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Getting to know your reusable nappy

Posted on: May 4, 2023 by
Katharine Brennan.
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Getting to know your reusable nappy

Whether you choose an All-In-One nappy, a pocket nappy, a snap and wipe nappy, a prefold, snappy or velcro fasteners, the basic modern cloth nappy has three main parts to it.


1. PUL/Plastic Shell or Nappy cover

This is the “pretty” part of the nappy and the part that most people obsess with. Why? Because its the only part that shows. This is a water-proof cover which covers the absorbent material. It is made from a soft polyurethane material (mostly). Often the most fun part of choosing your nappies is the gorgeous designs these covers come in across all brands. The cover usually consists of multiple snaps along the front of the nappy. These allow the nappy to cover a range of sizes (“one size fits most”) by adjusting to your tots leg and tummy size and really allow a perfect personalised fit. Then you can also get hybrids which include the snaps for better fit, but a velcro at the top (like a disposable). But basically, this is your pretty cover, keeping everything together (much like a parent).

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2. Inserts/Absorbent Layers

This is where we see the most variances. There are a few basic styles including a “pocket” nappy, snap nappy, and a prefold. But basically these are the “goods” in your modern cloth nappy acting as the absorbent layer between your tot and the cover.

  • The pocket nappy – Think of a large “pad” type insert which simply inserted into an envelope liner within the cover. These can sometimes be the easiest to prepare and clean. Plus there are often options to “boost” the pocket depending on your tots needs. Brands like Baby Bee-Hinds and EcoNaps do these well.

  • The Snap nappy – My favourite, this style has two press-studs on the “pad” insert which you just snap into place. Brands like GroVia and Baby Bare do these really well.

  • The pre-fold – similar to the snap nappy, the biggest difference here is the insert. Its made from folded cloth, which once tri-folded forms a thick liner. These can be great over winter as they dry really quickly, we recommend brands like Peekaboo and Seedlings Baby.

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The Pocket nappy


3. Boosters and Liners

So these aren’t necessarily always part of your nappies, but they can be an important part of the modern cloth nappy. Some brands (Designer Bums, Alcmena) have an additional absorbency layer or liner which you can add known as a booster, doing just that, “boosting” the absorbency of your nappy. These are especially great over a nap, or if you’re like me and you have a heavy wetter.


Additionally, you can add liners to your mix. In our trial kit we supply two types, disposable bamboo liners and reusable micro fleece liners. These are just thin layers which you can put between your tot and the cloth, I usually use them if we are due for a large poop as they can make it easy to grab and flick into the toilet, but they are definitely not necessary.


Still not sure where to start? Our One Size Fits Most package comes with a variety of options so you can find the ones you love.

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