Monday, December 12, 2011

Cloth Diaper Advice

It's something I've been thinking about a lot over the last 2.5 years. Especially every time I buy our months worth of disposable diapers and think to myself how much money we spend per year on diapers. And because my 2.5 year old isn't showing any signs of potty training interest and my 8 month olds poo is predictable I feel it's time to commit and go for the cloth diapers. I have done research in the past and read what other moms had to say about the pros and cons of cloth diapers. I thought I would ask you what advice you might have for me? Brand? What detergent to use? How many to buy? Where to buy them? What all to get with them? Tips? Warnings?
One of my hesitations is that we don't have a high efficiency washing machine and our water temperature doesn't get that hot in this old house. Do you think this would create a big problem? Anybody had experience with this?

Please, Please, if you don't mind taking the time to comment below and let me know any and everything you can in this area I would greatly appreciate it.




24 comments:

  1. Robyn! You'll love cloth diapers! :) If you don't mind, I'm going to FB message you, as I have written a "getting started" message to a couple of other friends there, and it will just be easier to share it that way. Also, I can "introduce" you to another MP lady (that you may not know yet; I'll check) who has an amazing wealth of knowledge on cloth diapers and may have some thoughts on the laundry/hot water questions. (I've been using cloth longer than her, but she definitely knows more than I do.)

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    1. Ami, I just ran across this blog (LOVE IT) and was reading the cloth diaper comments and I would love any info you have on cloth diapers as well if you don't mind. I have just cloth diapering my 1 year old and am loving it but love to hear any advice! Thanks :) Ashley sunshinegirl75@gmail.com

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  2. Check out younghouselove.com They use cloth diapers for their little one. You'll have to search for the post but it was done earlier this year! Hope this helps!

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  3. As far as brand, it really depends on what cost you're willing to have. All of our diapers are one size, that saves a ton of money because they adjust and can go through potty training. We use pocket diapers, they are convenient like all in ones, but wash and dry quicker. They are easy to use, even the volunteers at our church have become very at ease with them. I love our BumGenius, they work great. We also have quite a few Kawaii Baby. They aren't quite as good, but they are VERY inexpensive. We do not have an HE washer. The best, most readily available detergent I have found is All free and clear. I could go on and on, but those are a few of the basic points!

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  5. We're expecting our first baby in two months and will be using cloth! I have a bunch of prefolds and covers from one of my sisters and will be ordering some Kawaii pockets to see what they're all about too (it seems you can't beat the price). As far as I can tell you'll be at a cleaning advantage not having an HE washer... I've found allaboutclothdiapers.com to be very helpful-- lots of information, reviews and recommendations!

    Oh-- and I found your blog off a pin on Pinterest a few weeks ago and I love it!!!

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  6. Funny you blogged this today. I'm washing my first load of dirty cloth diapers right now. Today was my first day and I'm not sure which diaper I liked better just yet. I narrowed it down to FuzziBunz(one size) and GroVia Hybrid with snap closure. I was waiting for Elise to get a little bit bigger so they didn't swallow her so much to see which brand I like better (she's 6 weeks).

    This is the blog post that turned me on to cloth diapering. http://styleberryblog.com/an-accidental-passion-cloth-diapering-for-the-modern-mom. She's got a couple more posts about cloth diapering: http://styleberryblog.com/category/mommy-topics/cloth-diapering

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  7. I think cloth diapering is wonderful. I bought a ton of bumgenius 4.0 and then it wouldn't fit my long and skinny newborn and he kept peeing through them so I got scared about wasting money and sold them. I very much regret selling them because now I teach a few one year olds that have them at PDO and they work really great at that age. www.kellyscloset.com has everything you would ever need to know about cloth diapering and is a great shop to buy from. I had a wetbag that I would just throw diapers in and if it was poopy just spray with bumgenius spray and throw it in washer. I love bumgenius detergent but All free and clear works well. I have HE washer and it's not necessity but hot hot water is to get them clean! I put them in on hot with extra rinse to get them clean.

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  8. I love our one size smartipants. They are relatively inexpensive but made in the us, and the microfiber inserts agitate out in the wash naturally so you touch ickiness less. My 15 month old has been in them since his cord healed and they've held up beautifully. We've washed them in HE FL and standard TL washers without issue. Sometimes (shhhh, don't tell) I even bleach them. ;)

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  9. I don't cloth diaper, but used them on a baby I watched 3 days a week for several months. I've also been really interested in it and asked a lot of questions of cloth-diapering friends and read online. One small thing that I haven't seen as much online but really like in person is diaper liners - they look like soft dryer sheets (but skinnier). I'm not talking about fleece ones (those that's great), these are disposable and make poop diapers much easier and cleaner. Here's an example (I don't know anything about specific brands, and I think they are normally much cheaper): http://www.amazon.com/Kushies-Flushable-Biodegradable-Diaper-Liners/dp/B000V0QTMC
    Ask Terri Steele about it if you're interested! Good luck!

