Why I Broke Up With Detergents “Safe for Cloth Diapers”

Why I Broke Up With Detergents Safe for Cloth Diapers - My Mama Adventure

This post may get me kicked out of the “crunchy” mom category. Okay, probably not. But seriously, this is may be a very controversial topic in the crunchy realm of things, especially since my choice is not so green. However, it is saving me green and with only one income in our house right now, we really need to watch our pennies. So, while this may not be a popular opinion, it’s how we’re rollin’ these days.

Continue reading Why I Broke Up With Detergents “Safe for Cloth Diapers”

The Ultimate in Cloth Diaper Resources

The Ultimate in Cloth Diaper Resources - My Mama Adventure

I took to some fellow natural bloggers to get their posts on cloth diapering. Everything from cloth diapers 101 to DIY rash creams and everything in between. I’ve personally loved using cloth diapers. One might say I became a bit obsessed with trying different brands when M was still in diapers. I even bought a bunch of limited edition Chelsea Perry bumGenius prints and retiring colors that never got used because M became potty independent shortly after buying them. They have sat in wait for baby #2. So, yay! I finally get to use my lovely prints!

Continue reading The Ultimate in Cloth Diaper Resources

Cloth Diaper Starter List – Must Haves & Nice to Haves

Disclosure: Affiliate links are included throughout this post. Thank you for your support!

Getting started in cloth diapers can be very daunting! There are so many options out there, from prefolds to flats, pocket to all-in-one, hybrids to fitteds, it’s a plethora of confusion to anyone who is new to cloth diapers. If only there was a starter list, a checklist of sorts! Hmmmm….

Here’s a list to get you started on what you will need and some optional items that some people may consider necessities in cloth diapering. Each home is different, resources are different, so this is just a guide.

Continue reading Cloth Diaper Starter List – Must Haves & Nice to Haves

Ammonia Busting Solutions for Cloth Diapers {+ Eco Nuts Laundry Soap Review}

Disclosure: Affiliate links are included throughout this post. Regardless, all opinions are my own. 

It has been no secret to my cloth diapering friends that we have had ammonia issues since early on in our cloth diaper experience. I have no idea what causes it, maybe M just has extra stinky pee? Whatever the initial cause, we’ve had to play around with our wash routine and extra measures to bust the ammonia smell.

Ammonia smell has got to be the worst! It burns the nose and can definitely be hard to conquer, let alone prevent! We have found many ways to help with ammonia, some have resulted in extra money out of our pocket to buy special ammonia busting solutions. This was not an option for me, we use cloth diapers, in part, to save money and buying extra detergents or additives that is only available online (i.e., shipping costs), it just wasn’t cost effective for us so I started doing research on other ways to beat that ammonia smell.

Here are the top ways that we have found to bust the ammonia stink:

