Adventures in Newborn Cloth Diapering, Part One
Adventures in Playing Blog Hooky, Part Four Million and Three

Adventures in Newborn Cloth Diapering, Part Two

ZOMG, YOU GUYS.

So immediately after finishing my epic manifesto (or at least PART ONE of it) (and I don't think "finishing" is correct, because it was more like I ran out of time and simply had to STOP TALKING SO MUCH and hit the Publish button), I dashed out to meet Noah at the school bus. While I was waiting, I pulled my blog up on my phone, just to double-check that everything had published okay...and to start spotting the inevitable typos that always suddenly become SUPER obvious the second after I've convinced myself that I've proofread enough. 

And that's when it fully hit me JUST HOW MANY WORDS I'd committed to the topic of cloth diapers. By the time I was done scrolling through all those many, many paragraphs to the comments, MY THUMB HAD A FUCKING CRAMP. 

Then I did this embarrassingly audible snarf-laff at myself, because FUCK YOU, BREVITY, and another mother gave me a look and asked what was so funny. 

I opened my mouth, ready to explain that "oh hi I just wrote a Great American Novel's worth of text about my infant's diapers on the Internet for no real reason," but then thought this would be a smart time to STOP TALKING SO MUCH.

So instead, I lied. "LOLcats," I told her.

Cloth-diapers2-13 Anyway! Welcome to part two! In which I admit that sometimes cloth diapering didn't quite go as planned. Not so much to discourage anyone out there, but...I just need to be honest. I felt like everything I read from other cloth-diaper users never seemed to admit that cloth has ANY limitations or drawbacks (besides the obvious having to wash them, teh horrozz). Like we're all too focused on trying to convince people that we're not insane. Shhh! Don't give them any ammo! Don't mention the leaks! You shut your whore mouth about the overnight diaper rash from a sopping wet prefold!

Likewise, the people who WERE talking about their less-than-great experiences almost had an axe to grind, because they TRIED cloth and they didn't LIKE cloth and so they QUIT and went back to 100% disposables ALL THE TIME and have never been HAPPIER, SO THERE, HIPPIE FREAKS.

The thing is (and this was echoed in the comments several times), cloth doesn't HAVE to be an all-or-nothing, either/or endeavor. No one is going to come in and take away your Exclusively Cloth Diapering Gold Star Hero Award if you mumble "fuck this bullshit" at two in the morning and reach for a disposable instead. No one cares if you keep an emergency stack of Pampers in the diaper bag, or buy a big jumbo sleeve of Target-brand disposables whenever you go on vacation. Because I have done all three of those things, and I would do them again. 

And I would cloth diaper a newborn again! Really! 

(Should a newborn ever miraculously come into my possession, that is, like in a basket on my front step. Because: No. I sure do like babies, but now that I've had three of them, I can definitively tell you that babies turn into children. All babies! Yes! Even yours. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.)

Anyway, here is what I started out with, on the day Ike was born (note that we were already set for stuff like cloth wipes, detergent, wet bags, diaper pails and liners, etc.):

Eight preemie-sized organic cotton prefolds, by Bummis

One dozen newborn-sized organic cotton prefolds, by Bummis

Two dozen newborn-sized unbleached Indian Cotton prefolds, diaper service quality

Three Thirsties covers (one basic extra-small and two Duo Wrap Snap, size one)

Three PUL covers from Fluffy's Diapers on Etsy, size x-small

Six Fuzzi Bunz One Size Cloth Diapers (link goes to Amazon but there are better prices out there)

Three newborn-sized fitted diapers from Rebel Baby Co.

Accessories: Bummis Bio-Soft Liners , Bummis Reusable Fleece Liners, 3-pack Snappi Cloth Diaper Fasteners,

Cloth-diapers2-10

Oooh, ahhh, whatever.

Looking over this list, I can definitely see what my plan was: I'd go halfsies the first week or two, with the preemie prefolds and free hospital disposables, depending on Ike's size. (He was 7 pounds even when we brought him home. Ezra was in the 6-pound range. And Noah? NINE POUNDS.) No matter what his size, we'd move up to the regular prefolds fairly quickly, most likely.

I picked all PUL covers because I couldn't wrap my head about putting a baby in fleece or wool in the summer, plus the Thirsties cut away for the umbilical stump. 

I cinched up the FuzziBunz to the recommended newborn setting and figured those would be our going-out-of-the-house diapers, or middle-of-the-night-I-don't-feel-like-dealing-with-prefolds diapers. 

