The Real Nappy Campaign

​The Real Nappy Campaign aims to highlight the problems associated with common disposable nappies and encourages local parents to make the waste-conscious choice to switch over to washable alternatives.

We believe that washable nappies are the most environmentally-friendly choice for parents, helping to protect resources for future generations, save waste and also save families money.

Real nappies - frequently asked questions


Buying throwaway nappies may cost you between £5-£10 per week. The average baby will need to wear disposable nappies for two and a half years so you could end up spending around £650 to £1300 over your child’s lifetime.

A total investment of an average £200 could buy you a set of washable cloth nappies, taking your child from birth right up to potty training.

The cost of cloth nappies is getting cheaper as they become more mainstream, so there is even greater potential for savings.


The design of the washable nappy has been improved significantly since the simple folded Terry’s folded squares. Today you can buy a range of shaped nappies in a variety of colours and designs and Velcro and poppers have largely replaced safety pins.

Waterproof wraps can be popped over the nappies to keep them dry.

Many mums have stated that their child is more comfortable in real nappies.


No boiling is required. Used nappies can be put into a nappy pale or bag ready for the wash. An eco-friendly 40 degree wash with normal detergent is sufficient to get them clean. If you do have a stain that is difficult to remove we recommend using a gentle product such as Nappy Fresh Bio D cleanser and stain remover. Bio D is an effective natural and safe cleaning product that is eco-friendly.

We recommend line drying for most nappies as the sun acts as a natural bleaching agent. However, you can tumble dry on a low heat or put your nappies on an airer to dry over night.


If you have twins, you will need to purchase more to begin with but you will make a substantial saving of around £1600 over the average two and a half years. If your children are of different ages, then there will be even greater savings as your youngest will grow to fit into your older child’s nappies.

Real nappy loan kit

We recommend trying before you buy when it comes to real nappies. There is a wide choice of products on the market and choosing the right brand for your baby can be difficult. We have 5 loan kits that can be hired out free of charge for two weeks. Our kits are suitable for babies 4 months and up.

Our nappy kits are available to hire from the following Northamptonshire libraries: