Types of cloth nappy
So you read about the waterproof and absorbent part and you’ve had time let it sink in? No? Missed it? Go back a step – this way! Or scroll down to read about the absorbent part.
Nappy systems have different names but just explain how the two components we’ve previously explained, come together. There are all in one’s (AIO), all in two’s (AI2) or hybrids, two parters and pockets to name the most common.
AIO - All in one
These mean that the two parts of cloth nappy we discussed – the waterproof and the absorbent parts – are sewn together. They are quite literally, all in one! This is particularly handy if the idea of having to find the parts, or put them together, seems a bit much. Often they are ideal for childminders and nurseries. You won’t lose the pieces, and they just get thrown in the wash. A downfall to this is that they tend to be slower drying. You may also love the way the nappy fits, but don’t get along with the fabric choice for absorbency.
Sometimes the AIO has an opening where you either tuck the absorbent part in, or could add boosters. This image is all one nappy. The top right is how the nappy looks when it’s ready to be put on. The left is how it looks when it’s been prepared for washing and the absorbent part has been pulled out of the aforementioned opening. Other brands may not have this opening and are very literally sewn together.
AI2 - All in two
This means the entire nappy is in two parts. The two components should come together fairly easily and without much effort. For example, Grovia and Close Parent have the inserts that just ‘pop-in’ to the wrap. This is particularly helpful for washing and drying, as some inserts could be tumble dried while the wraps air dry.
It also gives the option to buy more inserts than wraps, and change them. If you happen to have a frequent pooper and you catch it before it’s soiled the wrap, you can swap the insert and keep the same wrap. Although, I’m not promising this will happen! You can also mix the inserts up this way, for example you could have microfibre during the day and bamboo at night. They are in between AIO’s and pocket nappies.
You may have realised by now, that the names of the nappy systems are pretty self explanatory. So a two parter is when the wrap and the nappy are completely independent from one another. This may be a wrap and a prefold, or a wrap with a shaped nappy. This again gives the opportunity to switch out the nappies and reuse the wraps, or get a better fit with shaped/sized nappies. You can add boosters and be really flexible with this system.
Pocket nappies are a wrap, with a sewn in piece of fabric, usually fleece or bamboo, with an opening at one end where to put your choice of absorbent insert inside. The position of the opening can vary from one end to the other, and occasionally there may be on at both ends. These are a great option for being able to mix and match your own inserts or try several combinations out to see what works best.
For example, my heavy night time sleeper I mentioned earlier, has a prefold with a bamboo booster. And yep, I put it in a pocket nappy rather than a wrap! See, you can do what you want really. The booster sits underneath the prefold so it’s between the prefold and the wrap. This means, for us, that it slowly soaks up any extra urine that the prefold is struggling to hold and lasts those extra couple of hours to get us through the night. One of our favourite pocket nappies, and a best seller, are the Baba and Boo one size.
You made it! That’s about it. There is more information I could give, but to be honest, you don’t need it at this point and you really will just pick it up as you go. It’s a lot of information to take in. To help, here is a leaflet I send out with my nappy kits. Still confused? Pop us a message, or drop in to The PoD any time!
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