The three newborn fitteds were a gift -- I hadn't considered buying fitteds because of the cost and the relatively small window of use. But for free? Giddy the fuck up. I set those aside for special occasions, like our well-baby visits at the pediatrician. (Shut up.)

That was a good plan, honestly. It was the result of months and months of needless obsessing, because I am crazy and refused to chill out and remember that I didn't need to have a cloth diapering system perfectly in place from day one. But still. Good plan.

A few tweaks and problems, though:

1) I didn't need the liners, flushable or fleece. Liners are fantastic for older babies with more, ahem, substantial, solid poops, but there's no real need to fuss with them for breastmilk baby poop. I have MAYBE felt the need to pre-rinse about two or three soiled diapers TOTAL before tossing them in the washing machine. I've dunked one in the toilet, I think, and the others I still simply put in the diaper pail and then rinsed them off in our utility sink right before washing. Everything else goes in the pail, then in a cold soak cycle and a hot wash with a tablespoon of Charlie's Soap. Everything nasty washes away like mustard-colored water, no biggie. If your diapers look stained, let them dry outside in the sun. 

For diaper stink, I strip them every couple months with Rockin Green' Cloth Diaper and Laundry Detergent according to the package directions. (Weirdly, I tried switching from Charlie's to Rockin Green full-time, but the stink just came back faster when I used it all the time. Charlie's keeps them smelling better for longer, but when the inevitable build-up happens, only Rockin Green can de-funkify them.)

2) I hated the Bummis organic prefolds, both preemie and newborn. HATED. Still do. They got demoted to burp rags almost immediately. They don't fluff up as nicely as the diaper-service-quality prefolds, but they shrink more, absorb less and don't have much "give" to them, which meant I couldn't use them with a Snappi fastener. I had to lay them in the cover tri-fold style, and when your covers are too big and your prefold too skimpy, well...

3) Blowouts. God, if there is anything to make a newbie cloth diaperer wonder what in the SAM HILL SHE IS DOING WRONG, it's the newborn poop blowouts. Which everyone assures you only happen in disposables! I mean, that was true for us and Ezra, but not with Ike. I had six covers, which was SUPPOSED to be more than enough to last a few days because you only had to change the cover when it got poop on it, right? 

YEAH. COOL STORY BRO. Newborn babies poop approximately a billion times a day. Our covers got poop on them every. Time. He. Pooped. So did his clothes. Not up and out the back, like a disposable, but out the leg holes. In the preemies, in the newborns, in the Bummis and in the "good" prefolds. There was no snap setting or extra gusset or special fold that was any match for Ike's scrawny little chicken thighs. 

In a panic, I ordered a couple Proraps in the preemie size, hoping that they'd fit a little better and keep the poop contained. The order got held up by Amazon for some reason, so by the time they arrived, Ike was a week old. They DID keep poop from getting on Ike's clothing...but poop still got on THEM, the covers, every time, so I was once again left with a pile of useless prefolds and no clean covers by mid-morning. Plus, the preemie size probably only fit him for another week, two tops. Bah. 

The rapid-fire poop-changes were a temporary problem -- (most) babies do eventually stop the poop-after-every-meal thing within the first month, so the onslaught of blowouts slowed to about one a day, then every other day, but they were simply...BIGGER blowouts. After about three or four weeks we abandoned prefolds entirely in favor of all fitteds with covers because GAAAAHHHHHH. 

By the time I dared revisit the prefolds again (sans the Bummis), about a month later, everything mysteriously worked like clockwork, and Jason and I both now rank the prefolds as among our favorite option to use (he likes the tri-fold/PUL option, I'm all about the angel-wing-fold/Snappi/wooooooooliepants).

Cloth-diapers2-12 

The "good" prefolds, with the hated Bummis banished to the very bottom of the stash. This is called staying organized, passive-aggressive style. 

I still don't really know what was wrong at first. Was Ike too small and skinny? Covers too big? Should I have had the preemie size on-hand from the start? Should I have opted for some newborn fleece or wool soakers instead of the wrap-style PULs? Did Ike just...poop more enthusiastically than your average baby? Were we just idiots? 

(Don't answer that.)

4) Other people. Jason and my mom stabbed themselves with the Snappi fasteners, not realizing that a replacement for diaper pins might still be a little, you know, SHARP. Our babysitter (who loves the one-sizes for Ezra) took one look at the prefolds and was like, fuck no. (She's since come around, though I can tell she haaaaates the fact that we have more than one "system" going. I revel in having options to pick and choose from; other people, not so much.)

