That is the question I often receive from preggie mommies!
With my first born I didn’t feel very confident about cloth as lots of other moms (my own included!) were quite disparaging about cloth period. I also didn’t’ really understand the savings aspect or realize how real sposie-poo-splosions were or how often I would be changing! So I decided not to hassle until he could comfortably fit into One Size Fits Most. He fortunately reached 5 kilograms around 3 months so we were off to an early start! But boy oh boy! I actually really regret not starting cloth nappies from the first week. Cloth was SO much easier than I anticipated. It is completely different, don’t get me wrong, but totally not what I was expecting and so worth it.
I am now expecting little Grew number two and I must say, I am so excited to start with cloth as soon as I can! I feel so much more confident as a “cloth-mom” this time around and also really understand the function of various types and brands, which has been really helpful. When pursuing new born cloth, I also highly recommend buying the majority of your stash 2nd hand. It saves SO much money and they are generally in great nick as they are used for a much shorter period of time. Here is a break-down of what I have purchased, the cost and the savings for baba no2. The aim is to have 36 nappies and 6-8 covers so I only have to wash every 2nd day. So far I have purchased a mix of things, 2nd hand and new as well as various brands and types. The South African Cloth Nappy Users website has great guides for types of newborn cloth to choose, from old-school flats to super modern All-in-ones and Snap-in-ones!
20 Kanini Hemp snapless fitteds with boosters, fleece liners and 3 fleece covers
R2000 for the lot (can you read bargain?)
2 Blueberry PUL covers
R100 for both
10 cotton fleece flats
R70ea R700 total
1 Pokkelokkie Cotton fleece fitted
1 TomFips fitted
1 Baby Beehinds PUL cover
2 TomFips Fleece covers
As you can see from the above I have purchased a mix of things and for those on a budget you could totally get away with less. The graphic below is from the South African Cloth Nappy Users and is a great way to show you just how much I saved:
With my stash I have saved about R1200 in cash – not to mention what I will save in wipes (cloth wipes I made from receivers cost me R60). When I resell (at least 50-70% resale value) this stash I will easily recur R1500-R2100 of my value totalling a savings of approximately R3000 – therefore essentially costing me R190 to diaper my new born!
Worth it? I would say a big giant yes-splosion!!!
And we haven’t even talked landfills today!
Lots of fluffly love,
Did you cloth nappy a new born? Or are you in the midsts? Please leave me a comment/suggestion/a piece of advice below! I'd love to have first-hand knowledge from my awesome partners in crime out there! ;)
Is it ever too late to start with cloth? The average cost of disposable diapers per child (0-3) is around R20,000. Your cloth nappy set (between 15-20 nappies) will cost between R2000-R3000, thus saving you R17,000-R18,000. Not to mention if you use cloth for more than one child! Then your savings is doubled! So even if you start using cloth when your baby is 12 months old you will still save between R8,000-R10,000! You do the math!
What is the cheapest option to go for? If your budget is a problem don’t stress! You can easily purchase a set of cloth nappies for less. You can do this by purchasing second-hand cloth nappies (follow the page South African Cloth Diaper Buy/Sell/Trade on Facebook) or purchase about 12-15 pocket nappies and 12-15 receiving blankets to use as inserts. Pockets are super affordable even for the smallest budget and very effective.
What if I can only hand-wash? Wash routines are a really important part of cloth diapering but hand-washing isn’t an issue! You may just need to buy simpler options so that they can dry faster and wash easier. Pockets and receivers are a great way to go if you are washing by hand! All you need is a bucket and a plunger.
How many nappies will I need? This answer depends on how often you would like to wash your nappies. New-borns should be changed every 1-2 hours and older babies every 2-3 hours, no matter what kind of diaper they wear. If you wash every day, you will need at least 5-10 nappies per day (depending on the baby’s age). So remember, you would need a dry set while your other nappies are on the line. Therefore, we always recommend 15-20 nappies as sufficient for a full stash.
Are those really expensive nappies worth it? Worth it? Yes! Necessary? No. Just remember that when it comes to any product ‘you get what you pay for’. The same is true in the world of cloth. The Chinese imports may be cheap but so is the quality and durability. We always recommend a good variety stash so that you can see the difference for yourself!
Do cloth nappies smell? They shouldn’t but they can. Having a good wash routine and storage system is vital for the life of your cloth nappies. A well ventilated basket and room are key, as well as a solid wash routine combining all 4 important elements for a wash (detergent amount + wash length + water temp + load capacity).
Is cloth really water-wise? The manufacturing and use of disposable diapers amounts to 2.3 times more water wasted than cloth. However, if you live in a drought prone area we know that can feel less applicable when you are using precious local resources. Even so, there are several ways to reduce your water use, such as rinsing in leftover bath/shower water and using liners.
What other burning questions can we help you with?! Leave a comment below:
So much fluffy love,
Wow! What a lot has happened in my first year as the proud little owner of this fun Cloth Nappy company nestled in the heart of Port Elizabeth!
Many new products, from lovely work-at-home mamas, have frequented our shelves this past year and you lovely customers and followers have been absolute stars at supporting Smart Bums and our extended group of suppliers! I have met such fabulous people through this little business - people who share the same love of the environment, their babes and all things natural and sustainable! It is such a beautiful community.
Smart Bums also came into my ownership when I was in some of the darkest days of a difficult medical diagnosis of my beautiful son - who is still undergoing treatment, but doing so well. This little business gave me something truly bright and encouraging to focus my creative energy on when I needed it most. So when I say thank you, it is for much more than the profits I've made, but for the sheer love, warmth and creativity that the cloth nappy community have shared and extended to me and my little family!
So from an exceptionally full and grateful heart I would like to say THANK YOU for making my first year as a small business owner an amazing experience and my time as a stay at home mom to my precious boy absolutely possible and priceless.
To many more smart bums and mums in 2019 :)