Before I ever had children I met a mother who was very into natural living. I loved the way she cooked whole foods, used non toxic house cleaners and dressed her kids in organic cotton. But, when I found out she cloth diapered, I thought she was nuts. Really. I could not imagine anything more vile then having to do more with a soiled diaper then roll it up and toss it away.
I really should be careful when I judge people because cloth diapering is one of those deviant things I swore I'd never do (like homeschooling, natural family planning etc etc)....and, well, here I am right now about to write about my love of cloth diapering! Go figure.
I started cloth diapering with my eldest using a set of gently used motherease one sized cotton diapers and covers. Someone described these diapers as workhorse diapers and that description is completely true! I used these diapers with Blueberry covers for Sofia's entire diapering and half of Maya's. They still look new to this day...but they are no longer soft (although this has nothing to do with the absorbancy). Since then I have upgraded to the motherease one sized bamboo diapers and I am in love with them. They have remained soft and like new for baby #3 now.
|Motherease one sized diaper in smallest setting (left) and largest setting (right)|
In addition to the motherease diapers, I have a handful of pocket diapers including FuzziBunz and BumGenius that I use for travel or for outfits that need a trimmer diaper.
Oh, did I forget to mention...cloth diapering makes your babies bum look HUGE. I'm used to it now (and I love the look of it actually) but that was one thing that got some getting used to for me. The motherease diapers are baggier than the pocket diapers (fuzzibunz and bumgenius). I prefer the motherease diapers over the pockets, however, because they can easily be used for multiple children without wearing out, they are easy to wash without stink issues that pocket diapers are famous for and they do not have synthetic material touching the baby which results in fewer rashes in my opinion.
We cloth diaper during the day, however, we DO use a disposable diaper at night. During the day we change diapers every 2 hours or so and at night the girls sleep for longer periods of time, so the disposable works better. But, on average, we only use one disposable diaper a day!
Here is a list of what I consider "must haves" for cloth diapering our way:
(this is for one child in diapers full time during the day doing laundry every other day)
- 12-15 motherease one size cloth diapers (choice of cotton, organic or bamboo)
- 4-5 covers (motherease airflow is also a nice cover that is virtually leakproof!)
- cloth wipes (we use those baby washcloths that every new mother receives a million of at their baby shower!)
- One large step garbage can. We bought ours from Walmart and you can see it below tucked into our bathroom closet:
5. Two pail liners to collect dirty diapers (we own two WAHMIES pail liners that have been used for five years now without leaking or wearing out!)
6. Diaper Sprayer - Not necessary but has made my cloth diapering experience worlds easier.
Our wash routine (keep in mind that we have NEVER had a stink issue, a buildup issue or leaking issues using this routine)
a) Rinse in COLD with no detergent
b) Whitest White Setting with Country Save detergent (3/4 scoop in our front loader)
c) Another Whitest White setting with NO soap
d) 60 mins in the dryer on Medium setting for diapers and pocket diaper inserts (I have to use a longer dry time because of the bamboo fiber in our diapers).
e) I hang all our diaper covers to dry (I have three blueberry diaper covers that are FIVE YEARS OLD and still working well)
Hope this helps! There are a multitude of cloth diapers styles, fabrics and methods of covering. We have saved so much money cloth diapering and it feels good at the end of the day not to be throwing away so many disposable diapers into landfills. Like anything, there is a learning curve to it but before long it becomes second nature. Hey, if my husband is on board with it...anyone can do it!