About Cloth Diapers

Here is a list of what we currently have for diapers and accessories (and I will do my best to update this and keep it current!).  A note: pockets generally come with microfiber inserts.  I despise microfiber, it leaks.  I stuff all of our pockets (except the babykicks) with prefolds.  We rarely have leaks with cotton stuffing.  I found that the microfiber inserts fit perfectly onto the end of my swiffer wet mop.  I secured with a rubber-band at each end and mop away.  Whaddya know!

I am more than happy to to help you figure out your own system.  Just email me, I love diaper shopping 🙂

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  • 10 BumGenius 4.0 pockets
  • 13 Kawaii pockets
  • 4 Babykicks Premium pockets (w/ 4 Joeybunz Prem. inserts)
  • 2 Rumparooz pockets
  • 1 Thirsties pocket
  • 6 Babykicks Organic fitteds (w/ 6 Joeybunz Prem. inserts)
  • 4 Thirsties Duo Snap Wrap covers size 1
  • 4 Thirstes Duo Snap Wrap covers size 2
  • 4 Diaper Safari covers
  • 1 Rumparooz coverIMG_20131229_153045
  • 18 Osocozy Better Fit Premium size prefolds
  • 12 Osocozy unbleached prefolds size 1
  • 12 Osocozy unbleached prefolds size 2
  • 6 Diaper Safari Bamboo/Microfleece Trifolds
  • 4 Thirsties hemp doublers size 1
  • 4 Thirsties hemp doublers size 2
  • 7 Babykicks hemp inserts (4 large, 3 medium)
  • 3 dozen BumGenius flannel wipes
  • 10 Grovia terry wipes
  • 12 Bummis flannel wipes
  • 2 Pail liners (Planetwise, Kissaluvs)
  • 2 Planetwise Wetbags (1 Medium for diapers, 1 small for wipes)
  • CJs BUTTer unscented/Triple Paste
  • 2 pairs Boingo fasteners
  • 3 wool covers (1 Disana, 1 Kissaluvs, 1 Sustainablebabyish (isn’t that the most ridiculous name for a brand?))

Our Wash Routine – Our machines are the traditional style top-loader and agitator and high/low heat dryer – nothing fancy.  Wash with water level on medium-large depending on how large you load is.  I have heard the water level described as stew consistency not soup. Do not use anything scented, and no fabric softeners; they cause buildup and your diapers to repel.  We wash every 2-3 days.

Detergent: Tide Original Powder

  • Warm short wash, no detergent (to clear away the initial pee/poo)
  • Hot heavy wash, with a full scoop of detergent (to the 3rd line of the included scooper). A rinse is built in to the wash cycle

Following BumGenius recommendations, I add 1/4 bleach to the bleach dispenser during the rinse cycle of the Hot wash every couple of months.  It helps refresh everything and clears up any residual smells or residue that might be lingering.  Following a bleach wash, I will do an extra rinse to make sure it’s washed out.

Hang dry pockets, covers, wet bags, and pail liners; it preserves the life of PUL and elastics.  Prefolds, fitteds, and wipes are dried in the dryer.  A note: the sun is a natural whitener.  When the weather permits I always hang covers and such on a clothesline in the sun.  When the prefolds, inserts, and fitteds are looking a little sad I hang them in the sun too.  Since they dry very stiffly in the sun, toss ’em into the dryer for 5-10 minutes to soften up.

Our Nighttime Diaper Solution – Once the twins started sleeping longer stretches at night around 4 months old, it became clear that they needed extra absorbency to make it through with dry clothes and sheets. I added a few fitted diapers, tried the babykicks first and never looked back. The fitted and a PUL cover worked great for a long time. At 11 months they started waking up with wet pjs again (dang toddler pee). I added a hemp doubler between the fitted and the cover and that solved the problem most nights. I have been eyeing wool covers for awhile as I hear they are the ultimate answer to no leaks overnight. I finally took the plunge at 17 months. I use them just like the PUL cover, fitted first, hemp doubler on top, wool cover over all. So far I like them a lot, they don’t leave any marks on the skin like the PUL covers do, the wool is SO soft, and they seem to do a pretty good job containing the nighttime overflow.

