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Types of Modern Cloth Nappies (MCNs)

Pocket nappies
The name gives us a very clear idea of the type of nappy – it’s a nappy with a pocket. It has a 'pocket' between the outer shell and the inner lining of the nappy. This pocket usually has an opening at the back or front (sometimes both) that allows you to "stuff" the absorbent insert between the layers. These nappies are very fast to dry and allow you to adjust the absorbency as required by using different inserts such as bamboo, hemp and microfiber.
You do need to take out the inserts before washing and put them back in afterwards.
Pockets nappies can be found in a snap or Velcro closure and this really just comes down to what the user prefers.

  • A nappy with a pocket where the inserts are stuffed into waterproof nappy cover (or shell) The lining keeps baby dry as moisture is wicked into the insert
  • Absorbent inserts can be increased and stuffed accordingly as needed for night times and as baby gets older
  • Fast drying
  • Come in a range of Velcro or snap closures

 

All-in-two nappies (AI2) 
Are where you have an outer waterproof shell (as known as a cover) and you add an insert that either snap in place or you lay in the shell. The absorbent insert is either attached to the shell with snaps or they simply lay in the shell and are lined with a water resistant fabric to keep bubs skin dry. This means the inserts can be removed to allow for faster drying and they often offer the ability to boost the absorbency.

They are available in snap or Velcro.

  • The absorbent layer snaps into a cover
  • You can customise how the inserts lay within the shell as to where you need more layers for absorbency
  • Washing and drying times are faster than an All-In-One (AIO) nappy as the inserts and the shell can be separated for faster drying.
  • Come in a range of Velcro or snap closures

 Side Snapping Nappies
A side snapping nappy has no front waist snaps, the snaps are on the side. Usually there are 2 snaps on each side, one for the hips and one for the waist. 
Most side snapping nappies don't have rise snaps, however there are some that do. Inserts are usually either lay in or snap in - you may find there are the odd pocket side snapping nappy available. 
You can get OSFM or sized nappies. 

  • The absorbent inserts either snap or lay into a cover
  • You can customise how the inserts lay within the shell as to where you need more layers for absorbency
  • Snaps are on the side

 


OTHER MSN STYLES – NOT CURRENTLY STOCKED BY LNS

All-in-one nappies (AIO) 
Are simply that, All-In-One. The absorbent layers are sewn beneath the lining of the nappy and is connected to the waterproof outer shell. These would come close to same idea as a disposable as in everything you need is all there. You put it on, take it off, wash it, dry it, put it on again.  There is no snapping of inserts, no stuffing of pockets.  It is the easiest nappy for Daycare Centres, Grandparents and often Dads!

However the down side is they do have a longer drying time and they can be bulky. Some AIO nappies also have a pocket for adding additional absorbency if required.

  • The most similar in design to disposable nappies
  • The cover and absorbent material are attached so no snapping or stuffing or matching up after washing
  • The whole nappy needs to be washed
  • Can take longer to dry
  • Very simple and easy to use. Perfect for daycare/babysitters and grandparents.
  • Come in a range of Velcro or snap closures

Cloth or ‘terry’ squares/Flats
These cloth nappies are made of fabric that absorbs liquid, usually terry or flannelette cotton, hemp, bamboo or a blend. They fit snugly but work best with a leak-proof cover. However they can be a bit bulky. You fold or fasten these cloth nappies with pins or clips. They dry quickly. The squares fit children of all ages. These nappies are the cheapest to buy.

  • Economical option
  • Different folds for newborns, boys and girls
  • A waterproof cover is needed
  • Snappi’s or pins are used to fasten
  • Fast drying
  • Great option for newborns before OSFM nappies fit
  • Can be used to stuff pocket nappies for older babies
  • Can be used for burp cloths and spills once you have finished using them as nappies

 Pre-folds
These cloth nappies are made of soft layers of fabric, like cotton or bamboo, which are folded over into a pad shape and placed inside a fitted, leak-proof cover. They’re not bulky, but they’re less absorbent than other types of reusable nappies. They dry quickly. You might need two or three different sizes. Pre-folds are quite cheap.

  • Another economical option made from cotton
  • A rectangle shape to be folded in three OR folded and fastened with a Snappi
  • A waterproof cover is needed
  • Great option for newborns before OSFM nappies fit
  • Can be used to stuff pocket nappies for older babies

Fitted nappies
They are made up of layers of cotton, fleece, hemp or bamboo. They do require a leak proof cover as fitted nappies are do not have any pul to make them waterproof. They’re slower to dry and can be more expensive than other types. They do also take a long time to dry as the entire nappy is absorbent – fitted nappies are quite popular for night nappies as they can handle a bigger output without leaks.

  • The entire nappy is absorbent and they have superior breathability
  • A waterproof cover is needed
  • Available in bamboo or hemp
  • Good for those who want only natural fibres against babies skin
  • A great leak resistant option

Night nappies 
These are often made from highly absorbent fabrics such as bamboo or hemp. You can get fitted night nappies which will require a waterproof cover (pul, fleece or wool) however there are also dedicated night nappies in the styles mentioned above with added absorbency suitable for night time use. Some people find their day nappies are sufficient when they boost them for night time use with a dedicated night booster pending how heavy of a wetter bub is.

  • Specially designed for using overnight
  • Usually sized and for older babies and heavy wetters
  • Often needs a cover
  • Bulkier and more absorbent than day nappies