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  10. some links I've referenced in my research:
    http://allaboutclothdiapers.com/
    http://www.pinstripesandpolkadots.com/detergentchoices.htm
    http://www.diaperjungle.com/detergent-chart.html
    http://gratefulforgrace.com/2010/03/cloth-2/
    This is what both Carrie and my cousin Laura used: http://www.softbums.com/
    Laura loves them. While many like pockets, she does not because it's just another place for junk to collect. I would agree and like just snaps or something better.
    Carrie loved them for a long time but for some reason, maybe her body shape?, they no longer work on Eva, so Eva is in disposables now. They started leaking all the time on Eva. That means I'll be using their stash! I'm starting out with disposable newborn diapers and then once he's a couple months old plan to switch over.
    Carrie used only a normal non-HE washing machine and they did just fine. She always hung them to dry; the sun is excellent for cleaning and bleaching.
    I have been advised (prior to learning we'd get Carrie's whole stash) to try a few different ones before deciding and then once you know which are good for you, go ahead and order the big bundle and spend the few hundred dollars. You save SO much by ordering those bundle packages. I believe one of the above websites recommends numbers of liners and covers to start with.
    One last thing - I'm interested in the bamboo liners... sounds novel.

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  11. We use the Thirsties Duo wrap and prefolds from Green Mountain Diapers. It is a two size system, which was great because our baby was tiny and still is tiny! The prefolds are super easy to clean, no issues for us with stains or odor. This system works for us becuase we have someone watch our daughter at our house. We would have the do the pocket style with daycare.
    For washing, we do two washes. The first is a rinse with Oxyclean on cold. The second is warm/hot to disinfect with Ecos detergent and vinegar. Hang the shells to dry and put the prefolds in the dryer.
    Love our cloth diapers and would recommend to anyone!

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  12. I can't wait to hear what you decide! This is something I always want to learn more about for future reference!

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  13. You don't want a HE machine - they don't use enough water to get diapers clean ;)

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  14. Hello! I realize you don't know me . . . I just found your blog (which I really like, by the way) but cloth diapers is something I can totally comment on ! :) I have two kiddos that I cd'd - one from 10 months on and one from birth. I don't think you'll regret using them, but it's not for everyone. You can usually easily sell used ones in good shape if it turns out it's not for you. :) My favorites are FuzziBunz and Tickety Bu prefolds with ImseVimse diaper covers. But different babes fit in different styles better than others & everyone finds the ones they enjoy the best. If you go to Nicki's Diapers.com she will be happy to help you get started and she has a great return policy! (Very helpful when trying things out at first.) By the way, you do NOT need a high efficiency washer .. . . I don't have one. :) The best thing to have is a clothes line so you can bleach out the dipes in the sun - they will be so clean and fresh-smelling! And there is just something meditative about hanging all those sweet dipes up to dry. Best of luck with your journey!

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  15. Good morning! I've been using cloth diapers for 3+ years now. You can stop by and check out everything. I'll send you my cell number through FB.

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  16. Hi there. My experience has been wonderful and I was so clueless and intimidated at the beginning. I researched so much until I finally decided on the Bummies starter kit, which is organic and brings 24 prefolds and 6 covers. There's so many options out there, but I do recommend Bummies, which is an excellent brand and high-quality product. The kit comes in two sizes, infant and large. My 7 month old uses the large size. It's a super good deal too. It brings the wet bag which you use to store the dirty diapers until your wash and some really durable liners, which are a must if you use diaper ointment. After you acquire this kit, you can buy individual covers as they go on sale or at your convenience, there are so many good brands out there too, Thristies, Fuzzibunz, etc. As for the shop, I highly recommend Nicki's Diapers, they are so good, have deals all the time, the shipping is free and the prices are so competitive. Just keep in mind that you will need prefolds no matter what system you choose if you go cloth, so the ideal is to get the kit. The large size claims to be food until potty training, so you will never have to buy prefolds again. I bought this kit and supplemented with other covers, one-size and sized ones too (I prefer the aplix rather than the snaps, it's much easier on your hands and they are quite durable) As far as the washing. I started using the Rocking' Green but it had to be expensive so now I use arm and hammer oxi dye and fragrance free and it works great and i dont have an efficient washer either so i do a double rinse, to get the detergent completely out. good luck if you have any questions email me i'm glad to help out.

