First, lets talk about the system we’ve got going on. I have a tall garbage can and two cloth diaper pail liners. These liners are waterproof on the inside. I use one liner a day, switching them out every morning when I wash the diapers. I just dump the contents and the liner into the washing machine together (more on the washing process below). I also have a small plastic bag attached to the inside for dirty disposable wipes. That bag gets replaced everyday as well. The key to making our system very user friendly is pre-stuffing the diapers as soon as they are clean. That way nobody has to worry about stuffing diapers with a fussy baby on the changing table. Once stuffed, they open up and go on just like a regular diaper. Easy peasy.
1) Leaving the garbage can open and allowing air in has kept the smell to a minimum. Washing everyday also helps, but I do that because I only have enough diapers for one day. Although, if I had enough diapers I would stretch the washing out to every other day.
2) We have a diaper sprayer attached to the toilet, but I don’t use it right now because breastfeeding makes for very watery (and water-soluble) poop. When he starts on solids that will all change.
Washing Our Diapers
Washing cloth diapers is super simple. Don’t let the internet scare you here. I simply do a bold rinse/spin cycle without detergent, then a hot wash with a cloth diaper safe detergent (I use Planet Ultra Powder). Using the right detergent will help you avoid losing absorbency due to buildup and, therefore, avoid leaks. I also make sure not to dry them with a dryer sheet, which can also cause buildup.
1) If you need to strip your prefolds (not microfiber), simply do one hot wash cycle with a cup of vinegar, then one hot wash with detergent. But don’t even get me started on microfiber inserts…those gave me leak problems, even after stripping and avoiding diaper rash cream, so I quit using them. More on that in the gDiaper review below.
2) Diaper rash happens, so make sure you have a cloth diaper safe cream on hand. I use California Baby Calming Diaper Rash Cream (available at Target) at every diaper change as a barrier and have not had any trouble with absorbency.
The gDiapers were a gift from my cousin. I don’t think they had ever been used before, so they were basically brand new. Here are my pros and cons:
- The small gPants fit a newborn perfectly. I love how snug they are on a little bottom compared to most cloth diapers.
- The colors and fabric are dreamy.
- Velcro in the back = genius.
- gDiapers have a disposable, biodegradable insert option for parents on the go.
- This who system is super easy to use.
- The gCloth inserts are microfiber and started leaking almost immediately. Even after stripping and avoiding the use of diaper rash cream, they still leaked. I had to improvise then – I had Drew’s aunt cut some larger prefolds in half and sew the seams so they would fit into the small gPants. No more leaks!
- These diapers started showing wear and tear after the first washing, which is disappointing since they are sp cute.
- gDiapers are not adjustable, so moving up in size happens pretty quickly. This is no fun since gDiapers are pretty pricey.
- Disposable inserts cost more than disposable diapers, but since you can flush them it may be worth it to you.
Verdict: I love the fit on a newborn, but would not use or buy these if they had not been given to me. The cost and quick wear and tear outweighs the cuteness. That being said, I do love them and they were free soooo win/win.
Thirsties Duo Wrap Snap Review
- Once the baby has gained a couple of pounds, these covers fit great.
- These are adjustable and grow with the baby, with only two sizes from newborn to potty training.
- Snap closures will make it more difficult for those little hands to remove the diaper.
- Cute colors and patterns.
- Hold up well in the wash and dry very quickly.
- Can be wiped out and reused without washing if the piping stays clean.
- The organic cotton prefolds from Green Mountain Diapers are amazing, soft and super absorbent. We use them for absolutely everything, from burp cloths to diapers.
- Bulky on a newborn.
- Not as soft and fluffy as the gDiapers.
- The Flip inserts don’t work well in these and leaked just like the gCloth inserts.
Verdict: These are a great buy! I will continue to use Thirsties covers with prefolds for as long as Westley is in diapers.
Real Nappies Review
I don’t have much to say about these yet because the covers, although one-size, are too big for W right now. They were used and given to me by a friend, but from the little research I’ve done I can say that they are very affordable and the prefolds are extremely absorbent (I had some of them cut in half to use with the gDiapers).
Verdict: Jury is still out.
So there you have it! Our extremely long and incredibly detailed adventures in cloth diapering. Got questions? Suggestions? Advice? What kind of cloth diaper system do you use? Leave a comment and let me know!
(And if you’re a company that would like some diapers reviewed, I love handouts. For real. Bring it.)