It’s been a long while since I’ve blogged about how we plan to use cloth diapers on here. I have some really old posts in my archives from when I first cloth diapered my oldest- EIGHT YEARS AGO. Holy cow.
In some ways, a lot has changed, but what hasn’t changed is that I’m STILL using bumGenius diapers by Cotton Babies. So it’s super exciting that this year they are working with me on a series of posts as I embark on cloth diapering my 4th baby, including sponsoring this post.
Newborn Cloth Diapering
To start, I’m thrilled to have 18 bumGenius Littles on hand for the tiny newborn phase. This will be the first time I’m using these, but I’m hopeful they will be just as effective and easy to use as the full-size (one-size) bumGenius diapers. While I usually prefer snaps over hook & loop closures, I think having h&l for newborn size is just perfect because sometimes you’re too tired to operate snaps, like when you have a newborn.
Because these are sized specially for babies 6-12 lbs, they are far less bulky than regular size cloth diapers on a tiny bottom. They are also designed to rest below baby’s belly button to keep the umbilical area dry. The ultra absorbent microfiber core and waterproof outer layer are all one piece, meaning there is no stuffing required. They go on and come off just like a disposable diaper. Another win for exhausted parents!
*A note on investing in newborn size diapers- I’ve used newborn sized diapers on all my babies (I did fitteds with covers for the other 3), and I think it was a worthwhile investment if you can swing it. You won’t be using these diapers nearly as long, so they will make it through more than one baby with no issue, and retain great resale value.
In fact, you can even sell them back to Cotton Babies, along with many other sizes and brands of cloth diapers, via the Cotton Babies buy back program.
Infant to Toddler Cloth Diapering
Once baby outgrows the Littles, we’re moving right along to bumGenius Freetime and Elemental one-size diapers. I’ll have about 30 of these once I finally get the diapers I used with the other kids out of the attic, but a stash of 18-24 should be plenty for one baby.
With my first and second babies, I used mostly bumGenius pocket diapers, and they were wonderful, but I really dislike stuffing them, especially with such limited time now. Luckily, the all-in-one diapers have improved so much since then in terms of durability and absorbency. I donated most of my pocket diapers, and am excited to exclusively use all-in-ones this time around.
Like the newborn sized Littles, and as “all-in-one” suggests, they are all one piece, so no stuffing pockets or snapping inserts in.
These fit kiddos up to 35 lbs, so they should get us all the way to the potty training stage, which they have in the past.
Sometimes (a lot of times, actually) we’re pretty lazy and use disposable wipes. I don’t know why I classify that as “lazy” because it’s really more work. When you use cloth wipes, you just throw them right in the diaper pail with the dirty diaper. With disposable wipes you have to separate them and throw them in the trash. So I’m going to try not to do that as much with this one. (Of course, with my first, I never used disposable wipes.)
You can buy special cloth diaper wipes, but I’ve found the inexpensive, thin baby washcloths that you can get at big box stores are just as effective. No need to keep either kind in a special wipe box or wipe warmer. Just toss the clean ones in a box or basket that’s within reach of your diaper changing area. I promise, there are better things to do in life than spending time folding your wipes.
Oh! And I like to use the peri bottle I bring home from the hospital to fill with water and tiny bit of baby shampoo. Then I squirt that on the wipes right before I use them.
Cloth Diaper Laundry
I try to get a load of diapers in every 2-3 days. In the meantime, the dirty diapers are stored in a basic plastic, step-lid trashcan, lined with a large, waterproof pail-liner. I actually need to get a new one of these, and am eyeing this one by Planet Wise. In my experience, this method is really effective in keeping smells at bay – no fancy diaper pail required.
While the baby is exclusively breastfed, it will be fine to toss his diapers in there without rinsing poop off first because breast milk poop washes away with no issue in the washing machine. Once he start solids, though, it’s super important to rinse the poop off before throwing them in the wash. I use a combination of flushable diaper liners, and the help of my Spray-Pal splatter shield and diaper sprayer.
To wash, I like to use All Free & Clear, and I follow the washing suggestions for our top-loading washer from Cotton Babies (though I’ll admit I rarely line dry and usually tumble dry on low).
While Out And About
It’s pretty easy to cloth diaper while you’re out of the house running errands. Just keep a couple clean diapers in your bag, along with a travel size wet bag. These do a great job of containing mess and smells, so you can throw the dirty diaper (and wipes if you use cloth wipes while out, too) in there, zip it up, and then toss it in the diaper pail when you get home.
On Keeping It Real
With my first baby, I cloth diapered him full time, like even on vacation. As I’ve had more kids, that’s just not been an option. With our 3rd, I cloth diapered while at home and used disposables or Flip covers with disposable liners while out and traveling.
The cool thing is cloth diapering doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Do what works for you! I’m hoping I’ll be able to cloth diaper this baby more than the last one. We’ll see! Not going to be upset if we don’t.
This is a very basic overview of our cloth diapering process, but I also feel like cloth diapering has become so much more streamlined (at least for me) over the years, that there’s not much of a learning curve anymore. I’m sure a lot of you have questions that I didn’t answer, though, so feel free to ask away! I’ll do my very best to get you some answers.