Cloth Diapering 101

I wish I could say that I’m a go green granola cruncher. But, I can’t. So why do I cloth diaper???   I’ve got two kiddos in diapers and it’s way cheaper.  Click here to find a great online store to purchase diapers with great deals and incentives. Click here to figure out how to buy detergent for your diapers.

But I often get asked how I do it. After about 3 weeks of trying to figure it out I’ve discovered a few  things on what works for me.  Keep in mind I think there’s a trial period for everyone and it’s unusual to find the process of CD to be perfect right off the bat.

1. Don’t even bother trying to CD a newborn unless you buy newborn sized diapers. They don’t fit no matter what they say and the freshly born poop and peep way too frequently for me to want to do laundry that often!

I switched to cloth when I had a 1 year old in diapers and was pregnant with our 4th baby (and that translates to I had a 7 year old, 5 year old, 1 year old and was preggers).  No sense in buying newborn size when my newest little one would be the only baby to ever wear them.  So I bought AIO (all in one’s). I heard that BumGenius by Cotton Babies was a great brand.  And though they’re pricey I knew that I wanted to get a good brand so I’d enjoy it the switch from disposable to cloth.  I purchased 12 Elemental  BumGenius AIO OS (one size) in a variety of colors. Click here to see their selection.

I heard that 12-18 was about all you need and I’d say that’s super accurate.  The difference with these diapers is that the liner is attached to the shell.  So there’s no stuffing so there’s no messing with a poopy diaper as you try to unstuff etc.  But not all bG diapers are like this.  Some are pockets and require stuffing (and I have some of that kind too but  in a different brand and they work well but the bG are superior in leak protection)

2.  If you followed my first tip and don’t begin with a newborn, you should be able to start cloth diapers around 2 months old.  I’d say around 9.5  lbs is a good estimate for an AIO diaper.

3.  Wash the diapers 5 times before first use. TRUST ME!  The more you wash them the more absorbent they are and this is the point right?

4.  Make a Poo Shield/Diaper Protector.  Use a microfiber fleece that you can buy at your local fabric store like Joann fabrics.  Cut it into strips and create liners or shields. See tutorial here. These will allow you to pick up the liner and dump the poo in the potty and also allows the diaper to remain free of stains.  We’ll talk stain issues soon :)

5.  Ready your diaper changing table. You’ll need a small bin to store your dirty wipes (if you’re using disposable which I did because I couldn’t imagine using washable/reusable wipes with two kids- oh and did I mention I actually have 4 kids! It’s way too much for me to keep track of with the spray bottle, cleaner and enough wipes for a day or two  plus diaper bag wipes). Mine’s similar to this and is about 7 ” tall.Covered Trash Cans

You’ll also need to make sure you get cloth diaper safe rash cream.  Not all creams are made for CD and if the zinc oxide is too high it will totally ruin your diaper.

1) California Baby Diaper Rash Cream: can be purchased at most Target stores

2) Method Baby Diaper Cream: found at Target

3) Northern Essence Bum Butter Diaper Rash/Barrier Cream

*4) Angel Baby Bottom Balm

5) Avalon Baby Protective Ointment

*6) Grandma El’s

*7) MotherLove Diaper Rash and Thrush Ointment

*8) Bee All Natural Diaper Rash Salve

*9) Scarlet’s Naturals Hiney Honey Creme

*10) Thirsties Booty Love

*11) CJ’s BUTTer

You can store dirty diapers in a dry diaper pail (line it or you’ll have a messy pail). You can buy liners simply enough or you could just use trash bags.

6. Get a Wet Bag for your diaper bag.  This can be purchased (use the same link for liners above) or you could simply use plastic grocery bags if you happen to have any of those.  Keep it in your diaper bag to store your dirty diapers when out in public.

7.  Washing Diapers.  Wash every 2 days to avoid bacteria build up. Do not use fabric softeners or any kind of detergent with additives or enzymes.  See the link above about detergents to get more info on that. Wash on the hottest setting (like Whitest Whites or Sanitize) AFTER you’ve done a cold soak first. If you have a top loader like I do this can be less of a soak than you’d like so I try to make sure I get the poo off the diapers by swishing the dirty grossness off in the toilet or you can even get a sprayer.

bumGenius Diaper SprayerThis baby will attach to your toilet and you can spray the diaper clean.

8. Diaper pail placement.  So you’ve just sprayed your kiddo’s messy diaper and you are wondering now what?  I’ve tried keeping a pail in the bathroom. Fail.  Tried bringing it back to the nursery. Fail.  What’s worked for me is to bring it to the laundry room which is in my basement.  All my messy diapers stay down there.  I keep a vinyl gloves there so I can easily handle the diapers from bin to basin with out the chance of getting messy myself.

I know it sounds like a lot but it’s not really difficult and I love the cutie cloth tushy.  Who needs cloths when the diaper is so cute!

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