Reusable Nappies: Why I Love Milovia and Pop Ins

Hello all! Happy RNW!

My name is Emily, I’m a blogger and WAHM and I live in North Wales with my two little boys, Jacob (4) and Nicolas (2). Living a more natural and greener life has been very important to me since before my children were born. Reducing waste and using products that are kinder to mine and my children’s health, as well as looking after our environment has always been very important to me. I try wherever possible to be conscious of the things we use in our everyday lives, and the waste they produce; so naturally I love cloth nappies and use them religiously.

We’ve been using cloth for almost four years now; it’s a journey that I’ve loved every minute of. My eldest son Jacob who is almost 4 was in cloth for the first three years of his life, starting at about 5 months. Using cloth nappies had always been something I wanted to try when I was pregnant with Jacob, but like a lot of first timers I was nervous about how to get started. I remember when I was almost full term and I kept looking online at cloth nappy starter packs, my mum was so keen to get me using cloth too, as she knew how important living a greener life was to me. I remember the same questions kept popping into my head: “how do I get started? How many nappies do I need? How do I know what size to get?” and of course thebiggie: “how the heck do I clean these things?!”

All of these questions were answered one afternoon at my local sling meet when a friend brought a big bag of her old cloth stash for me. I remember we sat outside and she explained everything to me, all the dos and don’ts, how to wash them, and the various brands that worked best for her. That afternoon I went home and put my first cloth nappy on Jacob, and from that moment on I was hooked!

When Nicolas, my youngest arrived; I used cloth from the get go. He was a tiny little thing when he was born, and so I had to get a load of new born nappies in because BTP (birth to potty) were just too big. So here’s the first tip I have for those of you thinking of using cloth for the first time:

Tip 1: Birth to potty does not always ring true with every baby; all btp nappies have a size guide from when they can be used, so don’t just assume that because they are named birth to potty that they will work from birth, as a lot of birth to potty nappies are too big for new borns and you may get a few leaks (just remember new born poo, that’s all I’m saying 😉 )

I had many reason for wanting to use cloth, first and foremost their green credentials really appealed to me, I loved that I wouldn’t be contributing to the already heaping landfills that leech poisons and waste back into the ground, harming our beautiful wildlife. But there were other reasons too:

  • Cost: Yes, ok; I know that the initial set up can be fairly pricey, but just think: once you got your starter you’re all set to go and won’t have to spend a fortune on disposables!

Also, don’t forget that some local councils (especially in parts of North Wales) offer financial help to new mums who want to buy cloth nappies. There are also many for sale groups on Facebook that sell used nappies for a fraction of the retail price of new nappies. 

  • Better for your baby’s health: There are so many chemicals, perfumes, plastics, and other nasties that go into a disposable nappy to make it as absorbent as it is; it takes a lot of questionable ingredients to make them stay dry for 12h+. Just think about all of those nasty chemicals being pressed up against your baby’s skin day in, day out. Can’t be good.
  • They’re SO PRETTY! Ok, I know this isn’t the most important point, but it’s still pretty important, with all of the amazing prints and colours out there, how can it not be? Seriously though- the aesthetics of cloth nappies have been a game changer in my experience- friends of mine have seen my boy’s nappies and have wanted to start using cloth just because they loved how pretty they were.
  • Resale value: Basically, with cloth nappies, you get a lot back from what you put in. If you spend £20 on a new nappy, providing you take reasonable care of it, you could get up to 50% back when you resell it. Used cloth nappies are a big thing! Many of the nappies I own have been bought second hand; and I’ve sold a heck of a lot of my stash when things have been tight. So although you may feel like you’re spending a lot at the time, just remember- you can sell them on when you’re done and make some pennies ☺
  • They last: Cloth nappies (providing they’re looked after) can last through countless children. The nappies I have bought new have lasted 4 years and two children, and I won’t hesitate to use them again if I ever have any more children. The cloth nappies that I bought second-hand have no doubt gone through several children, as well as mine; and are still going strong! 
  • Choice: There is so much choice out there when it comes to brands, sizes and styles. You can have wraps, all in ones, different sizes (s, m, l), birth to potty, swim nappies, prefolds, pocket, wraps and so on. There’s loads of choice out there and you’ll find in time what kind of nappy you want to go for and what works for you. Some nappies may work for othersbut not for you, it’s all about experimentation. I have a friend who used terry nappies with all three of hers and she loved them, but I’ve tried them and didn’t like them. It really does vary from person to person ☺

