A Reusable Nappy Week special - Debunking The Myths


Four years after Real Nappy Week was first launched in 2000 by the Women’s Environment Network, Close was born. We’ve had quite a journey since then. Launching our Pop-in nappies in 2007, it’s seen us make the most of the millennium and create some beautiful, built to last products which are sensitively made and impact appropriate to the environment. 

Now called Reusable Nappy Week[1] , this international awareness campaign has gained worldwide support from parents, NGOs, manufacturers and retailers to spread the cloth nappy message. And so to mark our fourteenth celebration of Reusable Nappy Week, we were inspired by a certain millennial movie to come up with this special blog post:

10 myths we hate about cloth nappies...

Myth one: They’re expensive

On average a baby’s nappy will be changed six times a day. Over the course of two years, that’s 4,368 nappy changes. For just £188, our flexible nappy packs are the most economical way to get your cloth journey started and will set you up for both daytime and night-time use. Two packs (20 Pop-in nappies) would be enough to cloth nappy full time, saving families up to £1,000 in comparison to disposables over two and a half years - and even more if you use them with subsequent children! And for an even lower cost way to get started, we recommend checking if your local authority offers reusable nappy incentive vouchers or hiring a kit from your local cloth nappy library to try before you buy.


Myth two: They’re complicated

We pride ourselves on creating inspired, simple to use nappies that are just as convenient and easy to use as a disposable. But we understand that when you first take a look at a birth-to-potty cloth nappy, the number of rise adjusters (poppers) may seem a little daunting. That’s why we’ve created some helpful videos to show you your way around our Pop-in nappies. Plus, we’ve been told our hook and loop fastening nappy wraps are particularly helpful for those parents looking to make the switch from disposables to reusables as they feel very similar to fasten as a disposable nappy.


Myth three: They smell worse

Disposable nappies contain a mix of polymers and chemicals (super absorbers) which retain moisture and hold liquids away from baby’s skin, whilst some are even scented to mask the smell of a nappy’s contents (which we believe can actually make the smell worse!). Our Pop-in nappy soakers and boosters are made from bamboo because it is naturally antibacterial, antifungal and even hypoallergenic. With good care, and regular changing and laundering, your reusable nappies can be used for many years (and with many children!) without ever having to rely on chemicals and perfumes to stop any smells. Our Reusable Nappy Instructions has all you need to know to help keep your Pop-in nappies in tip top condition.


Myth four: They’re more work

We like to say that it’s a trade-off in time when you choose reusables, not ‘more work’. From frequent trips to the shops and regularly putting out the bin, to switching the washing machine on and hanging a few extra loads out to dry, both scenarios are jobs that need to be done as parents should you be using disposables or reusables. However, with cloth nappies you are safe in the knowledge you won’t need to do a midnight supermarket dash because you’ve run out of disposables, or have a bin so heavy you can’t drag it to the curb alone. Some parents have even told us they find preparing cloth nappies therapeutic and a chance to practice mindfulness on an otherwise hectic day.


Myth five: They always leak

The most common reasons for a nappy to leak is because it has reached saturation point or isn’t fitted well and this can happen in both a disposable and a reusable nappy. It is worth bearing in mind that both disposables and reusables are there to absorb urine and contain poo.  (Explosive newborn poo is definitely a test for any nappy!) Our tried and tested leak-proof double gusset offers the best protection against leaky legs, while our soft elasticated waist also supports good containment and should mean you will fare better in a Pop-in nappy should this occur! But please, don't be shy if you have questions around leaks - drop an email to hello@closeparent.com or jump onto our online chat: most leaking issues are normally easily fixable and we'll be happy to help with any problems or queries you might have. 


Myth six: They don’t work at night

The bliss of a baby who sleeps through the night is something no parent will want to interrupt for a nappy change. But going from changing a real nappy every three to four hours to wearing a nappy for up to 12 hours is a big leap. Our night-time nappy boosters (included in our middle boxes) are designed to give the increased absorbency required for that jump without having to add a whole new type of nappy just for nights to your collection. Our boosters are made from a unique bamboo and fleece mix which is seven times more absorbent than cotton and naturally antibacterial; it’s the stuff of sweet dreams.


Myth seven: They’re difficult to put under clothes

Over the past twenty years, as increased awareness for the environmental and health benefits of cloth nappies has grown, and with more parents opting to use them at some point, a boom in children’s clothing retailers has followed suit. There are some fantastic brands on the market now catering specifically for ‘cloth bums’ in sustainably produced fabrics and ethically manufactured environments, whilst high street shops have a range of pant shapes that are ideal for boosted nappies. Keep an eye out for drop-crotch and ‘u-shaped’ inner leg seams for a comfortable fit. (And don’t forget, for baby vests which popper in the crotch, a simple ‘vest extender’ can be your best friend for those night-time nappies.)


Myth eight: They can’t be used outside the home

Choosing a nursery or childcare provider can be an overwhelming experience for new parents, but rest assured, not many nurseries will refuse cloth nappies. A childcare provider may have some requests - like asking for disposable liners or a wet bag instead of a nappy bucket - but they will be keen to work with you, particularly as reusable nappies help businesses reduce their waste costs. The same goes for using cloth nappies on holiday - simply check there are adequate washing facilities where you’re staying before you travel.


Myth nine: Myth nine: They’re old fashioned

Modern cloth nappies are a far cry from washable nappies of the past! Gone are the days when reusables were associated with compromise and seen as ‘alternative’ Modern cloth nappies are so much easier and cleaner to use.  Thanks to new material technology and huge steps forward in design reusables like Pop-in can provide the ultimate in nappy comfort and reliability from birth to potty. Millennial parents are more conscious than ever about the environmental impact of the products ( 49% of those under 24 have avoided a product or service due to its negative environmental impact ) and we only expect the intolerance of single use to grow. Finally, there is the small but totally undeniable fact that they are way cuter than any disposable out there.


Myth ten: They’re not that eco

In the UK, three billion single-use nappies are disposed of every year, representing 2-3% of all household waste. In February 2020, Zero Waste Europe published a report looking at the impact of wet wipes and baby nappies on the environment and laid out core findings on the debate: are reusable nappies better for the environment than disposables? Fundamentally, they concluded the answer is yes, they are. You can reduce your family’s carbon footprint by 40% (even considering the washing) by choosing to reuse full time.  But it doesn’t need to be all or nothing; part time, sometimes, every reusable helps. If you were to simply use one cloth nappy a day, you would still divert 912 reusable nappies from birth to potty. 

But there’s much more that can be done and here at Close we’ve been working hard to further reduce our environmental impact. In 2020, we began changing our laminate to RPET (recycled PET resin) and for our gorgeous Puffin print, we now use our brand new bio laminate which, unlike standard TPU, uses 20-30% renewable plant based ingredients. This helps to conserve precious non-renewable energy sources and reduce greenhouse emissions. We are also proud to support the WWF and other non for profits through our 1% for the Planet membership, giving back 1% of the proceeds of Pop-in nappy sales to protecting the environment. So, we can’t help but ask this Reusable Nappy Week: why dispose when you can Pop-in?


We’d love to see what you’re up to for this year’s #reusablenappyweek so do tag us on Facebook or Twitter, and don’t forget to use the hashtag #closegram on Instagram too. 


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