Everyone besides Jason and I seemed easily confounded by the snaps on one-sizes and the soaker pads on the fitteds and would NEVER EVER EVER fasten the diapers up tightly enough because they were afraid of hurting the tiny newborn. Of course, the diaper would then gap and leak all over and everybody would glare at ME, THE CRAZY PERSON, who was insisting that cloth diapers really were the way to go. That was fun.

I don't think there was any way to solve this except to 1) personally take care of every diaper change, 2) accept and embrace my role as the crazy person or 3) hover behind people at the changing table all, UR DOIN IT WRONG. I think I went with a combination of two and three, but I don't know. I was pretty tired. 

5) Rashes. Ike gets a vicious rash if he's left in a diaper for too long -- disposable or cloth, and particularly in a PUL cover. Not on his butt, but in the front, below his belly button and above his bidness. This is not great for nighttime, when you never know if your newborn will sleep for 45 minutes...or four hours. Again, everyone praises cloth diapers to the SKIES for their rash-preventing qualities, and AGAIN, this was true when I cloth diapered an older baby. Ezra NEVER got rashes. But a newborn? Some newborn skin is just that dang sensitive that it doesn't matter. 

Last night Ike slept for an astonishing NINE HOURS in a fitted diaper and a wool cover. Nothing leaked, amazingly, but yeah, there was that pesky, nasty, chapped-looking rash again. 

I recommend Grandma El's Diaper Rash Remedy (which I should have applied before bed last night). It's safe for cloth diapers and clears things up right quick, but I consider it a miracle of OCD over-preparation that I even had the stuff on-hand when Ike needed it, because ho ho ho, we won't need diaper rash cream because we cloth diaper, smugface, hurr hurr durr.

6) FuzziBunz elastic drama. This was, perhaps, the most surprising bit of our Cloth Diaper Journey (coming this fall to CBS!)...I assumed the uber-expensive FB one-sizes would be worth the investment, because I loved the sized version we used for Ezra. The improvements made in the one-size style could only be better, right?

Uh, yeah. Jury is still out on that one. These diapers are amost TOO adjustable. The waist and leg holes all have adjustable elastic that you can pull and button on both sides. Like so:

Cloth-diapers2-01

Before, at the largest setting.

Cloth-diapers2-03 Cloth-diapers2-04

Adjusting, adjusting...

Cloth-diapers2-05 Cloth-diapers2-06

Adjusting, omfg, trying to forget just how many of these fuckers I purchased...

Cloth-diapers2-07

Wookit the wittle diaper! Wookit it!

So that's...six different buttons and adjustment numbering options. And every time I put one of these diapers on Ike, I find myself second-guessing the fit. He grows so fast that I seriously end up rebuttoning and retucking in at least two or three places each time they come through the wash. That is, if the diaper is lucky enough to GET through the wash without the elastic accidentally unbuttoning and disappearing into the diaper, requiring me to dig it out with a safety pin and a lot of curse words. 

Plus, tightening elastic is not MAGIC. All that fabric? Designed to fit a potty-training two-year-old? Doesn't VANISH or anything. It's still there, just cinched and puffed up in the back. I don't mind the little roundy fluffybutt shape a baby gets in bulkier cloth diapers, but these were RIDICULOUS on Ike as a newborn. Like, I wanted to point and laugh at him. HA HA, your mom dresses you funny. I first tried them at around 8 pounds, but I really don't think they were realistic until at least 10 pounds.  

That said, these diapers are the favorite of grandparents and caregivers, because they seem like the "easiest." Just stuff, snap and done, no scary folding or additional cover. So fine! I leave these in the drawer for them, most of the time. (Or in the diaper bag, for changes when we're out.) I figure I'll like them better later, when Ike isn't growing so quickly and making me feel compelled to futz with the elastic so often. Eh, I KNOW I'll like them better, because they really are fantastic diapers. (Though by that point, my hand-me-down batch of Medium FuzziBunz will probably fit, meaning I really could have saved the money I spent on the one-sizes.)

I could just do without ALL THE OPTIONS and go for a little more honesty: Your baby WILL fit into these diapers at some point, but that point is probably not fresh out of the womb. You can buy these diapers a couple months later and not worry that you haven't gotten EVERY PENNY'S WORTH from them, you know? 