  1. Wash Every 2-3 Days – This is just best practice. If you are washing frequently enough then you are better able to keep the stink out and you aren’t risking other problems from diapers sitting around for too long (e.g., mold – EW!). This is the #1 secret to beating and, hopefully, preventing some stink issues. However, it may not always be enough, especially in our house.
  2. Extra Rinses During the Wash Cycle – Adding in that extra rinse at the end of your cycle will make sure that all the detergent is washed out of your diapers. I also recommend a pre-rinse to rinse out pee (and poop!) before actually washing. If you have an HE washer, the pre-rinse is almost mandatory.
  3. Liquid Dawn (just a squirt) – When washing frequently, using cloth diaper safe detergent, and extra rinses just aren’t cutting it, you can try a squirt of the blue Dawn dish detergent. It really does work well, but isn’t usually recommended for every wash and you will probably need more than one additional rinse at the end as dish soap is very sudsy. 
  4. 1/4 Cup Bleach – First and foremost, check your diaper’s brand and make sure they allow for bleach to be used. With that said, I’ve used the 1/4 cup bleach, up to, 2 times a month on all my diapers (regardless of brand) and have had no issues. I regularly use bleach, at least, once a month, but I’m not sure I use a full 1/4 cup, it may be closer to an 1/8 cup. This is truly a great way to fight ammonia stink, but use it with caution because I’ve heard of the bleach ruining the PUL and elastic.
  5. Sunning – I am so excited that the weather is getting nicer again and the sun is shining! Sunning diapers is such a great way to get out the ammonia smell and get out stains! It truly works great and is completely free! It also saves on dryer costs since I’m a rebel and throw all our diapers into the dryer. But there’s a reason I go the rebel route and toss everything in the dryer, I’m usually short on time and line drying does take longer. I love it, but it’s not always feasible for us. 
  6. Eco Nuts Laundry Soap Eco Nuts Laundry Soap is a cloth diaper safe detergent, which is highly recommended when using cloth diapers. However, I classify it as its own entity because it does the job of cleaning AND busting ammonia with no other additives or steps – well, I still do pre-rinse and extra rinse at the end, but that’s just a reality of cloth diapers.
Eco Nuts sent me a sample of their Eco Nuts Laundry Soap. Truth-be-told, I was skeptical when it said half a cap for an HE washer and I was really temped to use a full cap. I resisted the temptation though! I knew that I had to follow Eco Nuts’ instructions to really be able to give all of you a truly honest review of their product. Temptation resisted and I was truly amazed by the outcome! Now, let me tell you, I sniffed those diapers left and right when they came out of the washer. I was trying to find the slightest bit of stink or ammonia smell, out of the washer, I smelled nothing. I sniffed those diapers left and right again when I took them out of the dryer (remember, I’m a rebel!), no stink!

What are Eco Nuts?

Traditionally, they are soap nuts, which is a berry shell that naturally contains soap. These berries actually are able to remove dirt and stains from fabrics! They are gentle enough to be used for those who have sensitive skin, eczema, psoriasis, and allergies (even nut allergies, since they are technically a berry, not a nut). They are even safe to use on newborn clothes and cloth diapers. Eco Nuts soap nuts are organic and contain the USDA organic certified seal.  
You may be wondering about the liquid soap that I tried. The liquid soap is the soap berries put into liquid form and is recommended for those who have an HE washer, hard water, or wash mostly in cold water. The liquid soap only contains 3 ingredients…that’s it! What other laundry detergent can you find that has only 3 ingredients? I haven’t actually done my own research on this, but my guess is very few. I know none of the ones we have in our home have 3 ingredients, they have a laundry list of ingredients (catch the pun?).

Eco Nuts are phosphate free, contain no fillers, optical brighteners, dyes, fragrances, or enzymes. They naturally soften and fluff your clothes and diapers. Not only are they all natural, but they are even much less expensive than your standard store brands of detergent (let alone other cloth diaper safe detergents!). I am saving $0.31 per load by using Eco Nuts, sure, there’s shipping costs on orders under $49, but the amount I’m saving per load is definitely worth any possible shipping charges.

My only complaint? I’m not a huge fan of the smell right out of the bottle. But clothes and diapers come out smelling like nothing but clean so I could care less about that and if they were to make it smell nicer then they’d be adding in fragrances and you’d no longer have a fantastic natural product. So, yeah, really no complaints from me!

Get Your Own:

Online – and you can currently save 10% off your order with Code: SpringClean (don’t miss out on this!)

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Potty Learning Pants – The Bane of My Existence

Potty Learning Pants - The Bane of My Existence

Now, I know that M is quite young to be successful with potty learning, especially compared to other boys his age. We’ve been lucky. Whether it’s the method we chose to help him learn, the fact that he wears cloth diapers, or just pure luck, I don’t know. But whatever it is, it has made finding training pants a real bugger since he’s so small!

M wears a 24 month or 2T shirt (so age appropriate), but he’s only in 18-24 month pants, anything bigger would be swimming on him. Most training pants start at around 28lbs, he weighs about 24lbs now and he’s been using the potty for several months now, so he’s also quite skinny. Normal torso, short legs, skinny waist does not make a combination made for most training pants (let alone actual underwear, he’ll be 5 till he’s in those!).

