I have a newfound obsession. Wait for it…..cloth diapers! I’ve been considering cloth diapering for a while now and always knew in the back of my mind it would save a lot of money and Miss Mother Earth. I’m not sure what my initial apprehension was besides admittedly being lazy. With a toddler and a baby my time is money. I thought cloth diapering would be too time consuming and – for a lack of a better word – gross.
My only knowledge of cloth diapers was what our moms used on us back in the 70’s and 80’s. They used a tri-fold cotton rectangle fabric that was pretzel(ed) around our little waists and secured with safety pins – then topped off with some plastic under ware. This method did not appeal to me. Trying to put a regular diaper on a squirmy baby is sometimes torture, I couldn’t imagine having to pin it too!
Wanting to learn more I reached out to a few friends to seek advice, but my curiosity eventually faded. It wasn’t until I actually saw a cloth diaper on a baby that made me immediately change my mind. Why did I change my mind? Because they are so freakin’ cute! The stylish girl I once had the time to be – had to have them!
Being an over analyzer, I did do some research before jumping into cloth diaper land. I wanted to make sure I had the patience (and stomach) to handle washing my own diapers, or if I needed to hire a service. I also wanted to calculate all expenses to make sure it was worth the investment. In the end, I decided to go for it and I haven’t missed disposable diapers yet!
In fact, since receiving my cloth diapers I’ve become very protective of my stash. It’s actually kind of weird. I count them everyday to make sure I know where they’re at. I also coordinate them by color and keep them on their own special shelf. My husband thinks I’m crazy, which is partially true, but I want to safeguard our investment since they have to last for the next few years.
In case you were on the fence regarding cloth diapering or didn’t know much about them (like me); I’ve complied a list of helpful tips below:
- Watch Youtube videos! There are hundreds of tutorials on how to use and wash your diapers, along with reviews for all the different kinds of cloth diapers on the market.
- Join Facebook groups on cloth diapering. They provide a lot information and there is always a live person to answer any questions. It’s like having your own personal customer service!
- Try a couple from different brands to see what you like best before buying a full stash. I have G Baby, Bum Genius and Thirsites. So far I like them all. G Baby has cloth inserts and disposable inserts (which are flushable) to put inside a plastic insert. Bum Genius have pockets to insert the cotton insert or built in ones, and Thirsties you will need to by pre-fold inserts.
- No blowouts with cloth diapers! This is amazing. I haven’t had any blowouts or leaks. They are a little more bulky than disposable diapers, but it hasn’t been a problem in regards to baby’s clothes fitting properly.
- Buy a sprayer for your toilet. I have one made by BumGenius and it is very easy to install. You can use this to ‘spray’ off any residue from number 2’s, instead of dunking it in the toilet. It makes the clean up so much easier! They are $60 and worth it. Plus you can sell it later.
- Buy some odor / spot remover. You’ll need this if you launder yourself. I use Babyganics.
- Buy a wet bag to store the diapers in until you do your wash – usually every two days. Try to let air in the bag otherwise the diapers get stinky. You can find these on Diapers.com or Amazon.
- Regarding washing – I do a rinse cycle (cold water), then wash with ¼ cup of laundry soap in hot water. Then I line dry or lay out to dry to save their life span. For stains, either do the above twice or lay them out in the sun. The sun naturally bleaches! It’s like magic!
- You’ll need about 16-20 diapers to complete a stash, otherwise you’ll be doing laundry more often. Be sure to buy the diapers and inserts.
- My electric nor water bill has increased from using the washing machine.
- You can use the inserts as wipes to save money too.
- A Chicago diaper service I would recommend (if you go that route) is Green Diaper Babies. The owner is Shannon, she’s awesome!
- If you get diapers with Velcro make sure to close them before washing, or they fray any other items in the wash. I learned this the hard way.
Overall, I love them! My only regret is not starting earlier! Let me know if you have any other questions in the comments or share your tips for our readers!
Here’s to saving money and the earth!