AH CRAP BUS TIME AGAIN GOTTA GO. This is a nice little tradition I've got going for myself. Perhaps today, when I gasp in horror at this entry's length and wordiness, I'll pretend I'm seeing goatse for the first time, or something. 

Tomorrow-ish: The stuff that worked. Or else just looked the cutest. Plus some reader questions/requests, so shout 'em out if you've got 'em (or send follow-ups to the Advice Smackdown [amyadviceATgmail.com], and I'll try to cover any specific topics there when we're not feeling quite so CLOTH DIAPER OVERLOAD MAKE IT STOP anymore). 

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Comments

Issa

I am commenting mostly from the top paragraph. Sorry dude. What can I say, my youngest is potty trained. *mostly* That and you are way braver than me. Or I'm way too lazy for cloth. Something. Well that and mine were always in daycare.

Anyway...when I laugh in public and people look at me odd, I always say either LOLcats or DYAC. I'm glad I'm not alone in this.

Shannon

Oh my god! this is why I didn't try to cloth diaper. I start to have an anxiety attack when I read stuff like this. TOO MANY OPTIONS! NOT ENOUGH TIME! BUT THE GUILT! THE PLANET! AHHH...

Emily

Hello wise one Amalah! I know you don't have twins, but I am due in January (though realistically they'll be here sooner then that) and I am pretty determined to try the cloth diaper route, I just don't know if a) it's crazy with two babies and or b) how much to start with. Right now I am registered for some Happy Heinys XS (6), Thirsties Due Wrap covers (8) and two dozen Indian cotton preemie prefolds. I know I need to add to this, but I don't know how MUCH to add?? Any advice? PUHLEASE?

Felicity

I never cloth-diapered my kids though I probably would have if it was more "mainstream" then. I certainly wasn't ready to blaze any trails on my own!

IF I have another (see also: whoops!), I will def. give it a go and reference this manifesto.

So, the point is this topic is of zero interest or relevance to me and yet I am riveted by every word. The writing is that good.

Bravo.

Candace

We did the cloth thing for the first three months, but when month four hit and I went back to work, I just about lost my mind with it. The GOOD news? There's a hella resale value for these things! Even the prefolds!

Olivia

@Shannon, me too with the many, many options. I seriously get overloaded thinking about using a lot of different systems. I was given fuzzi buns size small, so when my daughter outgrew those I just bought fbs in mediums cause it was what I knew. I thought about the one-sized fuzzi buns, but now I think I'm glad I went with medium.

Also, I'm only a part-time CDer. Cloth during the day, disposable at night (I can't be arsed to changed a wet diaper at night). Then when she started staying dry overnight, I used cloth then. Now in daycare, it's sposies during the day and cloth whenever we are home.

Sarah

I was going to say how much we loved the prefolds, and we only did prefolds (with a snappi, not tri-folded) and thirsties covers with our son until he was about 12 lbs but he was in the NICU for the first week, plus we had 3 packs of disposables people had given us in size 1, so maybe we got through that first akward stage w/out knowing it.

i do the tri-fold method now that my son is almost 2, but never thought of using it - even in the covers - when he was tiny because it seemed the snappi would help keep the poop in.

Oh - and whats an angel fold? We did a "newspaper" fold I think? Because it was what I remembered with my mom / younger brother... I assume angel fold is similar?

Ruthie

Wow. We just...used the BumGenius one-size ones. From the day his stump fell off until, well, now. When he's about 95 percent potty trained at 2.75 years old. Guess we lucked out on the chicken-leg front.

Ruthie

Wow. We just...used the BumGenius one-size ones. From the day his stump fell off until, well, now. When he's about 95 percent potty trained at 2.75 years old. Guess we lucked out on the chicken-leg front.

Laurie

I cloth diapered for a year and used Crickett fitteds with a PUL cover, both snaps. Loved loved loved them and I would have continued (and bought the next size up) but I was going back to work.

Too many options would have driven me crazy though...

Roberta

I keep saying that if I have another one, I'm going to cloth diaper. *After* the itty-bitty oh so many diapers SO MUCH POOP newborn stage. This has definitely solidified that thought, because I am DIZZY about all of the things you could diaper a newborn in. I'll fill a landfill for only three or so months, and then redeem myself and call it even.

