Tag Archives: real nappies

Real Nappy Week 2018 – post 2

Three years ago I watched a report on Channel 4 News about child poverty.  I was shocked to hear a Stoke primary school teacher say that 35% of her September reception children had arrived at school in nappies.   Let that sink in, as they say.

A while later, I was at a health conference and met a Danish IT consultant (who uses big data to improve health outcomes.) His response, when I told him that up to a third of children starting school in England may still be wearing nappies, indicated no shock or surprise. “It’s a UK thing right?” he said. “That wouldn’t happen in Denmark. We would find out this is happening and we would spend money on educating the parents. In the UK, you don’t spend money.”

What’s clear is that many children are toilet training later. Schools are installing nappy changing areas.   Children’s education is being disrupted by it. It should concern all of us that reception teachers are spending time NOT teaching because 1 in 3 children in the class are not able to take themselves to the toilet.

Public Health England has noticed this problem. It has made toileting independence one of the ten school readiness indicators Foundation Years has also noticed. Its document, supported by the Department of Education: “What to expect, when?” tells parents your child will tell you s/he needs the potty or to go to the toilet at 16-26 months.

What’s this got to do with Nappy Ever After?   We want to help people who want to use washable nappies.  In so doing, we help reduce London’s nappy waste. We run a nappy laundry service and give expectant/new parents the opportunity to see nappies before they buy.  If a household uses them, that’s one tonne less household refuse to collect and landfill or incinerate per baby.

However even if we reduce nappy waste through encouraging more people to use washable nappies, nappy waste will not go down if an ever increasing number of children are wearing nappies for longer and longer – for no medical reason.

London spends £20 million per year on the collection and disposal of nappy waste. We want to reduce this cost. We can think of better ways to spend £20 million. We need more parents and carers to receive good up-to-date information about potty training. No one wants to be changing nappies of a child who is perfectly capable and happy to take her/himself to the toilet.  Let’s do it!


This post is part two of a six part series of posts leading up to Real Nappy Week 2018 (23-29 April.) Nappy Ever After, a not-for-profit real nappy social enterprise is 15 years old this year. Working in partnership with local authorities and parents, we have tested out the market for washable nappies in depth, through offering a local nappy laundry service and selling real nappies face-to-face. What we know is that recovering the culture of reusable nappies is slow, but a significant level of disposable nappy waste is reduced when a culture of real nappies thrives in local areas.

Real Nappy Week 2018 (23-29 April)

This post is part one of a six part series of posts leading up to Real Nappy Week 2018 (23-29 April.) Nappy Ever After, a not-for-profit real nappy social enterprise is 15 years old this year. Working in partnership with local authorities and parents, we have tested out the market for washable nappies in depth, through offering a local nappy laundry service and selling real nappies face-to-face. What we know is that recovering the culture of reusable nappies is slow, but a significant level of disposable nappy waste is reduced when a culture of real nappies thrives in local areas.

This Real Nappy Week  I am making a plea: we need more people with the intention to reduce disposable nappy waste.  And where do I get this idea of intention?  Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola.

According to the news this morning, today is an  historic day.  Wigan, a second-league club knocked the invincible Manchester City out of the FA Cup.  City manager Pep Guardiola defends his players “It’s the intention that matters, not the result.”

Let’s get out there and spread these encouraging words from someone who knows about leadership.  We all need the intention to reduce nappy waste if we’re going to make it happen.  Sadly, this didn’t work for Man City last night but this is not about winning today, reducing nappy waste is a long game!  And Man City will win the league.


Brazelton UK: celebrating 20 years

Yesterday I attended a day to celebrate 20 years of the Brazelton Centre in the UK.  Having booked on some months ago, I found myself wondering why I had decided to attend.  What the real nappy industry knows child development expert Dr T Berry Brazelton for is endorsing the size 6 Pampers nappy with the mantra “Let the child decide when the time is right to potty train.”

What I discovered yesterday is there’s much more to Berry Brazelton than this.  He radically changed attitudes to the new born.  It was Berry who really championed the idea that babies are born individuals, that whilst babies may not speak their first word for a year, they are born ready to communicate.

Something else struck me deeply at the conference yesterday.  We also heard a talk by Professor Dieter Wolke who made the case that babies who find it difficult to ‘self-regulate’ are more challenging.  They make the life of her/his parents much harder.  The message was, be careful not to judge those parents who are having a tough time. Parenting is significantly more challenging for them.  These parents need support to understand how they can help their babies to self-soothe.  Their baby may need more regular routines.

I guess this is all common sense to to most of us now.  However, it feels important to understand that it hasn’t always been so and we have Berry Brazelton and the Brazelton Centre UK to thank for this.

With all the pressures of our busy lives perhaps it’s even more important to spread the Berry Brazelton message that we need to tune into new borns.  Suzanne Zeedyk is carrying on the work, showing just how important and enjoyable nappy changing can be when we ‘tune in.’  Watch this short film ‘Dance of the Nappy’ (on Youtube.)






Nappy Ever After Trial Kits explained

So you’re interested in using real nappies – you’ve heard great things about them.  But why are there so many different types?  How is it possible to make a choice?

Different nappies suit different babies AND different parents.  And you may find the nappy that works well at home during the day doesn’t work at night or when you’re out and about. You need to start using real nappies to find out for yourself what works for you and your baby.

Sounds daunting?  We can help you learn through your own experience for a minimal investment.  We sell an 8 nappy trial kit which will form the basis of your nappy stash.   Those 8 nappies will last about 24 hours.  While they are in the wash and drying you use disposables.  You will soon find out what you like best and you can work out what else you need.

