Friday, December 19, 2014

Disposable Diapers VS Cloth Diapers

Googled image, found on Pampers site

The cost of cloth vs disposable was a big issue for my husband. Yes, the $60 a month we were spending was a lot of money, but in troubling times, coming up with $280 to have a 24 piece stash was impossible!

I know everyone has their pros and cons of disposable vs cloth and I'm not here to dispute that. This post is based off pure facts, and what works for some may not work for others, but if anything, I hope that whoever reads this information, gains SOMETHING from it!

The costs calculated below for disposable, single use diapers are based on two of the most popular brands, using a store known for its value pricing.

The newborn pkg. (up to 10 lb.) contains 48 diapers @ $16.23 = $0.34 each . The average number of changes for a newborn is 12-16 times per day for the first 2 weeks.14x7x2=196 diapers @ $0.34 =$66.64

The Infant # 1 pkg. contains 104 diapers up to 14 lb. @ 0.22 ea. An average baby requires 10-12 changes per day for the first 3 months 11x30x2.5 =825 diapers @ $.22 each = $181.50

The Infant # 2 pkg. 12-18 lb. contains 88 diapers @ $0.26 each. An average baby 3-6 months old requires 10-12 changes a day 11x30x3 =990 diapers @ $0.26= $257.40 Mega pack pricing was used for the balance of the packages as it is the least expensive. Each Mega Pack was $28.92+$2.02 GST For a total of $30.94 / pkg.

The Infant #3 pkg. 16-18 lb. contains 96 diapers @ $0.32 ea. A 6-9 month old baby requires 8-10 changes per day 9x30x3= 810 diapers @ $0.32 ea. = $259.20

The Infant # 4 pkg. 22-27 lb. contains 64 diapers @ $0.37 ea. A 9-12 month old child requires 8 changes per day 8x30x3 = 720 diapers @ $0.37 = $266.40

The toddler pkg. # 5 over 27 lb. contains 58 diapers @ $0.41 each. An average 12-18 month old child requires 6-8 changes a day. 7x30x6=1260 diapers @ $0.41 ea. = $516.60

The child #6 pkg. over 35 lb. contains 48 training diapers @ $23.00 =$0.45 each. An average 18-30 month old child requires 6-8 changes per day. 7x 364 = 2548 diapers @ $0.45= $1146.60

Total estimated average cost $2694.54 for 7,349 disposable, single use diapers.
Pricing above was googled and found HERE

Depending on the style of cloth you use, how often you choose to do laundry, and other factors like cloth wipes, wet bags, diaper sprayer and other accessories, you can spend on the HIGH side of $500 to cloth diaper from newborn-potty training BUT then you can put them away and they're ready for your next child, which means you spend NO money after your initial big purchase unless you decide to add more.

Googled Image

It's recommended to have 24 cloth diapers from the newborn stage, if you do laundry every other day, and a company like Smartipants is currently charging $280 for a 24 pack of One Size (8-35+lb) cloth diapers, available in thirteen different colors. Smartipants Packages also allow you a discount for the more you buy and come in 3, 12, 24 packs if you like to save!
Using chlorine to bleach paper releases dioxins, which are one of the most potent cancer-causing chemicals out there. Dioxin exposure can also cause reproductive problems - and disposable diapers put dioxins right next to your baby's reproductive organs. Those little gel beads that absorb the liquid can actually cause asthma and airway restriction.

When you no longer need cloth diapers, you can sell them for a portion of your money back! On average, cloth diapers retain about 60% of their value. Since you need fewer diapers as your baby grows, you can trade up in sizes (fitted diapers) without spending any more money! Diaper Swappers is the main website where diapers are bought, sold and traded. Buying used diapers can also be a great way to try the many different styles and brands before settling on one particular company and possibly being disappointed later if they don't meet your standards. I consider myself lucky to have gotten in to giveaways because I have a huge variety of brands, styles, and closures, and it really helps see where you'll get your most money's worth.

So there you have it, a little information on disposables vs cloth. As a family that's used both, I can honestly say sometimes I do miss the convenience of a disposable, and I know my husband prefers them because they're so quick (he needs AIO with velcro!) BUT the money we save is amazing, no running out of diapers at 2am, and I KNOW they're better for my child.

Contributed by Michelle

Monday, November 3, 2014

Randi Talks about Traveling with Cloth Diapers!

November has arrived! The holidays are coming up quickly and for many of us, that means traveling. For the cloth diapering family, this often leads to many questions. Is it possible to use cloth while traveling? What will I need? How many will I need? How do I wash them? To be honest, many choose to not bother with the extra hassle and choose to use disposables during their trips.Others choose to use hybrid options that allow them to use disposable inserts in cloth covers giving them the best of both worlds. Both are great options, but for those who choose to stick with cloth (be it due to need or choice), using cloth does NOT mean you must give up your holiday simply takes a bit more planning ahead. Here are a few quick tips to help you cloth on the go:

  • Know Your Destination. Figure out what laundry options are going to be available. Personally when we travel, we always stay with family, which means I always have access to their washers. If you're staying in a hotel or don't otherwise have easy access to a washer at your destination, you may consider other options.Will it be worth the extra effort of going to the laundromat? Is hand washing an option? Will you be gone long enough that you will NEED to wash? Take all of these factors into consideration.
  • Choose Your Diapers. Personally, I find that our all in twos are much easier for travelling as they tend to take up less space for more diapers, but choose what works best for your needs. Again, you might consider disposable inserts to make things a little easier as well. Or disposable for the road, cloth when you reach your destination. There truly is no wrong way to go. If you will be spending many hours on the road, consider insert options as well. Microfiber can often lead to compression leaks when sitting for too long, so other options may be necessary. I typically go for hemp for these long drives and prepare much as I would for a nighttime diaper.
  • Don't Be Afraid to Overpack. I'm an overpacker in general, but have tried to get better about this...except when it comes to diapers. We personally have a stash that would allow us to go nearly a whole week between washes, and I always bring each and every one...even if only for the weekend. It's better to have too many than not enough...this is especially true during the holidays when it seems to be busy, busy, busy! I never want to worry that I won't have time to wash when needed.  
  • Don't Forget The Extras. Wet bags are an absolute must when travelling with cloth, but they're not the only things to be certain to pack. Bring plenty of wipes, liners (if you use them), etc. Many areas don't have places to purchase these if you realize you forgot/need them, so plan ahead. I also always try to bring my own detergent as well...premeasured to make it easy! Even while staying with family, I don't always know what detergents they will have available so I want to be sure I have something appropriate for our diapers! If you hang dry your diapers, know ahead of time what options are available. We have an octopus hanger from Ikea that we take with us every time.
Do you travel with cloth diapers? What tips do you have?

