Soiled nappy storage


Modern cloth nappies should be kept as dry as possible until they are washed. Do not soak your cloth nappies. Soaking nappies degrades the PUL and elastics prematurely and creates a breeding ground of bacteria.

What is a dry pail?

A dry pail is something to hold dirty nappies until they are washed. The ideal cloth nappy dry pail is an airy basket without a lid. Plastic baskets have the advantage of being easy to wash and do not rust.

Remove soiling (poo) with toilet paper and flush, then rinse anything remaining, either in the laundry sink or in a bucket in the laundry sink and tip the water down the toilet. This doesn’t need to be done immediately after the nappy has been changed during the day, it can be all done at the end of the day. After doing this you can either:

  • Put the nappies straight in for a pre wash cycle, or
  • Spin the nappies in the washing machine to remove excess water, and put them into the pail until prewash.

Removing this excess water helps reduce the development of ammonia and the potential for mould growth.

What is a wet bag?

Wet bags are water-resistant bags made of PUL. They can be used for storing soiled cloth nappies and wipes while out or during the day. They are also useful for wet swimwear and clothing.

What is wet pailing?

Decades ago wet pailing was the most common method of dirty nappy storage. This is no longer a suitable or needed option. Napisan previously contained sodium hypochlorite (the active ingredient in bleach which sanitises), it no longer does, so the modern Napisan/Vanish does not sanitise.

Wet pailing poses a drowning risk, and creates a perfect breeding ground for bacteria to flourish. Soaking nappies prematurely degrades modern cloth nappies and is more labour intensive.