Wool Maintenance – To get my wool in true non-leaking order I had to do some pretty heavy lanolizing. Once everything has soaked up enough lanolin they are good to go for a month, or even longer. You can wash as often as needed in between lanolin soaks. Unless poop gets on the wool, a quick wash every 2-4 weeks is what we are doing. The wool resists pee smells (awesome), and you’ll know when it’s wash day when it starts smelling a little. I am using CJs Wool Wash which contains some lanolin and does help extend time between lanolin soaks, though you can use any fragrance free baby wash. To lanolize I am using Now organics solid lanolin. It seems like a lot of work, but once you get used to the process it is really quick. Waiting for stuff to dry is the longest part of it.

    • In warm water (warmer than warm, but still too cool for a bath) rinse your wool, squeezing the fibers to help the water soak in. Fill sink or basin with enough warm water to cover your wool and add a capful of your wool wash. I add oh, maybe about a teaspoon per item. Turn your wool inside out and swish around in your water. If you are washing new wool, you can rub the wool against itself in the wet zones to help pull the fibers closer together which will improve its waterproof-ness. Let it soak at least 10 min, I usually let it sit until the water gets cool. If just washing you’re all done. Leave woolies in the sink and let the water drain through. Fold the items in half and half again and squeeze water out, then roll up in a dry towel to remove as much water as possible. Do not wring dry. Lay flat to dry.
    • To lanolize, after you wash, squeeze water from your woolies and set aside. Put a small amount of wool wash in a small container (like a travel size shampoo bottle) and about 1/2 teaspoon of solid lanolin. Fill about halfway with very hot tap water and shake shake shake until the lanolin is completely dissolved. While you’re shaking, refill the sink with warm water and add your lanolin mixture. Add your wool inside out and massage the water through the material for a bit until the wool is saturated. Submerge it as best you can and let soak like before, at least 10 min, but as long as you like. Let water drain through the wool, roll in a towel, and hang dry.
    • If you need a little extra waterproofing, you can rub a little lanolin on your dry woolies in the wet zones, that helps me a lot.

To “Prep” new diapers – When you receive new diapers you need to prep them before first use.  Synthetic materials like microfiber, fleece, pockets, covers, etc need to be prepped separately from natural materials like cotton, hemp, and bamboo.

The synthetic stuff just needs to be washed and dried once with detergent and it is ready to go.

To prep natural fibers wash 4 or 5 times.  Use detergent with the first wash, and then every other wash cycle.  Be sure to dry after each wash cycle.  You don’t need to do go through the whole dirty diaper routine, just wash and dry.  If you are just prepping a few things, you can washing with a sheets or towels to help make up a whole load of laundry.  Natural fibers reach maximum absorbency after 10 washes or so, but you can start using on the baby after 5.

A Few Notes – I had very little trial and error with my wash routine, so this stuff just pertains to my experience.

      • You will have staining no matter what. The diapers are clean, I promise. Drying in the sun helps a lot.
      • I only used 2 tbsp detergent until 12 months of age…when I thought my diapers smelled just a little.  Not dirty exactly, just a scent whereas they didn’t before.  A little extra detergent solved it.  I think toddler pee is much stronger than infant pee and hangs around.
      • Around 18 mths the diapers were clearly not getting clean enough, you could smell dirty diapers while they were in the dryer, 4 tbsps was not enough. I did 2 rounds of strip soak, after which my diapers were pristine, and started using a full tide scoop of detergent. Things are much better. To strip soak: fill your washing machine or bathtub with very hot water, add 3 x’s the amount of detergent as normal and all your inserts/prefolds/doublers/wipes. Anything with PUL shouldn’t be soaked. Let it soak for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Finish with a rinse in the machine and dry as usual.
      • Of course rinse poop before you wash.  Infant poop before they start solids can just be thrown in the wash without rinsing, it’s totally water soluble.
      • We used exclusively prefolds and covers, and washed diapers every day until the twins were about 2-3 months old.  That is when they started fitting into the pockets better.
      • About rashes…be careful with rash creams and avoid any with fish oil listed as an ingredient.  Triple Paste is fine to use when your baby has a rash or even a little redness, but ONLY with natural materials like cotton prefolds.  NEVER use a rash cream with a lined pocket.  I use CJs BUTTer with every type of diaper and at every change.  Coconut Oil is also a good choice.  I give the twins some air time every day going no diaper or using just a prefold no cover.

How many diapers in a day?  This is totally based on my own experiences and numbers may be skewed cause I diaper twins…also on your preference for frequency of changing.

