I was asked by another blogger to do a cloth diaper post and then was again asked by a good friend and fellow blogger gaybymakessix to do one as she is expecting and trying to sort through the cloth diaper world.
So here is what we use and how we work things. This is just our experience, people have all kinds of systems and it’s all about preference. Also, I have zero judgement for people who use disposables. We like using cloth and it works for us – not everyone.
At six weeks old August has never been in a disposable diaper. A lot of people use disposables until their baby is done passing meconium. We just immediately rinsed meconium diapers in the bathtub and then put them in the wet bag. It wasn’t a huge deal for us. We have a local cloth diapering group here who has a lending library. We got that for a month so we could try out different things which helped but honestly we didn’t use a lot of it – we found what we like and stuck with it. Here is what we use:
Diapers: We are currently using kissaluvs. They are a fitted diaper. These are diapers that you need a cover with. We were hoping to like the fitted and were loaned this stash from friends of ours so it worked out perfectly with no cost to us. We have ordered the next size up in fitted from Green Mountain Diapers. These are what we planned on using all along and using the kissaluvs proved that we like the fitted. Our stash is 24 diapers. This works for us but we do have some back ups of different kinds.
We like the fitters because they are easy to use and we feel secure with them. We have not had any blows outs which is lovely. Right now we are struggling a bit because the kissaluvs have snaps and August is between two snap sizes – one feels too loose, one feels too tight. We bought the GMD’s without snaps and plan to use snappis with them.
While using the newborn library we tried some pocket diapers and All in Ones. In the end they just seem like more of pain, I don’t know why. We have probably about a dozen pockets (both sunbaby and alva diapers, bought from a local co-op) and I have used exactly one. I keep telling myself I should try them more but never do. I will at some point, I’m sure. The library had Charlie Banana pockets and we used those a couple times. Those are nice because they are sized (the alva and sunbaby are one size so more adjustable) and that makes them more trim.
Covers: Most of the covers we got from the library and our friends were Thirsties. I did not like them but Lesley didn’t mind. I had leaks all the time, mainly from velcro covers. (We had some velcro, some snaps.) I felt the velcro was not very substantial. I would struggle to get them fastened and then August would kick his leg and they would come undone. Lesley likes the velcro because they are more adjustable – she must be a better velcroer than I am. Even the thirsties with the snaps I did not love. We have now switched to the covers we got for him which are Rumparooz. I LOVE them. They are thick and very secure. We also have some Best Bottoms that I don’t mind (We just use them as covers, we don’t snap an insert in.) but I love the rumparooz. I really don’t think it is worth it to get used covers. I don’t think they are made to last that long and our new ones have worked way better. That being said, I don’t know that the one size covers would have fit him great when he was just born so I think that having some sized covers is good at first.
Wipes: We got packs of flannel wipes that we used and also made some. Lesley got flannel to make fun receiving blankets and cut up the extra and just sewed along the sides. We both like the homemade ones better because they hold water differently and we feel they get him a bit cleaner but it’s not enough of a difference that we would get rid of the others. We do not use a special wipe solution, just a spray bottle of water. Spray the wipe, wipe the baby, done.
Wet bags: Wet bags are wet bags and I don’t think there is a huge difference in brand. We have two large ones for the nursery – one we are actively using and a back up, a medium sized one we keep in our room, and two small ones for the diaper bag – again one we use and one as a back up.
Diaper cream: We use Earth Mama Angel Baby bottom balm. We got a three pack of little bottles from amazon. We keep one in his room, one in our room, and one in the diaper bag. It is a big expensive but we only use it as needed and have hardly made a dent in it in the last six weeks. So far it works great. If he looks a little red we put in on for the next couple of diaper changes and it clears right up.
Now onto the process. A lot of people hate the washing. We have a high efficiency washer and dryer. With 24 diapers we wash every day or every other. I think we can make it every other but I’m home so we just wash daily normally. We wash them first with no detergent on a quick wash, medium soil, tap cold water, no spin. This takes 36 minutes. Then we add soap (ecos) and put them on the heavy duty wash with an extra rinse. That’s a setting on our washer so we just hit a button and are good to go. We don’t stress over how much soap we use – just a normal amount. This takes an hour and 19 minutes. Then we dry them on a normal dry. I put the wet bags and covers in as needed – sometimes I dry them, sometimes I don’t. When the diapers come out of the dryer I put them on a clothes drying rack that sits in front of french doors we have in our kitchen to sun them. Being that we live in Oregon they don’t get a ton of sun but this helps to take out stains. There are usually stains and the sunning helps remove the stains and any odors that may be in the stain. Every two weeks or so I wash the diapers on the sanitize setting in the washer. When it is nice and sunny I will probably put the rack outside after sanitizing. We take them handfuls at a time and either put them in our room where he gets changed at night or in his room where he gets changed during the day. (We were doing all of our changing in our room until I realized that my back pain was from leaning to change him on the bed. Now daytime changes happen on the changing pad on his dresser.)
So that’s what works for us. We both are fine with this system and are happy to be using cloth. That may change someday but for now, it works for us!