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Best Modern Cloth Nappies In Australia 2023

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The best modern cloth nappies in Australia are more accessible than ever.

There is a growing movement of parents choosing to return to cloth nappies in Australia.

In 1993, cloth nappies represented 60% of nappies used. Nowdays, this number has reduced to just 5% however there is a moving trend which is seeing more families choosing modern cloth nappies in Australia over single use nappies.

Modern cloth nappies have less of an impact on our environment. They are also a great way to save money and are gentler on babies skin.

Cloth nappies come in many different shapes and sizes. So whether you have a newborn or toddler, with chunky legs or lean, there is nappy to suit your family’s requirements.

Australian’s are really lucky to have access to so many local, amazing brands of nappies. Each boasts a benefit unique to their brand. Just as every baby is unique, there is a cloth nappy to suit.

Cloth nappy success starts with taking the jump. It can be overwhelming. However once you get started you will see that using cloth nappies really is a simple, sustainable and an economical choice for your family.

best modern cloth nappies in Australia pin - designer bums
Photo Credit: Designer Bums

Best Modern Cloth Nappies in Australia 2023

Switching or starting with cloth nappies can be an overwhelming process.

I have had three children from birth. I was totally overwhelmed trying to find the best for number one, didn’t even try with number two and number three has been in full time cloth since 6 months of age.

If only I knew then, at the beginning of my parenting journey, what I know now. Hashtag – cloth botts rock!

Cloth nappies really are a piece of cake to work with and our family has saved soooo much money swapping from disposable nappies.

That’s not to mention the impact on the environment too!

I really should sit down and work out how many disposable nappies I have saved going to landfill by doing a couple of loads of washing each week. Be right back…

I found a calculator that works out how many nappies are prevented from going to landfill by swapping to reusable cloth nappies.

In 18 months of using cloth nappies, I have saved 3270 disposable nappies from going to landfill and $981.

Dani – Play Inspired Mum

Wow! That is mind-blowing! Would you like to check out the calculator?

Designer Bums Modern Cloth Nappies
Designer Bums

What are modern cloth nappies or MCNs?

Modern cloth nappies, aka MCNs, comes in many shapes and sizes. That is to suit newborns to toilet-training toddlers.

Essentially they are a nappy that can be used, washed, and reused, over and over again.

For many families, one collection may be used for first, second, and third-borns!

Gone are the days of folding the terry toweling squares and fastening them with a super-sized nappy pin.

Although if you are pregnant and reading this, do yourself a favour and grab a pack of ten of these classic squares. They are so handy for so many things! Best things ever to use as burp clothes, lining change tables to protect your pretty covers, mop up spills and so much more!

Again, back to nappies!

Modern cloth nappies are just that. A modern take on a classic nappy. Generally speaking, they are a leaner fit without the bulk, more absorbent, and easier to fit compared to their predecessors.

There is an abundance of choices available.

From differing styles, materials, and designs, oh the designs. There is something to suit everyone’s tastes. Whether you are a fan of bright or boho, you will be able to find a style to best represent your style.

Best Modern Cloth Nappies Brands in Australia

Different types of modern cloth nappies in Australia

Pocket Nappy

Just like the name suggests, this type of nappy style has a pocket in either the back, front or both of the shell ( the pretty part of the nappy) for the insert (the absorbent part) to be ‘stuffed’ into.

Generally speaking, they are a one size fits all. The front of the nappy will typically have a selection of snaps or Velcro’s, referred to as the ‘rise’, for which you can customise the fit of the nappy to suit your child. This feature is on most types of nappies and is fabulous as it means a nappy can be used throughout your child’s nappy journey until toilet training.

Typically the pocket fabric is microfleece which keeps babies lovely and dry while being super soft against their skin.

There are different inserts and boosters (super inserts) available so you can tailor absorbency to suit your baby’s varying output.

Flushable bamboo liners are also available for making poops easier to manage too.

Given the inserts are separate from the shell, pocket nappies will dry quicker than an all-in-one nappy.

