Nappy Liners – Complete Guide

  • By: Gian
  • Date: June 16, 2022
  • Time to read: 6 min.

What’s a nappy liner for?

Essentially, a Nappy Liner is a layer that traps solids while allowing liquids to pass through and into the nappy. Liners have no absorbency value and are only intended to make nappy changes more convenient for the parent.

Liners are the final piece of cloth in the nappy stack, and they are placed immediately next to the baby’s bum. Liners can either be a disposable liner made from cellulose paper or reusable liners like fleece liners.

A nappy liner does two things: it allows urine to pass through but not return so keeping the baby’s bottom a bit drier and it also catches poo. It goes next to the baby’s skin.  

A pooey liner is easy than dropping into the toilet for flushing leaving you with a nappy ready to be stored in a nappy bucket or bag. It does not make an absorbent nappy, that is a booster or insert. Cotton nappies retail moisture so a fleece liner keeps them dry when next to babies skin.

Are nappy liners necessary for a cloth nappy?

No. They are a matter of personal preference. Though not required when using reusable nappies, liners for cloth nappies have several advantages over disposable nappies.

Paper Liners will catch all the solids in the nappy, making cleanup a lot less difficult in the future. Fleece liners provide an extra layer of protection against liquids while yet feeling dry on the skin.

When should I start using nappy liners?

You don’t need to use paper liners if you are exclusively breastfeeding your baby, they will only get in the way and won’t do much. When your baby begins to eat solids, the consistency of his or her poop will gradually grow more solid. At this point, you will need to start utilizing liners to make it easier to get rid of the solid faeces and waste.

If your child has nappy rash and you want to use a nappy cream it is advisable to use liners then, to protect your nappies from the cream. Read our guide on cloth nappies and creams here.

Remember liners will help prevent staining and help your nappies if you choose to use creams.

Are nappy liners reusable?

There are two types of liners, paper or disposable liners and reusable liners. Paper liners are generally not reusable, though some brands can be washed and reused once.

Because they can be deposited in a bin, disposable nappy liners are an excellent choice for when you are away from home and need to collect and dispose of solids quickly and easily. The more environmentally friendly approach is to use reusable diaper liners. A reusable liner is reusable.

Disposable Nappy Liners

Disposable Nappy Liners

Paper liners are a disposable part of a nappy system and come in many different thicknesses and sizes. There is a paper liner suitable for whatever your baby’s age and type of nappies you’re using. 

While a baby is breastfed and before it is weaned, any poo will not normally smell strong but it is frequently very runny. For this stage, a good thick quality paper liner is best.

Good quality paper liners tend to only be available online, the ones in High Street stores tend to be quite thin and better for older weaned babies. The thick liners The Nappy Lady sells are Ultra Liners and Bambinex Liners.

Bambinex liners are especially good if you are using all-in-one nappies as they are a bit narrower than other brands. 

For older children thinner liners are suitable. Liners made of viscose are very popular as they are very soft but also have a stretch to them, which is fantastic when you reach that wriggly baby stage. Little Lambs Viscose Liners and Onelife Liners are very popular for this reason.

Many people bulk buy paper liners online several times a year, this usually qualifies you for free postage. On average paper liners cost around £5pm so still significantly cheaper than disposables.

Often the thick paper liners if wet only, can be washed with your nappies and reused again, making your liners and money go further.

Paper liners are normally designed to be flushable one at a time but if you are in any doubt about your plumbing or have a septic tank, either compost or bin your paper liners or alternative use washable liners.

Disposable liners are extremely convenient because they can simply be thrown away with each diaper change while also being biodegradable and reasonably priced. If you are using a liner to protect the nappy from cream, you should use a disposable liner to avoid contamination.

Washable Nappy Liners or Fleece Liners

Washable liners are normally made of fleece (polyester). Some nappies such as Bumgenius or Bumbles come with a fleece liner sewn in already. For other nappies, you can use a separate loose fleece liner. Use nappy liners to catch solids and help reduce the soiling of your nappies.

With a wet-only fleece liner, you put it straight into your bucket or storage bag. If the baby has done a poo then you need to sluice the liner in the toilet first to remove the poo.

To sluice a fleece liner you hold a clean corner of it and hold it in the toilet bowl (clean water in the toilet bowl). Then flush the toilet holding onto the fleece liner. The power of the flush usually removes most of the poo.

If the baby hasn’t been weaned and is still at the very runny poo stage sometimes their poo can stick to the liner and won’t come off with sluicing. If this is the case you just put the pooey liner into your storage bucket/bag and the washing machine will deal with it very well.

Just do a rinse cycle first before the main wash. If you’re squeamish and for some people, the thought of pooey liners in their washing machine is just too much then stick to using flushable paper.

Reusable liners are less expensive than disposable liners. The nappies and reusable nappy liners can be washed together in the same load.

There is no risk of tearing or splitting with reusable liners. It is good for babies who have skin issues such as eczema since the fleece material is extremely comfortable against the baby’s bottom and provides excellent protection.

How do you use nappy liners?

You simply place them on the nappy between the nappy and the baby’s skin. That’s it. For disposable liners when you are changing the nappy pop them into your bin. For reusable liners just put them in the wash with your nappies.

To dispose of paper liners for older or narrow drains, flushing liners is not recommended; thus, the most effective approach to dispose of them is in a disposable diaper bag placed in your trash can or recycling bin.

Because reusable liners are washable, solids should be flushed down the toilet or washed off before being placed in a nappy bucket or wet bag with the rest of the diapers.

How many nappy liners do I need?

For paper liners, you will need probably a pack of 200 every month. However, if you are just using to catch the solids, and you have a child who is very regular and only does 1 solid a day (if only!), then you can reduce this and only use for the nappies you know you will need them for!

For reusable liners, you will need 1-2 for each nappy you have, so about 40-50 in total. Some of your real nappies might already have a stay dry layer so you will not need any liners for those.

Can you flush Liners or Bambino Mio liners?

Can you flush Liners or Bambino Mio liners?

The manufacturers claim that Bambino Mio’s nappy liners can be composted when wet or flushed when soiled. Soiled liners must be flushed one at a time.

However, we have found that it is not advisable to flush any liners down the toilet.

But no, you cannot flush disposable nappy liners. Well you can but its not environmentally friendly to flush. Think fatbergs!

What can I use instead of nappy liners?

If you have a pocket nappy, which is fleece lined you do not really need to use anything else. If you are short of paper liners for a cloth nappy you can always make some reusable ones using an old cheap fleece blanket, just cut it up into squares. You can put them in the compost bin but note that human poo should not be composted.

This article was written by: Gian MIller – Full-Time Writer, Baby Whisperer & Dad of 3.

Gian spends a lot of his time writing. A self-proclaimed baby whisperer, Gian has been through it all with his own children and is passionate about sharing his hard-won wisdom with other parents. When he’s not writing or changing diapers, you can find him playing the guitar or watching baseball (or preferably both at the same time).