Q&A Chat With Modern Cloth Nappy Experts

Have you ever thought about using Modern Cloth Nappies (MCN) but not sure if it will work for you? Have you bought some MCNs and have questions about care or use?

Using MCNs is a great way to save money, save the planet and stay chemical free. On the 27 February 2013 we will have two MCN experts from Extremely Nappies to answer all your questions about modern cloth nappies.

Simply join the chat on this post at 8:30pm (AEST) on the 27 February 2013  and Coralie & Adam from Extremely Nappies will be online to answer all your questions.

Chat Transcript

Thank you to all that joined us! It was a great discussion.

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 7:52 pm
Thank you for joining us! The Q&A session will start at 8:30pm.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:20 pm
Alexis is stirring. I'll feed him now and hopefully be back before 8.30, but Adam is here for everyone.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:23 pm
I am.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:30 pm
Okay, 8:30, guess I'm on as Coralie's still with bugalugs.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:30 pm
I'm back. Perfect timing.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:31 pm
Welcome, everyone! I hope you all brought some friends.

SarahC
February 27, 2013 - 8:31 pm
Nights with MCNs any tips?

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:32 pm
We've been having this issue ourselves, lately. Seems we have a baby with a bottomless bladder.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:33 pm
We've ended up using three layers inside a pocket nappy, then a waterproof layer on the outside of that.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:33 pm
Layers. Oh so many layers. Coralie, do we have a picture of how fat Alexis' nappy is at nights?

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:33 pm
No picture, sadly. He's usually asleep when we put it on last thing at night.

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 8:33 pm
Do you mind explaining what a pocket is?

SarahC
February 27, 2013 - 8:33 pm
i have been doubling up massive night bums are adorable!

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:34 pm
If you use the layer upon layer upon layer method and yo use sized nappies, you may need to go up a size or two to fit it all in.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:35 pm
Pocket nappies are ones that basically have a pocket: there's a space on the inside of the nappy into which you stuff absorbent material.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:36 pm
Okay, well you don't really 'stuff' it in. You place it carefully so it's all nice and flat and neat, but you get the idea. You can use inserts made of almost any absorbent material, but microfibre and bamboo are two of the best.

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:36 pm
What washing powder/procedure do you recommend?

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:37 pm
For strong wee

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:38 pm
If you use ordinary washing powder from the supermarket, make sure it doesn't contain optical brighteners. That can cause a build-up on the nappies and then they'll start to repel the urine instead of allow it to be absorbed.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:38 pm
For strong wee, we use a few drops of tea tree oil in the wash.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:38 pm
The main consideration is to use something without optical brighteners.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:39 pm
For strong wee, you'll need something with enzymes as that'll attack the protein that's causing the smell.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:39 pm
Also, never use fabric softener, as it also coats the nappies. A small splash on vinegar will do the same job as fabric softener.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:40 pm
Making sure they hang outside in a well-aired place to dry will also help.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:40 pm
In terms of what's on the market ATM, Trimat Advanced and Biozet Attack Ecosmart are two products that don't have optical brighteners and have enzymes in them.

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:41 pm
Great will give the lavender a shot
I have tried aware, home made rng and currently using earths choice and always seem to get a smell even after sun, plenty of rinses.

Jess
February 27, 2013 - 8:42 pm
I am about to have a baby and looking at cloth nappies. Is there anything I should be looking for when deciding on a brand?

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:42 pm
earth Choice products doesn't have brighteners but also doesn't have enzymes.

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:42 pm
Oh that's great, will try one of those detergents next time I buy some
thanks!

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:43 pm
We tried eucalyptus oil, but found better success with the tea tree. I'd be interested to hear how the lavender goes.

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:43 pm
Didn't know about the enzymes

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:44 pm
It depends on how strong the wee is, we've had good results with baking powder in the wash, it neutralises the acid in wee and helps to remove it.

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:44 pm
Oh I meant tea tree, oops

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:44 pm
There are quite a few types to try, Jess, so the best thing to to go somewhere where you can have a play with them. Do you have any friends already using MCNs?

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:45 pm
Is it safe to use baking soda every wash?

Jess
February 27, 2013 - 8:46 pm
No, unfortunately not. I have googled a bit but there is so much information!

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:46 pm
If you don't, Jess, then have a think about what you'll find easiest or most practical to use. For instance, the pocket nappies can be pre-stuffed before use, straight out off the line, so that makes them ready in an instant when you need them.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:47 pm
Yeah, it's true, Jess. There's so much info out there and it can be a bit confusing.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:48 pm
A great way to see what works best for you (and that may change as baby gets older/bigger) is to buy just a couple of a few different styles (look for the specials, there are always a few around), and try them out. You'll get an idea for what you like best.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:49 pm
@Jamie It is. We use about a heaped spoon full in every wash.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:50 pm
Oh, in terms of other washing procedures, dry paling is best with MCNs, as leaving PUL to soak increases the risk of delamination which can then unwaterproof the nappies.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:50 pm
All-in-one nappies (AIO) are very convenient in the way that you don't have to have any separate parts to them. You just wash them, let them dry, put them away and they're ready for use. That's the advantage. The main disadvantage with AIOs is that they take longer to dry as you can't separate the parts, so you may need a bigger stash of them to take you through the perhaps three days for dry

Jamie
February 27, 2013 - 8:50 pm
Fantastic, I've used it in strip washes but wasnt sure about ongoing use. Thanks so much for your help!