Contributed by Randi!

Monday, October 27, 2014


Today I’m sharing “if I knew then, what I know now” thoughts on cloth diapering, as we’re expecting our second baby in the spring.  This time, I feel like a cloth diapering professional, and am even more prepared to have a smooth and successful cloth diapering experience from the very beginning.
I plan to start simple again, but make some changes to the routine I created when I was new to cloth with my son.  For starters, I won’t be using a wet pail.  Using a wet pail seemed like a great idea (especially for using prefolds), but soaking my diaper covers in a wet pail of a vinegar water solution relaxed the elastics on my small covers.  The reason I used a wet pail was because I was concerned about my unbleached prefolds getting stained (don’t ask me what I was thinking).  This time around, we’re ditching the wet pail, sticking with the dry pail, and saving ourselves the hassle; you live and you learn, right?
While I am still a huge fan of flats and prefolds for cloth diapering during those early newborn days (they’re easy to clean, quick to dry, and an inexpensive option when you’re going through 18 diapers a day), I’ll be adding some newborn all-in-ones (AIO) this time around.  There are many reasons why newborn diapers come in incredibly handy, and for me, having a small baby and other [non-cloth experienced] caregivers are two great reasons.
 Some of you may be familiar with the whole guestimating baby’s weight in the womb trick, and now that my son is here, I can honestly say that I’ve never heard of a case that was spot-on.  My first-time pregnant, gullible self was convinced that I was going to have a nine pound baby, so much so, that I only purchased zero to three month clothing to start; imagine my surprise when we left the hospital with our little man weighing a hair over six pounds!  Thankfully, I had purchased a dozen preemie prefolds, as they were a godsend for cloth diapering our little guy; while the preemie prefolds fit, our covers were a little big.  This time around, I plan to have newborn-sized AIOs on hand, in the event we have another little baby.
Newborn diapers are also great to have on hand for caregivers, other than your partner and yourself.  I remember how intimidated some family and friends were, when faced with changing a prefold.  Save yourself the trouble, and buy some newborn diapers with velcro enclosures, you’ll thank me later!
Apart from the wet pail and lack of newborn diapers, I wouldn’t change much about my cloth diapering routine from the start.  I got into cloth diapering in an effort to save money and produce less waste, and kept my routine very simple as a result.  If you keep things simple, you can’t go wrong!

What did you change about your cloth diaper routine, if anything, the second (third or fourth) time around?

Contributed by Lauren

Monday, October 6, 2014

Cloth Diapering Myths: DEBUNKED!

Making the decision to cloth diaper can be quite exciting. You do research, you find all the cute diaper options available and you are ready and willing to get started. Then you start telling people your plans. Immediately it seems, someone has something negative to say. "Why would you use cloth? It's inconvenient/gross/expensive. Your baby will have rashes. You'll pay more in water bills. They still DO that!?" I'm sure many of us have heard one or all of these comments, right? The funny thing...most are coming from people who have absolutely no cloth diapering experience! So, don't get discouraged...take a look at these common cloth diapering myths, debunked!

The Myth: It's soooo much work.
The Reality: Okay, sure, in some ways cloth diapering might be a little more work. If you use pockets you'll have to stuff (easy!), you'll have an extra load or two of laundry, and maybe have to put them away once in awhile (though I'll admit I'm guilty of grabbing straight from the basket...). But you know what else is hard work? Getting little ones dressed and ready, loading them into the carseats, trying to leave the store without a basket of toys you don't need...for those inevitable trips when you run out of diapers! Both require different kinds of work, but personally I prefer the kind of work I can do in my jammies! As for the diapers themselves, there may be a small learning curve but if my seven year old son can put a diaper on his baby sister, ANYONE can do it! And if there's concern about pins and baby getting poked? Well, just show them a modern cloth diaper. No pins required.

The Myth: Your baby WILL get rashes.
The Reality: Cloth diapers or not, some babies are just prone to diaper rashes. Some babies DO have sensitivities to certain cloth diaper materials just as some babies have sensitivities to disposable diapers. But just because a baby uses cloth does not mean they will have rashes. My daughter has extremely sensitive skin...look at her funny and she gets a rash. BUT she's been in cloth since the beginning and has never had troubles with rashes!

The Myth: They leak. All the time.
The Reality: The great thing about cloth diapers is that you can usually adjust the absorbency to fit your child's needs. Some diapers may be prone to compression leaks if baby will be sitting a lot- switch to a different insert and you're set! Aside from that, if you find the diapers that provide a good fit for your little one and change as often as necessary, leaks should not be a problem!

The Myth: You'll be doing laundry all the time. Your water bill will skyrocket.
The Reality: Depending on your washer and wash routine, then you may see a slight increase in your water usage but in my experience personally, it's very minimal. I've compared our personal water usage to the same time period before we were using cloth and have found it stayed fairly constant. In fact, there were some months we used even less. Besides that, have you ever found a disposable diaper that can contain an exclusively breastfed blowout diaper? When my son was in disposable, we could not...and we tried them all. I was doing just as much laundry (and cleaning just as much poop) as we do using cloth!

The Myth: It's too expensive.
The Reality: It's no secret that cloth diapering is the cheaper option in the long run, but there's also no denying the startup cost is much heftier as well. Still, there are many ways to make cloth diapering fit any budget. From using prefolds and covers, entering blog giveaways, buying used or buying slowly before baby's arrival. Cloth diapering on a budget IS doable.

The Myth: It's Gross.
The Reality: Well, to be honest I'm not quite sure how to respond to this one...why is it so gross? Oh sure, there's the poop. And the pee. But did you see my above story about the blowouts in disposable? Chances are as parents, we are going to get peed and pooped on whether or not we use cloth anyway. Is it the washing that's gross? Do you toss out every pair of undies your child has an accident on while potty training? Or every outfit that gets soiled? I'm guessing not! They are perfectly clean after each wash...nothing gross about that!! Being a parent is all about the gross!

The Myth: You can't use cloth while travelling.
The Reality: You may find you prefer not to use cloth while on the go out of convenience, but if you choose to use cloth full time, it's certainly doable. Pack a few extra diapers and a wet bag or two and you're ready to go. If baby will be sitting awhile (carseat or stroller) consider absorbency options other than microfiber to avoid compression leaks. We travel to visit family quite often, and while our diapers may take up more space, we've never had any problems using them on the road! But again, you can also use disposable OR hybrid options as well! The possibilities are endless!

What cloth diaper myths have YOU heard?

