Why We Created Our Own Cloth Nappy
Why we created our very own nappy! An Irish brand for Eco babies.
Reusable cloth nappies have countless environmental benefits, but they also have financial benefits too. That fact can be quite hard to swallow at the beginning, because reusable cloth nappies are actually quite expensive! When you can purchase a supermarket own brand disposable nappy for just a few cent, it’s hard to justify how a €28 washable cloth nappy is better value. But remember a cloth nappy can be reused a couple of times a week for years. The same nappy will usually fit your baby from about 1 month of age up to about 3 years of age if it is a One Size nappy. Then also factor in the cost of disposing the disposable nappies (bin charges are always on the increase), and other elements like the need for more nappy rash creams when you use disposable nappies. Despite the cost saving over the years, many reusable cloth nappy prices often vary from €20 to €30 so it is still quite an investment at the start, and often one that will actually put people off.
We wanted to create an excellent quality and absorbent cloth nappy at an affordable price. We have started off our own range with a pocket nappy, as we feel this is the easiest one for a “newbie” to start with, and it is the closest to a disposable nappy in terms of putting it on. Pocket nappies are simply a waterproof nappy cover with (usually) a fleece lining, and there is a pocket where you can place inserts between the waterproof section and the fleece. Most pocket nappies will come with 2 inserts, and it is recommended to use both inserts each time for maximum absorbency. The main problem with pocket nappies is they usually come with microfibre inserts. Microfibre will work well at the start when your baby is small and peeing little and often. But when the volume of wee increases, the microfibre inserts will underperform. There are also environmental concerns about microfibres getting into the waterways, but they are still better than disposable nappies, and that is for a future blog post!
Bamboo is a much more absorbent fabric than microfibre, and bamboo is less harmful than microfibre. It is more expensive to produce though, so bamboo inserts will be more expensive. Some other brands will market their inserts as being bamboo, but often they have a hidden layer of microfibre inside, a layer you wouldn’t know about unless you cut open the insert to inspect. We wanted to create a reliable pocket nappy with bamboo inserts, with no hidden layer of microfibre. Our nappies come with 2 bamboo inserts. Each bamboo insert has 3 layers of bamboo jersey and 1 layer of bamboo terry. So when both inserts are used, this is giving you 8 thirsty layers of bamboo (6 of bamboo jersey and 2 of bamboo terry) The fleece layer is used as a stay dry layer. The polyester fleece doesn’t have any absorbency so the wee essentially flows straight through it or the bamboo layers below, and the fleece stays feeling dry to the touch.
This is a generously sized One Size nappy, so it will start fitting your baby at about 4 to 6 weeks of age, and it should fit your baby until they are about approximately 3 years of age. Most children will have potty trained at this stage. This is a daytime nappy. The whole nappy would need to be washed after each use.
When washing, simply remove the solids ( you can use a disposable liner to do this, or go without) and place it in a wetbag until you are ready to wash it.
When washing time comes, pull out the inserts and place it all in the washing machine.
Do a cold rinse cycle first with no detergent.
Do a regular wash (40 or 60 degrees) with regular detergent. You can use bio or non bio.
Do not use fabric softener.
Line drying is preferred. You can tumble dry, but shrinkage of inserts may occur. They will still be absorbent even if they shrink.
Where was our nappy manufactured? We looked into different options for the manufacture of our nappy. Our primary goal was to create an affordable nappy made up of absorbent bamboo fabric. Ireland would have been the most preferable location for manufacture, but unfortunately manufacturing costs in Ireland would have driven up the price of this nappy to yet another €30 nappy (or more!). I feel that these sort prices of really turn many people off making the decision to switch to cloth. Producing the nappy in other parts of Europe really wasn’t going to bring the cost of the nappy down either. Bamboo is grown in China, and the bamboo fabrics are produced in China. To have these nappies produced in Europe we would have to ship the bamboo fabric from China to the manufacturers in Europe, and then ship the finished product onwards to us here in Ireland. We decided to select a specialist cloth nappy manufacturer in China that produces cloth nappies responsibly and have all the required materials already onsite. It is the same factory that produces many already well known and well loved British brands and some really premium American brands, so I was confident that they would be able to follow my design with their already existing skills. Their sewers are already very experienced in the creation of a comfortable and absorbent cloth nappy. The shipping is then limited to just one journey from China to us here in Ireland, rather than via a factory in Europe. We really hope our decision to create this nappy will help more parents in Ireland make that leap into cloth nappies.
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