We are now almost 2 years into this little cloth diaper experiment. I’ve learned so much and am still picking up new info every week. I’ll probably get the whole thing totally mastered by the time Mini Bear potty trains. Today I’m sharing with you the top five things I’ve learned from our first 20+ months of using cloth.
1. Diapers We Love:
If you read our about Great Cloth Diaper Trials you know that we’ve tried and tested 11 different kinds of cloth diapers. We are now up to 14. Out of control. Not all of the brands we tried worked for us, but we do have a few that we absolutely love and we are always looking to try more. Our all time favorite brand is Softbums. We’re obsessed and they make up the bulk of our diaper stash. We also love the Bumgenius 4.0 and Freetime. We use our Bumgenius Elemental, but the drying time takes it from a love to a like. I love Apple Cheeks diapers, but Jed is not as big of a fan. I loved the 1 size two AC we had so hard the elastic is now busted. Anyone want to fix it for me? We love our Bummis swim diaper, and our Bunzuke bandana diaper is still in the rotation as well. That Bunzuke is so cute and hard to find I will never give it up. The rest we’ve sold. Which brings me to #2.
2. The Cloth Diaper World:
Did you know there is a whole underground world of cloth diaper people out there? We DO exist. There are Buy/Sell/Trade groups and fan pages on Facebook for every major brand. There are local cloth diaper swaps. There are forums where you can learn everything you every wanted to know about every diaper on the market. I’ve sold all of our used cloth diapers we didn’t love because they work really well for other people. I’ve bought used diapers from people who didn’t like our favorite brands. There are cloth diaper meet ups and mom groups in most major cities. The cloth diaper world is amazing, and I love being part of it. Before we started this experiment, I looked to blogs to learn everything I could. That’s why I now post about what I’ve learned to share with you.
3. The Laundry:
The cloth diaper laundry is no longer intimidating. You can read about our original simple cloth diaper laundry routine here. We just switched to Rockin Green detergent because of a hard water issue at the new house. Our new routine is one cold wash, one hot wash, extra rinse. We use 1 TBSP of Rockin Green in both cycles. That’s it. Then we hang the dipes up to dry and dry the pods and inserts on low. We now have the routine down pretty well and do a load every other day and never run out, even giving the diapers overnight to dry.
4. Over Night Cloth Solutions:
We struggled with this for a LONG time. Bear is a super heavy wetter and I thought we would never find the right fix. Bear would literally explode an over night disposable diaper, but we couldn’t find a cloth solution that worked either. Finally after begging for help from Twitter and Facebook friends as well as in cloth diaper forums, and visiting my two local shops, we have found a solution that works for our super heavy wetter. We use a waterproof cover (Rumparooz and Tiny Tush), two Grovia bamboo prefolds with one of them folded in half towards the front, two microfiber inserts (one in half towards the front and one flat on top of everything else), and two fleece liners covering the microfiber. It makes the fluffiest booty you’ve ever seen, but it works.
5. Cloth Diapering Really is Easy, Cheap, and Doable
It’s true. Maybe not for everyone, but it is true for me. I had many doubters when I first started talking about cloth, but thankfully I’m stubborn enough to prove them wrong. If you are interested in using cloth diapers, do your research and go for it. Don’t buy all one brand though, because that brand might not work for your babe. There are a few specific things that have made it easier on me as we have gone on. Our diaper sprayer is magnificent. We bought the Bumgenius diaper sprayer and have it attached to the toilet in one of our bathrooms. We keep our diaper pail beside it and after the dipes get sprayed they go straight into the potty. Totally easy. We use a simple Ikea pail with a lid. The other thing that makes it easier is having a bigger stash. We wash every other day and let them dry overnight, and still have enough to make it through. It just makes my life better if I’m not doing laundry every day, and is totally worth the investment. You can do this. If you want to. You will save around $2000 per kid and thousands of disposable diapers from the landfill (which don’t biodegrade for over 500 years!). I believe it’s worth it.
Do you use cloth diapers? If so, what’s one thing you’ve learned from cloth diapering?