Pop-In Cloth Nappy Frequently Asked Questions
Pop-in Nappy Know-How: All Your Questions Answered
How many nappies do I need?
For full time use we recommend around 20 nappies. This will mean in the early days you’ll have a day’s worth to wash and a day’s worth to dry when you’re washing every day. Later on you can wash less frequently as your baby's output changes.
If you want to try using the nappies before investing in a whole set, the 6 pack of Pop-in Nappies is ideal. It will give you most of a day’s worth of nappies to see how you get on.
If you plan to use reusables part time with other nappy systems then a middle box of 10 nappies (plus 3-night time boosters, liner and tote bag) may be the perfect set for you.
However, if you plan to just go with it from the beginning, then two middle boxes of 20 nappies (plus 6-night time boosters, liners and tote bag) will see you through to toilet training.
All the boxes come in mixed, plain unisex colours, either brights or pastels.
Please be aware that if you try to use fewer than 20 nappies for full time use, the nappies, being washed more frequently, won’t last as long.
Equally, you won’t need too many more than 20. It may make the first few weeks easier on the washing front but long term you won’t need them. Though it’s hard to resist adding the odd printed nappy to the collection – sold separately as single nappies – they’re always nice to have!
What about the newborn nappies?
The newborn nappies work differently to the Pop-in one-size-fits-most nappies. They come in a box containing 6 outershells and 10 soakers. Most families find they just need the one to two boxes to see them through the first few weeks, the intention being that you can change just the soaker/booster at most nappy changes as the outershell shouldn’t often get dirty, and the nappies are quick to dry after washing so you can rotate the whole stash very quickly.
It’s all about the sizing…
The nappies are one size only, and fit most babies from birth to potty (8-35lbs or 3.2-15kg) but obviously all babies are different shapes and sizes! The weights for the different popper settings are only a rough guide and you’ll need to use your judgement about when to change up popper settings.
If you can get a snug fit on your baby around the waist and thighs so that there are no gaps but they are not too tight, then the fit is probably a good one. When it seems to get a bit tight then try moving up a setting, and don’t be afraid to experiment (hopefully without causing too many leaks!).
If your baby is just a few months old and you’re getting a bit worried that you have gone all the way up the sizing and you’re on the biggest size already, don’t worry. What we tend to find is that babies change shape quite radically when they start to crawl and then walk, and their waist and thighs slim down even though they continue to grow and get bigger. So the nappies magically still fit!
My baby’s too small for the night time booster but I still want to use the Pop-in at night?
When your baby is small, the night time booster will generally be too bulky to use together with the whole nappy. However, the Pop-in nappy system is intended to be flexible so that you can use the different parts to suit the absorbency needs of your baby.
So for instance you could un-popper a booster off another nappy and add it into your usual day time nappy to increase the absorbency for night time. This would be less bulky than the night time booster but should give you the absorbency you need for your baby overnight. If it’s not quite enough you could try using 2 soakers inside the nappy instead. It’s basically trying out different combinations to see which works for you.
When your baby is older the intention is that you would use all 3 parts together, (the soaker, booster and night time booster) once your baby is big enough and sleeping through… isn’t it great to reach that stage!
I’m having problems with the Bamboo nappy leaking...
It’s very unusual for the bamboo nappy to leak. If you find that it does, the first thing to check is whether or not the boosting inside is completely soaking when you take it off?
If the soaker and booster are completely soaked through, then your baby needs more absorbency in the nappy. You can try adding in a booster from another nappy to see if it solves the problem. Sometimes this can seem to begin very suddenly and you may wonder why, but if your baby is perhaps 14 months+ then it’s very possible that they’re beginning to get ready for toilet training, and they start to hold the wee in for longer periods so when they do release it, there’s quite a large amount all at once, flooding the nappy! A bit more absorbency should help for a while…
If on the other hand the nappy isn’t completely soaked through but still leaking, then it’s more likely to be the fit of the nappy on the baby. Have you recently changed the popper setting, or perhaps you need to change the popper setting? You may go through short periods of unsettlement during these growth periods, and it may be a case of trying to fit the nappy on in a slightly different way, experimenting with how the tabs fit around the waist for instance, or how high up on the back the nappy sits when you’re putting it on.
I’m having problems with the Minkee nappy leaking...
The Minkee nappy is designed with fast wicking, fast drying materials – so the nappy quickly moves the moisture away from baby’s bottom to keep baby drier than in the bamboo nappy, and also when it is washed it dries very quickly so that you can use the nappy again soon.
It’s intended for more frequent changes but with a quicker laundry cycle. The compromise with this nappy is that it isn’t as absorbent as bamboo, so it can’t be left on the baby for as long. So where you could leave the bamboo nappy on your baby for 3+ hours, with the Minkee you’ll need to change baby every 2 hours. Changing the baby an hour sooner makes a big difference with this nappy!
The other thing to check is the popper setting you have the nappy on. The nappy needs to fit snugly on the baby but not too tight, as microfibre fabrics have a tendency to suffer from ‘compression wetness’ which is that because the material ‘holds’ the liquid, rather than absorbing it, it can get squeezed out if the fit is too tight, or if for instance a bodysuit over the top is tight, causing leaks before the nappy is even full.
