Yes, I am one of those cloth diaper mommas, but with baby #2 almost on the way, I have wondered what I am going to do- stay with cloth or add disposables?
When I was first pregnant with Luna two years ago, I thought about cloth diapering because I had read a lot about how more and more people were doing cloth again, and how great it was for the environment. Plus it helps them potty train sooner and is better overall for their bodies without all the chemicals found in disposables. I researched cloth laundry services and soon realized I didn't want a diaper service where you share diapers. Yes, maybe they're clean but it still sounded unsanitary.
So we went out to the only diaper store in the Dallas area to learn more about cloth diapers: Babies Bottoms and More located in a mom's garage! The owner went over all of the options: cloth diapers with covers and snaps, inserts, liners, all in one diapers, and two in alls. It was enough to make my head spin! We figured we would wait until my newborn was settled at home before I tried anything drastic.
After our baby was born we used disposables to make our life easier in the beginning. They are the greatest invention, but I also felt like I was building my own landfill with the amount of waste we created in just one day. We were taking out the diaper genie bags once a day! So I researched some more and read about all the junk in regular diapers like these cancer causing toxic ingredients: bleach, PVC, formaldehyde, heavy metals, Sodium polyacrylate, etc. Have you ever noticed those little crystals on your child's behind from the diaper? Yeah, those are some of those absorbing wetness crystals that cause all the bad stuff.
That's when we started purchasing the dye-free, chlorine free diapers. My family thought we were crazy and going overboard, but hey, we were just being cautious. But I still wanted to try the cloth diapers.
Disposables and wipes were going to run us 100$ a month and we learned that cloth diapers might be an investment in the beginning but will pay off in the end.
So we decided to go with the All-in-Ones when she was about 3 months old. What are AIO's?
They are a cloth diaper and cover all built into one diaper! You don't have to put on the cloth part, then a cover. You also don't have to do the insert thing where you buy the reusable cover with the pocket and stuff the cotton cloth inside of it. AND the AIO's have snaps and adjust while your baby grows.
We love the Bum Genius Elemental AIO, the best cloth diaper out there in my opinion! You can get it on Amazon for 24.95$ if you click here: Single Bumgenius Elemental Organic Cloth Diaper All in One for Girls PINK. We bought about 24 diapers and yes they may be expensive to get a set, but in the long run they pay for themselves, especially with other babies. They last a long time! I've even seen people selling them on eBay.
They are super absorbent and very easy to use. Just snap and go. And when you need to use a wipe, we also bought some cloth wipes to use that are like little washcloths. I have a diaper warmer and I fold the wipes, run them under water to get them damp them store them in the warmer. You can also buy or make your own diaper wash spray with almond oil and some lavender oil that we spray before we use a wipe.
So what do you do once they do their business? We have a diaper pail which is a plastic trashcan (from Target) that we put a laundry bag in to line it and toss the dirty ones in it as well as the wipes. With babies not on solids yet, you just toss the poopy diapers in and wash them. Once they are on solids, you do have to just dump it into the toilet or we have a Bum Genius diaper sprayer attached to our toilet to wash them if needed. It's really not that bad, trust me.
Then once it's full, you take the laundry bag and dump the bag and all the diapers in the wash. We have a front loader and it works great. We do once cycle on cold, double rinse with no soap to just rinse out the diapers, then we do a second cycle with hot water, 2 scoops of soap and a second rinse.
The best soap we have found is Rockin' Green. It gets everything out! We use it for our laundry too and it comes in lots of different scents and depending on your water, either Soft Rock, Hard Rock or Classic Rock. And with a front loader machine, we don't use much water at all.
How often do I wash? About every 2 days or very other day. It's not bad, my washing machine does all the work! And there is no folding, I just toss them in one of my child's drawers in her dresser.
As far as night time diapering, we did buy a couple of extra liners. These are basically pieces of cloth that you put on top of the diaper to absorb more at night so they don't leak:
And in case you were wondering what to do when you are out in public and have a diaper change? Sometimes if I know I am going to be out for awhile, like a trip to the zoo, I make sure my child is in a disposable. But if it's just a trip to the mall and you need to change a cloth diaper, I always have a 'wet bag' (a mini laundry bag that zips) in my diaper bag to put the cloth diaper in and then you can carry an extra cloth diaper in your bag or bring some disposables to change into. The wet bags come in some super cute fabrics too:
So there you have it. Cloth diapering 101. See? It's not so hard! Ok, maybe you think I'm crazy now, but it really is so easy.
Now of course I still keep disposables on hand for my child's Mother's Day Out and when I know I'll be gone for awhile, or when traveling. I still buy chlorine free ones and just found a new line by Jessica Alba called The Honest Co. I ordered a free trial sample and loved them! Click on her website if you want to order your free sample too. They don't have any of the bad ingredients in most diapers and they come in lots of cute patterns. Right now you can't order them individually, you have to sign up for monthly service of 80$ a month for a full supply of diapers and wipes, but they told me they'll be selling individual packages soon. Check out the cute diapers that came in my sample:
So what to do when I have 2 children in diapers with one being a newborn? Yikes, I still don't know what I will do but I think I am going to give cloth diapers a try for both. I may purchase a few extra All in One's so I'm not doing laundry every day. I will definitely start with disposables for my newborn the first week so I'm not too in over my head!
Oh and I have to add that I am in no way reimbursed by any products mentioned on here, I wish! I've just felt like talking about how great cloth diapering has been and have been wondering what on earth I'll be doing with 2 in diapers very soon :)