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  17. I was typing with my baby in arms, I see many misspellings now, sorry about that.

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  18. I have cloth diapered for about a year and a half now and currently have 3 in diapers (almost 3 year old, 13 month old and 4 week old). I started using pockets, Bumgenius and Fuzzibunz and regret spending the money on the expensive diapers because I've come to find that plain old prefolds and flats, with a few cotton fitteds thrown into the mix as they are so much easier to maintain. My favorite fitteds are from www.greenmountaindiapers.com (the workhorse diapers are awesome) the Diaper Rite prefolds and flats from www.diaperjunction.com are our main diaper. Diaper Junction have been my favorite store and Nicki's is a close second behind them (shipping on covers are free). Thirsties sized covers and Blueberry Coveralls, both in aplix are a good fit on my boys that have completely different body types.
    We do not have an HE machine and from what I have read that is actually preferred for cloth diaper laundering. I started with Rocking' Green also and found not only was it expensive but that it wasn't getting them clean either and after trying several of the "natural" detergents I've settled on Tide Free and Clear and have been loving it for awhile now.
    My main advice is to not buy too much of any one thing until you've tried it out and know that you love it then order what you think you will need. I regret buying the over 2 dozen pocket diapers I have that are now sitting in a trash bag in the basement because they just don't work for us. Also, www.diaperpin.com has a great forum and reviews sections. The mama's are full of advice and support. Good luck and even though it is a little bit extra work, I'm so glad that we took the plunge when my oldest was about 16 months old.

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  19. We have been cding since my 20-month old daughter was a few days old. We mostly just use the plain old prefolds and it has worked great for us. No HE washer here either! The only thing I can add to all of the other posts is that we use the flushable liners to catch poop. The liners can actually be washed several times before they fall apart... so if it's just a wet diaper, we throw the liners in the bin with the 'to be washed' diapers and if's a poopy diaper, the liner gets dumped in the toliet. Easy clean-up and still way cheaper than buying disposables all the time!

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  20. hey robyn, i came across your blog via the lee's blog, and i just saw this post on cloth diapers and couldn't not comment! i have a 2 month old and so I'm just starting, but I've done a TON of research and asked a lot of mamas, so i wanted to pass on some of the info I've received!

    I have heard that the Bumgenius brand is by far the best, and so far that has proved true for me. I tried lots of different ones, and I didn't really like any other ones. (fuzzibunz are the most comparable, but still leak more than bumgenius).

    The most common Bumgenius cloth diaper is the 4.0, one size, pocket diaper. but I think the Elemental or the brand new Freetime are better, because they are all in ones, which make it a lot easier, especially when you have to wash them every couple of days. They run about $20 a diaper, but I think you get what you pay for, and you can just start to accumulate over time so you don't have a huge upfront cost!

    A few more tips for cloth diapering:
    -The Planet Wise diaper pail liner is great and isn't too expensive.
    http://planetwiseinc.com/Planet_Wise_Diaper_Pail_Liner_38_cat.html

    - Bumgenius diaper sprayer hooks up to your toilet and gets the poop out of the diapers (once they are eating solids, when they're exclusively breastfeeding it all goes straight into the wash). This way you don't have to swish them in the toilet by hand.
    http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=4060019&prodFindSrc=search

    - Cotton Babies is the online retailer who manufactures and sells bumgenius, and they have a 30 day satisfaction guarantee, so try a few diapers from there and return which ones you don't like!
    http://www.cottonbabies.com/

    I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any questions!

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    1. I disagree about BumGenius. They are my least favorite of the diapers in my stash--in fact, now that I have enough, I don't even use the BumGenius anymore. I love my ComfyRumps and AppleCheeks best (which is funny, because they are at opposite ends of the price spectrum). I don't know, though, what it's like to use a new BG diaper, as the ones I was using were pre-owned. (I hated the Velcro--it just didn't hold up.)

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  21. You might have already made your choices, but I followed your link about soap from Simple Mom today.

    My absolute favorite diapers (and I've tried Bum Genius, FuzziBunz, MotherEase fitteds) --- flats from Green Mountain Diapers in Flips covers. Economical, one-size, and easy to wash.

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  22. One more thing, some of the cloth diaper forums are more about the newest fad diaper ... I mean, some of those new diapers sell for crazy prices.

    My favorite diaper forum is Diaper Pin, and many mamas on that forum use flats now, and I read there that they felt modern cloth diapers is more about the covers than the actual absorbency.

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