Amy

We're expecting our first in November, and I was overwhelmed by the idea of a separate newborn system, followed by deciding what to use as a one-size. So I'm going with a newborn rental package from itsy bitsy bums. The package is all newborn-sized fitteds and covers, for a fraction of what it would cost to buy them. The rental is good for 12 weeks, which I figure is plenty of time for us to decide what system we want to use for one-sizes. Meanwhile I've registered for a variety of AIOs and AI2s so we can try them out and decide before we return the rental. Love all the info in these posts, Amalah!

Angie @ Musings of a Violet Monkey

I love all of your variety... and yet, I think that would drive me crazy.
I think I am going to have a difficult time "selling" CD-ing to my sig other and my Mom (who will god-willing, be a part-time caregiver for the future wee one)... So I will probably have to simplify things a bit. But who knows. I'm standing my ground on the CD front.

I'm *trying* to make sense out of all of this, but I think until I can hold a modern CD in my hot little hands - it's not going to click. But - I'm still riveted. Every word. Bring it on! :)

~

Kara

My kids are (mostly, pleaseGodplease) past diapers, so I will probably never have much practical use for this new knowledge, but thank you for presenting it in such an entertaining way. Got a yooge belly laugh out of "smugface, hurr, hurr, durr".

Delora

I have 3 of the FB one-size diapers. The first I got as a freebie at BlogHer '10 when Colin was almost 7mos old (and still only about 15lbs). It fit great, was easy to work with, and I was in love. I bought two more off zulily when they were on sale for around $13. Over the same period of time, I also got a couple perfect size smalls, and a bunch of perfect size mediums thinking he'd be in them soon (FB sizing says Med starts at 15lbs & around 6mos).

Well, fast-forward a year. I've only adjusted the elastic on my one-sizes once because my super-skinny toddler is only 20lbs. However, he's such a heavy wetter, that he soaks through a double-stuffed OS in 2hrs because the inserts are so dang small since they're so narrow in the crotch. He didn't wear the PS Meds until over 15mos, and even now still wears them on the smallest snap settings, but we love them for night b/c I double-stuff with a joeybunz hemp insert. AND he still wears his PS smalls during the day double-stuffed.

In short, the OS were a dream for about 9 months, where as the PS smalls have been great for well over a year.

(At Jodi's party we talked about GroBaby and I've lost my love for those snap-in inserts, but their covers are still great for tri-folding a pre-fold. I just bought a bunch of these "better fit" prefolds from OsoCozy that are the same height as a newborn pre-fold, but the same thickness as a regular prefold. I love em.)

Cristin

I love the IDEA of cloth diapering but....oh geez. Just- bless you...for cancelling out the 47,000 disposables I will fill our landfills with...Bless you

M

Can I just say, the Grandparents, they crack me up?

My parents only had the prefolds, you know? And the hideous plastic pants. Those were the options when me and my sisters were kids. That was ALL there was.

And now with the Grandchildren it's all OH MY HECK, how do I change this thing? What? Did they fall and hit their head and forget it all somehow?

I'm thoroughly digging these posts, American Novel and all. I'm pregnant and have been debating how I want to cloth diaper a newborn...we didn't start with our Boy until he was probably 3-4 months old. Thank you, thank you for writing them!

Jean

I must've refreshed the page a zillion times today because I was so excited about seeing the continuation of yesterday's post...
I've been CD-ing my 7-week old son using angel-folded prefolds with Snappi's and Thirsties x-small diaper covers (did you see the new Hoot wrap? OMG!). I had problems with blow-outs on the gussets until I started tucking his penis _below_ the three-layer part, which is counter-intuitive but it works.
None of these words would have made sense to me six months ago. Wow.

E @ Oh! Apostrophe

YAY for chunky baby legs. We did okay with the BG one size from the get go (10 days in I think), although I had two BG XS and those were awesome and fit a little better in the beginning. Now we love the BG OS and I'm excited to try the new BG training diapers someday. (Someone shoot me for just writing that I am excited to try diapers. GAHHHHHH)

Shelbey

Just so you know, I have no kids, am not pregnant, and I am eating these ridiculously long posts up! Keep em coming! You've convinced me to try cloth diapers, when the time does come! Who knew I would find this so fascinating??

Sheryl

My little guy was actually allergic to the polyester fleece that lined most of my pocket diapers. We had to switch to a micro-chamois inner (Rump-a-Rooz) or one with just cotton (Bum Genius AIO).
When my pedi saw the rash she was all "You need to switch back to disposables". Um, no. But I did need to make a hefty purchase for more cloth diapers (the other ones resold pretty well on DiaperSwappers).
FYI, no more rash, and two years later, still CDing for naptime and doing disposables at night. We're almost done with diapers!

