Using Reusable Nappies - The Ultimate Guide

1 Comment6 May 2021  |  Admin

Using reusable nappies is becoming more and more popular, however, we do get many questions from parents who are not sure how to begin. We have put together this ultimate guide which answers many frequently asked questions about using reusable nappies:


How Do Reusable Nappies Work?

Although they can appear confusing, reusable nappies work very simply.  All reusable nappies are formed of 3 layers:

  • stay dry liner against the skin
  • absorbent layers to hold urine
  • waterproof layer to prevent leaks

Do cloth nappies need liners?

Yes, cloth nappies need liners. It’s really important to make sure you use a liner in your nappy, whether it is reusable or disposable. This way you can get as much of the poo off as possible before putting the nappy in the washing machine. 

It also acts as a stay dry layer, protecting your baby's skin.  It can be a separate fleece liner or it can be part of the nappy itself.  The purpose is to wick away moisture and keep your baby dry. 

What type of reusable nappy is best?

The best type of reusable nappy is one which is absorbent but not bulky. Cheeky reusable nappies are made from 80% bamboo and 20% pico cotton terry. They are super absorbent, however due to separate boosters they are also quick drying. The main benefit of this is that you can build absorbency without bulk based on your baby.  

How do you know when a cloth nappy is wet?

It can be quite tricky to tell when a cloth nappy is wet, without touching it or sniffing it because generally they are white in colour which doesn't show wetness!  However Cheeky Doodoo nappies are grey in colour which means it's easy to tell when your baby needs changing.

Reusable Liner: Tip the solids into the toilet and either rinse the liner in the flush of the toilet or have something ready to scrape any remaining poo off. 

Disposable Liner: Tip the poo into the toilet and then bin the liner. DO NOT flush the liner down the toilet. 

How Many Reusable Nappies Do I Need?

It's difficult to say how many reusable nappies you will need as it depends on your baby and how often they go to the toilet. It also really depends on how often you'll be washing your cloth nappies. If you're washing daily, 10 reusable nappies should be sufficient.  If you're washing every other day or less frequently, you'll need more like 20 cloth nappies.

The good news is that it has been proven that using reusable nappies and liners is going to save you so much money compared to using normal ones. Check out this blog we wrote on costs of disposable nappies vs reusable nappies.


How to Wash Reusable Nappies?

This is definitely the question we get asked most, and we have a fantastic blogpost here all about how to clean reusable nappies. It can be hard to get your head around when you first start, but after a couple of times it will become a normal routine. We do recommend pre washing your nappies before use when you have just bought them. Simply run a full cycle with a little detergent twice before using and it will enable your nappies to become more absorbent. Let’s take you through a quick step by step on how to wash reusable nappies. 


  1. Preparation: Make sure the liners are completely separated from the nappy, and velcro tabs are secured down so they don’t stick to any other washing. 

  2. Pre wash: Pop the nappies in for a quick wash, you don’t need to use detergent. It’s also important to make sure you don’t fill your washing machine with other clothes at this stage. 

  3. Main wash: Run the longest cycle for your washing machine with the temperature between 40 and 60 degrees. Use the right amount of detergent for your load. 


When it comes to the drying stage, we recommend hanging them out on the washing line to dry, if you don’t have a washing line outside, a rack or airer is fine. DO NOT USE THE TUMBLE DRYER as this can shorten the life of your nappies. 


That brings us to the end of our blog, we really hope the above has given you an insight into using reusable nappies. You can browse our full range of nappies here. Of course if you do have any other questions you can get in touch and a member of our team will be happy to help. 

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