Our trial kit consists of

Six small pre-fold nappies: these work from new born through to potty training.  They form the backbone of any real nappy wardrobe.  A pre-fold is a flat nappy with a central extra absorbent section – you do still have to fold it!   This short video shows how.  Pre-folds tends to be the preferred option for when you’re at home.  They are simple and durable and cheap meaning you can bulk up your stash for a very low cost.  They also make great cloths on the changing mat when your baby is having bare bottom/nappy-free time.

One birth-to-potty all-in-one nappy (most of these have a pocket which you stuff with the absorbent nappy insert, so also called pocket or stuffable nappy.)  This tends to be the preferred option for out and about.

One birth-to-potty shaped nappy – which tends to be the preferred option for nights.

Two waterproof wraps: one sized with Velcro and one birth-to-potty with snaps (both go over prefold nappies and your shaped nappy)

A roll of liners to catch the poo so minimal poo gets on the nappy and thus into your washing machine.

There are 2 sizes, one from new born, the other from 6 months. You can buy the pack here.

NB You may have heard about high and low-rise nappies (not unlike high and low-rise jeans.  Some fit round the waist others below the tummy.)  This pack allows you to try out both so again, you find out which suits your baby better – if it makes any difference at all.

The main thing is to see changing time as enjoyable contact time with your baby.  Watch this short film on YouTube by baby brain guru Suzanne Zeedyk.  It shows that a nappy change can be very important stimulation to the development of your baby’s brain.

Nappy Ever After’s Quick Guide to Buying Real Nappies

Choose between these options:

  • All-in-ones:  nappies that are quick and easy to change, most like a disposable, easy to wash and quick to dry,  last from birth to potty. Choose these (£17 each) or these (£16 each) You will need about 16 so total spend is £240 – £272.
  • Fitted nappies plus waterproof cover: this birth-to-potty nappy is organic cotton so natural next to baby’s skin.   This one is more absorbent and is good for nights when your baby is sleeping for longer.  You need a total of 16 nappies plus a few waterproof covers
  • Pre-folds with waterproof wraps:  organic unbleached cotton so natural next to baby’s skin.  You also need waterproof covers (1 cover to 4 nappies). These nappies are only £3 each so most people buy 24.  Weight guide for nappies is up to 20lbs (9kg) so you may larger nappies (£4 each) after baby about 6 months.  See our video on how to fold.
  • G-diaper system: Also quick & easy to change.  Require no folding.  Slim fitting only take a little longer to dry.  Option to use washable or disposable inserts.  Choose these.

All the nappies we sell at Nappy Ever After do the job so please don’t be paralysed by the choice.  If you haven’t chosen yet why not buy a trial kit?  These are a mix of some of the above.  You then buy more, based on your own experience, to build up your stash.

Don’t forget to add liners to your order.  These catch the poo so it goes in the bin or down the loo and not in your washing machine.  WARNING: only put poo in the loo, not  liners.  It will get blocked.

Was this useful?  Do call 020 7014 3006 if you need help.  We are often out & about but leave a message and a good time to call you back.  We also run real nappy workshops when you can see, touch and discuss the different nappies. Visit www.nappyeverafter.co.uk for current events.

No delivery charges when you Click & Collect!

After much thought, we have decided to stop  postal/courier delivery services from our on-line shop.  After 3 years of trying to deliver a service that is often excellent but too often disappointing, causing stress, and expense and wasting everyone’s time, we have realised that we can’t deliver a service that is cost-effective and meets customer expectations.

As we have a shop based in London, within a 5 minute walk of Euston, Kings Cross and St Pancras stations (we probably have the best public transport links in Europe,) we’re hoping more of you will Click& Collect.  Look on Streetmap. These days you don’t even have to walk along the Euston Road from any of these 3 stations.   Often partners, friends or neighbours pick up on-line orders for our customers and this works really well.  Although our ‘shop’ hours are restricted (Tuesdays 2-6pm, Wed 9am-4pm) we are often here doing admin.  Just call or email to arrange.

We also like meeting you – and your babies!  Running a real nappy business and shop is not easy.  It’s always been meeting our customers that’s made it enjoyable and given us the will to continue.  Plus knowledge and experience gets shared.  It’s good!

You can also pick up from Hackney City Farm on the second Wednesday evening of the month when we run nappy info sessions.  From March (or earlier if there’s demand) we will be running real nappy sessions at Mother’s Hub, E17 so you can collect orders from us there.   It’s possible we could arrange other collection points, such as Children’s Centres that are open during the day.  Let us know if you have suggestions that work for you.

We understand some of you can’t get out.  If you live in Hackney, Haringey, Islington, Tower Hamlets, Camden or Waltham Forest we may be able to deliver (when we’re doing the laundry round).  Call or drop us an email to ask.

If you really want an order sent to you phone or email. We may be able to send by courier but we just need to to make it clear, we are not Amazon!

This is a quality of life issue.  We know that just-in-time deliveries and repeated missed deliveries are an environmental issue, especially for London air quality.  We don’t want to be contributing to that problem.

What we also  want to do is get rid of the diesel vehicle we use for our laundry service and get our electric freight bike out of the shop window and back on the road.  Any suggestions of grants available?   We have some fund-raisers planned so please look out for those and help publicise (we’re running them in Climate Week – 3-9 March 2014).  We need about £2,000 for new batteries and a charger to make this happen.  If it reduces costs (we think it will) we’ll be able to bring down the weekly laundry service charge.  So a better way to do business.