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Cloth or Disposable Nappies?

Congratulations! The baby is on the way, you have all the furniture, car seat, pram, enough clothes to last until they are 5, but have you thought about nappies? Who knew it was even a decision to make?
It’s becoming trendier to use MCN (Modern Cloth Nappies) as opposed to the disposable kind and they have come a long way in the last few years. But how good are they, and which one do you use? Are they really any better than disposable nappies? Here are a few positives and negatives of both types.

cloth or disposable nappies

Photo Credit: Jen Stokes

The Cloth Nappies

The positives of cloth nappies:

• The biggest yay for them is they are better for the environment. They aren’t going to landfill. Cloth nappies tend to be made with environmentally friendly materials.
• Another benefit is they may reduce/prevent nappy rash. The cotton helps to keep baby’s bottom dry so there is less moisture to cause red bums. They are normally made out of cotton or bamboo and that’s nicer on the skin.
• The next best thing (I think) is they look super cute. A lot of brands these days are making them in lovely bright colours and adorable designs. There are also many different kinds to choose from: all in ones, pre-folds, Velcro closures, press studs…
• You can get a great deal online for pre-loved ones or purchase them new at the baby expos for a reduced cost. You can also sell them on when the baby has grown out of them (if another baby isn’t on the way…)
• Some say it helps with toilet training as the baby can feel the nappy is wet faster than the disposable.

The negatives of cloth nappies:

• It may be a big start up cost if you choose to buy new. If you do buy new, what’s to say you like that one, or they don’t work for you?
• You need a lot. Cloth nappies tend to get wet faster, so require more changes. It also adds to your washing load, and we all know the amount of washing children make.
• They can be fiddley at first, and can take time to get used too.
• Then there’s the bucket with dirty nappies in it. Depending on how often you wash, you need a place to put it and to dry them. This might be hard in an apartment/unit, but not impossible.
• It’s harder to travel with cloth nappies. You need buckets and wet bags. What if you go somewhere without laundry facilities?
• You need to make sure they are cleaned and dried correctly or they aren’t as sanitary as the disposable nappy.

Disposable Nappies

Photo Credit: Jen Stokes

Disposable nappies

The positives of disposable nappies:

• The convenience of this nappy is probably the biggest thing about them. They are easy to use (even dad’s can use them!)
• They are very absorbent and last longer than the cloth nappy.
• There are so many brands so if one doesn’t fit, then you can easily use another brand the same day, you don’t have to wait for postage. They are more readily available. Every supermarket and most department stores sell them.
• They are cheap.
• Disposables are easy to travel with. There is no need to take buckets and wet bags. You can pack them easier as they are smaller than the cloth nappy. There is no need to wash, you can easily and quickly “dispose” of them.
• You can get free samples from various websites. The company always wants you to use their brand so they are willing to send you one free of charge. This is a great way to see if they fit and work for you.
• The sanitary of them is said to be better than the cloth nappies.

The negatives of disposable nappies:

• They are not environmentally friendly. There are many that say it can take upto 500 years to biodegrade, which means all nappies ever produced are still out there.
• Because they hold so much, the wetness may cause nappy rash.
• It may end up costing you more in the long term than the cloth nappy as you will use more over the years.

So whichever you choose, MCN or disposables or a mixture of both, do a bit of research and decide on what’s best for you and best for your baby.
Sometimes it’s trial and error and neither way is wrong. Happy nappy-ing!!!

By Jen Stokes – Another mummy-blogger @ justicemum

Jen Stikes - Another Mummy Blogger @ Justice Mum

Being a stay at home mum to 2 beautiful, wonderful and extremely energetic boys, Marshal, 3 and Maverick, 1 it always gives me some great stories to write about. Becoming a mum was the best thing I have ever done and I love that through writing I can express my feelings and experiences (good and bad) to other mums.
You can find my blog at http://justicemum.wordpress.com

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