Babies 0-3 mths: you want about 10-12 diapers/day, and if you wash every day, you need a few to get you through until the wash is done.  18 prefolds and 4 covers would work pretty well.  I did a bunch of hand-washing of covers when they all got dirty…’cause infant poop is runny.  It rarely leaked onto clothing, but onto the inner covers definitely).  If you want to wash every other day I would say at least 24-30 prefolds and 6 covers.  If you have extra money to spend on newborn size stuff go for it, but I made do nicely with the size 1 covers and prefolds.  For reference, the twins were 6lbs and 6.5lbs at birth and we’ve had them in cloth since we came home from the hospital.

Babies 3 mths and up: This is when the twins started fitting well into the one-size pockets, around 12 lbs.  They were using fewer diapers by this point, probably closer 7-8 in a day rather than 10-12.  To wash every 2 days, I would suggest any combination of fitteds/All-in-One/pockets/covers & prefolds amounting to 20 changes.  At 3 mths, our cloth supply was still in its beginning stages.  Per baby I had 11 pockets, 1 fitted (nighttime diaper), 3 covers, 6 prefolds.  I would suggest having a few more than that as our diapers started showing wear at the end of the first year since they were in such heavy use.

Babies 5 mths: This is when the twins outgrew their Thirsties size 1 covers.  The size 2s were still a little big, and the size 2 prefolds are still huge.  I started exclusively using the size 1 prefolds in pockets.  I still (after 15 mths) conveniently re-purpose them as stuffing in pockets.  I invested in some one-size covers and the better fit prefolds and trifolds.

Babies from 1 year: Since about 6-7 mths of age we use about 6 diapers/day including nighttime.  The big change at this stage was the nighttime diaper.  Since around 4 mths of age the fitted and a cover were working perfectly for overnights (7:30pm-7am with no changes unless necessary).  At 11 mths they were leaking b/c the absorbency was maxed out.  One of the thirsties hemp inserts on top of the fitted and under the cover was the solution.  I did a lot of research on wool covers for night and might still go this way, especially if we start getting leaks again.

Babies from 18 mths: They started peeing through the nighttime combos again. I added a third hemp insert and went for the wool covers. Finally, something they’re not destroying with so. much. pee.

My babies at 24 mths: Both showed signs of potty interest around 20 mths. Lucie potty trained easily at 23mths, and is still using a diaper to sleep in (and hates it). Teddy took a few more weeks but on his 2nd birthday he had his first successful outing in undies and used a potty while we were out. So I’m proud to say both twins were daytime potty trained by their 2nd birthday!

Nighttime training: I let this happen on its own. Lucie started staying dry for naps a few months before her 3rd birthday and the week before her birthday stayed dry overnight consistently. I bought a few pairs of Ecoposh trainers to help with overnight accidents but she wears undies 100% since about 3years and 2mths. Teddy started staying dry for naps and sometimes overnight around 3yrs and 3mths and one month later he is staying dry overnight as well. At 3yrs and 4mths he’s wearing the trainers overnight, but expect in a couple weeks to lose those too.

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Clockwise from top-left: BG 4.0 in Grasshopper, Thirsties snapwrap cover size 1 with a prefold and boingos under, Rumparooz stuffed with size 1 prefold, Babykicks fitted

Some Basic Terms:

(I don’t know everything obviously, but this is what I’ve picked up along the way)

PUL – a waterproof material used with most diaper cover systems.

Pocket – a diaper with an outer PUL layer and an inner “stay-dry” layer (ie. microfleece, suedecloth) with a pocket in between containing absorbent layers; generally must be un-stuffed for washing and re-stuffed afterwards.

AIO – “all-in-one;” essentially like a pocket except that all layers are attached; no stuffing required.

AI2 – “all-in-two;” AKA Hybrid; a system with a waterproof cover and absorbent inserts that snap into the cover.

Prefold – a rectangular flat diaper with extra absorbent layers in the middle; can be folded around a baby and secured with a fastener, or in thirds and laid in a cover/stuffed in a pocket; require a waterproof cover.

Flat – a large square of material in a single layer; can be folded any number of ways around a baby and secured with a fastener, laid in a cover, or stuffed; require a cover

Cover – made from a waterproof material like PUL and used to cover absorbent layers of a diaper, generally unlined.

Fitted –  a diaper with no waterproof layer; snaps on like a regular diaper and is waterproof all over; very good at containing messes.

Fasteners – Snappi or Boingo; used to secure a prefold or flat around baby.

Aplix – AKA “hook and loop” or velcro; an alternative diaper closure to snaps.

One-Size – an adjustable sized diaper usually covering 10-35 lbs; adjusted either with snap “rises” on the front of the diaper or hidden toggles on the leg elastics.

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