I’ve updated my guide to the best reusable nappies for The Telegraph. I first tested washable nappies for the newspaper in 2019 and have done updates since, covering my first child’s journey into night-time pull-up pants, and now testing some new arrivals to the market on my second child.
Reusable nappies are the greenest choice (avoiding thousands of throw-away nappies) and work out cheapest in the long-term. A win-win for people and planet.
Last year DEFRA published their life-cycle analysis comparing reusable nappies to disposables and found that reusable nappies have a lower carbon footprint, even taking into account the energy invested in washing the nappies. You can read the Nappy Lady’s summary here and find the full report here.
Recently, the BBC radio programme Sliced Bread crunched all the costs of reusable and disposable nappies with nappy seller Wendy Richards, providing a comprehensive price comparison of budget, mid-range and disposable options in both markets, and found reusables markedly cheaper, even when factoring in costs for running your washing machine and buying detergent. Wendy helpfully shared her sums here.
The trouble is, reusables have a high up-front cost and that can be a barrier for people investing in them. For this reason, they make great presents! If you take your child swimming regularly, I definitely recommend using a reusable swim nappy – and they make great gifts for other children too, saving a stash of disposable swim nappies.