I’ve written a little about cloth nappies before, but never specifically about how I manage using them with twins, so here we go!
When I found out I was expecting twins, the thought of using cloth nappies suddenly seemed overwhelming. It took me three months to get my head around the idea of giving it a go, but I got a few nappies and decided to go really slowly. I think introducing them slowly is the best way of starting to use reusable nappies no matter how many babies you have, but it really takes some of the pressure of when you’re dealing with multiples. I used one cloth nappy a day on each baby until I got to grips with what I was doing. Once I’d grown in confidence, I moved up to two nappies a day, and gradually worked my way up to full time daytime use, and occasional night time use. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again; even if you only use one cloth nappy a day, you’re having a meaningful environmental impact.
This one sounds obvious, but it really does make life that little bit more manageable when you’re dealing with two babies! Make sure you always have nappies washed, dried, and ready to go somewhere easy! I have a stash of nappies upstairs and downstairs, and they’re always in the same place so I know exactly where to find what I need. I keep everything neat in IKEA storage boxes and wicker baskets, but there are loads of wonderful ways of keeping your nappy stash organised. Look to Pinterest and Instagram for nappy storage inspiration!
Prepare everything ahead of time
Leading on from organisation is preparation. If you’re not familiar with cloth nappies, they come in two parts – the outer nappy, and the inner, absorbent boosters. These parts are washed separately and then have to be put together before use. You can also pop a liner (a bit like kitchen towel) on the top of the nappy to catch any poop and make cleanup easier!
I know parents of singletons who happily put their nappies together as they go, but this doesn’t work for me with two babies. Most of the time I change my twins within a few minutes of each other, and taking the time to put nappies together while changing inevitably causes impatient babies and crying. Instead, every evening I prepare nappies for the next day. I get my newly dried nappies and boosters and put them together before popping them in a storage box ready to go. I also rip off liners and place one in each nappy to make my life as easy as possible the next day.
Take a break if you need to
Looking after a baby is exhausting. Looking after multiple babies can be even more so. If you’re feeling stressed or run down and can’t face the laundry that comes with cloth nappies, take a break. Take day or two off, and try to come at it again when you’re feeling a little better. Creating more work for yourself when you’re not feeling great isn’t going to help anyone.
Invest in a wet bag or pail
When I was just getting the hang of cloth nappies, I chucked used ones in an old bin. Even when they were only there for an hour, there was a definite pong! I soon discovered the joy of wetbags which contain the smell before you’ve had a chance to do the laundry! When I empty the bag of nappies into the washing machine I just turn my wetbag inside out and put it in the machine for a wash too! They’re also very handy if you’re using cloth on the go. Lots of people use pails to contain the smell – basically a bin with a lid! You can also put a few drops of essential oil in a pail to freshen things up if you like. While I would probably recommend either a wetbag or a pail (or both) to any parent using cloth nappies, people who have multiple babies have to deal with at least twice the amount of nappies, and therefore twice the smell!
While I am definitely not an authority on cloth nappies, I do feel like I’ve got to grips with them and am more than happy to try and answer any questions, or direct you to someone who can!