we started cloth diapers with lucy when she was one week old. we use a lot of different brands – some i got second hand off facebook marketplace (look for gently used diapers that still have strong elastic bands for the legs – or know someone who can replace CD elastics), some i got from a friend (s/o to my friend jessi – thanks girl!), some i got off amazon. i love this brand – they’re affordable, easily accessible thanks to 2 day prime shipping, clean up nicely, fit great, and are SO durable!
between washes, i store dirty diapers in a machine washable wet bag lined trash can with a lid. we also use cloth wipes instead of disposable wipes because it’s easier to just throw everything in the diaper bin than separate a disposable wipe and throw it away. i got a small spray bottle from target and fill it with water to spray the wipes before i use them.
did you know it takes about 500 years for a diaper to decompose in a landfill? did you also know that newborns poop literally NON STOP and you could easily go through 10 diapers a day!? did you also know that disposable diapers are expensive? while cloth diapers are expensive up front, you wash and reuse them so much that they end up costing less than pennies per use even when you account for the detergent, water use, and wear on your washing machine.
first, you should do some research on the different cloth diapers available. we have an assortment of all in one (AIO) diapers and pocket diapers. there are benefits to both : AIO are ready right out of the dryer unlike pocket diapers which require you to use microfiber or cloth inserts, but with pocket diapers you can adjust the inserts depending if you have a heavy wetting baby. how many cloth diapers you purchase depends on how frequently you want to wash your diapers, but i would say you need a minimum of 20 diapers to go 2 days between washes.
after you decide on your diapers, you should figure out your washing routine. i wash my cloth diapers on tuesdays, thursdays, and sundays. i looked up my wash routine on fluff love university’s washing machine index. for my washing machine, i do a quick wash with cold water and no detergent, then an hour and half cycle using hot water with scent-free detergent (i love target’s scent free detergent!) and borax. you can either put everything in the dryer, or hang dry the diapers and throw the inserts in the dryer.
my wash routine takes about 3 hours start to finish.
what about poop?
babies are on a liquid diet for the first 6 months, so their poops are just liquid. there is no need to pre-rinse newborn poop diapers before you do your regular wash routine – seriously! once your baby starts solids, you just dump the solid waste in the toilet or use a diaper sprayer attachment for the toilet and spray the solids in the toilet.
cloth diapering isn’t for everyone. it is a pretty big time commitment – i spend about 10 hours each week washing and folding diapers. a majority of that time is hands off though (waiting for one wash cycle to be done before starting the next, switching to the dryer, etc).
we do still use disposable diapers overnight. i stopped changing lucy’s diaper overnight pretty early and i found that in order for her not to pee out of her cloth diaper overnight, i had to put so many inserts in her diaper that her pajamas wouldn’t fit, even after sizing up. i encountered this problem with claire and just found that overnight disposables worked for our family. i know some CD mamas also use disposables when going out of town or to the store.
would you cloth diaper? i would love to know your thoughts!