DIY Magic for potty learning pants {Potty Learning Pants - The Bane of My Existence}

I first just wanted to buy something that was as close to underwear as possible so I went out and bought the size small Gerber training pants. They started at 28lbs, but I figured we’d give them a try anyway. They were way too big! I worked my magic with some snaps and cinched them in so that they could grow with him. I also used a tutorial to add some extra absorbency and a waterproof layer to one pair of his Gerber pants, but I only did one pair, I found that it just wasn’t necessary. Either way, my makeshift training pants have worked out nicely but I wanted a few more pairs for him without spending a ridiculous amount of money on a pair of glorified underwear.

I also put new use to his 2 pairs of cloth swimmers I bought for him over the summer. The benefit of swimmers was that they were waterproof so in the event of an accident we didn’t have to change his pants, just his undies. The downfall of swimmers is that they are quite absorbent, like a diaper, so he did not feel wet. But, they have worked well as a back up and when out and about so we don’t have to worry about leaks.

I took advantage of Cyber Monday and did some online shopping for training pants that were on sale. I tried to stick to pants that were around $3-7 per pair. I found Flip trainers on sale and they came with 3 inserts and a cover. The training pants are supposed to fit approximately 20-50lbs as the sides and front are adjustable. They are still a bit big around M’s waist though, but they work fine enough, they are not my favorite though and when we first got them, accidents meant leakage from a leg hole. Without a sale, they are about $30, so $10 per pair since you get 3 pairs of undies out of the kit. Not bad, but I was glad I got them on sale.

Best Bottom Potty Training Pants
Best Bottom

I also bought the Best Bottom training set . They also came with 3 inserts and the outer cover looks a lot more like a traditional pair of underwear. They fit M well, but with accidents when we first bought them, they still tended to come out the leg hole as he has skinny legs. They come with a plain color cover, but the inserts have fun designs on them. M hasn’t really cared about the designs on his undies though. Best Bottoms sell for about $13 (depending on the site) and again, you basically get 3 pairs, so on sale for Cyber Monday, I definitely got a good deal!

I bought one other training paint for Cyber Monday but it was so huge when it came in the mail that I never even tried it on him. I’ve found that I grab for the Gerber training pants before any of the other brands. I think it’s because they look and feel the most like true underwear, there’s no insert to deal with, and they do have designs on the outside that M does enjoy (especially the dinosaur pair and cars/trucks pair).

What would I recommend for those looking for training pants? I’d recommend just going straight to underwear or the Gerber training pants. But, if you’re looking for something waterproof, I’d recommend the Best Bottom, they’re less bulky, and while they don’t grow with your toddler like the Flip trainers do, I don’t think it’s a huge issue, at least it’s not for us.

What have been your struggles with potty learning?

**All pictures belong to the creator and writer of My Mama Adventure blog unless otherwise noted in the picture. Pictures are not to be reproduced, distributed, performed, publicly displayed, or made into a derivative work without the permission of the creator and writer of this blog.**

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Cloth Diaper Laundry

I think the assumption when it comes to cloth diapers is that the laundry is a huge hassle, there’s more of of it, and it’s gross.

None of those things have held true for us. Let’s start with the first assumption.

  1. Cloth Diaper Laundry is Huge Hassle. The only additional step to cloth diaper laundry is spraying, rinsing, or dumping the poop. This isn’t even necessary for exclusive breastmilk poops and pre-solid poops are super easy to rinse off anyway. Once you start solids it will just dump in the toilet, which even disposables say to do this on the packaging. Other than that factor, it’s like doing any other laundry. It’s done every 2-3 days, contained in a pail/wet bag, dumped in a washer, dumped in a dryer or line dried, and done.
  2. It Causes More Laundry. No. Just no. Laundry is done every 2-3 days, I don’t really see how this is much different than doing regular laundry. I remember people telling me I’d be doing laundry every day with a baby (which, no, I didn’t), so what was the difference with doing diaper laundry? None, none at all. Folding diaper laundry? Takes me less time to stuff/fold diapers than to fold actual clothes. Plus, I would, by far, much rather do diaper laundry than regular laundry.
  3. It’s Gross. Cloth diapers or disposable diapers, what comes out of a baby’s butt is gross. You are not touching poop any more than you would be in any other diaper. It goes down the drain, where poop is supposed to go. And if you can honestly say, as a parent, you’ve never had poop on your hands or clothes, then please, tell me the secret!
So, how does one go about doing cloth diaper laundry so it’s clean? I talked about our laundry routine in this post that I wrote awhile back about our experience, but our laundry routine has changed so much over the past 2 years, and it’s just to meet new needs.
In general, you’ll want to do a pre-rinse (without the spin if your washer will allow you and you use an HE washer), hot wash, extra rinse at the end, done. Line dry or put in dryer based on diaper recommendations.
Our hot wash is a heavy duty hot wash so it’s about 90 minutes and our washer has an option to add an extra rinse at the end. This extra rinse at the end is just to make sure you have all detergent out of your diapers. That’s it. Not nearly as traumatizing as it’s made out to be.
Detergent? Yes, you should use a cloth diaper safe detergent. This detergent can be used on all your clothes so no need to have two different detergents in your house (unless that’s your preference). Here’s a good list of cloth diaper safe detergents. In general, I find this website as a great resource for cloth diapers.