Contributed by Randi!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Cloth Diapering Throughout the Seasons

In the summer months, cloth diapering is especially fun isn't it? No need for pants on those hot days, just throw on a little tee to match your little one's diaper and you're done! But summer is quickly ending which means cooler weather will soon arrive. It's time to cover those legs...and the bums! Unfortunately, some find that cloth diapering in cool weather can be a bit more difficult. Pants just don't fit as they should with those fluffy bottoms, which can lead to compression leaks and frustration. What's the cloth diapering mama to do? Here are a few tips to surviving cloth when the weather turns...

  • Leg Warmers. It may be getting cooler, but there is still plenty of time for leg warmers! Until the frigid cold hits, they provide just the right amount of warmth (depending on your area of course!). Coordinate them with a cute top and let those diapers show for a few months longer!!
  • Dresses for the Girls. I love putting my daughter in dresses all year long. First of all, they're ridiculously cute, but when cloth diapering, they're much easier as far as sizing goes! Leg warmers, tights or leggings add some extra warmth underneath, or on warmer fall days a longer dress should be just fine!
  • Ditch the Jeans. For many babies, my daughter included. Jeans just will not work out. Between her chunky thighs and her fluffy's a losing battle. And one we decided just wasn't worth it. Even if we could get them on, the tight fit could lead to compression fun for anyone! Instead, we opt to go for stretchier options. Stretch cotton leggings look adorable and leave more room for diapers!
  • Made for Cloth Jeans. For us, ditching the jeans was not a big deal...but if you still prefer them, they DO make jeans specifically for the cloth diapered baby! Companies like Project Pomona offer a variety of jeans that leave more room for any type of diaper while giving that jean style that moms love!
  • Size Up. Perhaps the easiest way to deal with fall baby fashion is to buy a size larger than you normally would. If baby is typically in 12 months but they don't fit well over the diaper (or you finding yourself dealing with leaks when using microfiber), try 18 months. That little extra bit of room can make all the difference!! If length should be an issue, just roll the hems...or hem them yourself if you're crafty!!

Cloth diapering in cooler weather may require a bit more planning, but that doesn't mean it you should give it up! Follow these easy suggestions and you'll be cloth diapering with ease all through the year!

What tips do YOU have for keeping baby in cloth during the cooler months?

Contributed by: Randi

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


You’ve breezed through the newborn diapering phase with daily loads of laundry, many sleepless nights, and have mastered the perfect cloth diaper fit on your little one…and then s/he a.) becomes mobile, b.) starts eating solids, c.) becomes a heavy wetter, or d.) all of the above.  Never fear, help is here! 
Your baby’s milestones often tamper with your fine-tuned cloth diapering regimen, but with a few tweaks, you can cloth diaper with confidence again!

At some point, your little one will likely need more absorption in his/her diaper, whether nighttime, naptime, or throughout the day.  While many cloth diapering families are able to adjust their diaper absorbency by adding additional inserts, adding some natural fibers to your cloth diaper routine may give you the additional absorbency you need, keeping your little one dry and comfortable.  Smarti Pants Smart Sleeves inserts can help give an additional absorbency boost to your cloth diapers.

Heavy wetting often leads to accidents while out and about.  Don’t forget to pack an additional wet bag, along with a spare change of clothing, so that you’re prepared for the inevitable accident while out.  I can’t count the number of times I had to get creative because I wasn’t prepared for a diaper accident while out with my son.  Stock up on extra Smarti Pants Smart Tote wet bags (you can thank me later).

The introduction of solid foods into your little one’s diet is a cloth diapering game changer.  Once your little one begins eating solid foods, your days of simply throwing soiled diapers into the diaper pail, without rinsing or removing solids, are over.  A cloth diaper sprayer, or diaper liners, are a great help in tackling soiled cloth diapers at this point in the game.

When my son became mobile, I had to change our entire cloth diapering process, as prefolds and snappis were becoming a challenge on the changing table.  Smartipants one-size cloth diapers allow you to easily change the fit and absorbency as your baby grows and becomes more mobile.

How has your cloth diapering regimen changed as your baby has grown older?

Contributed by: Lauren!

Monday, August 18, 2014

4 Reasons to Cloth Diaper with Natural Fibers


I see concerned mothers posting about rashy bums all of the time in cloth diapering forums. Nine times out of ten, they’re using microfiber to cloth diaper...and their baby’s have a skin sensitivity to synthetic fibers. Microfiber is an affordable and inexpensive way to cloth diaper, but liners are often ineffective in preventing reactions to the synthetic fibers. Switching to natural fibers, such as bamboo, hemp, and wool, can often provide relief.


I never made much of a fuss over what fibers I used to cloth diaper my son in the first year I was diapering him, as we were diapering using mostly organic cotton prefolds and PUL covers (switching to wool in the summer). We switched to microfiber AIOs when my son was around a year old, but a couple months later he became a heavy wetter. I found myself frantically searching for diapers he couldn’tpee through. Bamboo fitteds, hemp inserts, and organic cotton AIOs and AI2s allowed me to effectively diaper my son without putting layer upon layer of padding into his diaper.

Antibacterial/Antimicrobial Properties

Both bamboo and wool fibers possess natural antibacterial properties, which makes them an excellent choice for having next to your baby’s skin. I consider wool to be a ‘miracle’ fiber because of it’s ability to absorb up to 30% of it’s own weight (before feeling damp), it has the amazing ability to cool in the summer and insulate in the winter, and it is self cleaning (when ammonia in urine mixes with lanolin it produces a ‘soap’). Hemp possesses antimicrobial and anti-mildew properties, in addition to it’s incredible absorbency.


Many families make the choice to cloth diaper in an effort to cut down on landfill waste and reduce their carbon footprint. Microfiber diapers and inserts are made from synthetic fibers and are not typically biodegradable. Natural fibers, such as hemp and bamboo, are biodegradable and can also be recycled once they can no longer be used as diapers.

Do you diaper with natural fibers? What fiber(s) do you prefer?

Lauren is a former publishing rep-turned-WAHM to a rambunctious toddler. When she's not chasing her son, you can find Lauren blogging about all things natural parenting/living at, sewing or knitting woolen goodies, or brainstorming ideas for the Infant/Toddler section in Tattle Magazine.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Tips for Preventing Heat Rash

Summertime...the season of swimming pools, barbecues, vacations, and fun in the sun! For many, the summer heat can also lead to heat rash. The diaper area can be a particularly prone area...after-all, cloth diapers are designed to keep the moisture in. And when hot humid weather strikes and baby starts would only make sense, right?

Here in Indiana, we've had a fairly mild summer for the most part and have not had to deal with heat rash too much. Unfortunately, others are not nearly so lucky. If you have a little one who struggles with heat rash, consider these few tips to keep your baby cool and dry!

