Thursday, January 8, 2009

Cloth Diapering FAQ's!

For anyone interested in making the switch to cloth diapers, here's a great place to start! I wrote this post up on Babycenter, but thought readers on here could benefit from it as well. If you see anything I'm missing, or have a link you think I should add, please let me know!

Will switching to cloth diapers save me money?
As long as you don't go overboard with buying diapers (trust me, it gets addictive with all the cool colors out there), then you can come out ahead. Expecially if you use them for more than one child. Mine were paid off within 4 months since I used them for 2 children at the same time.
Try this cost caluclator to get an idea of how long it will take before the cloth diapers have paid for themselves by switching from disposables This second site has a great example comparing the costs to cloth diaper a newborn vs. using disposables.
Also, did you know that cloth diapers are resellable? You can make some of your money back by selling them when your children are done with diapers.

What are prefolds, pockets, and AIOs??? (This one has a nice chart where you can compare the different types side by side)

How much of everything do I need to buy to get started?

How often do I need to wash the diapers and covers?
Every 2-3 days to prevent stains and smells from setting in.

How do I wash Cloth Diapers?
Here's what I do:
Rinse cycle on cold, wash on hot using 1/4 recommended ammount of detergent, then rinse cycle on hot with 3-4 drops of lavendar essential oil.
Here are a couple links with more info. on washing:

What types of Detergents are alright to use?
However, many moms recommend that you STAY AWAY from using detergants marked "Free and Clear". They say it causes build up on the diapers. So, keep that in mind as you read the detergant recommendations. I use regular Tide and it seems to work well. Make sure you only use 1/4-1/2 the ammount you would usually use for a load of laundry; this helps prevent detergant build up as well.

I have a HE washer, do I need to wash my diapers a special way?

I can't keep up with regular laundry, how in the world would I be able to keep up with washing diapers too?!?
It's really not that bad, really. I have a hard time keeping up with laundry, (it's usually all clean, but rarely put away), but doing diaper laundry doesn't seem like much work. I just wash the diapers, pull out my covers and pockets to air dry, stuff the other diapers in the dryer, then stuff them into a laundry basket. I used to fold them afterwards, but now I just keep them in the basket and pull what I need as I go through the day. If I can do it, then surely you can do it too!
Here's a link with a time evaluation that's worth checking out:

How do I cloth diaper a newborn? Do you have any special advice?
I haven't tried it yet- my babies were 4 months & 1 1/2 when I started up. Here's a couple links with advice from people who've used cloth with a newborn:
Here's one more link to newborn cloth diapering info.:

How do I make my own wipes solution?
An easy way is to make up the solution and keep it in a spray bottle.When you need a wipe, just spray the solution on a wet wash cloth just before use. I use the Anti-fungal recipe for my baby from Diva Diapers. Their website has many great wipes solution recipes worth checking out:

Can you use cloth diapers while out of the house? What about for longer trips?
I use cloth diapers while out- it's no big deal! Many ladies use wet bags to hold their dirty diapers, but you can also just use a grocery sack. I use a Happy Tushies Wonderbag and it works great for on the go. It has two seperate sides- one holds wet diapers, the other for holding clean. You can snap the sides together and it becomes one bag. There are two loops for hanging the bag on a door handle, or even on a stroller. Here's the link from the company I bought mine through (which had great customer service, BTW):
Here's info. on how to cloth diaper even while camping!

Do you have any sites you reccommend for getting reviews on cloth diapering brands?
Diaper pin has reviews on just about everything!

My diapers are starting to leak a lot and I think it may be due to detergant build up. How do I strip the diapers?
1. Washing clean diapers on hot 2-3 times without detergent.2. Washing diapers on hot with a squirt of Dawn dishwashing soap.
(taken from


  1. Thanks for posting this. I decided that with my next child I would make the switch over to cloth diapers. I will have to remember to come back here for great info.

  2. I'm in the process of moving to all cloth with our 6 week old...we've been dabbling but she wasn't big enough for the AIOs I bought until this week. I'll be checking back here for advice, I'm sure!

  3. Making the switch was definantly good for our family! If you have any other questions, let me know!

    Megan- what type of AIO's did you buy? Did you like the company you ordered them from?


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