So, that’s it, that’s cloth diaper laundry. Not as traumatizing as it seems, right?

Folded diapers just look so much prettier than…well…any other type of laundry!

**All pictures belong to the creator and writer of This is my life… blog. Pictures are not to be reproduced, distributed, performed, publicly displayed, or made into a derivative work without the permission of the creator and writer of this blog.**

Using Diaper Creams with Cloth Diapers

I love Earth Mama Angel Baby® products, I have purchased them with my own money, I have not received any products for review. I am sharing this information with you simply because I love their products and want to share the love! Affiliate links are included in this post.

I’ve mentioned before that there are items that go beyond the actual diaper when you use cloth diapers. It can be overwhelming and finding out that you can’t use the traditional brands of diaper rash creams can be stressful and you may choose to use disposables during a rash or end up switching to disposables all together because your baby is prone to rashes.

I’m here to let you know, that there are cloth diaper safe rash creams that work just as well, if not better, than the traditional rash creams such as Desitin, Boudreaux’s Butt Paste, and A&D Ointment. There is absolutely nothing wrong with these rash creams if you are using disposable diapers, a flushable insert, or flushable liner to protect your cloth. But if you are using cloth right up against the bum, these rash creams can be very difficult to get out of your cloth and can lead to leaking problems.

We’ve tried a variety of different cloth safe rash creams, each having their benefits, but it wasn’t until I tried Angel Baby Bottom Balm by Earth Mama Angel Baby® did I really understand what it meant to have a rash cream that was not only safe for cloth diapers, but worked wonders!

I’ll be honest, we’ve been really lucky with rashes in our house, but there have been a few rashes that have been stubborn and just didn’t want to go away. Before trying Angel Baby Bottom Balm, I would struggle with the other cloth safe creams I had and would end up just switching to disposables and using A&D Ointment, but even that wasn’t working for us and it was costing us so much money to be using disposables.

I started to do more research on cloth diaper safe creams and discovered Earth Mama Angel Baby® at Wegman’s. What really intrigued me about their Bottom Balm is that it has a “blend of naturally antibacterial and antifungal organic herbs” with tea tree oil. This pulled me in because we were at one point questioning whether or not we were dealing with a yeast rash. Tea tree oil is a known killer of yeast and the added herbs that were antifungal and antibacterial meant that the Bottom Balm would not only treat a yeast rash, but it would also help to prevent future yeast rashes.

The best part? As soon as I applied the Angel Baby Bottom Balm to M’s rash, the next diaper change we finally saw results! His poor little bum was less inflamed and less red. By the next day the rash was completely gone, no remnants of his rash. I have deemed the Angel Baby Bottom Balm a miracle cure for a tough rash! 

We’ve always used a barrier cream on M before bed, otherwise, we don’t really use rash creams, unless there’s a rash of course. Angel Baby Bottom Balm is the first ointment I reach for now, I’m not a huge fan of the smell (but I’m not a fan of Tea Tree oil scent), but it’s a fairly pleasant smell (much better than traditional zinc oxide rash creams). It goes on smoothly, wipes off easily, is USDA Organic, and it’s cloth diaper safe. It’s pretty much the perfect rash cream.

