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I decided to start using cloth nappies when my daughter was 3 months old as I was very aware of the amount of waste (no pun intended) and the cost of disposable nappies. Being new to the fluffy scene and not having a lot of spare cash, I decided to buy some little blooms as they were cheaper. I purchased 5 nappies and 5 bamboo inserts. I was a little nervous of using them because of leaking but can honestly say, after a few days of using them, I haven't had any leaks at all. I had gone on to purchase other brands before starting. Like Bumgenius and little lambs. I have found that I prefer the Velcro wrap. Rather than the poppers as they are more secure. I found a pack of 3 on amazon for around £8 so have ordered 6. They come in lovely colours suitable for boys and girls. The nappies are very easy to use and after the initial expense, will save us a lot of money. I would recommend having at least 10 to get started so this brand is a great choice as the price is very reasonable. With a 3 month old, we use around 4 or 5 nappies a day so we can wash one load and use the other. I have found that the world of cloth nappies is addictive tho and I have more on order. I would say that I will have around 20 in total over the next few weeks. A lot of these nappies are BTP (birth to potty), which again, is great from a value point of view. The poppers adjust to fit. The Velcro versions have poppers to adjust the length and Velcro for the waste which is very easy, like a disposable nappy.
The reactions we get from most people when they realise that we cloth bum Baby JJ range from disgust at the idea of dealing with all that pee and poop to wondering why we would put ourselves through all the extra work. The truth is using cloth nappies is really no more work than disposables and it is certainly not as messy as we don't have stinky nappies waiting around until bin day (which is now fortnightly in many parts of the country). We use a variety of different types of nappies with Baby JJ, the majority of them being of the Little Lamb brand, but the very easiest to use of these and our daytime nappy of choice are the Little Lamb pocket nappies. Little Lamb Pocket Nappies come in two varieties, the sized pockets where you need to buy more as your child grows and the One Size Fits All (OSFA recently renamed One Size) which grow with your child.
The One Size Pocket nappies definitely make up the backbone of our cloth stash, we started with five and were so impressed that we bought another fifteen meaning that we easily have enough to last two and sometimes three days between washes and never run out at an inconvenient moment. As far as price goes, I personally feel these are pretty good value for money, the standard price for one nappy is £10 and then ever increasing discounts can be had when you buy in multiples. But I really would wait until the nappies are on offer and buy then, by doing this we picked up ten for £50 which made them an excellently valued £5 each.
These One Size pockets are designed to be suitable for a large age range, which while not quite from newborn is a close run thing. The cleverly placed poppers allow you to adjust both the rise (height) and fit of the nappy to fit a large weight range with Little Lamb recommending that they are suitable for babies from 10lb-30lb (4.5kg-14kg). The long, thin Baby JJ actually weighed slightly less than this recommended minimum when he first started wearing these nappies at 8lb 4oz, but they still fitted well.
Once you get into a routine these One Size nappies are as easy to use as disposables, only needing to be poppered on after they have been prepared for use. These actually come in two parts, the pocket nappy itself and then absorbent inserts that are stuffed in the pocket and soak up the pee. The pocket part of the nappy is made of a beautifully soft fleece that is incredibly gentle against baby's skin and does a fantastic job of wicking moisture through to the inserts. Each nappy is covered with a stretchy waterproof (PUL) layer and is available in a variety of funky colours along with basic white. Not containing an absorbent layer the actual nappies dry very quickly, being almost dry out of the machine and ready to use after a couple of hours drying on an airer.
Little Lamb are very generous when it comes to the absorbent inserts and supply not one but two bamboo boosters. Although they don't actually touch baby's skin, these boosters are super soft and super absorbent as well as being relatively ecologically sound (bamboo is a very renewable source). The downside of this super absorbency is that the boosters do take a lot longer to dry than the nappy (a good 24 hours on an airer), so I would recommend buying some extra boosters so that you don't have empty, unusable nappies hanging around.
An amount of initial preparation is required before these nappies can be used for the first time, but really this is just a case of washing them. The pockets only need to be washed the once before the first use, but the boosters/inserts do need at least three washes (preferably six) to increase absorbency, but they do not need drying in-between so it's simply a case of running the washing machine continuously at 40 degrees for a day. Once the nappies and boosters are washed and dried all that is needed is to stuff the boosters into the pocket and then put the nappy on your baby, adjusting the rise of the nappy using the horizontal lines of poppers that give three different heights and then fitting the nappy snuggly but not too tightly using the poppers on the waistband. Dealing with the dirty/wet nappy is similarly simple, remove the nappy, take out the boosters, place in a lidded bucket and when you have enough wash at 40 degrees using a half dose of non-biological powder.
We've been using these nappies on Baby JJ for four weeks now and find them the easiest of the different nappy types to deal with. The most tedious and time consuming part of using these would have to be stuffing the inserts into place, it's not difficult, just tedious and best done while watching TV in the evening and it's probably best not to wait until you have fifteen nappies to stuff. How many boosters you will need to stuff in each nappy depends very much on how heavy a wetter your baby is and how long you want the nappy to last for. With some babies you can get away with just one, but with Baby JJ we need the two to last two to three hours and three if we want them to last longer. What I particularly like about these nappies is that unlike some other brands of pocket nappy we own there is a flap at the back to hold the booster in place.
As Baby JJ is at the smaller end of the recommended weight we have used the poppers to adjust this to the smallest rise and when put on him the fit is just below his belly button. The waistband has a large range thanks to the many poppers and at the moment we are using not quite the smallest setting (the smallest setting involves popping the two ends together as well as to the waistband and is very, very small and so suitable for the smallest of babies). The combination of being able to adjust the waistband and the soft elastic at the back of the nappy and the leg cuffs, means that we get a nice snug fit without gaping and also without the nappy digging in to Baby JJ's delicate skin.