Change Often. Of course, it is always important to change your little one's diaper often, but even more so in the summer heat. Keeping baby's bottom dry will keep rashes of all kinds away!

Ditch the PUL. Again, we've never had any issues with PUL over the summertime, but if your child does, consider more breathable options least on the more extreme days! Wool or fleece covers can be a great alternatives. Or if you're staying home, just ditch the covers entirely! (You'll just want to be certain again to change baby frequently...with no waterproof covering, you could end up with a mess on your hands otherwise.)

Get Naked! Perhaps one thing that may have kept my daughter from developing heat rash is letting her air dry. After each diaper change I'll give her 5-10 minutes or so to just run around diaperless. She loves it, and I love that it helps keep her super cool and dry. I'll admit, we've ended up with a few puddles along the way, so be prepared for that. (And if your little one has an older brother- be prepared for the giggles and shouts of 'She's naked! or 'I see her BUTT!' Boys will be boys!!)

Go Swimming! Since heat rash is caused by sweat, keeping cool is the easiest way to prevent it from starting... but that's easier said than done in the summer heat (because who wants to be cooped up inside all day, right?). One of our favorite ways to cool down is a little time in the kiddie pool! Post swim time is also a great time to allow baby to have their naked mess to clean up if they pee outside!!

Pants? Who Needs Them? I've said it once, and I'll say it again...cloth diapers are just entirely TOO cute to cover anyway, so why bother? Keeping clothing layers to a minimum helps baby stay cool, and allows you to show off their super cute fluff! My daughter's summer wardrobe consists almost entirely of cute dresses and tops that coordinate with her diapers! Adorable!

Heat rashes can be an annoyance, but they don't have to ruin your summer cloth experience! Keep dry, stay cool and baby will be rocking their fluff all summer long.

Has your little one struggled with summer heat rash in cloth? What tips and tricks have YOU found that worked for you?

Written by: Randi

Wednesday, July 23, 2014


If you’re like me, you started cloth diapering because you hated the thought of your hard-earned dollars literally being tossed in the trash and flushed down the toilet. There are added perks, such as leaving a smaller carbon footprint, putting natural fibers next your precious babe’s bum, and being able to amass a cloth diaper stash that can be used for multiple children (more savings, smaller carbon footprint, etc.).

We’re in the midst of potty training my son, who will turn two next month, and we have no baby on the horizon; these two things have made me think about alternate uses for our cloth diaper accoutrements, as I’ve spent almost three years amassing a comfortable cloth diaper stash and accessories. Many of these alternate uses can be concurrent with cloth diapering, but the point is to show you how your cloth diapering materials can continue to be used after your little one has ditched the diapers.


My favorite style of diapers (particularly during the newborn stage), flats and prefolds are likely the most useful of the cloth diaper styles available out there; in fact, many non-cloth diapering families use prefolds as burp cloths. If cloth diapering has caused you to be more aware of the waste your family produces, prefolds and flats make amazing unpaper towels for your household. I actually prefer using flour sack towels in my kitchen (which many people use as flat diapers), and you already know how absorbent prefolds are, so why wouldn't you put them to even more use in cleaning up spills and wiping down surfaces?


My cloth wipes have possibly been the handiest of all of my cloth diapering accessories (apart from the wet bag), as I have had many occasions to use them on places other than my son’s bum. I've used dry cloth wipes as a tissue in a pinch (for both my son and myself), and love using them to clean my little guy up when we’re eating out. I will likely continue to bring my mini wetbag with damp cloth wipes out with us, long after my son has potty trained. Lastly, for my hard-core unpaper sect, cloth wipes can be re-purposed (technically, it’s serving the same purpose) as family cloth. This option’s not for us, but more and more families are going paperless in their homes.


Probably the most widely used cloth diapering item, in both cloth diapering circles and non, wet bags are also one of the more versatile cloth diapering accessories. If you’re looking to get continued use out of your pail liner after potty training, you can use it for kitchen cloths and dish towels as we do. Once my son started eating solids, I found myself going through our two dozen IKEA washcloths like water, and needed a place to store them before washing; I snagged one of my son’s pail liners and used an old wastebasket to convert it into our kitchen laundry basket (we use cloth napkins, so we produce a lot of kitchen linen laundry weekly). Your wet bags are the cloth diapering items that you’re going to want to hold onto, long after you’re done with diapers. There are SO many great uses for wet bags, apart from holding dirty diapers:

• accidents happen and wet bags are perfect for storing dirty clothing on-the-go
• great for storing wet towels and bathing suits after pool or beach time
• protect your electronics & valuables by placing in a wet bag
• keep damp cloth wipes in a small wet bag for messes out-and-about
• reuse your small wet bags for organizing items in your purse or holding snacks
• the list is endless – get creative!


Before you’re in the clear, you must pass through the potty training stage. Nighttime can be especially accident-prone while your little one is getting the hang of things, so don’t toss out those soakers! Many training pants have an envelope for you to adjust absorption by adding soakers, so your cloth diaper inserts will fit in them rather nicely. This may be a reach for some, but if you’re a mama cloth user, your child’s cloth diaper inserts will work well for postpartum bleeding.These are just a few of the ways you can repurpose your cloth diapering items. I’d love to hear your ideas for even more alternate uses – please share in the comments below!

Lauren is a former publishing rep-turned-WAHM to a rambunctious toddler. When she's not playing Susie Homemaker, you can find Lauren blogging about all things natural parenting/living at, sewing or knitting woolen goodies, or scheming for companies as a freelance copywriter, blogger & marketing consultant.

Monday, July 7, 2014

5 Surprising Reasons to Love Cloth Diapers

We all know the primary reasons that most decide to use cloth diapers- they're better for baby and the planet and they save you a ton of money. Those are pretty obvious. Chances are if you're using cloth, it's based on one of those factors or a combination of them at least! And all are fantastic reasons to love cloth. For us, all were contributing factors, but the number one was certainly the cost! Still, after beginning cloth I found that there were many other reasons to love cloth that you don't hear about as often. Here's a look at five surprising reasons I love cloth.

5. Fluffy bums are adorable. Okay, that's pretty obvious, right? And let's be honest that IS a primary reason for some. For us, it wasn't the deciding factor but it certainly is a great benefit. Vibrant colors and cute just don't get that with a disposable!!

4.The community. In my experience the cloth diapering community is a pretty great one. Oh sure, there are some bad apples and the occasional drama but overall, I've had fantastic experiences. I've 'met' some wonderful like minded bloggers, fellow moms and even the ladies at my local cloth diapering shop. They are a great group of supportive ladies who I'm glad to have gotten the chance to know more about!