What rash creams have you tried with cloth diapers?

Purchase Your Own At:

Earth Mama Angel Baby® Online
In store at Wegman’s and other retailers (just click on Store Finder to find a store near you)
Retail Value: 1 oz jar $8.95 or 2 oz jar $12.95

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Using Cloth Diapers at Night

No matter what style of diaper you use in your home (disposables and cloth alike), finding a good nighttime diaper can be a challenge. Lets face it, there comes a point when we’re just tired of waking up in the middle of the night just to change a diaper.

Fortunately, with cloth diapers there are a ton of options out there and these options are frequently more absorbent and effective than disposable options. I do have some cloth diapering friends who have used disposables at night simply because they could not find a good combination. It’s whatever works for you and your baby.

Continue reading Using Cloth Diapers at Night

Beyond the Diaper of Cloth Diapering

I’ve had several friends over the past couple weeks ask me about cloth diapers. I’ve shared my past posts with them (here and here) in the hopes that they can get a start on navigating the cloth diaper world. I’ve also linked them to the FB group that I admin with a friend of mine so they can be part of CD conversations and get some questions answered.

However, after an extensive conversation with a friend today that is looking into cloth, I realized that cloth diapering goes beyond the actual diaper. It can seem like so much when first starting with cloth, from rash creams, to laundry detergent, cloth wipes, wipe solution, wet bags…and so on. Once you get started in cloth it really all flows, just like anything else with a baby.

So, here’s some information that is beyond the diaper:

Laundry Detergent
Cloth diapers need to be absorbent to be effective (duh! right?), but the traditional detergents that you buy at the grocery store have so many additives in them that they can interfere with the absorbency of cloth. Even the free and clear brands have additives that are not good for cloth. The last thing you want to do is spend money on diapers to have them fail because of the wrong detergent, that’s just frustrating. There are specific cloth diaper detergent brands that you can buy (mostly online) that are completely safe for your diapers and can be used on your clothes (so there really is no need for more than one type of detergent, but that is a personal preference). We use Rockin Green or we’ve used bumGenius brand detergent (because when you buy bumGenius diapers they send you detergent samples…yay!). There are other brands out there that are safe for cloth, you may want to check reviews and see what kind of water you have (hard, soft, etc.). I’ve also used Original Tide powder, which has been considered safe for cloth diapers.
Related to detergent is dryer sheets, they are not recommended as they can leave a build-up on your diapers and interfere with absorbency. Wool dryer balls are a great substitute for dryer sheets, they can be used with all laundry and can cut drying time in half (bonus!).

Diaper Rash Creams
As with detergent, there are certain brands that are safe for cloth. Most of the traditional brands that you may be used to seeing, probably are not safe for cloth (Desitin, A&D ointment, Boudreaux’s Butt Paste), they can interfere with absorbency since they do not wash out of the diaper. You’ll definitely want to do some research on rash creams. I used this site when I first was researching rash creams (and detergents actually). We currently use California Baby (bought in store at Target), Grandma El’s (bought online through Target), or Angel Baby Bottom Balm (bought in store at Wegman’s). We just started using the Angel Baby Bottom Balm and so far, I really like it. I’ve also heard that coconut oil works great as bum cream, but when we tried it M got a rash from the coconut oil, so, that was out for us. For the record, you probably won’t be using the cream very often anyway. Most people experience fewer issues with diaper rash with cloth than disposables. We put a layer of cream on before bed and at the first sign of any redness. We’ve only ever had 2 issues with rashes in the past 14 months of exclusive cloth diapering (coconut oil over a year ago, and this past week which I plan to write another post about soon).

Wet/Dry Bags
To store diapers, you may want to use a wet bag. We have 2-3 smaller ones in the diaper bag (this way when one is in the wash, we have an extra) and 2 that we use as pail liners (again, one to use, one to wash). They come in all sorts of styles, colors, and sizes. We currently have 3 Planet Wise wet bags and 2 Bummis large pail liners. It’s more than enough and we’re very happy with both brands. One of my DIY goals is to make a wet bag myself…we’ll see if that ever happens.

