Before we even started trying for a baby, I knew I wanted to try cloth diapering and Jon was on board with it. It's not as important of a decision as core parenting values and types of discipline but I wasn't about to move forward on my research without the full support of my husband, who will definitely be involved in diaper duty. He is just as psyched as I am. Now before I get more in depth, I fully respect each person's choice on how to diaper their kiddos. Honestly I couldn't care less what other people do but some people are so opinionated so if you think it's nasty and want to leave a comment about how gross we are, just skip this post :-).
I can honestly say that John and Sherry over at YoungHouseLove got me really excited to cloth diaper with these two posts (1 and 2). My husband and I can afford disposable diapers (and we still plan on using them from time to time) but the cost savings is nuts with CDs! I feel like what is drawing me to it the most is the challenge. And really, it doesn't seem like a challenge to me. I have changed tons of diapers in my lifetime as a nanny, babysitter, big sister, and aunt but I have never had a baby of my own that requires multiple changes a day. It is our first baby and we won't know any different.
What We Bought
After lots of research (and basically just doing what YHL did), we bought 24 BumGenius 4.0 One Size Snap Pocket diapers from Diapers.com. Yes the initial investment may be frightening but we plan on using them for our flock of children to come. We chose all gender neutral colors too. These diapers are adjustable to fit babies weighing 7lb-35+lbs so you can use them up through potty training. Each diaper comes with 2 inserts, a smaller newborn one and a larger, thicker one for when baby starts eating more. The nice thing is babies tend to leak/blowout WAY less in cloth diapers because you can add more liners. The liners are similar to burp cloths.
Though you can manage without one, we also bought a BumGenius diaper sprayer for when baby starts solid foods and #2 gets messier.
For when we are out and about, we bought this Itzy Ritzy wet bag. It is cute, really big, and well insulated so nothing will stink.
In lieu of a diaper genie, I bought this 4 gallon tin trashcan from Ikea (ours is yellow) and 2 Kissaluvs antibacterial pail liners so we can throw diapers in there when we are upstairs. It is basically the same thing you'd do with disposable diapers and the smell is locked in the pail. I will probably bring dirties down every other day or when I wash the diapers.
How does it work?
Jon and I are new to diapering all together so we will be learning as we go. We plan on using disposable diapers for the first few weeks of baby's life just to make it easier when he pees through 4 diapers in one changing haha. We also won't be asking anyone else to cloth diaper our baby meaning that when we have baby sitters, drop him with family, or even on vacation, we will use disposable. Sometimes it's just easier to throw them away.
The process doesn't seem hard at all. God willing, we plan on exclusively breast feeding which will be good for cloth diapering because we won't have to dump out the contents of soiled diapers. Breast fed babies stools are liquid enough that they don't need to be sprayed either. This will change when we introduce solids though. So wet or dirty diaper, we simply take it off his booty, crumple it up like you'd do a disposable and toss it into the diaper pail. I've heard of people getting away with owning 12 cloth diapers and washing more often but we decided to buy 24 so we didn't have to wash every day. We should be able to get away with washing every 3 days when baby is on a good eating/sleeping/bathroom schedule.
When the pail is full (or I feel like washing), I will wash with natural detergent (which we already use) on cold, using an extra rinse cycle at the beginning. We have a high efficiency washer and dryer that can sense the size of the load and control how much water is used based on size. We have a drying rack and I hear it is best to dry the diapers outside in the sun to avoid stains so even though some may argue the added laundry expense, this will cut costs. When diapers are dry, we re stuff with the liner and they are ready to go!
Something I've learned about cloth diapering that is really important is you can't use all types if diaper rash cream with them. The good news is cloth diapered babies get less rashes but you do have to buy different creams. I found out coconut oil works great for rashes and is completely safe with cloth diapers. The creams that work with CDs are all organic and natural so probably better than most.
I was excited to see how many people responded positively to the picture of our cute little diapers on Instagram and I'm excited to join the CD community! Please leave me any tips or recommendations you've learned along the way.