3. They're the gateway to all things green. For many moms (particularly those who chose to cloth to save money), cloth diapering soon leads to going green in other areas of their lives- they start switching to mama cloth or washing their clothes with soap nuts...or greening their cleaning and otherwise eliminating chemicals from their homes. For me, I was fairly eco-conscious before cloth came along...BUT it was through cloth that I learned of some green alternatives I was unaware of before- like wool dryer balls which I now LOVE! It was also through cloth diapering that I learned about all the amazing properties of coconut oil for all areas of life. I also learned more about essential oils where body care was concerned!

2. They save money...on PANTS! Yes, once again we all know that they save money over disposables, but what everyone fails to mention is that they can reduce/eliminate the need for pants. Pair them with a coordinating tee with or without legwarmers and you're set! Can you do that with disposable? Maybe, but they don't look NEARLY as adorable! (See reason 5)

1. To be honest, I'm lazy! Wait, what? How can cloth diapering be good for a 'lazy mom'? Simple, I'm too lazy to make a run to the store when I run out of diapers! Don't get me wrong, I love shopping...but diapers never run out when it's convenient and that means getting everyone dressed and loaded into the car...then into the store...and like I said, I'm just too lazy for that! When it seems like I'm getting low on diapers, I just toss them in the wash! So easy...and I don't even have to change out of my yoga pants!

Have you found any surprising reasons to love cloth diapers? Any friends you've made through them? Lessons learned? What do YOU love about using cloth?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Overnight Cloth Diaper Solutions for Toddlers

Overnight Cloth Diaper Solutions
If you've made it to cloth diapering a Toddler, give yourself a pat on the back! That means you've successfully cloth diapered for over a year - so kudos to you! It's all smooth sailing from here on out, well, kind of.
After cloth diapering for over a year, you probably feel like a pro [and you are]! Or maybe you're just now picking up cloth diapers after your baby has been in disposables for his or her first year of life, and that's fantastic too - you're making a wise choice for your baby, the environment, and your wallet.
Although you won't be changing your toddlers diaper as frequently, you might start to notice that what was working overnight for your baby just might not be keeping your toddler's sheets dry by the morning. I'm sharing with you a couple of overnight cloth diaper solutions for toddlers.

Double Stuff your Cloth Diapers

If you're using a pocket cloth diaper system like Smarti Pants, you may get back with simply double stuffing. You can experiment with this by first stuffing 2 microfiber inserts into your pocket diaper or what I found worked best for my girls is by laying a microfiber insert on top of a hemp insert and stuffing it that way. The microfiber traps liquids fast and the hemp is trim and able to hold more liquids - which gives you a slimmer double stuffed diaper that works twice as hard.

Prefolds with Diaper Covers

Some parents find that certain types of prefolds hold in more liquid, especially at night. You can pair a prefold or folded flat with a diaper cover, like Smarti Pants Diaper Covers to give you a diaper that fits your toddler while absorbing more than a regularly stuffed pocket diaper.

Fitted Diapers with Fleece or Wool Covers

Once my girls hit a certain age, I could no longer stuff their pocket diapers enough - they were too bulky and just couldn't handle the amount of wetting overnight. I chose a Fitted Diaper and Wool Combination simply because a fitted diaper is one in which the entire diaper absorbs, not just the inserts. The Fleece and Wool covers act as a liquid-proof barrier - they hold the wetness into the diaper without letting it escape on your crib sheets. This system can be a bit more costly, which is why I would try the other overnight cloth diaper solutions for toddlers first.

What overnight cloth diaper solutions for toddlers have you tried with success?

  Lindsey is the author behind the So Easy Being Green blog. Once she decided to use cloth diapers on her children, she started making green-er choices in all areas of her life. SEBG is a resource for parents who want to make small changes that will make a big impact on their path to a green-er life.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Randi's Cloth Stash

It's a question that is often heard being asked by one cloth diapering mom to another:

What's in YOUR stash?

When we started cloth diapering, it started with a very modest stash. For the newborn stage, we worked with twenty-four pocket diapers. We knew she wouldn't be in those long, so we stuck with one type and hoped for the best. Once she made the move into one size diapers-at around 4 weeks old- we started experimenting a little more. We purchased some pockets, some covers and inserts...a little bit of everything. As a blogger, I was also lucky enough to have the chance to review many varieties and brands to find what worked best for us. Now that my daughter has turned nine months old, we've finally gotten a good feel of what works best for her and our cloth diapering needs and just finished completely overhauling our stash to reflect that. Here's what our stash looks like now:

All-in-Twos/ Covers & Inserts
The majority of our stash is made up of covers and inserts. We found this system works great for's budget friendly, we can adjust the absorbency and makes for less laundry. We also travel semi-frequently to visit families 3 hours away so these pack up more compactly for travel. (Of course, there is also the option of disposable inserts though we usually just borrow a washer!) They do take a little more effort at diaper changing times, but I change 99% of my daughter's diapers and I don't mind! Our current stash consists of 21 covers and a TON on various inserts and flour sack towels.


Though covers tend to be our preferred choice, pockets are great too. They still give us that option of adjusting the absorbency as needed, but are a little easier at diaper changing time, making them more daddy/grandma friendly. We have 10 pockets. One of our absolute favorites is her custom designed Frozen diaper!


To round out the stash, we have the absolute easiest option- the all in ones. They are probably our least preferred only because the lack of options when it comes to adjusting absorbency, but I love this particular kind for their fast dry time. They are another fantastic option for the non-cloth-diapering diaper changer since they are ready to go no prep work needed. We have just 5 all in ones.


And to finish it off, we have an assortment of much needed accessories- extra inserts for added absorbency, wet bags, wet bags, wet bags (you can NEVER have too many), and of course, cloth wipes!

Overall, our stash is a great fit for us...It gives us the great versatility and ease of all in twos that I personally love, while still having those easier to use options for anyone else (or when I'm in a rush!). It is the perfect stash for my daughter...for now!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Lauren's Experience with Cloth

I’m happy to be contributing to the SmartiPants blog, and am eager to share some of my cloth diapering background with you! Here are a couple of cloth diapering facts about me:

• I am a huge proponent of simple cloth diapering (flats, prefolds, and covers)
• I prefer using natural fibers
• I love helping people feel comfortable using wool (it’s a miracle fiber!)
• I am not a fan of pocket diapers
• My favorite diaper is a diaper you can’t purchase in the US (I came across it used)

When I began building our cloth diaper stash, almost three years ago, the driving force behind our decision to use cloth was primarily based in economics. We had moved to another state for my husband’s job, forcing me to leave my own career behind. I worked in publishing and the market was unbelievably competitive due to massive layoffs the previous year; I had multiple interviews with publishing houses, none of which turned into a position. Expecting a baby, and living off of one income, meant that we had to be extremely mindful about our expenses; cloth diapering was the perfect fit.