Diaper Pail
You may or may not choose to have an actual pail. Some people just use a large wet bag to store soiled diapers in with no pail. We go that route when we’re airing out our diaper pail. There is no reason to get fancy with the pail, if you choose to use one. We have a large kitchen garbage can (with a foot pedal) that we line with the Bummis pail liner. But, you can buy cloth diaper specific pails, do some research, you’ll find what works for you.

Baby Wipes
We used disposable baby wipes for the longest time. Honestly, the thought of using cloth wipes just didn’t occur to me at first and then it just seemed like it would be one more thing to confuse our already stressful lives. Once things started to settle down with M’s medical concerns and I got tired of our dog eating all the poopy wipes (gross!), I decided I was ready to attempt cloth wipes. I don’t know why I didn’t do it before! I paid nothing for our wipes, I cut up an old receiving blanket and then got some flannel from my mother-in-law and just sewed my own. I hadn’t sewn since middle school home ec class and these were a breeze (found a video tutorial online). However, there are several sites that sell cloth wipes, and they are not expensive. I have probably about 25 wipes, it’s enough to get us through until I do laundry again, but we do have disposables on hand for the diaper bag.

Wipe Solution
If you use cloth wipes you’ll want a wipe solution. This can be as simple as water or as complex as several ingredients mixed with water to make wipe solution. The presentation is personal preference, a spray bottle, pre-moistened wipes in a container, etc. We use a spray bottle that has a small amount of baby wash and oil (currently grape seed oil, in the past shea butter oil). We spray the wipe, wipe the bum, done. The diaper and the wipe goes in the pail (just like with disposable diapers/wipes).

Diaper Sprayer
This is not an essential CD item. We have one and I’m very glad that we do, but it’s certainly not essential. The diaper sprayer easily attaches to your toilet’s plumbing (no plumber or plumbing experience required, it’s super easy to install), you spray the poopy diapers down the drain (where human waste should go), store in the pail until laundry day. As poops become solid the sprayer will get used less and less. I find that I do a toilet swish more frequently now, rather than spraying. Exclusively breastfed baby poo is water soluble so does not have to be rinsed first, it will rinse away in the washer (no, you will not have poop in your washer), we still rinsed though, personal preference.

I think those are the biggies when it comes to accessories beyond the diaper. It seems like a lot and cost wise, you may be thinking that all the additional costs just aren’t worth it. But, believe me, it’s worth it. And in the end, you’re still saving by using cloth diapers. Here is a link to an article I found recently that reviews all the hidden costs of cloth diapering, in the end, the estimates are still cheaper than disposables, and the biggest bonus is saving the environment and keeping thousands of disposable diapers and human waste out of our landfills, not to mention cloth diapers are super cute!

More About Cloth Diapering

As promised, here is another post about my cloth disappearing experience. I’ve had several friends ask me about CD over the past few months and I thinks it’s great that the CD word is being spread! It’s such a great way to save money and the environment.

So a few months ago I published my first post about my cloth diapering experience. Not a whole lot has changed but I’ve discovered some new diapers, tricks, and tips along the way since my last post.
First, I discovered the world of prefolds and since my last post, that’s been a learning experience that I’ll discuss in a bit.

Okay, so if you read my last post on CD, you’ll see that I did a bit of a review on the diapers we had tried. We tried (and recently sold) FuzziBunz, gDiapers, Blueberry AIO (all in one), and recently I finally tried the Rearz fitted I bought awhile back. When I first bought the Rearz, I had no idea what fitted meant versus pocket, AIO, AI2 (all in 2), OS (one size), perfect fit, prefold, etc., etc., etc. The world of cloth can be, oh, so confusing and overwhelming. So, in an effort to make it a bit easier for anyone considering cloth, here is a bit of an overview of what it all means.

**Please note, I will provide the link to the official product website (when one is available) one time during the post, refer back to the link to find out more information about a specific brand.**

PUL – stands for polyurethane laminate. It’s a waterproof fabric that is used in many styles of cloth diapers.

