Diaries Magazine

Cloth Nappies 101: the ABC of Cloth

By Sjay235 @naturalmommainm
Welcome back for the fourth part of my cloth nappy mini series! We've had a brief look at whether cloth might be for you, how to build a stash and how to wash your nappies. Today's post is meant to help you decipher the terms used in cloth nappies.
Cloth nappies 101: the ABC of cloth
When I first started, I was pretty bamboozled about what some of the terms meant, and even though I've used lots of these terms already in the series, you might not know what they mean! So here is simply a list of the most common terms, and what they mean.
Prefold nappy // a flat nappy, usually stitched in to 3 sections, which you fold around a baby and use with a cover
Fitted nappy // a shaped nappy, which usually fastens around baby using Velcro. They are really absorbent, and are used with a wrap
Pocket nappy // an outer waterproof shell with inner liner. In between these layers you "stuff" the absorbent insert
All in one nappy // a nappy which is everything in one place. - an absorbent inner section attached to a waterproof outer
All in two nappy // these are usually an outer waterproof shell in to which you snap the inserts
Hybrid nappy // can be used as a normal cloth nappy or with a disposable insert
Hybrid fitted // a fitted nappy with a 'hidden' layer of PUL of fleece, which means it may be used without a wrap in some cases
Nappy wrap // a waterproof shell which goes over fitted or prefold nappies
Insert // this is the absorbent part of a pocket nappy. Usually made from microfibre, you must have one in a pocket nappy for it to be absorbent. They are rectangular in shape
Booster // these can be used in any type of happy to "boost" the absorbency of that nappy. Bamboo is a popular choice as it's very absorbent. They are rectangular in shape, but usually slightly smaller or thinner than inserts.
Liner // these sit inside a nappy, right beside baby's bum. They can be fleece (or other stay dry material) to keep baby's bum dry in a natural fiber nappy, or disposable to catch solids
Wet bag // a waterproof bag in which you keep dirty nappies
Applix or hook and loop // these are non-brand name versions of Velcro, used to fasten some nappies. A popular choice for nappies which will be used by other people, as it makes a nappy very smile to use
Poppers // used to snap a birth to potty nappy to the correct size, and a popular choice to fasten nappies as they are durable and long lasting
Sized nappies // these are a specific size, such as small, which are made to fit a narrow weight range of baby. Baby's will grow out of these at some point, and a large size will be needed
Birth to potty or "one size fits all" // a nappy which grows with baby and can be used across a very large weight range - generally from a few weeks old until a child is near to potty training
PUL // an abbreviation for polyutherane laminate , which is a waterproof material used on the outside of most pocket nappies and all in ones. Most wraps are also made from PUL
Minkee // a soft fabric which is sometimes used on the outside of nappies
Microfibre // a man made, absorbent fabric. It absorbs quickly but does not hold a huge amount of liquid
Bamboo // also man made, despite its name. It absorbs more slowly than microfibre, but holds a larger amount of liquid
Hemp // a natural fabric which absorbs slowly but holds a large amount of liquid
Cotton // a natural fabric which can hold a large amount of liquid, especially if it is organic
Build up // when washing powder isn't rinsed out of nappies and 'clings' to the fibres, trapping bacteria and ammonia in the fibres too
Strip washing // washing nappies extremely thoroughly to remove all traces of build up

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