Monday, October 10, 2005

Alright cloth users, sell me

I've really been going back and forth about cloth diapering. I have some questions I need answered first and although I can probably find the answers on the web I wanted to hear it from the people I know (sort of) and trust (you all seem trustworthy). Some of these may sound completely ignorant but hey, I won't know if I don't ask. And no reason to point out the environmental benefits of using cloth, that much I know! (I have some friends that probably cannot believe I'm even concidering this!)

1. What all do I need to use a cloth diaper. It seems like you need inserts and covers and all kinds of other stuff.
2. How do they close, do they still use pins like the Grandma days (example of said ignorance)
3. How many diapers (and all the other stuff you need) do you need approximately to make it a week without doing laundry because Lord knows I'm not about to be doing laundry every day.
4. Is there any special way to clean them
5. The ones I've seen on babies sometimes look so big and bulky I worry about clothes fitting him well (or looking silly because this is all about vainity) do they come "compact"
6. J flies through the disposable sizes, if I buy all my gear will he outgrow it in a month or do their sizes cover a bigger range
7. How do you store them when they are dirty before laundry day
8. How do you get breastfed runny poops off of them before washing, it's not like a hard turd I can roll into the toilet. Do they get all stained?
9. Are they more leakproof than disposable
10. About how much money have you spent on your supplies (question for the bread-winning Papa)
11. What are your favorite suppliers
12. Are they hard to put on correctly, is it a learned skill? Because a monkey can put on a disposable.
13. Do you need to change them more frequently? I'm assuming you do b/c that is one of the benefits that a baby isn't sitting in a dirty diaper since they make disposables so absorbent these days. I'm worried about being out for a whole day and having to bring a suitcase full of diaper supplies when disposables are so compact.
14. Have any of your husbands refused to change diapers once you started using cloth because it's "so much more work?"
15. What are some benefits to using cloth (again, not talking environmentally here!)

Hmmm, I think I forgot a few but this will get me started. Hopefully I'll get some responses but if not, the web is calling my name.


Blogger Elaine said...

OMG, that's a lot of great questions. I'm going to have to email you when I can get all my answers together bc I don't think there's enough room in comments for the answers!

11:28 PM  
Blogger The Mom said...

Wow, the balls on you to even consider this! I have to say, I don't think I could ever do it. I'm just talking out of my ass here, but I think you'd have a service that would pick up your soiled diapers and drop off fresh ones. When you're dealing with poop, I don't know that you can get them clean enough at home not to have to worry about harboring bacteria, etc. Good for you for considering giving it a try. I can see how going out for the day can be troublesome, but probably not more so than having to worry about bottles, etc. for a bottlefed baby (I remember that was a production with Emily, but we managed). I'll be interested to read some of the cloth-diaper-using-mommies responses.

7:03 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

I too am curious what the answers are -- I am considering cloth on weekends and other days we are home, but still using disposables for outings and babysitters. I too worry about the bulk and I have heard they are leakier than disposable.
Oh and Ryan blew through sizes at first but has been wearing size 3 since April!!!

7:22 AM  
Blogger fuzzypeach said...

Indeed, a lot of q's. I'll give it a shot.

1. Depends totally on what kind of 'diapering system' you have. There are all-in-ones, which have their own cover and everything, there are just prefolds which require pins/snappi and a cover, and fitted diapers, which are , uh, self-held-on by snaps, but also require a cover. You can get fancier with doublers (for added absorbancy) and liners (fleece or suedecloth helps the baby not feel the wet).

2. There is a little plastic y shaped contraption called a snappi you can use in place of pins if you're using prefolds, or if you're using a fitted or other fancier diaper, they have snaps or velcro.

3. You might not be able to go a week without doing laundry, because of the stink. In summer I had to do it every two days, otherwise they'd mildew. Now I'm going three days between washings. Before we started ecing, I didn't have enough to go that long. So I had about 45 diapers, that lasted me long enough to wash every other day. I use just prefolds and covers, except at night, when I use fuzzibunz which are pocket diapers, with inserts.

4. Cold prewash/rinse to prevent stains from setting without soap, hot wash to get em clean with soap.

5. All in ones and pocket diapers are very trim.

6. I would say it depends on the diaper, but in general I think there is a wider range. With prefolds especially, I've been using the same size since Pearl was born.

