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Childcare and cloth nappies

Updated: May 3, 2020

Stack of reusable cloth nappies and work pass on Peter Rabbit changing table

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I returned to work two days a week when H was 7 months old, a decision which was right for our family at the time. During this time H was with her grandparents one day, and with a friend another. At 9 months my days increased to four and so we had to seek paid childcare to support this.

After careful consideration of the available options, we decided that a childminder would best suit our family. H still felt so young at 9 months, not communicating with any method other then crying and not walking - I liked the home style setting and continuity of care a childminder could offer us.

Being able to continue our real nappy journey was important to us. While finding the right minder is more important, it was at the top of our list of questions when we met with our recommended carers. Thankfully of the two childminders we were considering both had previous experience of using cloth nappies and were happy to do so for us as well.

Stack of Motherease Wizard Uno real cloth nappies balanced on a woman's hand

I explained the style of nappies we use and how to care for them. At home we use reusable fleece liners to catch any poo, however at the time we were far from anything ploppable and the childminder highlighted that she would not be able to spend time sluicing them because there were four children in her care. With this in mind we agreed that we would send disposable liners to childcare so that she could manage these in the same way as disposable nappies and we weren't receiving nappies home with hours-old poo in them.

I like to keep it as simple as possible for the childminder so prioritise our Wizard Unos for use there. Each day I prepare enough nappies for the day plus a spare, I pre-stuff them all with an extra booster to increase absorbency time and lay the liner inside each individual nappy before packing them in the bag. Basically, for the Childminder there is no difference between our nappies and disposable other than she puts them in the wet bag we provide rather than throwing them in the bin.

H's Grandparents still care for her one-day a week in our home which is building an invaluable bond with them, in fact as soon as she sees Grandand (a name deposed by H's cousin) or you say his name she starts excitedly shouting Ga-Ga. We operate a similar process with them, except we use a wider variety of nappies. I prepare the required nappies for the day, but with fleece liners, and they leave the dirties in the bucket - if we're lucky they'll occasionally do the nappy wash for us too!

If you're heading back to work and wish to use cloth, definitely have the conversation with your childcare provider. They have to consider all reasonable requests, and if you come up against challenges ask them why. It may be as simple as a little training or myth busting to bring them around.

Modern cloth nappies, disposable liners, cotton boosters fitted night nappies, nappy wraps and a wet bag

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