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What is a nappy dry pail?

nappy dry pail

The nappy dry pail, explained.

Dry pailing is a method of storing dirty nappies until you're ready to wash them. It is "dry" because it does not involve soaking them in water. Dry pailing is the recommended method for storing Peachi Baby nappies and many other brands of modern cloth nappies.

There are several different ways you can dry pail your reusable nappies. We will focus on a dry pail solution that would work best for someone washing every day, or every other day, which is what we recommend for our nappies.


It's easy

A dry pail is the safest, easiest, best-smelling option that lets your washing machine do the work.

There's no drowning hazard

A dry pail does not require soaking nappies in water, eliminating the risk of drowning.

It's better for your nappies

Modern cloth nappies are constructed of elastics and PUL fabrics which can be damaged by prolonged soaking. Soaking dirty nappies in water creates a perfect breeding ground for yucky bacteria. Dry pailing prevents bacteria buildup that can break down the natural fibre fabrics in absorbent inserts. 

It's less smelly

Unsurprisingly, soaking nappies in a "poo-soup" is very unpleasant on the nostrils (!). On the other hand, concentrating smells in a closed, lidded bucket will only intensify odours when you open it. A dry pail with good airflow is the best option because it will reduce odours or at the least, make them far less offensive.

Dry pails prevent mould

Mould loves wet fabrics. So, allowing nappies to dry out slightly in a dry pail makes the environment much less hospitable for mould to grow.

What you'll need:

A wet bag
For on-the-go or for daily use at home if you're washing every day, our wet bags are an excellent dry pail option. You can hang them on the back of your bathroom door and wash them along with your nappies.

Or a nappy bucket
An ideal home dry pail solution is a 15-25 litre plastic bucket or laundry basket with holes in it (no lid). The holes will allow for airflow, letting water evaporate from the urine and minimising ammonia buildup. This set-up will be less smelly than a lidded bucket with no holes. A plastic bucket is best because it's easy to wipe or spray clean, won't rust, and when you've completed your cloth nappy journey, you can repurpose the basket for general laundry use. A bucket with handles will help you carry the bucket to the washing machine.
Something that looks like this would be perfect:

nappy dry pail bucket

Where to keep it:

You'll need to remove the poo from your nappies before putting them in the dry pail. So, having the dry pail close to the toilet can be handy.

How to use a dry pail:

  1. Solid waste should go in the loo. Ideally you should rinse and wring out anything else.
  2. Unsnap nappy shells and inserts and remove any inserts from the nappy pockets.
  3. Place everything in the bucket or wet bag.
  4. When you have enough for a wash load, you are ready to empty the contents of the dry pail into the washing machine.
  5. Do a short cycle with a half dose of detergent + a long cycle with a full dose. Full laundry steps here.
  6. If you're using a wet bag we recommend washing it along with your nappies.

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