Saturday, April 14, 2012

Our Cloth Diapering Journey So Far

I don't remember how the topic of cloth diapers first came up, but as I researched them I discovered they would be a great option for us.  With our move to Alabama and back to Kentucky it was not likely I was going to be working when our little one arrived and a while before that as well.  So the savings of cloth compared to disposable was what originally drew me to use cloth. Once I started looking more into cloth I realized it was better for the baby (little to no rashes, little to no blowouts and softer on their skin) and cloth diapers were just cute!

Here is a quick overview of modern cloth diaper lingo (with links!):
Pocket - popular diaper style made with an moisture-wicking stay-dry lining and a waterproof outer layer. Requires an insert.
Prefold - A thick, absorbent rectangle of fabric that can be folded in a variety of ways to fit the baby. Requires a cloth diaper cover.
Snappi - A T-shaped stretchy fastener used to hold prefold or fitted diapers in place. 
AIO - An all-in-one cloth diaper has an absorbent inner and a waterproof outer. The diaper is "all-in-one" with the diaper and cover created as one diaper
AI2 - An AI2 (all in two) is usually made with a waterproof outer cover with an absorbent diaper or soaker attached in some way.
Cover - A cloth diaper is made from a waterproof or water-resistant fabric. A cloth diaper cover can be used over a fitted, prefold, or flat diaper to protect baby's clothes and other items from wetness.
Fitted - A fitted diaper is an absorbent diaper with elastic at the legs that fastens with snaps or hook and loop (a.k.a. velcro) 
Insert - An absorbent soaker that can be added to a Pocket diaper for absorbency.

One Size  - these diapers are made to fit from birth to potty training.  Most have various snaps to adjust the sizing.

Here is what our diaper stash consisted of when Peyton arrived:
2 Grovia AIO Newborn sized
3 Bumgenius AIO Newborn sized
8 XS Fuzzibunz pockets
8 Newborn & 8 Infant Diaper Rite prefolds
2 Rumparooz Newborn Diaper Covers (1 snap, 1 Aplix)
1 XS Thirsties Aplix cover
1 Kissaluvs fitted diaper, Size 0
4 Thirsties Duo Covers, Size 1
8 Bumgenius Pockets, one size
6 Fuzzibunz Pockets, one size
2 Ones & Twos AIO/AI2 diapers
2 Econobum covers, one size
1 Flip cover, one size
6 Econobum prefolds, one size
2 Thirsties hemp prefolds, one size
4 Thirsties hemp inserts, 2 small & 2 large
2 stay dry insert socks
30 cloth wipes
2 snappis
1 Kawaii one size minky pocket (freebie)
1 Diaper Rite one size pocket (freebie)
3 medium sized wet bags
2 diaper pail liners
Rockin Green detergent
Diaper Rite wipe solution
Diaper sprayer

When we first started using our cloth diapers (after she was about 10 days old & her cord stump was off) Peyton didn't fit into the one size diapers (even though she met the weight requirements).  Without the one size diapers our stash wasn't very large so we still used disposable at night.  Once she fit into the one size diapers we stopped using disposable at night and added those into the rotation.  Here's a summary of what I found:
  • The XS Fuzzibunz were bought used and they ended up leaking every time.  I believe it was because the elastic around her legs was so worn it just wouldn't hold anything in.  So those were taken out of the rotation.
  • The NB Grovia leaked almost every time due to the way the leg holes are made so I am selling those.
  • I really liked the NB Bumgenius.  They are starting to get too small & sometimes they leak when she pees too much for them (but that's not the fault of the diaper).
  • Prefolds aren't my favorite but they have worked great.  I don't usually use the snappis, just fold the prefold into the cover.  I may not use these as she get bigger (and squirmier).  The Thirsties covers fit to 18 lbs so I don't think I will be getting Size 2.
  • I love the rumparooz newborn covers!  I only had one at first but bought another.  They fit great and are trim.  No leaks, even messy poo.
  • The Thirsties covers are great as well.  The size 1 Duo covers are less trim, but fit right away.  No leaks here either.
  • The Econbum and Flip covers didn't fit at the beginning and I haven't tried them again as the others still fit her great.  Not sure if I am going to keep these.
  • The Kawaii and Diaper Rite pockets didn't fit when the FB or BG did, but they did around 10 lbs.  They are a great affordable option (around $10 a diaper) vs the FB or BG (around $20 a diaper) and I will probably get a couple more of each.
  • I stuff the stay dry socks with BG one size inserts and/or Thirsties hemp prefolds and put them in Thirsties covers. It is like a stay dry pocket diaper, but in the Thirsties cover.  You can also put prefolds in the covers. I will probably get more of these socks.  They aren't necessary but it keeps the prefold contained, especially when you add more inserts and it's softer on the skin.
  • I loved the Kissaluvs fitted diaper!  Easier than prefolds and very absorbent.  They still fit her (up to 15 lbs) so I would like to get more.  They will probably be the majority of our newborn stash for our next baby.
  • I like the Ones and Twos diapers, but we are currently having major leak issues with one of them (it's leaking through the waterproof outer...?) Not sure if it is me or a flaw in the diaper, so jury is still out on that one. But they are good nighttime diapers for older babies since they have an extra bamboo insert (as long as the leak issue is resolved).
  • My favorite diapers are Bumgenius.  We haven't had an issue with them at all.  The Aplix versions are easier to put on than the snaps, but snaps generally last longer.  We have mostly snaps so I will get a few more Aplix (when they run a Buy 5 Get One Free sale again).
  • The Fuzzibunz fit sooner than Bumgenius but they are trickier to find the right fit (since you adjust the elastic for fit, not by adjusting the snaps). I'm not going to add any of these just yet, I want to figure out the fit first.
  • I love the cloth wipes!  They do a much better job than disposable.  We are currently using them "dry" (spray the solution on them right before using) but I want to try them "wet" (storing them in solution).
Daily Routine:
I put the dirty diapers in a trash can lined with a diaper pail liner.  For pockets I shake out the insert into the pail.  For poo diapers we usually use the sprayer that is attached to the toilet, especially if we aren't washing that day.  It isn't necessary at this point, but it helps with stain and stink issues.  We also spray poo diapers with Bac Out.  This also helps with stains and makes the diaper pail smell better (the diapers are not soaked in water in the pail, they are dry).  When we are out I put the dirty diapers in a wet bag and then add that (wet bag included, turned inside out) into the wash.

I wash when the pail gets full (which is also when our pockets stash runs low) and is about 3 times a week.  (The pail goes into the wash too so you don't have to touch the diapers!)  Since we have an HE washer (that uses less water) I spray cold water into the full pail and add a wet beach towel to "trick" the washer into adding more water.  Then we do a cold rinse (no detergent), hot wash (with Rockin Green detergent) and extra rinse.  I air dry the covers (including pockets) and dry the inserts and prefolds in the dryer.  If we have any stains I put the diapers in the sun and viola!, stains are gone.

I am really glad we are using cloth diapers.  They are really not too much extra work, and I really don't mind washing them or getting them ready since I know I am saving money and they are better for Peyton.  If you have any questions about cloth diapers please do not hesitate to ask!  I am not an expert by any means, but I would be glad to share what I have learned so far and offer any advice I may have.

Here is Peyton in some of her diapers!

1 week old in a Newborn Bumgenius (about 9 lbs)
12 days old in a prefold and Newborn Rumparooz cover (about 9.5 lbs)
About 11 lbs in a prefold and Size 1 Thirsties Duo cover
About 11 lbs in a One Size Bumgenius Pocket Diaper

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