Once these nappies are on they look so cute and are perfect teamed up with a long sleeved top and baby leg warmers. We have and love most of the colours that are available, they are bright without being gaudy and most are suitable for both a boy or girl. Although we find these nappies are less bulky than many reusable nappies they are still a little more bulky than disposables and some thought is needed in choosing clothes. You may find, as we did, that you need to move up a size in body and sleepsuits a little earlier than expected or you may discover that leg warmers make a great alternative to trousers. As far as the colours go, my favourites have to be Hazy Sun (yellow), Spice (burnt orange) and Green Apple (almost lime green), they may not have fancy patterns but they still look gorgeous and would look equally nice on a girl.
As far as how well these nappies hold up to peeing and pooping I do feel they do really well. As long as he is changed every two to three hours we don't tend to get any leaks or wet patches, although we did have a few compression leaks from trying to stretch bodysuits over the nappy. On the majority of occasions Baby JJ's poop is also contained, most days he will poop four or five times a day and this poop is dealt with perfectly well. Every four days or so though he does fewer poops in a day and at least one of these is an explosion that would defy any nappy's ability to hold it in. Disposables didn't manage and unfortunately neither do these, the only nappies I've found so far that do are two-parters with a bombproof wrap.
On taking the nappy off Baby JJ's delicate bottom does not feel too wet thanks to the way the fleece wicks the moisture away and he has not shown even a sign of redness or rash since the change from disposables. We do, however, use a cloth friendly bottom balm at every change so that might not just be down to the nappies. As soon as the nappy is taken off it is put in a lidded pail and then when I have enough for a load I stick them in a wash at 40 degrees making sure that I remove the boosters from the pockets. As we are trying to keep nasty chemicals as far away from Baby JJ's skin we don't actually use soap powder in our wash, instead washing the nappies with an Ecoegg. Even without soap powder the nappies come up lovely and clean, despite coming into contact with liberal amounts of bright yellow poop. After four weeks use, countless wears and washes all of our one size pockets are as good as new. Just in case you are wondering we do also use these nappies when out and about and they really are just as convenient as a disposable. Whereas you would put a used disposable in a plastic nappy bag for later disposal you simply put the used reusable in a waterproof wet bag to take home for later washing.
I really can't recommend going down the cloth nappy route enough, not only is it better for baby's skin and the environment, but it also can save several hundred pound over the time that baby is in nappies. I also have no hesitation in recommending these particular nappies, we love the ease of use, look and reliability, but do remember that every baby is different and what works for one may not for another. I would therefore recommend that you start with a trial pack that includes the nappy, two boosters and a wet bag for £12 to ensure that it is the nappy for you before buying a larger pack.
With baby number two arriving we knew we wanted to cloth nappy this wee one from the start - previously we'd only started using cloth part time around 7/8 months with our first and I found it saved us a lot of money, even including the costs of washing, drying and my time spent assembling the nappies together. I also really don't like disposables; the cost is a big one for me but I'm not comfortable with those horrible crystals all over my babies genitalia, thankyouverymuch! I also think cloth nappies look so cute on a wee one :). I'm a cloth addict, I have no problems admitting this!
I only had a selection of newborn cloth to choose from so we had to update our stash quite dramatically if we were to go at the full time cloth nappying adventure. I easily now have about 30 nappies in my stash and could very easily push that number to 60 if I wasn't so restrained ;). We get by on our nappies. 10 of those nappies are the OSFA (One Size Fits All) nappies from Little Lamb. I got very excited when they introduced these pocket nappies but as my son was on the cusp of nappy wearing and toilet training I couldn't justify the spend - and I wasn't sure we'd be adding to our family at the time! When I found out I was pregnant I looked into buying these but again didn't feel the spend was justified and bought some other all-in-one nappies (like a disposable but in cloth.) Then Little Lamb had a sale on their 'version 1' OFSA Pocket Nappies so I ordered 10 for £35! Bargain. I wasn't sure how great or not they'd be but they've worked out to be absolutely fantastic - even my husband, a cloth skeptic, gets on with them very well and doesn't complain about changing nappies when our son is wearing these nappies.
As the name suggests they're a 'one size fits all' nappy which means you can go from birth to potty with these nappies. The cover is stretchy (and always feels dry coming out of the washing machine to boot) and has what I call 'snappies' on the cover/outer layer that allow you to adjust the size to comfortably fit baby to toddler. There is a 'pocket' opening where you can insert boosters for night time wear or for heavy wetters/toddlers. I prefer having a booster that I insert rather than being sewn in as the nappies I have with sewn in boosters take the longest to dry after being washed whereas a separate booster takes a shorter time to dry or a dry booster can be used with the nappies - which take the shortest time to dry due to being made with microfibre.
Wash on a 40 degree wash with non-bio soap powder, no fabric softener as it can decrease absorbency and air dry where possible. When I'm drying inside I hang them on a rack and turn on my dehumidifier
The current price on the V2 (Version 2) nappy is £10 per nappy but if bought as part of a set you can make huge savings - £180 if you're willing to spend £300 on 48 nappies and with 48 nappies your stash would definitely be fulfilled! The nappies come in a selection of colours; hazy sun, snow, big sky, candyfloss, truffle, grape and spice. We have the hazy sun colour variety and they look wonderful on our son and I can imagine they'd be a great colour on a girl so if you're not sure of the sex of your baby then yellow is probably the colour for you as it works as a great unisex colour. I opted for the yellow colour as I love yellow and I love how it looks on babies. These nappies are easy to adjust, fit on the baby and they dry so fast. They've already been through load after load of laundry and look as fluffy as ever. My only gripe is that I wish I'd bought more in the sale!