Cloth diapering is no easy feat. It can be tempting to run out and buy a pack of disposable diapers with a guilty conscience looming over your head. Here’s what I’ve learned about the wonderful world of cloth diapering over the past two years.
An insight into cloth diapering
Some Brands Suck
Yep, I went there. Whether this collection of diapers is set to last you a few children or even just for a couple years, you’ll want a good quality item. Not to mention, they’re a small upfront investment.
When I began cloth diapering I invested in a variety of brands to find out which one would work best for my daughter. The brands ranged from Applecheeks, Bummis, Lil’ Helper, Sunbaby and Alva Baby.
The First Six Months is the Easiest. No, Really.
You think I’m joking, don’t you? In your haze of newborn sleep deprivation you may be wondering how I can sit here and say that the first six months are so easy. The reason why? Your little bundle of joy hasn’t entered into the world of solid food. Which means that dealing with their bodily fluids is a heck of a lot easier. Breastfed baby poo is water soluble, and that means you don’t need to bother with a diaper sprayer. But…
You’ll want a Diaper Sprayer and Shield
Once your infant begins exploring solid food, a diaper sprayer is a fantastic investment. It also doubles as a bidet if you’re feeling really adventurous and I highly recommend it for postpartum usage.
And when I say “shield” I mean to protect your bathroom from receiving a new brown speckled paint job. You don’t have to buy anything fancy. I repurposed an old plastic planter by cutting out the bottom. Get creative before you spend the big bucks.
I know you like hot showers, but diapers don’t.
Hot water is necessary to ensure a good clean, but every diaper has a recommended maximum water temperature. So just be sure your water temperature isn’t set too high.
Cloth diapers can be extremely finicky if they aren’t cared for properly. If you’ve got an amazing washing routine make sure that your washing machine isn’t boiling your cloth diapers. This will cause the elastics to lose their elasticity, as well as your PUL, which is a fancy word for the waterproof lining, to start separating.
If you have a new high efficiency washer, it might include an extra heater to get your water real hot. So just make sure before you start making a cloth diaper stew.
Cloth Diapering + Daycare = Difficult
You’re ready to go back to work but you don’t want to give up on your cloth diapering journey that you’ve invested so much time and energy into over the past 12 months? You’ve lucked out and found a cloth diaper friendly daycare, hooray!
I sincerely hope that you don’t get sent home with poo-ritos. On top of working full-time, caring for your toddler, trying to keep some remnant of sanity and cloth diapering can be exhausting. After a few difficult months and receiving countless messy poo embedded diapers sent home, I bit the bullet and began using disposables for daycare.
And on the same note…
If you’ve given the scrunchy mom life a try and want to use the occasional disposable diaper, you do you Mama! Sustainability isn’t about perfection. If it was then we’d all be failing miserably and I don’t care what the lady who’s kept her trash in a jar for 3 years says. Does she have a kid? No.
What have you learned from cloth diapering?