How much extra work are cloth nappies?

Updated: May 3


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Isn’t it loads of extra laundry? This is probably the question I get asked the most when people learn that we use cloth nappies, and the most common reason people give me for not trying it themselves.


For me, although I complain about doing laundry a lot, the nappies never bother me. I actually find it quite enjoyable, and sitting mindlessly re-stuffing nappies in front of the telly at the other end once H is in bed is strangely therapeutic.


We have around 30 nappies in rotation (more than you need to cloth full-time) meaning I can get away with washing every three days, back when we had a more reasonable amount of nappies (around 20) I was washing every other day. When a nappy comes off the bum if it’s just wet it goes straight in the nappy bin, before weaning, pooey nappies also went straight in the bin, it’s only been since weaning we’ve had to start scraping. On nappy forums you hear of the elusive ‘flickable’ poo, trust me this day will come and it is amazing! Before then and during any bouts of teething, it's harder work.


Once weaning has started it is important that as much poo as possible is removed from the nappy before washing, if not it may clog your machine’s filter or you may find little balls in the bottom of your washing machine.


There are many different methods for removing poo, some parents choose to utilise the poo knife, which is a knife or spatula dedicated to scraping dirty nappies. Some choose a spray gun, this is a pressurised spray bottle (you can pick them up on Amazon or in garden centres) you pump and can spray the nappies down with. Some lucky people’s shower reaches the toilet so they can rinse with this. I personally choose the sluicing method, removing any boosters so as not to lose them down the toilet, I hold one end of the nappy tightly and flush it in the toilet until all of the poo has gone.


We store our nappies in a dry bucket lined with a mesh bag, for smaller spaces you can also get handy XL wet bags which you can hang from the changing table or on the back of a door. On wash day pop the mesh bag or unzipped wet bag straight in the machine and the nappies will work their own way out - no need for additional touching of dirty nappies!


Check out 'My wash routine' post for a step-by-step breakdown of how I wash my nappies.




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