How many Pop-ins per load?
It largely depends on the capacity of your machine, so unless you have a very small machine, we recommend washing a reasonable amount together (12-15 nappies) as fewer nappies make it less environmentally friendly. Be sure not to overcrowd the load as the nappies need plenty of room to agitate in the wash to thoroughly clean them.
If you have a higher water setting on your washing machine, then it’s worth using this. Often, smelly nappies are caused simply because they aren't rinsed thoroughly or are washed in too little water.
Which detergent should I use?
We don’t recommend specific brands of detergents. Ingredients, their quantities and recommendations from detergent manufacturers are changing constantly.
Rather, we support the Australian Nappy Association’s recommendation to steer clear of detergents with additives designed to stay in the fabric after the wash, like softeners (which can reduce absorbency) and brighteners or fragrances (which might cause issues for a baby’s sensitive skin).
In addition, bleaching agents and soaking solutions will deteriorate the fabric and will reduce the lifespan of your nappies, particularly the bamboo components. Likewise, vinegar, bicarbonate of soda, washing sodas etc will all deteriorate the fabric.
Just like with regular washing, you will find you get better results with some detergents than others and a lot depends on your washing machine, the water in your area and the temperature you wash at – it’s not just about the detergent.
Should I strip wash my nappies?
If you have a solid washing routine, you should never have to strip wash your nappies. For more information, please Click Here.
How long do the nappies take to dry?
Assuming the average room temperature is 18 degrees Celsius, over a line the nappies should take the following amount of time to dry:
- Outershell: approx. 2-3 hours
- Minkee soaker/booster: approx. 4-6 hours
- Bamboo soaker/booster: approx. 24 hours
For more information about protecting your nappies from the summer heat, please Click Here.
Can I tumble dry my Pop-ins?
Never tumble your outer shell or leave it in contact with direct heat (such as an oil heater) as this will deteriorate the waterproofing.
You can tumble dry the inner parts once in a while if necessary, so separate the soaker and booster from the outer shell and tumble dry on a low heat. It can help to revitalise bamboo fibres keeping them nice and soft.
We only recommend tumble drying infrequently to maximise the lifespan of the product, as all the fluff that’s collected in the filter of your dryer is actually your nappy wearing away!
My nappies still smell after washing them!
First of all, we strongly recommend a rinse before your normal wash as part of your usual routine, as this will help prevent stains and smells from setting in the wash.
If you have a higher water setting on your washing machine then it’s worth using, as lower water levels just don’t wash as well and can leave your nappies a bit smelly still.
Sometimes nappies can begin to smell musty during the winter months when they don't see as much sun. Wherever possible, hang them outside in the fresh air, even if only on a clothes rack.
My nappies are a bit crunchy after laundering...
This can happen with the bamboo nappies, particularly in hard water areas. Ensure that the nappies are rinsed well enough after washing to get rid of all the detergent – if you can still see bubbles in the machine at the end of the rinse cycle, try doing another rinse.
Some people recommend adding vinegar to the rinse cycle to soften the nappies, but please don’t do this as the vinegar will deteriorate the fibres of the nappy.
Tumble drying just the soakers and boosters for a very short period of time can help revitalise the fibres and bring the softness back. Even 5 minutes in the machine can help. See the separate advice on tumble drying above.
What should I do if my baby has thrush?
Thorough washing of nappies is crucial if your baby has thrush, and we would recommend trying Dettol Anti-Bacterial Laundry Cleanser, which can be used in conjunction with your usual detergent and is said to kill off bacteria.
I'm having problems with the Velcro not sticking...
Often the effectiveness of the velcro can be affected by bits of fluff and threads getting stuck in the teeth of the velcro. You can pick these out with a needle or pin and this should help greatly!
If this isn’t the case, it may be due to a build-up of detergent on your nappies; particularly if you’re using a powder this can build up amongst the velcro and hinder the attachment.
Firstly, try carefully brushing the velcro pile with a comb to comb out the detergent, and if that doesn’t help try putting the nappies on a full wash with no detergent, and rinse until you no longer see any bubbles during the rinse cycle.
Finally, the last suggestion is that sometimes this can be due to a build-up of calcium on the tabs from washing, and a way to improve this is to very carefully try dipping the tabs in an acidic solution such as white vinegar or nail varnish remover, (make sure no part of the nappy goes in, just the tab!) It may bubble a bit, and when it’s stopped bubbling it should have all dissolved and hopefully will stick again.
If the problem is just that the velcro tabs won’t stick to the washing tabs any more during the laundry cycle you can simply close the velcro tabs to the main velcro strip around the waist, or even to each other!
I’ve used Pop-ins on my first child but now on my second child I’m getting leaks!
We do say that the nappies should last for one baby until toilet training. If you want to try the nappies with subsequent babies, you are likely to need new outershells as the waterproofing will be the first thing to go (sometimes even in storage between babies).
We do sell outershells and soakers/booster sets separately, but do please check version compatibility before you buy.