Is it getting easier to see the value of cloth yet?

Baby Beehinds
Baby Beehinds

All in One

All in one (AIO) are just as the name suggests. Think of a disposable however one that can be washed and reused. The absorbent insert is built into the shell. While this cannot be switched out like a pocket nappy of all in two, coming next, all-in-ones can still be boosted!

Given the absorbent layer is sewn into the shell, there is no risk of bunching, making an AIO a comfortable choice for your baby.

These nappies do take longer to dry however the least amount of effort to assemble after washing and drying.

All in Two

All in two (AIT) are a system that is essentially two parts. There is the waterproof outer shell and then the absorbent insert. These can be washed separately and customised to suit your baby’s output if needed.

Inserts are available in different materials such as microfibre, hemp, and bamboo. There are also different thicknesses or numbers of layers of absorbency.

The inserts are typically held in place with snaps which makes separating them simple and efficient.

Tips for beginners

  1. Start with a few different brands to find out which fits your baby.
  2. Think long-term. Are boosters available?
  3. Check your local council for rebates available to assist with the cost of establishing a cloth nappy stash.
  4. Get a foldable indoor drying rack for rainy days.
  5. Grab a few wet bags for nappy changes when out and about.
  6. Establish a sustainable wash routine
  7. Get stainless steel pegs. They are the bomb diggerty. Once you go stainless steel, you will never go back.
  8. Have bamboo nappy liners on hand in case you need to use nappy cream or alternatively use modern cloth nappy-friendly nappy creams.
  9. Enjoy all the beautiful designs!

A huge congratulations to our friends over at Designer Bums for being voted Australia’s favourite reusable nappy 2022!

Eco-Friendly Disposables

Come to think of it… I had been using super eco-friendly disposables after Mr had a terrible reaction to some generic disposables… so our preliminary contribution should have decomposed by now -phew!

Yup, these eco-friendly, plant-based disposables are typically 93% decomposed within just three months. Crazy amazing compared to conventional disposables which scientists say can take 150 years to decompose.

If you choose to stay with disposables, I would definitely suggest and recommend Ecoriginals.

And please roll the solid waste into the toilet!

So much waste ends up contaminating drinking water and our oceans via landfill. Flush solid waste and it will be processed via the wastewater sector to reduce harm to the environment.

For your baby’s sake and for the environment’s sake – our kid’s kids don’t need to be playing in their grandparent’s soiled disposables!

Anyways, back to cloth.

My personal experience with Modern Cloth Nappies

The only thing I regret about cloth nappies is not committing to them sooner.

Since my son was 6 months old, cloth has been our go too. Thinking of all the money spent on landfill over the years…. actually no, not going there.

I am so proud to have made a swap that is not only better for our family but the environment too.

In short, wet nappies are rinsed and placed in an open basket. Poop-soiled nappies have the solid waste dropped into the toilet before being rinsed (remember to stretch the elastics) before being placed in the same basket.

The soiled nappies are prewashed each night before having a long hot wash each second day.

On sunny days they are hung out on the washing line to dry.

On wet days they are hung up on a drying rack inside, strategically positioned under the air conditioning if we have the heat on. If left overnight and they are still not quite dry, a quick finish in the drier is all it takes to get the last bit of moisture out of them.

As he has grown, his urine output has changed. I add boosters and tri-folds depending on where we are and what we are doing to add extra protection.

When out and about, soiled nappies are thrown into a wet bag and dealt with when we get home. If the facilities are available, poop is always plopped in the loo if possible.

If for whatever reason nappy cream has been needed to be applied, I simply drop a bamboo liner over the top of the insert to protect it.


Modern cloth nappies are easy, totally doable, and for a few extra loads of washing a week, totally worth it!

Modern cloth nappies are simple to use, clean and maintain.

Don’t overthink cloth.

Just jump.

You will feel so good about reducing your footprint on the planet, and having some extra cash each fortnight and who doesn’t love the gorgeous designs on your babe?

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