7. I store mine in a trash bag in a trash can. Nice, huh? I meant to get a special wet bag but the one i ordered was too small and I've never gotten another one...

8. I don't do anything special for poopies. Sometimes they do stain, but letting them dry in the sun gets the stains out, or at least lightens them a great deal. Haven't had any permanent stains yet.

9. Again, this will depend on the diaper you use. You have to get a prefold on pretty damn good to contain poopies, near impossible with Pearl the Wiggler. But the fitted diapers do better at it. I can't really compare to sposies as I've never used them much.

10. At this point, prolly around $300, which is less than we would've spent on disposables. Prefolds are super cheap, less than two bucks a diaper, and there are diapers out there that cost $26. Another good thing about cloth diapers, especially the higher-end ones, is that they resell GREAT on ebay. I know it seemed kind of weird to me at first, but after all, they get cleaned.

11. has a great selection and great prices, and they're superspeedy. there is a lot more out there then they supply though. has lots of reviews on diapers and stores too i think.

12. Again, depends. All in ones are just as easy as disposables. Pocket diapers have snaps, so a little less easy than velcro-ed all in ones, but still very easy. Prefolds would be the hardest, as you have to fold them, snappi them, then get the cover on.

13. You're prolly getting sick of hearing this, but it depends! With prefolds I change every pee. With pocket diapers, as many pees as will be absorbed.

14. My husband definitely prefers the pocket diapers over the prefolds as they are much easier, but he prefers cloth over disposables because they feel so much better on baby, much more comfy. He also likes the frugality of it.

15. Cheaper. Feels better on baby. Also there are some really, really cute diapers out there, lovely artistic stuff and what not. You can get custom diapers made, lots of work-at-home moms have online diaper making businesses, so you can support them if you so chose. They have high resale value. Sposies are not just bad for the environment but also for babies - the chemical used in making the gel is sposies, sodium polyacrylate, has been linked to increased childhood asthma and decrease in sperm count in boys. here is an article:,1282,63182,00.html

Well, hope that was helpful! :)

7:57 AM  
Blogger Candice said...

Try I just figured out I could buy a reusable swimmy diaper for Cole instead of trying to find disposables in winter. We never tried cloth diapers, and I wish we had. Anyhow, the above website has some really good FAQ's about how much to buy and such!

11:32 AM  
Blogger Candice said...

Sorry. the link is no "W".

11:33 AM  
Anonymous Carol said...

I'll email you too but in the mean time, check out :) Great resource.

Cloth diapers ROCK!

Oh, and if you decide to go with cloth, definately get one of these: -- mine broke after several years of abuse so I'm without one right now and it SUUUUCKKKKS!

11:44 AM  
Blogger Melissa said...

This is's shop and she has an extensive FAQ section.

12:35 PM  
Blogger bmoremel said...

when i lived in dc, i used stork dy dee service (301-739-1143) and it was fantastic. they delivered a supply of diapers weekly, which was usually the right amount, plus an odorless pail and bags.

1:17 PM  
Anonymous Carol said...

Oh, I love, now known as Very good service!

3:11 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

Thanks for posting these questions Cara. I wanted to use cloth w/ Millie and Holden but knew I was out of my gourd since I had NO IDEA what I was doing w/ twins anyways. Parker isn't sold at all, but I think Tiny is gonna be a cloth baby... well, at least a cloth baby when s/he is with me. (diposables w/ daddy) Anyhoo.. thanks for asking all the questions I wanted to ask but didn't know where to turn.


7:39 AM  
Blogger Elaine said...

I was so gonna write you a long email on this and then I read fuzzypeach's reply and I have nothing to add. So, yeah! Just read her reply again and put my name on the top and we're done. WEEEEEE!

P.S. I do have to say, "harboring bacteria"? Pshaaaw! Not an issue. Besides, have you seen what kids put in their mouths these days? Something strapped to their ass is the LEAST of my worries (but they do get plenty clean, yo).

11:23 AM  
Blogger Kira said...

regarding #8 - my friend used to use these paper liners for that, which made them easier to clean.
i didn't cloth diaper and good luck to you if you do.

11:23 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

all i have to say is FUZZIBUNZ.

10:23 AM  

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