Sheryl

My little guy was actually allergic to the polyester fleece that lined most of my pocket diapers. We had to switch to a micro-chamois inner (Rump-a-Rooz) or one with just cotton (Bum Genius AIO).
When my pedi saw the rash she was all "You need to switch back to disposables". Um, no. But I did need to make a hefty purchase for more cloth diapers (the other ones resold pretty well on DiaperSwappers).
FYI, no more rash, and two years later, still CDing for naptime and doing disposables at night. We're almost done with diapers!

Stefanie

I used to practically fall down laughing every time I put my barely in the third percentile for weight baby in a FuzziBunz.

RebeccaC

This is simply fantastic. I'm cloth diapering a 12 week old. We started as soon as the stump fell off and never looked back. We have a mix of Best Bottoms (from Nickis Diapers) and hand me down G diapers. Curious if you have any experience with these?

Also we have been using All Small & Mighty which I'd heard good things about for cloth but at this point our diapers are starting to have a serious eau du funk. Just ordered Country Save bc I've heard great things but any advice for stripping? Rockin Green is the way to go eh?

PS you're honesty is hilarious. Thanks.

PPS had no idea about all the fabness on etsy. My husband is going to kill you for that little tip-- fleece soakers = adorbs!!!

RebeccaC

This is simply fantastic. I'm cloth diapering a 12 week old. We started as soon as the stump fell off and never looked back. We have a mix of Best Bottoms (from Nickis Diapers) and hand me down G diapers. Curious if you have any experience with these?

Also we have been using All Small & Mighty which I'd heard good things about for cloth but at this point our diapers are starting to have a serious eau du funk. Just ordered Country Save bc I've heard great things but any advice for stripping? Rockin Green is the way to go eh?

PS you're honesty is hilarious. Thanks.

PPS had no idea about all the fabness on etsy. My husband is going to kill you for that little tip-- fleece soakers = adorbs!!!

kristin @ going country

The only thing I can think of that worked for us and you haven't mentioned are the gauze diapers for a newborn. The kind that most people get for just burp cloths, I think, which is the reason I added them to our registry. Turned out, they're so . . . foldable in so many different configurations, that we figured out ways to origami them into containing blowouts from the very beginning. Surprisingly, my husband was the best at this. It challenged his Mr. Fix-It., or something.

Amy

I haven't wrangled a diaper in a few years, but I haven't yet tired of talking about them. So carry on! It is crazy how fast the products and options change. A lot of what you are using wasn't even available when my daughter was a tiny baby five years ago. I loved my (old-style) FuzziBunz, until the inserts got SO funky nothing I could do would save them. We liked Bumkins AIOs too. And plenty of hand-me-down pre-folds with Bummis Super Whisper Wraps and Litewraps.

And that "cloth doesn't give rashes" thing is bullshit. My daughter had a few terrible rashes. The only thing that cleared it up was Triple Paste Cream. That stuff is magic. We tried Weleda and other more crunchy options, but they just didn't cut it sometimes.

Jess

I just wanted to say that I think you're right that you'll like the FB more when he's older. We bought a big batch of one-size FB when my son was one month old and 10.5 pounds. At first it felt like we were adjusting all those damn elastic buttons every other day. By now each setting lasts way longer and we're almost on the biggest one. In fact, with a 27-pound seven-month-old? I'm wondering if they'll fit long enough for him to potty train. I'm SO GLAD we got the one-size because we would be all the way up to the larges by now if we'd gone with the perfect size, and GAH, the cost.

CJ

You know, considering that diapering is how we spend most of our waking hours during the first 2-4 years, I don't think what you have written is excessive. Imagine if you spent that much time making cheese. You'd be a famous artisan.

We liked prefolds best too. With baby #2, I learned I could fold as if I were going to use the Snappi, but let the cover hold everything in place. No sharp plastic required, and it got better butt coverage than just folding the diaper in thirds lengthwise.

teachergirl

please, please, please. add a ps. add a post about how to get started without your brain exploding because a) you have a 5.5 month old; b) you work from home and said 5.5 month old doesn't really nap for more than 45 minutes at a time; and c) NO TIME TO RESEARCH. no really.

PLEASE. wet bags? diaper pails? how do you get poop off? i'm like...wandering in the weeds. pretend i'm stupid. PLEASE.

i'm beginning to loathe desitin because i use so much of it. i think our girl might do really well in cloth, but i have to find a way to do it that i won't screw up and will actually, you know, work.

thank you thank you thank you!