I was a cloth-diapered baby (flats, prefolds, rubber pants), so it wasn’t such a stretch to envision lots of fluff in our future. After researching all I could about cloth diapering, I decided that prefolds and covers were the best choice for us (economical and easy to care for). I built our stash gradually, hunting out cloth diaper sales, and adding some used pocket diapers here and there. When our son finally arrived, and we got into the swing of cloth diapering, we quickly realized that pocket diapers were not for us. I added more prefolds and, eventually, fitteds to our cloth diaper stash.

When my son was around 11 months old, he began fighting every diaper change; pinning Snappis proved a challenge, let alone trying to complete three steps in diapering (prefold, Snappi, cover). Since we were already using GroVia and Best Bottom shells as covers, I purchased inserts and began using them as all-in-one (AIO) diapers (single use). Over time, I added several AIO diapers and purchased many used diapers to get a feel for what worked for us. As a result, my cloth diaper stash is varied and versatile; comprised of over 75 prefolds (preemie to toddler sizes), 10+ PUL covers (sized and one-size), 5+ wool longies & shorties, 9 AI2s, and 20 AIOs.

If I could offer advice to new cloth diapering parents, I would suggest NOT buying a particular diaper in bulk (no matter how good the deal). In two years of cloth diapering, I’ve gone through multiple styles of diapers with my son, as what worked for him at a one [st]age no longer fit well or provided adequate absorbency at another. Being able to easily sell or trade diapers that don’t work for us is extremely helpful.

Lauren is a former publishing rep-turned-WAHM to a rambunctious toddler. When she's not playing Susie Homemaker, you can find Lauren blogging about all things natural parenting/living at, sewing or knitting woolen goodies, or scheming for companies as a freelance Copywriter, Blogger & Marketing Consultant.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Transitioning from Newborn Cloth to One Size Diapers

The Smarti Pants newborn diapers were my favorite newborn diapers during those short early weeks my son fit into them. Unfortunately that glorious honeymoon of a newborn phase doesn't last long. My son was out of newborn diapers in a month, and has continued to chunk up ever since. I tried one of the one size Smarti Pants diapers on my older son, to see if they were as magical in bigger sizes. Sadly they weren't as awesome as the newborn ones, but still were great for the toddler.
10307360_10202930572724397_2763097683843000468_n Smarti Pants one size diapers are your average cloth diaper, without frills. The low price of $14.95 it is a great deal compared to a lot of other, more expensive diapers. The Smarti Pants costs more than a china cheapie, but that extra few dollars shows in the durability of the snaps and pul. Months later, the diaper is still bright, and the snaps are strong and secure. I've had china cheapies break the first wash, so a few dollars really is worth it.

 the main difference between smarti pants and other diapers is the smart sleeve pocket, which is open at both ends. this is a great feature for my husband who still, years after we started using cloth, forgets to unstuff the diapers once in a while. nothing is worse than folding laundry to discover a diaper with a wadded up insert still in it. the smart sleeve allows the insert to agitate itself out during the wash. unfortunately it also means there is nowhere to secure the insert in when im putting the diaper on the babies to ensure it isnt peeking out the diaper. for this reason i keep the smarti pants on the toddler, so i dont need to adjust the rise and shorten the diaper for the baby. 10356282_10202930573524417_469316629354338409_n all in all this is a great diaper for the price, even though the smart sleeve can be a double edge sword. if i wasnt trying to speed change the baby to make sure the toddler doesnt get into anything i would be able to take the time to make sure the insert isnt peeking out the back of the baby, so i blame that issue on user error!

Contributed by Miranda

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Miranda talks about 2 children in cloth!

One of my favorite parts of cloth diapering is the ability to use the diapers I used for one child to diaper subsequent children. Before I had baby3.0 it was a great plan in my head, but it wasn't until he was born and I actually started diapering him that I fell in love with cloth all over again. One of the biggest expenses with babies is diapers and I didn't have to buy any with the new baby, nor will I ever have to! Talk about getting your moneys worth and saving money!

Some people looked at me like I was crazy diapering two in cloth, and remarked about how much wash I would end up having to do. I'm pretty sure they are the same people who said cloth would be too much wash when I was doing it for just one baby, but I don't do any more laundry now than I did before baby3.0 was born. I was still needing to do a load a day with just one in cloth, whether it was diaper laundry or clothes, and I still only have to do one load a day.

I'm not too sure how typical my cloth experience is for two in cloth; I had (and have) a huge stash of diapers, and I could go days between needing to wash for just toddler2.0. Even now with two in cloth I could do diapers every other day without running out. I have about 60 diapers, so I would have that as my recommendation for anyone planning on diapering two at the same time! Even my old diaper bag (a Vera Bradley) holds enough for the two of them, but I also don't leave the house for long! I'm pleasantly surprised at really how little having two in cloth has changed my regular routine.

Contributed by: Miranda

Friday, May 16, 2014

Using Cloth Swim Diapers

Whether you cloth diaper full-time or just part-time, one of the easiest forms of cloth diapers is cloth swim diapers! Why? Because they're basically just like their disposable cousins, but way better for your baby, the environment, and your wallet! clothswim Both disposable swim diapers and cloth swim diapers are made to keep in solid waste. They both let liquids pass through. Think about it - if the disposable swim diapers collected liquids, they would swell up like regular disposables do in the water! Other than the fact that you wash the cloth version, they’re basically the same thing! There are cloth swim diapers that are marketed as such - most are sized, to give the best and trimmest fit on babies [since they are often put under swimsuits]. Some are pull-on style and others are similar to regular cloth diapers, with aplix or snap closures. But you don't technically have to have a "cloth swim diaper". You can always use a cloth diaper cover or shell has your swim diaper. You should be careful as prolonged exposure to chlorinated water can break down PUL so if you choose to go this route, I would use the same shell for your swim diaper rather than using a variety in your stash.

 Another great idea is to use a cloth diaper that may have already delaminated. Since you don't need the swim diaper to be leak-proof, it's a great way to use a diaper that you might otherwise think you need to throw out! No matter what type of cloth swim diaper you decide to use, make sure you have a nice, snug fit around the legs as you don't want any leaks!

Do you use Cloth Swim Diapers? Did you purchase a "Swim Diaper" or use something else?