Which brings me to tip 2: It can take a while to find the style and brand that is right for you, don’t be deterred if you find certain brands just aren’t working for you. It took me quite a while (and several brands) to find what really worked for my boys. There will no doubt be leaks along the way, which can sometimes put you off and make you want to scrap the whole idea completely (been there);  but you’ll find the right nappy for you and your smalls and then you’ll wonder how you ever did without cloth!

As I said, it took me a while to find what nappy worked for my boys, I tried several before I found the right ones that fit them well and didn’t leak. Both my boys are heavy wetters, so I did for a while struggle to find a brand that was absorbent enough to do the job. After trying a couple of other brands and found they didn’t work, I came to my two absolute favourite brands: Close Pop in, and Milovia.

Not only are these brands both utterly beautiful, and have the most stunning designs, but they’re super absorbent, have an excellent fit,  and are easy to wash.

What I love about the Milovia nappies is that they have the most amazingly absorbent inserts. Their microfiber inserts are the most absorbent I’ve ever used, and what I love about them is that they stay soft with every wash, they don’t go stiff or rough like some others do. You can buy Milovia wraps or pocket nappies, and they also come in newborn sizes. They are so easy to wash and they dry very fast compared to a lot of others. Also, check out their nappy bags. Seriously, they’re amazing…you’ll want them all.

Close pop ins are a tried and tested favourite of mine, and was one of the first nappies I bought from Babi Pur. I saw the robot print on the shelf and had to have it- from that day on it was love.Since then Close have brought out so many beautiful prints, they just seem to be getting more beautiful with every new release! It’s hard to choose a favourite style, but it would probably be the Tiger print with bamboo inserts, and the stripe Elephant nappy. But the camper van and Dewi prints are pretty fab too!

Pop in nappies are super easy to use, they start as an outer shell which you snap your inserts into. Taking them out to wash is super easy and they dry pretty fast too, the outer case especially. You can also buy extra inserts to put into your nappies for at night etc, and these work amazing! I was amazed that we didn’t get a leak over night!

Pop ins come in either Velcro strips or poppers. Personally I prefer the Velcro as it’s easy to close them quickly when you have a wriggly two year old that doesn’t want his nappy changed. Which brings me to tip 3: be mindful of the Velcro when closing your little one’s nappy- it may seem like an obvious thing to say, but the Velcro can often rub on their bellies if fastened too high; so I tend to fasten it lower down to ease any chafing from the Velcro. 

Looking after your cloth nappies is pretty simple once you know the basic dos and don’ts, and trust me, after a while of using them you’ll find your own way of caring for and maintaining them. It really did seem so complicated when I first begun, but now I do it on autopilot and don’t give it much thought. If you want to know more about how to wash cloth nappies, you can find all the info here.

A lot of this stuff really is more about common sense- but if you’re not sure just go on the manufacturer’s website and see their care section. Just remember that we all make mistakes along the way. I know I have, just don’t be too deterred if you do; it’s a learning curve. But that’s what I love about cloth is you’re always discovering something new, be it in the form of  a new print you like; a new kind of booster you’ve found that works wonders; or even neat little tips on how to clean them or get them to dry faster. And I’m telling you- there’s no sight more pleasing than a washing line full of nappies. It’s one of life’s simple pleasures 😉 

If you’re just starting your cloth journey I really hope this article has helped you make that first step in getting started. I really can’t stress enough how awesome cloth nappies are, and how great you’ll feel using them. I love using cloth and wouldn’t ever go back to disposables, even the extra washing doesn’t bother me; because I know once they’re washed I get to hang them up on the line and stand back to admire the lovely colourful pretties – for so many reason, using cloth really is a pretty great mood booster ☺ 

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