Everything you need to know about.. Reusable Swim Nappies!

Updated Apr 2024

How do reusable swim nappies work?

Reusable swim nappies work in the same way as a disposable one, but without the waste going to landfill! A swim nappy is only designed to hold solids, they don't need to be able to hold in liquids as otherwise they would simply soak up the pool. It often seems to come as a shock to parents that swim nappies do not hold urine, and I suppose until you really think about it the issue wouldn't cross your mind. But indeed, swim nappies, whether reusable or disposable, are not designed to hold urine. Rather, they are there to catch solids and a good reusable swim nappy will contain every type of poop.

Reusable swim nappies usually have elastic at the leg cuffs to aid containment, and can be used as a two-part nappy system.

What to look for when buying reusable swim nappies?

Look for a two-part swim nappy system when buying reusable swim nappies as many swim schools and pools insist on this, plus check sizing on your swim nappy. 

A two part swim nappy is an internal piece covered with a top layer for extra containment so you may need to check if this is the case where you will be swimming. If it is then a Happy Nappy Two-Part System from Splash About is definitely your best bet!

You will also need to make sure you get the right size swim nappy. Some nappies are one-size meaning they are designed to fit most children and can be adjusted using the rise snaps. Others are sized, usually in months, just like children's clothing, where this is the case you will always find a handy size guide on our website just like with these Tots Bots Swim Nappies

How many reusable swim nappies do I need?

You only need one reusable swim nappy if you want to give reusable swim nappies a go! ,That's because you can wash and reuse them over and over! However it may be handy to have a spare in case of poos especially for younger children. If you do have younger children then a two-part nappy system, like the Happy Nappy range, with a separate swim nappy liner is a really good choice, you can have a spare liner handy and simply swap them over in the event of an accident!

How do I wash reusable swim nappies?

To wash reusable swim nappies, rinse as soon as possible to remove chlorine which can literally rot your nappies away.  Then hand wash or machine wash as usual without fabric conditioner. It is usually recommended not to tumble dry your nappies as this will reduce their lifespan. We recommend picking up a waterproof storage bag, or wet bag, to store your swim nappies and other swimwear in after you've finished in the pool.

This bag and the contents can then be emptied into your washing machine, or hand washed, on a low heat with non-bio washing powder. You can then hang your nappies to dry, but try to avoid hanging them in direct sunlight. If your little one does have a poo in their swim nappy, you can simply pop any solids into the machine, rinse off if needed, and pop the nappy into wash.

What is the best reusable swim nappy?

The best reusable swim nappy may differ from child to child, you may find one that works brilliantly for your two year old but not for your 3 month old!

But on a whole a two-part swim nappy system is chosen by the majority of parents due to the need to have them for swimming lessons. Because of this our best recommendation for reusable swim nappies is the Happy Nappy Range from Splash About! Simply pick yourself up a reusable swim nappy liner and then choose from the range of options to go over the top, from super cute baby swimsuits to toddler sunsuits, and you've got a reliable and long-lasting swim solution! If your little one is a bit older and you are a little more confident there won't be any accidents then the Happy Nappy Duo is perfect, it is already a two-part system thanks to the attached lining and will make for super quick change times!

However, if you are just wanting a swim nappy for beach days or back garden pool play then a super easy nappy, you can use any nappy wrap or cover as a reusable swim nappy.  Take a look at the Cheeky Nappy Wrap or Little Lamb Cover would be our recommendations because they are both quick to change, and wash and dry ready to use again.

Our Swimming Top Picks:

Cheeky Baby Reusable Cloth Nappy Covers - One Size
Cheeky Baby Reusable Cloth Nappy Covers - One Size

Reusable Cloth Nappy Wrap - one size

Splash About Happy Nappy Liner

Shop our full collection of swimwear and reusable swim nappies here

About the Author: Helen Rankin, an advocate for sustainable living, embarked on her journey with reusable products when her first child was born in 2004. Facing limited options in cloth nappies, Helen’s passion only grew, leading her to launch Cheeky Wipes in 2008, right before welcoming her third child. Helen's commitment to promoting sustainable solutions led to her taking over The Nappy Gurus in 2024. Today, she is excited to share her extensive knowledge and enthusiasm for reusable swim nappies, helping a new generation of parents navigate eco-friendly choices for water-based activities.


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