Changing your baby's nappy

By Mustela

Your baby’s nappy needs to be changed up to 7 or 8 times a day. An infant’s very delicate little bottom can easily become irritated from dampness, contact with urine and stools, or friction from napkins. As a result, special care is needed each time you change your baby’s nappy.


  • Two options: before or after a feeding (depending on your baby’s habits)
  • Some babies don’t like to feed if they have a full nappy, while others usually fill their nappy just after a feed
  • If the nappy is soiled, you should change it immediately

How often?

Generally you will need to change your baby’s nappy 6-8 times a day during the first few weeks.

1. Preparation

  • Wash your hands to avoid transmitting germs to your baby
  • Get everything ready (products, towel, nappy, nappy barrier cream) so that you don’t have to leave your baby for a second!
  • Put a towel on the changing table in case of any little accidents that might happen while you are changing your baby

2. Initial cleaning

  • Open the nappy, wipe off the majority of the waste using the non-soiled side of the nappy. Roll it up and seal it with the tabs, then place it in a bag to be sealed with wipes or cotton pads once you have finished cleaning your baby’s bottom

3. Cleaning

  • Clean your baby’s bottom with either, water and a special baby cleansing milk (soap-free) or with a cotton pad soaked in no-rinse cleansing fluid
  • You can also use wipes, once your baby’s skin is more mature

4. Cleaning precautions

  • Always wipe from the cleanest area towards the dirtiest area, so that you do not spread impurities
  • For little girls: from the vulva (outer lips then middle) towards the buttocks
  • For little boys: the penis, scrotum and all around, then the buttocks.

5. Drying

  • Dry completely, patting (not rubbing) with a clean towel or paper tissues, not forgetting to dry the skin folds to avoid any chafing
  • When possible, leave your baby’s buttocks open to the air for a few minutes

6. Prevention (nappy irritations)

  • Apply a nappy barrier cream like Mustela Vitamin Barrier Cream, ideally every time you change your baby’s nappy, or at least before bed, to prevent redness. It is important to choose a non-occlusive fragrance-free protective cream
  • If your baby has severe nappy irritation, ask advice from your midwife or pharmacist

7. A clean nappy

  • You can now put a clean nappy on your baby!
  • Holding your baby’s ankles, slide a clean, open nappy underneath the buttocks, adjusting it around the abdomen without tightening it, then fasten the tabs. For little boys, make sure you point the penis downwards, to avoid any leaks
  • Wash your hands carefully.

Note: The views and advice expressed on this blog post are those of the author and are not representative of the Pregnancy Babies & Children's Expo.

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