelia was born, but my husband didn't agree with my concerns about the environmental and financial burdens of single-use nappies. Once she was here the sleeplessness, chaos and constant life changes moved my focus to survival mode and I didn't have the headspace to think about it again. Once I started to find my mummy rhythm and after seeing the volume of nappies and wipes going into the bin I started to think about it again. We plan on having a second child so although investing so late into my daughter's nappy years, they wouldn't be wasted and I will have a stash ready when baby number two arrives.
There was so much conflicting information out there on cloth vs. disposable, but having some mum friends that used cloth meant that I could get some real statistics. With my husband being a FIFO (fly in fly out) worker, I became the predominant nappy changer, so I decided that since I was doing all the work anyway, I should do it my way. That was when I reached out to one of my cloth friends. At this point, I had made up my mind but it was the handling and washing of dirty nappies that seemed a bit daunting. We arranged a playdate so that I could see cloth nappies in action - a behind the scenes type of thing. She also lent me a few nappies, wet bags and wipes to get me started. That was it, I was hooked.
I was a bit nervous when I got them home and started to use them on my own. My change table set up wasn't ideal, so I had to rearrange a few things so I had somewhere to put the dirty nappy (before taking to dry pail) and somewhere to store the wipes. I only had the loan nappies and wipes for a while until my first order arrived, which made the transition a bit easier, as I was still in my comfort zone half of the time. As I grew more comfortable with using modern cloth nappies I definitely preferred them and couldn't wait for my first order to arrive.
I was impressed with the fit that I got with cloth nappies. I didn't have any more poo leaks! This was something that was still a common occurrence in single-use nappies, especially if she was wearing a romper. Something I had to adjust to though was changing them more frequently. I had become used to being able to go for a long time in disposables (if only wees) and I suppose I became lazy. So changing every few hours took a little bit of getting used to, particularly if we were out and about and time passed quickly.
Wetbags are a must! And lots of them, especially if you have days where you are out and about. The double-pocket wetbag is great for swimming lesson days or picnics, and also good if taking extra sets of clothing out with you. Bags that have a clip handle are my favourite as they can be hung over just about anything.
I followed the instructions that came with the nappies, as well as the wash routine from Clean Cloth Nappies. The cleaning side of things got easier the more I did it, and the washing routine got easier once I had a full collection of nappies - enough for 3 days worth for washing, plus nappies for washing day. I had limited space in my laundry for a dry pail, but I found a vertical stand with threee wire baskets from Kmart (I think it is for veges) that I could put on the laundry bench that didn't take up much space. And I knew once all the baskets were full it was enough for a load of washing.
A perk of having such beautiful and colourful designs is that my daughter enjoys being able to select her nappy to wear. On the negative side, it sometimes results in tears because I would only let her wear one at a time!
We have recently started toilet training, so I'm only using nappies for day naps, after swimming lessons and if another situation calls for them. I also use the nappy inserts to line the car seat and to have on hand in case of any accidents. Our wetbags have proved themselves yet again. They are perfect for carrying spare clothes and undies, and for storing wet/soiled clothing. There are so many uses for wet bags that I have even ordered some more!
I was proud of myself for deciding to change to cloth, even though it was so late. I was proud that I was doing something good for the environment, as I believe that everything, no matter how small, can make a difference. I am also pleased that this change shows my daughter a better way to do things and that not everything has to be thrown in the bin. She even has cloth nappies for her babies (dolls) now too.
The perfect nappy for late starters
At Bubblebubs we have the perfect nappy that is both easy to use and will fit your child right through to toilet training. Candies fit from 4-15kg and are a side snapping one size fits most nappy. Candies are incredibly quick and easy to assemble with a simple square of absorbent fabric that folds in thirds and snaps into a waterproof shell – meaning no fancy folding or pockets to stuff. This multi-award-winning nappy comes in a range of solid colours and limited edition prints. If you are considering making the switch, reach out to us at Bubblebubs and we will help make using cloth nappies smooth and hassle-free!