Jaime

We cloth diaper and mostly use bumgenius, with one prefold econobum thrown in which I also hated but now love as it is the only one that hasn't leaked. I also have a couple of happy heinys that I don't really care for and just bought some brand new bambineo tonight at a sale for super cheap. I'd never heard of them before so I hope they're good.
Now I do have a question about wool covers. I know that it's something I probably should be using - mostly because I'm a knitter and could make some super-sweet ones. But how do you take care of them? They really don't leak? Or is it just not that bad of a leak? Also how so you wash them without them felting? Is it all handwash? (obviously I rely on strangers instead of doing the research myself! Thanks!)
Also - it took me three tries to get through this entry on account of all the words. But I love this subject so it was worth it!

jill

I have a question, though it mostly relates to your experience with Ezra. We started cloth diapers on my daughter when she was about a month old, but gave up after only a few weeks mainly because she would cry immediately after wetting herself. Every time. She'd wake up screaming from naps, screech for whole car rides, etc. Now two years later, i have a five month old, and i'm thinking about trying again. So i wondered, do you notice a difference in tolerance level for wetness between cloth and disposable? I had no problem with the washing and other details (we used prefolds with PUL covers) i just hated her being umcomfortable, and was unwilling to mess with the precious naps. I am hestitant to make another investment only to have the same experience. I would love to switch my son, and then maybe try my daughter with cloth again when we're ready to potty train in a few months. Can't hurt to use her preferrence for disposable against her, right?

Liz

We have done prefolds & PULs since day 1, and have the same issue with overnight wetness causing a rash. So at bedtime, I started putting a gDiaper refill on top of the prefold, adding extra absorbancy, but also pulling the moisture away from the skin. This way the baby doesn't feel wet and doesn't wake as often. I'm not sure if there are any similar products on the market, that can work in conjunction with a prefold, but these are perfect and we rarely have rashes anymore. https://www.gdiapers.com/gdiapers101/our-products/biodegradable-diapers

Jenny

Your stash sounds pretty much identical to mine, with the same issues. Glad I only bought one FuzziBunz as a trial, that thing is a pain in the butt and is never tight enough around my bub's waist. Esp love the bit where people think you're hurting the poor lil baby so they leave the dipe nice and loose. My mother did this once, left a BG with 4 snaps open at the waist despite me telling her to put it on the smallest setting. She plopped my 2 month old baby girl back on her playmat and announced to me that she'd 'done it looser so she didn't get that elastic mark on her back'. Darling girl superpooped about 2 seconds later and blew right up to her armpits, front and back. I just tossed her a fresh diaper and sleeper and left the room. Don't think my mom has offered to change a diaper since, lol

Sarah R.

I switched my first to cloth at ~7 months, then cloth-diapered the second two from about day 4 or so. For the newborn explosive poop of the first 2 months or so (depending on your babe's size), Kissaluvs size 0 fitted diapers ROCK. Rather pricey, but you can find them used or I've found their "seconds" (with slightly misplaced snaps) occasionally showing up on the company's website.
And as far as that lower abdomen rash, fleece liners are really effective for preventing that (though you're right about not needing them for the poop).

Julia K

Love your blog and love this CD piece! I have a 2 month old, am rotating in some CD with the disposables right now and I immediately went on Amazon and placed a big 'ol order after reading part 1 last night. um, thanks? Anyway, I do have a question. You may think I'm gross for even asking, but...is it ok to wash your cloth diapers with other laundry? Since I'm only using 3 diapers right now, I hate to do a separate load for them and let's just say my laundry room is outside and 2 stories down from our apartment, aka I'm lazy! My rationale is that I wash clothes with poop and pee and vomit on them with other clothes, so the diapers are kinda the same thing. right?

Genie

Great info.

In that last picture, Ike looks like he's saying, "Woman, put down that camera and come help me. Can't you see I'm on my face and this head is too heavy for me to pick it up?" LOL!

Pange

great info as usual! we also had the prefold blowout issue but flatfolds + PULs worked beautifully on my child when she was a newborn. no poo leakage ever. i guess they just have more give in them or something.

BB

You seem to really love the wool covers and I've heard this from a lot of other people as well. I'm wondering about the lanolizing. How often do you need to re-lanolize? Have you needed to do that yet? Is it a huge pain?

jL

So. I was thinking one of the benefits to cloth would be that our garbage can would not stink so much from the disposables piling up in there (since we don't use a [worthless] separate diaper pail).
Can you talk about The Stink. You mentioned it up there with the build up and stuff. That scared me. How bad is The Stink?

