If you're looking for a reliable option for night nappies, heavy wetters or fitted and flat nappies in general, you can't go past wool covers.
Much like other aspects of cloth nappy use, overcoming the fear of the washing routine for wool covers will open your eyes to one of the easiest and most gentle waterproofing options in the MCN world.
Here's 6 facts you might not know about wool nappy covers.
1. Natural absorption AND waterproofing in one
Wool that has been treated with lanolin is water repellent, so it stops liquids escaping through. Plus, it can absorb up to 30% of its own body weight in liquid before starting to feel wet! This means that wool covers are great for night nappies because a cloth nappy with adequate absorbency will have an additional 30% buffer when using a wool cover, so your baby will wake up feeling dry every morning.
2. Suitable for use with virtually all nappy styles
Whether you use traditional flats, fitted nappies, or modern cloth nappies, a wool cover will reduce the risk of leakage and make your cloth nappy journey so much less stressful. They are designed to fit comfortably around little legs and waistlines, with ample booty space for even the largest of night nappies. The natural elasticity in the fibres also means a wool cover will be snug around a standard MCN or prefold setup as well. This elasticity also means that you can place an additional nappy booster on the outside of your fitted or flat nappies to improve absorbency and the wool cover will provide enough stretch to fit the additional boosting whilst holding it in place.
3. Great for sensitive skin
Wool covers are naturally hypoallergenic so they are great for sensitive skin. They also draw moisture away from the surface, acting as a "stay-dry" layer to avoid friction and wet elastic burns. Plus, modern wool covers are not prickly or itchy, like many of us would associate with our childhood woolies!
4. Suitable for use all year round
Wool is a natural insulator, so it helps to keep your baby's body temperature consistent. If bub is rugged up and toasty warm in winter a wool cover will maintain that warmth, even when wet (whereas PUL gets cold when it is wet!). Wool is also naturally flame resistant. And since they are the most breathable type of cloth nappy cover available, wool covers are actually great in the summer because they allow air to flow through to keep your little one cooler. You can be assured that your baby's bottom is safe and comfortable all year round with a consistent temperature regardless of moisture content.
5. Great for travelling
There are two major reasons that we love wool covers for travelling. Firstly, the absorbent nature of wool covers provides added security whilst away from home. Nobody wants to deal with a blowout! Secondly, they don't need to be washed so often, and dry out quite quickly been uses, so you can often get away with taking fewer covers on your trip. Hip hooray for packing light!
6. They're actually easier to maintain than you might think
To wash your wool covers:
- Turn wool cover/s inside out.
- Gently pre-treat soiling and stains with Sard soap.
- Fill your laundry tub or a large shallow dish with lukewarm (not hot) water and a splash of wool wash.
- Place your dirty wool cover in the warm wool wash, give it a gentle squeeze to soak up the liquid and leave to soak for approximately 30 minutes.
- After soaking, empty the sink/dish and gently squeeze the excess water out of the cover.
- Add a little more lukewarm water to the sink to rinse the wool cover. Gently squeeze the excess water out of the cover again.
- Now you need to lanolise (see below).
Don't forget to be GENTLE with your precious wool covers!
NEVER wring or twist your woollies.
To lanolise your wool covers:
- Whilst your dirty covers are soaking (see above), place 1/4 teaspoon of 100% pharmaceutical grade lanolin (we prefer the b.clean.co Magic Balm but products like Lansinoh are also suitable) and 1 teaspoon of wool wash in a small amount of fresh boiling water. Stir mixture until cloudy white and the lanolin has dissolved.
- Add fresh cool water to your sink/dish and stir in your lanolin mix. Make sure the water is COOL/LUKEWARM.
- Add the wool cover, give it a few gentle squeezes and then soak for at least 1 hour or overnight in lanolising mix.
- After soaking, empty the sink and gently squeeze the excess water out of the cover.
- Place cover on a dry towel, roll it up and push to squeeze out as much liquid as possible,
- Line dry flat in the shade.