Pocket Diaper – a diaper with a PUL outer layer and a soft inside layer. There is a pocket between the soft layer and the PUL layer that allows for an insert to be placed inside the diaper. bumGenius, FuzziBunz, Kawaii, Blueberry, Rumparooz, and many, many, more make pocket style diapers. We have the bumGenius OS 4.0 for M and we LOVE them! However, I’ve been feeling the need to try some new brands. We were not a fan of FuzziBunz, but that was just because of the fit on M. I’ve had friends who swear by them so don’t let one person’s opinion sway you from trying something.

AIO – stands for All-In-One. An AIO has the insert sewn into the diaper so there is no stuffing (or removing) of insert required. This is as close to a disposable diaper as you can get. Take off, throw in bin, wash, dry, put on baby. That simple. bumGenius recently came out with an AIO (Freetime), we have one, and we love it! I may end up buying more…if I can somehow justify purchasing more diapers! I’m not going to list all the brands that have AIO, if you go to some of the websites on my Stash O’ Links tab you can take a look at some of the different brands out there.

AI2 – stands for All-In-2. I just recently figured this one out. I hadn’t paid much attention to the world of AI2 and did some research a few weeks back. Basically it’s similar to a pocket diaper but the insert lays on top of the cover, instead of inside the cover. The concept allowing for just the insert to be changed and not the cover as well. gDiaper could possibly fit into this category, but they really are quite different than most CD out there. I have not tried any official AI2, I don’t really have an interest in trying them either, not sure why, but I think I’m going to stick with pocket, prefold, or AIO.

Prefold – speaking of prefolds…Prefolds are basically your old school cloth diaper but no more do you have rubber pants to go over the prefold diaper. Now, there’s a cover that is made from PUL that has either a snap or aplix (velcro-like) enclosure. I don’t use pins to secure the prefold, the spectacular invention of the Snappi is my choice of enclosure. It’s not that you can’t use a safety pin, I just feel a Snappi is safer and easier. We use Econobum prefolds. I tried another brand that I bought from an Amish store but I bought them too small and ended up selling them and replacing them with Econobum. I’m really happy with them so I don’t see me trying any other prefold brands at this time. I love using prefolds on weekends when my husband is working. I actually find them really nice. I was told they were the bulkiest of CD but I haven’t found that to be true. They actually result in less laundry because you don’t have to wash the cover every time. Simply wipe out unless it’s soiled with poo. So, only the prefold goes into the wash. There are several different ways to fold a prefold so if this is something you’re interested in, do some research to see what works best for you and your baby.

Fitted – again this is one that took me awhile to figure out. It wasn’t until I started looking into the prefold world that I realized what a fitted was. Fitteds are basically an AIO in that they don’t require an insert, but do not have a PUL layer so they do require a PUL cover. They come in snap or aplix enclosure and are usually sized (so as baby grows you have to size up). I have 3 fitteds (1 that is still too big for M) and 2 that I can use right now. They are Rearz fitteds. I’ll use my fitteds but I’m not attached to them. I may end up selling them, we’ll see.

OS – stands for one size. OS diapers usually have snaps going up the front that allow for the diaper to grow as baby grows. The OS diapers we have, have 3 rises, M is currently on the middle rise of snaps. Some may only have 2 rises, but from what I’ve seen, it’s been 3 for the most part.

Perfect Fit – this means that the diaper is sized. So as baby grows you have to size up. You’d have to check with the specific brand you are looking into to find out which size you’ll need depending on weight. However, it’s just a guesstimate so you’ll have to see what fits best for your baby. Our FuzziBunz were perfect fit as are gDiapers and the Swaddlebee AIO we had. I personally prefer an OS diaper so I don’t have to worry about stashing diapers that are too small or too big until they are needed (or needed again for a future baby). I do have my small gDiapers stashed away though because I really liked them for up to about 11-12lbs on M and will use them again for another baby at some point.

