Can you use reusable nappies as swim nappies?
Yes, you can use some reusable nappies as swim nappies. A reusable nappy wrap makes a very cost effective swim nappy .
Absorbent nappies should NOT be used for swimming with babies as they will soak up water and become a drowning hazard.
Pocket nappies with boosters removed or a wrap on its own will work perfectly as a reusable swimming nappy. A washable nappy PUL shell from a two part nappy system will work the same as a disposable swim nappy.
How do reusable swim nappies work?
Disposable and reusable swim nappies work the same, however once used the reusable nappy is simply washed, dried and used again rather than heading off to landfill.
No swim nappy, disposable or reusable, soaks up urine or they would soak up pool water, they are just for poop containment! Unfortunately it is just a fact that swimming pools have wee in them!
In my 15yrs as a baby swimming teacher I have seen so many swim nappy fails in swimming lessons!
Parents who tried to sneak into swim school pool with baby in a regular nappy as they have forgotten the swim nappy. They quickly learned how dangerous this can be - modern disposable nappies are designed to hold an EXTREME amount of fluids. In moments baby becomes twice the weight and is in real trouble of sinking if not held up. A burst disposable in a swimming pool is a real headache too!
It is important to remove any absorbent parts of a reusable nappy when using as a nappy for swimming.
Disposable swim nappies often fail and poo waterfalls are not uncommon. This leads most pools to require a double barrier system with disposable swim diaper being covered by a reusable neoprene cover.
Reusable nappy wraps are perfect for use as swim nappies due to their snug fit and can be used alone.
They have the added bonus of poppers or velcro openings so no need to pull them down wet legs if they are full of poo! They have elasticated leg rounds and gusset so are perfect to keep everything contained. Plus they dry quickly too!
How to use reusable swim nappies
Reusable swim nappies just need to be popped on and you are ready to go! Washable swim diapers can go under a swimming costume or swimming trunks for older toddlers or worn alone.
They are washed and cared for just like your normal swimwear. Put the nappy in the wash with your normal washload.
Wraps and pocket nappy shells dry fast because they are mostly waterproof PUL. So, you don't need to bring many for a vacation. Just let them dry after swimming in the pool or sea, and they'll be ready to use again.
They take up much less space than a pack of disposable nappies for swimming.
Chlorine can damage PUL over time so use an old reusable nappy rather than your favourite and designate one as your swim nappy. Cloth nappies that have damaged PUL can be repurposed as swim nappies too!
Disposable swim nappies are expensive and sometimes hard to find. By recycling an old reusable nappy you will save money.
Most disposable swim nappies, as long as they are only wet, can be rinsed and reused. They have a waxy coating and water resistant and are only designed to hold in poop! You can rinse them, turn them inside out and dry them. Legend has it that they can also go through the washing machine!
If you enjoyed this we think you would like this blog on when to start using reusable nappies or how to clean reusable nappies
As always, if you're unsure of what you need to make the switch, please do drop the team a line or use the online chat function. The team all use the products themselves and just LOVE to chat pee poo and periods, all day long, nothing is TMI and we all love to overshare based on our own experiences...
About the Author: Kirstin is part of the Customer Experience team at Cheeky Wipes, which since 2008 has been selling the original reusable wipes kit. She is mum to 3 and loves the forest, the sea and the hills!
Along with the rest of our crack team, she spends most days talking about poo, pee and periods and loves a chance to overshare. The business was recognised with a Queens Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development in 2021, celebrating their hard work over the last 13 years.