Cloth Diapers for Beginners

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Cloth diapers vs. disposable diapers

Do I want to use cloth diapers or disposable diapers? This is a question I asked myself when I was pregnant. There is no right or wrong answer to this question, only what works for you. While this article is about cloth diapers for beginners, there are pros and cons to using both. You just have to decide what is most important to you and what will work best for your life.

In my opinion, the biggest pro for using disposable diapers is that they are more convenient because you don’t have to do extra laundry.

Another pro is that most disposable diapers have wetness indicators. Since cloth diapers don’t have them, you should make sure to change your baby’s diaper about every two hours.

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I think the biggest pro for cloth diapers is that you can save money. After doing some research, I thought Bum Genius diapers would be good cloth diapers for beginners, and I’m very happy that I got them.

They are adjustable, easy to use, and have grown well with my baby. I also like that I don’t have to worry about stuffing them back together.

Cloth Diapers 101 for beginners

Do you really save money using cloth diapers?

You can absolutely save money with cloth diapers, but that will depend upon a myriad of choices that you make, such as how many cloth diapers you buy or what brand disposable diapers do you use. Those answers will be different for everyone.

If you go through an average of 9 disposable diapers a day, and 18 wipes a day, depending on what brands you use, you could end up spending around $2000 over the course of two years.

My average costs for two years using Bum Genius diapers, laundry detergent, reusable pail liners, wet bags, reusable wipes, and my water bill are about $887. Most of those costs are upfront from purchasing the diapers and accessories.

What do you need for cloth diapers?

The number of diapers that you need will intersect somewhere between how much you are willing to spend, and how often you want to do laundry. I bought 24 diapers, and I usually wash a load of diapers once every three days.

Other items you will need include laundry detergent, reusable pail liners, wet bags, Grovia reusable cloth wipes (if you are going to make your own wipes solution), and a trash can.

I use other reusable cloth wipes as well, but Grovia cloth wipes are my favorite. They are very soft, and I also use them to wash my baby during bath time.

Bumkins flushable biodegradable cloth diaper liners can be used for convenience. They are thin layers that are meant to catch the poop to make for easy clean up and to help with stains.

When changing your baby’s diaper, you can simply flush the liner down the toilet.

How to Clean Cloth Diapers

My biggest concern by far was how to clean cloth diapers for beginners because I was intimidated by the idea of extra laundry, and putting poopy diapers into my washing machine.

I almost quit the first day I started using cloth diapers, but on day 2 or 3 I found my rhythm and it was surprisingly easy.

I use Rockin Green laundry detergent to clean the diapers. If you have a front loader or HE machine, which I do, than one scoop per load should do it.

I wash my diapers, pail liners, wet bags, and cloth wipes on two long, hot cycles. Then I dry everything on low, and I do not use dryer sheets.

My diapers are still in pristine condition, and you can’t even tell that I wash poopy diapers in my washing machine.

Keep in mind that you should refer to the specific washing instructions for the cloth diapers that you purchase.

Easy homemade baby wipes solution

I have a homemade baby wipes solution that is really fast and easy to make, and I usually have to make a new batch every two weeks.

It is also really inexpensive to make. I’ve been making this solution for five months, and I still haven’t gone through the bottle of baby wash that I use to make it.

I put the wipes solution in amber glass spray bottles, and spray it on to the reusable wipes. I use the bigger bottles at home, and the smaller bottles for travel. Here is the recipe:

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How do you travel when using cloth diapers?

I bring wet bags with me when I’m running errands. I actually put one wet bag inside of another wet bag to minimize the smell.

Then I just bring reusable wipes, a small bottle of wipe solution, and the number of cloth diapers varies based on how long I think I’ll be out.

I use disposable diapers when going on overnight trips. You don’t want to have a giant bag of stinky diapers in your car for multiple days, and most people probably aren’t going to want you to wash poopy diapers in their washing machine.

Do you use cloth diapers at night?

A lot of cloth diapers come with long inserts that you could use at night, but I think this answer depends on how long your baby sleeps for. I’m sure there are moms out there who have had success with using cloth diapers at night, but it just wasn’t the right solution for us.

My baby started sleeping through the night when she was 1.5 months old, before we started using cloth diapers, so I decided to keep her in disposable diapers at night.

If she was sleeping for 2-4 hour stretches when I started using cloth diapers, then I would have used them at night until she started sleeping for longer stretches.

I originally started using Pampers Overnight diapers for bedtime, but one day I read a review where someone had taken a picture of Pampers Overnight diapers next to regular Pampers swaddlers.

The kicker was that the overnight diapers and swaddlers looked exactly the same, other than a picture of the moon, and the overnight diapers were more expensive. So basically I paid more money for a picture of the moon!

Now I use Pampers baby-dry swaddlers at bedtime, which are less expensive, and work great. My baby sleeps around 9-11 hours every night, and has never had any issues with leaking.

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What tips do you have for using cloth diapers for beginners? Please share in the comments below!

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