We have been cloth diapering Taz since he was brand new. It was something we had *kind of* talked about, but to be real, I was ready to just let the whole thing blow over. Bryan had suggested it, and I was… less than enthused, shall we say?
You see, Bryan tends to be a liiiiiittttlllee… how shall we put this?… cheap. There I said it. To the point where it can drive me just nuts sometimes.
I was about 6 months pregnant and making lists.
(I love making lists. It soothes me.)
I was making lists of the things that we had left to buy before the baby was born. On one of my lists was, “Research Amazon Mom vs. Diapers.com to compare prices.” So Bryan peeks over my shoulder and nonchalantly says, “What do you think about cloth diapering?”
Hold the friggin phone. Are you OUT of your darn mind???
Was what immediately went through my mind. I mean, seriously gross, right? I want to spend as little time touching my child’s poop as possible. WASH diapers? Hecks to the no.
Plus I hate doing laundry.
Not like normal “I don’t like doing chores” kind of hate- I mean I really loathe it. It is the never ending task in our house. It’s NEVER done. That’s why it always cracks me up when I tell people that we cloth diaper and they’re all like, “Oh I could never do that. I hate doing laundry.”
I’m just like *snort* “I love doing laundry. That’s the ONLY reason I cloth diaper.”
Ladies and Gents, I present… my couches.
But I let Bryan poke around. And I learned that cloth diapering has come a looooooooong way since my mom was wrapping my little sister in diapers, plastic covers, and pins. There are a ton of different kinds of cloth diapers. And I was shocked- SHOCKED at how much cheaper it is to cloth diaper. My husband is an MBA, so he likes making spread sheets as much as I like making lists. He worked out how much it would cost to buy 30 diapers for a year, and included the cost of coin laundry in our shared condo laundry room, and the special detergent you have to use with the diapers so you don’t ruin them. Then he compared that cost to the cost of disposable diapers from Huggies, Pampers, Wal Mart, Costco, and Target brands. We came up with a minimum savings of over $1,500 for the first year alone. I don’t know about you, but $1,500 seemed worth it to us.
Then I started asking friends about cloth diapering, and they told me the laundry really really isn’t that big of a deal if you have a good system. I was skeptical, but I heard enough people say it that I started to believe them.
So I caved.
We found a website that offered a cloth diaper trial. Diaper Junction and Jillian’s Drawers offer the same kind of deal now- you get to borrow a couple of different kinds of diapers for a month to see what you like. There are a zillion different kinds of diapers, but we found that we like Pocket Diapers.
We use Fuzzibunz. Cute brand name, totally great product. These are called “pocket diapers.” There are three parts to the diapers:
1.) The flushable liners:
These things are KEY! We buy flushable bamboo liners. They come on a roll. If baby poops, you put it right into the toilet and flush. Remember I want to spend as little time handling my kid’s poop as possible. This helps with that. If the diaper is just wet, we actually throw the liner in the laundry. They hold up for about 3 washes or so.
2.) The microfiber inserts:
We like that you can determine how many you need with the pocket diapers since the inserts aren’t attached. We use 2 inserts per diaper during the day for Taz, and 3 at night. Little P only needs 1.
3.) The covers:
These are the fun part. They come in so many cute colors and patterns!
At home, we get lazy and just lay the inserts on top of the covers.
For daycare, we actually stuff the pocket like this:
We want to make it as easy as possible for them to cloth diaper at daycare! It’s no more work than a disposable for them.
We have a set of Fuzzibunz “one size” diapers that Taz wore until he was 13 months. They have adjustable elastic, so as the baby grows, you just let the elastic out a little more to fit. Now he wears “medium” size, and Little P is in the “one size.”
So back to me not wanting to touch my kid’s poop any more than I have to… I feel like we have a really good system for handling the dirty diapers now. I do laundry 2-3 times a week for diapers, and we have a few things we do to pre-wash them before they go in the machine.
1.) The bamboo liners I showed you above. Baby poops, most of it gets caught on the liner and gets flushed.
2.) But sometimes theres overflow… gross. So we attached a cloth diaper sprayer to our toilet. It’s pretty high power. Just hold the diaper in the toilet using a thumb and index finger and spray it off.
3.) Planet Wise diaper pail liners. These things are awesome. The dirty diapers go in the pail. On laundry day, I take the (waterproof) liners out, and just turn them inside out right into the washing machine, and toss the pail liner in to get washed with the diapers.
4.) Bac-Out. I put a few squirts of this stuff in the diaper pail throughout the week. It makes the pail not stink… it has a citrus scent. And it helps cut through the icky stuff in the diapers to get them good and clean.
I wash them in HOT water using an extra rinse cycle. They usually go in our dryer because I’m lazy (with NO fabric softener- that can ruin them). If you want your diapers to last the longest they can, you should line dry them. But I’m the UNsupermomma. I own it.
I can honestly say that if any ONE piece of that system were not in place, I would hate cloth diapering. Right now, I feel like I don’t spend any more time dealing with ick factor than I would if we used sposies (that’s cloth diaper speak for “disposables.”)
So there you have it! Unsupermamma Cloth Diapering 101. If you have any questions, I’d love to answer them. Send them my way:
Or leave them in the comments.
If I get enough questions, I’ll do a follow up post. Now go fourth and keep baby butts clean and dry!