Monday, April 21, 2014

Miranda talks about SmartiPants Newborn Diapers

most newborns (breastfed at least, not sure about formula fed) gain about half a pound a week. baby3.0 was 6 pounds 7 ounces when he was born (and 6 lbs 2 oz when we went home) so i figured it would be much longer until he outgrew the newborns diapers. of course i have super boobs and he has gained a pound a week. the diapers were sooo cute and tiny, and although i gave them away already (yes, you can resell them but im lazy) i did keep one or two just to remember how small my babies were...
  smartipants AiO newborn cloth diapers were the ones i used most, and were my favorite ones. the velcro made for easy on and easy off during the zillion changes a day we do, and made middle of the night changes so much easier than toddler2.0 and his snaps were. i changed every two hours, and never had a leak until the very end when baby3.0 was beginning to get to the limit for the diaper weight. smartipants are made to fit babies 5-12 pounds, but around 10 pounds i started getting the leaks. the only downside i saw for them was the front goes straight across without a spot for the cord. i didnt start this part of the process until after the cord fell off, but i know many people who start immediately and that detail would be a factor. for $17.95 they are a little pricey for my cheap self when the baby will only use them a short time, but comparatively they are the same price or lower than other newborn diapers. i really did like them for the time they fit, and am going to try out some of the smartipants one size diapers now that we outgrew the newborns!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Taking a look at Lindsey's Cloth Stash

After using cloth diapers for over 3.5 years… I have finally built my perfect cloth diapers stash. I admit – it took a long time {3.5 years!}, a lot of trial and error, testing and reviewing, selling and buying, washing and sunning, but we're here and all that work was worth it.

 Actually, our cloth diapers stash is ever changing. I am constantly finding new favorites - finding diapers that worked well during crawling stages, but for an older toddler just don't cut it. I get lazy and only want to use AIO's so I don't have to stuff, then my daughter will start needing more absorbency so I adjust my stash to more Pockets. It's a crazy cycle keeping up a cloth diapers stash but it sure is fun!

 After lots of experience with using cloth diapers, I've found that these are the diapers that I absolutely prefer. Since my stash changes so often too, it's quite telling when a diaper sticks around for a long time. There is one diaper, that has been in my stash the longest, and you shouldn't be surprised that it's that Fire Engine Red Smarti Pants Cloth Diaper!

 I don't save many cloth diapers – if they're not in the current rotation, I usually sell them to get something that works better. But my Smarti Pants went through both girls and I am ecstatic to finally have been adding more Smarti Pants to our Perfect Stash!

So, how's that for a cloth diapers stash? What does your stash look like? Does it change often or remain constant?

Lindsey is the author behind the So Easy Being Green blog. Once she decided to use cloth diapers on her children, she started making green-er choices in all areas of her life. SEBG is a resource for parents who want to make small changes that will make a big impact on their path to a green-er life.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Miranda's Love for Cloth!


There are so many reasons and things to love about cloth. they are eco friendly. they are cute. they work so much better than sposies. they keep yucky chemicals off my baby's bum. my all time favorite thing about cloth? their reusable nature! when i started cloth diapering toddler2.0 it was not one of my top reasons, or even one of my reasons at all. the thought of being able to use them for another child hadnt entered my mind. after all i had just had a baby, i wasnt planning on a third quite yet!
as soon as we found out we were expecting belly3.0, the hand me down ability of cloth diapers became one of my favorite things about my massive stash. while calming babe down from his utter panic over the cost of another baby and being outnumbered before we had originally planned, i pointed out we wouldnt need diapers at least! all those cute fluffy diapers we had been using with toddler2.0 were perfectly fine, and would also be able to be used on the newest member of the family. of course i didnt get into the minor detail of being able to use them once the baby was 10 pounds, but i handled the newborn stash later.
because we cloth diaper, preparing for baby has been so much easier than i see other friends who dont cloth diaper. while some would lament how we would just be getting one out of diapers (haha no end in sight, hes only 21 months now) and be starting with another one, i think of it as a great investment. no slowing stocking up on diapers before baby gets here to be prepared since we have them. no need for a "sprinkle" or diaper party... we have them! after belly3.0 arrives and is eventually finished using his/her hand me down diapers, they will still have their resale value and continue to be cost effective!

Contributed by: Miranda

Monday, February 10, 2014

One (or more) Things I Love About Cloth Diapers

February is the month of Love. Why not share some of my favorite things I love about using cloth diapers.

• Cloth Diapers save you money – the average baby can use up to $2000 worth of disposable diapers before they are potty trained. Cloth Diapers can cut your cost significantly. Plus you don’t have to make any midnight runs to the store!

• Cloth Diapers are eco-friendly – disposable diapers will sit in landfills for many years before they break down where as cloth diapers can be reused for many years to come.

• Cloth Diapers are super cute – with the modern cloth diaper comes many styles, colors, prints, closures, and even ruffles!

• Cloth Diapers help to prevent leaks and blowouts – I have found that cloth diapers, when used properly will hold in leaks and blowouts better than disposables.

• Cloth Diapers have no chemicals – cloth diapers do not contain chemicals that will be in contact with your baby’s skin for hours at a time. They are all natural. 

• Cloth Diapers can be used on multiple children – this can make the cost savings skyrocket when you use your cloth diapers on multiple babies. Be sure to keep your diapers clean and store them properly when not in use. 

• Cloth Diapers can be sold after use providing additional cost savings – if you are done with your cloth diapers, you can sell them back for up to 90% of your cost depending on the wear and use. Not bad!

What do you love about using cloth diapers??

Contributed by: Julie

Monday, February 3, 2014

Oh, Cloth Diapers, Why Do I Love Thee?

Challenging a SmartiPants Cloth Diapers Blogger to share the ONE reason they love cloth diapers, well, that's like asking why you love your children, isn't it!? I might be stretching it a bit with that comparison, but there are so many reasons why I love using cloth diapers!