Heather

Yeah, you totally just made me google goatse. Thank goodness it took me to (image-free) Wikipedia.

Rachel

I will never use cloth, unless it is as a grandmother, hopefully a LONG time from now. My kids are 14 & 11, so like 10-15 years from now would be just fine, thank you! Anyway, not sure why I am reading these posts except that I love your blog and find the options interesting, I guess. I did lol at "your mother dresses you funny" so this lengthy comment is to say thanks for the lengthy posts that I have no logical reason for reading.

Rachel

I will never use cloth, unless it is as a grandmother, hopefully a LONG time from now. My kids are 14 & 11, so like 10-15 years from now would be just fine, thank you! Anyway, not sure why I am reading these posts except that I love your blog and find the options interesting, I guess. I did lol at "your mother dresses you funny" so this lengthy comment is to say thanks for the lengthy posts that I have no logical reason for reading.

Jenn C

This is really so super helpful. I CDed Kid #1 but we didn't start till she was 6 months. Now that I'm expecting Kid #2, I've been so lost among all the newborn options! It helps so much to hear about the pros and cons of your systems.

Jen

Love these long posts as well. You are the single reason why we cloth diaper, I wouldn't have had the guts to try it without all the knowledge you have shared.

I have a quick question that I didn't think was Smackdown worthy ( but, oh how I love the Smackdown!). Question: Can I wash my Bum Genius AIOs with my Bummis (ack!) Organic prefolds? The Bum Genius website and packaging says no. But....reeeeaally? Would it actually hurt anything? I only have 6 Bum Genius and am annoyed with having to do a separate load.

Robynn

Can you address the cost of all these options? Even an estimate would be helpful. Everyone always talks about the cost savings but I don't think they shop like I do. I pay 11 cents a diaper and get cases of disposables from my MIL whenever she visits. I estimate that I spend less than $200/year on diapers and really more like $150. Potty trained at 3 is $450 total. That's quite a bit of money but if you were to buy everything you mention above, even some used, I'd really like to see the comparison. And please include fancy soaps you wouldn't need if you use standard cheapie (All Free) detergent otherwise. Thanks!

Valerie

I WANT to use cloth diapers, I REALLY, REALLY DO (& everyone who views my baby registry laughs & says I'm nuts...Including my husband) - but reading your posts confused the sh*t out of me. Too many options.
I've been around babies my entire life, never have I been afraid of diapering, until now.
Can you break it down with the easiest option for newborns & the first few months? I need to convince my hub this is the way to go, and he's not taking the bait so far...

fresh365

Ok, just FINALLY broke into my stash of FB One Size. They have been taunting me for the past 3.5 months, but I spent an hour yesterday adjusting those darn elastics & yay, they are working good (fingers crossed). I agree, these were not realistic for a newborn since I also laughed at how silly he looked a few months ago. But now at 16ish lbs they fit him well on setting 3 for waist and legs. Although, I am getting nervous about the "disappearing elastics". First round in the dryer now (on low!), so we will see...

lesley

Amy, thanks for mentioning the newborn rental! I started cloth diapering my first child when he was about 3 months old for the very reason that I didn't want to buy diapers small enough to fit him, and the GroBaby AI2s were too bulky. I am definitely trying this with my baby that's due in January! Thanks!!!!!

The Muskrat

We did old school cloth diapers with safety pins and no snaps or velcro; we washed them at home, without a service. It was all good, until a sibling was born and doubled the shit.

Erin

I have a variety of cloth diapers including one FuzziBunz one size, which I HATE. I would say if your kids are of the long & skinny variety you will probably never like that diaper. Once they get a little bigger the rise is SO LOW but I have to keep the elastics pretty tight on my boy's skinny thighs, the whole thing is ridiculous. My vote for worst pocket.

Erin

I have a variety of cloth diapers including one FuzziBunz one size, which I HATE. I would say if your kids are of the long & skinny variety you will probably never like that diaper. Once they get a little bigger the rise is SO LOW but I have to keep the elastics pretty tight on my boy's skinny thighs, the whole thing is ridiculous. My vote for worst pocket.

Do babies poop in the womb

In earlier days, the cloth was used as a diaper and the kids faced lot of difficulties and now with these new diapers and easy to wear,easy to remove has made life so easy. Its awesome!!

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