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:52 pm
Our pleasure Jamie.

Jess
February 27, 2013 - 8:53 pm
Thank you

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:53 pm
Jamie, I have read somewhere that it can be a bit damaging using it all the time, but I read that only in one place. Everywhere else says all the time is fine. Adam says he uses bicarb in every wash, but then I haven't had the scissors handy to open the new packet of it and haven't been using it.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:54 pm
But I always use the tea tree oil. I try not to put the oil directly onto the nappies, though. It's unlikely to hurt them, but I figure better to be safe than sorry.

Guest_448jo
February 27, 2013 - 8:54 pm
can you stick them in the dryer? sorry khloe keeps waking up so i havent raed through all the comments

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:55 pm
You can use the dryer, but try to limit its use, and make sure it's on _low_ heat, otherwise it can damage the PUL.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:56 pm
PUL is the waterproof layer of most MCNs. It stands for polyurethane laminate.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:56 pm
Only on low Jo, and not for too long. Drying them on high will delaminate/damage the PUL (polyurethane laminated).

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 8:57 pm
When it's nice and wet outside we have a portable line in the laundry, that way we try to dry everything on the line for as long as possible and only use the dryer when absolutely needed.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:58 pm
Pocket nappies, or All-in-two nappies (AI2) are good for wet weather, because you can leave the shells to dry inside on a portable clothes airer, and put the inserts in the dryer. Most inserts won't be damaged by using the dryer.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:59 pm
I could suggest that wet weather is the reason MCN users often have a huge stash of nappies, but it's more likely because they just like the gorgeous patterns.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 8:59 pm
But having a big stash does solve the problem of things taking longer to dry in wet weather.
Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 9:03 pm
If you have he budget or the space for a portable clothes airer, they're also handy because MCNs can take up quite a bit of space on the line alongside your usual washing.

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 9:04 pm
One from the moderator! I use a combination of cloth and disposable but I don't think I have got the cloth right yet. When bub lies on her side the cloth nappies leak. Is there a trick to placement of the inserts?

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:05 pm
*skin

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:05 pm
You need something that soaks fast right next to the sxin.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 9:05 pm
We've found this as well. Alexis is a side-sleeper, and sometimes, the pee just manages to find the path of least resistance and goes straight out the side! We have a waterproof mat on his sleeping area to catch those leaks.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 9:06 pm
Microfibre is best closest to the skin (inside the nappy, of course, not against bub's skin) as it absorbs fast.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:06 pm
Microfibre absorbs a lot of liquid quickly, but it can also release liquid through compression.

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 9:06 pm
I think that is the chat. Thank you for all your input! This was great!

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:07 pm
So at night there needs to be something else along with the microfibre to soak what the microfibre catches.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 9:07 pm
It could also be that the inserts haven't reached full absorbency yet. Sometimes they take a while to reach maximum absorbency.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:08 pm
My pleasure Lauren.

Coralie
February 27, 2013 - 9:08 pm
I'll stay in and keep checking in as some others may stop in late.

Kristy
February 27, 2013 - 9:27 pm
Thank you for having such a great Q&A night, we are HUGE fans of the cloth nappies, and have been using them for many years now

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:28 pm
Our pleasure Kristy.

Kristy
February 27, 2013 - 9:29 pm
Is there anyone here tonight that already uses them also? WHat brand do you use?

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 9:31 pm
Hi Kristy, I think a few have already left the chat, unfortunately!

Lauren [Moderator]
February 27, 2013 - 9:33 pm
I have Cushie Tushie and soon to own some Extremely Nappies. What do you use?

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:34 pm
We use them extensively, we use our own brand of course Extremely Nappies, along with Cushie Tushies, Bright Bots, Eeezy Peazys (may need to check on spelling on that one), Pea Pods, and uhm, one or two others that I can't recall the name of.

Kristy
February 27, 2013 - 9:35 pm
We are HUGE fans of baby beehinds, to be honest they are the only brand we have use as I am too scared to try any others because we know they work

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:37 pm
They look cute, lots of options there.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:39 pm
Hello Guests.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:40 pm
Hello Karyn.

Adam
February 27, 2013 - 9:52 pm
Which of the Baby Beehinds do you use Kristy?

Kristy
February 27, 2013 - 10:00 pm
We use the all in ones as well as the bamboo OSFA with the Pul covers.

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