Should I use nappy liners? Fleece or disposable?
Nappy liners for cloth, or reusable, nappies are an optional extra when using cloth nappies. In this post we will tell you what they are, what they can do for you, and why they are optional. We will also tell you the pro’s and cons of each type of liner. By the end of this blog post you will be able to decide whether you would like to use liners in your reusable nappies.
What are nappy liners?
Liners are a removable, stay-dry layer that we add to cloth nappies. They fall into two categories. Disposable liners, sometimes labelled ‘flushable’ but please note they are not and Fleece liners. Disposable liners are a throwaway product often made of bamboo or wood pulp. Fleece liners are made of polyester fleece material and are washable and reusable.
What is the point of using a liner in a cloth nappy?
Liners offer two main benefits. The first is that it provides a stay-dry layer against the skin. The wee goes through into the absorbent part of the nappy and keeps the skin feeling dry. The second benefit is that when the baby has poo’d, the liner is easily removable from the nappy and the poo can be put down the toilet more easily. It is easier to hold a liner over the toilet than it is to handle a whole nappy, especially when that nappy is a flat nappy for example. It can be quite frustrating when baby seems to wait for a clean nappy before having a poo. If the nappy is otherwise clean and fresh you might, on the odd occasion, get away with just swapping the liner and wiping baby down in the usual way. It might sound small fry now but it’s the small things that we really appreciate when it comes down to it!
Why are nappy liners optional then?
Nappy liners are an optional extra for a few reasons. First, some nappies already offer a stay-dry layer. Most Pocket Nappies, All-in-Ones and some All-in-Twos are already fleece lined, or suede cloth lined. The means that you don’t need to put an extra stay-dry layer into the nappy. That said, if you value the ability to remove the liner to dispose of the poo then you might still like to use them. Further, even without a stay dry layer against the skin, you still don’t have to use a liner. If you choose not to, we would suggest you change baby slightly more often to reduce the length of time there is wee on the skin but you will be able to judge that for yourself.
Fleece or disposable nappy liners?
Fleece liners go into the nappy wash and can be used over and over again, just like the cloth nappies. They wash well, can take fairly vigorous washing and if they need replacing at any point they cost very little. They are no extra work and solid poo rolls off them easily. Disposable liners on the other hand might appeal, or feel like a less messy option and could be the happy medium between disposable nappies and cloth nappies. If disposable liners are the one thing that mean you feel like you can use cloth nappies then go for it. There will still be far far less waste produced than if disposable nappies are used, please just don’t flush them.
Can I make my own fleece liners?
They are really simple to make so yes, you can make your own if you so wish. All you need is a fleece blanket and a pair of scissors. Fleece doesn’t fray so you don’t need to do any sewing at all. If you don’t want to go to the trouble of cutting up your own, we do have them available to buy here.
Can baby poo go in the washing machine?
As a side note, it might of interest to learn that pre-weaning poo is water soluble and can therefore be put straight into the washing machine, in theory. As a result, you might choose not to use liners until you begin weaning. It really is a matter of choice. For what it’s worth, we used liners from very early on and would do so again. We had firm poo due to reflux medication so no need to put it in the washing machine, water soluble or not. Other baby’s just do a series of regular wet poos that are less easily removable and as such, chucking it all in the machine is quite possibly the only option remaining!
To use nappy liners or not?
So, you’ll see, whilst there are a few good reasons to use liners but they are not enough to make them an absolute must have. It’s perfectly ok to leave them out. Similarly, there are good reasons to choose reusable liners over disposable liners and vice versa but there is a choice, you have options. Make the decision that you feel the most comfortable with and that you think will work the best for you and your baby. Remember, no decision is final.
* If something doesn’t break down in water as quickly as toilet roll does it is likely it will take a long time to break down in the sewerage system and in the meantime contribute to blockages. We don’t deem any products like this flushable. If you want to find out for yourself, you could put one through the washing machine. If it survives, it really isn’t suitable to be flushed. If you choose to put one in the washing machine you are doing so at your own risk.
If you'd like to learn more, or hear Rebecca chatter about the subject you can view our YouTube video here