Cover – the cover is the part of the diaper you see once the diaper is on. It can be a pocket cover or plain PUL cover (remember this is used for fitteds and prefolds). They come in all sorts of designs, colors, and patterns. The cover is what makes CD so addicting!! In my opinion anyway! I see a cute pattern or design and I just must have it!! 🙂

Insert – most pocket diapers you buy will have at least 1 insert that comes with it (bumGenius gives you a newborn insert and a OS insert that grows with baby). There are a ton of inserts out there and just because the diapers you buy come with a specific insert, this does not mean you will like that insert all the time. For example, nighttime, frequently a double stuffed diaper or a more absorbent insert is required to help baby sleep through the night. We use a bumGenius OS insert (on 2nd rise snap) and a Zorb insert for nighttime and get a good 10 hours of sleep out of M before he needs his diaper changed. The brand of zorb I bought has a specific overnight insert that I don’t have (bought from a Mennonite store) and I keep meaning to buy some to see if we can get him closer to the 12 hours that he sleeps at night. I have since bought 2 nighttime zorbs, they work great. Either zorb option, is a good option, M is in his nighttime diaper for close to 14 hours and we have no leakage issues and sleeps all night with no diaper changes needed. I have found that we get less stink issues though if the zorb is paired with a prefold or gdiaper insert rather than the bumGenius microfiber insert. Cloth diapering has a lot of trial and error.

Please refer back to my previous CD post (link above) as I’m going to briefly touch upon how we wash M’s diapers. This is what works for us, now, this process could change at any time if I find something that works better or is more efficient. Each of my fellow CD friends wash their dipes differently so it’s really what works best for you and your washer.

Step 1: Rinse poop diapers with diaper sprayer so poop goes down the drain, store in bucket in bathroom with a lid; store pee diapers in wet bag that lines a kitchen trash can in the nursery. (Or dump solids in toilet and toss the rest in the diaper pail…no rinsing needed unless it’s a looser poop).
Step 2: Dump pee diapers and rinsed poop diapers into washer.
Step 3: Run cold rinse and spin cycle on washer with 1 tbsp of Rockin Green Funk Rock (or a couple times a month a 1/4 cup of non-chlorine bleach by Seventh Generation if I don’t have any Funk Rock).
Step 4: Run quick hot water wash, heavy soil setting, small amount of Rockin Green CD detergent, and extra rinse at the end.
Step 5: Run heavy duty hot wash, heavy soil, 2 tbsp of Rockin Green CD detergent, and extra rinse at the end.
Step 6: Throw diapers into dryer.
Step 7: Stuff/fold diapers, put away at changing table. Done!

Step 1 and Step 7 are really the only steps that take extra time out of your day, but it becomes part of the routine and after awhile you don’t even think about it.

I recently started using cloth wipes. Couple reasons why. First, it’s more environmental and it’s a money saver (okay, that’s 2 in one), second, my dog finds poopy wipes a delicacy and was eating them, I’d find poopy wipes all over the place (EW!).

I ended up just making my own cloth wipes (see DIY All By Myself for more info on how I made my cloth wipes). I’ve found that using a spray bottle with wipe solution has worked best for me. I made his solution out of some baby wash and organic shea butter oil with some water. Put water in before the soap so you don’t get lots of foam, then gently rock the bottle back and forth to mix the ingredients. I don’t know how much I used of each, I really just eye-balled it. If you do an internet search though, you can get tons of other wipe solution recipes. This just seemed easy and gets the job done. I spray the solution on the wipe, wipe the bum, put in pail, easy peasy lemon squeezy. All you really need is some water though, all the other stuff isn’t necessary, it’s whatever works best for you and whatever you prefer.

So, that’s CD in a nutshell…a large nutshell  I hope that if you’re considering cloth this did not overwhelm but was informative and helped you feel less overwhelmed! My recommendation for deciding whether or not to do cloth is to make the decision, buy a stash and ease yourself into it, check out Jillian’s Drawers or Nicki’s Diapers for their diaper trials. I wish I had known about these trial options when I started with M, maybe for another for newborn dipes…we’ll see. Ease yourself into CDing (or at least get through the meconium poop stage) by starting with just weekends or just during the day, then as your disposable supply decreases and you feel more comfortable with cloth, decide that when you’re out of disposables, that’s it, you’re not buying anymore. That’s what we did and we’ve never turned back! I believe we have 1 disposable and I’m pretty sure it would be way too small on M. Not even sure why we still have it, just in case I suppose.

Any questions, please leave comments! Fellow CDers out there, any other information or advice you would offer?