  Love Cloth DiapersSome super popular answers to this question include:
  • Cloth is way cuter than any paper diaper you can find.
  • They're better for your baby - cloth has no chemicals and causes far fewer diaper rashes for most babies.
  • Cloth diapers are one million times better for the Environment. By choosing cloth, my bathroom trash can gets emptied every month or 2 instead of daily.
  • Cloth can be used for more than 1 child. Forget buying disposable diapers every month for every kid you have - cloth diapers have a lifespan that can easily make them last through 2, 3, maybe even 4 children!
  • Cloth diapers have been shown to help children potty train faster! Even though we all love using cloth diapers, it sure is nice when anything makes potty training easier and faster!
  • And probably most people's first response, and definitely the number 1 reason I love cloth diapers...
reason I choose cloth
I love making healthier choices for my children, I love the cuteness of cloth, I love contributing less to the landfills, but... Money Talks. Can you imagine that $2,500 cost savings!? You could put that back in a Savings Account and start a great fund for your child for college just by not buying them diapers for 3 years! Just by choosing cloth, you can make a tremendous impact on the earth, your child's health, and your family's budget! That's the number 1 reason why I love cloth... with the cuteness factor at a super close 2nd!

  mo smartipants Lindsey is the author behind the So Easy Being Green blog. Once she decided to use cloth diapers on her children, she started making green-er choices in all areas of her life. SEBG is a resource for parents who want to make small changes that will make a big impact on their path to a green-er life.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Cloth After Potty Training

If you have kids, you will get to the point where your little one’s will no longer be in diapers! While it may be a sad day, it is also an exciting point in your child’s growth and development. But if you are like me and have a ton of cloth diapers lying around that are no longer being used, what are you to do? I have come up with a few different ideas for you.

Sell - This may seem like one of the most common and profitable ways to go after you are done using your cloth diapers. You can sell many of your used cloth diapers for up to 90% of what you paid based on the condition of the diaper. The condition of the diaper can be dependent on how big your cloth diaper rotation was, how many children you cloth diapered, how often you used cloth diapers, or even what type of cloth diapers you used. There are many different sites that you can sell your used cloth diapers on including: eBay, craigslist, local mom’s group, cloth diaper retailers “used” sections and specialty cloth diaper trader websites. It’s up to you how and where you would like to sell your cloth diapers and is an excellent option if you are looking to recoup some of the money spent on your original cloth diapers!

Inserts can be used for cleaning – Some cloth diapers are in such bad condition that they simply cannot be resold for any value. In this case, the fabrics on some of your cloth diapers would make a great cleaning pad or wipe. I know of people who have used the cloth diaper inserts for scrubbing floors, bathrooms and even windows. This is definitely a viable option if you are looking to stick with the “green” theme that cloth diapers offers.

Donate to Cloth Diaper Charity – If you want to pay it forward to people who are in need of cloth diapers, but are having a hard time affording them, I suggest you research some of the national and local cloth diaper charities. These charities seek to help and educate families about the use of cloth diapers while providing them with their own stash whether it be temporary or permanent. Many families struggle to diaper their babies, but cloth diapers when distributed properly can help out many of these families and babies. Check your local area for charities that may need your donations!

Pay them forward to a Friends or Family – You may not know of any local cloth diaper charities, but I can be sure that many of you probably know a friend or family member who is looking to try out cloth diapers. Maybe they are curious and would like to get started, what a perfect way to help them take the plunge. Passing down cloth diapers to friends or family will help to pay it forward, and hopefully your friend or family member can pay it forward to the next person!

What other ideas do you have for the use of cloth diapers following potty training?

Contributed by: Julie

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Diaper Cream and Cloth Diapers

One of the first things new cloth mommas learn is that you cannot use typical diaper creams when using cloth diapers. It is completely logical if you look at the way diaper creams are meant to work. they act as a barrier to keep wetness off the baby's rash, and give it healing time. When this gets on a sposie its no big deal, but when applied to cloth it causes repelling issues. The diaper cream will work on the cloth diaper the same way it works on the baby, and repel wetness preventing the diaper from absorbing and doing it job. What to do for rashes then? There are four options: switch to sposies during the rash, use a liner, cloth diaper safe cream, and my cure all for everything, coconut oil.

Some moms, especially ones who already use sposies part time during day care or at night, simply use traditional methods and keep their baby in sposies until the rash goes away. This is a preferred method if the rash is a yeast rash, because yeast is as tricky as diaper cream to get out of a diaper! The other option while using traditional cream is to use a liner inside your cloth diaper to protect the diaper. Ive heard great things about viva paper towels being laid in the diapers, or you could use a cloth diaper specific liner like the ones from gDiapers.

The third option is to try cloth diaper safe creams. The ones I know about for sure are the ones marketed by cloth diaper companies, or more "natural" companies like California Baby, CJ's Butter, Angel Baby Balm, as well as some smaller WAHM companies. If natural is for you, I like naked baby time (diaper free! woo!) to get air circulating on the rash, as well as coconut oil, my cure all for everything. At the first sign of redness I pull out my jar of coconut oil and apply it with every change, and the redness is usually gone within the day before it turns into a full blown rash.

What do you use to combat rashes with cloth diapers?

Contributed by: Miranda

Friday, January 3, 2014

Washing Cloth Diapers in a HE Washing Machine


One of the questions that you see people pose over and over again about cloth diapers is "How do I really get them clean in my High Efficiency Washing Machine?" If you use cloth diapers, chances are you care about the environment and you try to make eco friendly choices everyday. One of those choices may have been to buy a high efficiency or HE washing machine. Then to only discover that so many are up in arms about HE machines don't clean cloth properly - which may put you in a small stage of panic. Don't let it.

You can successfully wash your cloth in an HE washer!

One of the reasons that so many believe that cloth diapers don't come clean is because they feel that HE machines don't use enough water. Now, I'm no scientist and I'm not claiming to be {or chemist, plumber, whoever can make these scientific proclamations}, but I can attest to the fact that I've been washing my cloth diapers in a HE washer for over 3.5 years quite successfully! You may have heard of the "Wet Towel Trick" - where you put in a wet towel with your diapers to "trick" your HE machine into thinking the load is heavier and it will use more water. I can't say if this works or not, really, who can? Sure, your HE machine may use less water in a load than a traditional Top Loader, but if you put your diapers through a long enough wash and rinses, they will come clean!


 I have been successful for the last 2 years with a cloth diaper wash routine that looks like this: Warm Rinse {no detergent} Warm Wash w/ Extra rinse {with detergent} Warm Rinse {no detergent} While some may say you need to use a Blanket Setting, I've always used the same cycle as I wash my clothes with no issues. This step may not be necessary for you, but it ensures that our HE machine is truly using enough water to rinse the detergent out of the cloth diapers. Two important things to remember on top of a good wash routine: A load size, for any washer for that matter, should be around 12-15 diapers. Too few diapers could mean that you're not getting enough agitation and too many diapers could mean it's too crowded in there. Washing every 1-2 days is ideal, no matter your washer as well. The longer you leave stinky diapers brewing, the harder they will be to get clean.

Happy Washing!

  Lindsey is the author behind the So Easy Being Green blog. Once she decided to use cloth diapers on her children, she started making green-er choices in all areas of her life. SEBG is a resource for parents who want to make small changes that will make a big impact on their path to a green-er life.