Monday, October 24, 2011

Cloth Diapering Routine

Some mamas I know are seeking information on cloth diapering and I decided to just blog about it and have the info all nice and organized for people that are interested.  This is a post about a system I like and works for my family; but believe you and me, there are so many options unexplored on my part.  It really is about experimenting and finding what works for your baby because they come in all different shapes and sizes.  This is a list of things you might find helpful to aid you in cloth diapering:

 •   Diaper pail of some sort that has a lid.  

   Diaper pail liner so you will not have to rinse out the diaper pail each time.  I just throw the liner in when I am washing dirty dipes.  Just make sure you don't put it in the dryer.

   Wet bags to use for storing dirties in when you are out and about.  I have a few so that I can rotate through until I am able to wash them.  I also throw these in when washing dirty diapers. 

   Diaper sprayer that attaches to your toilet.  You can do without BUT makes it a lot easier to get the poo off once they start eating solids vs the dunking method. Not so much fun.

   Bac-out Stain and Oder Eliminator is a MUST have in my opinion.  After we rinse out a poopy diaper we spray it with the Bac-out and have excellent results in the enzymes eating the poo that clings to the diapers fibers and not to mention helps with the smell while it sits in the diaper pail waiting for the next wash. Also great to have around for general help in keep the kiddos clothes stain-free. We go through a lot of Bac-out, in fact joke about how we should buy stock in the company.

   Diaper friendly detergent.  I use Charlies Soap and have good results with it.  I use half the recommended amount  for diapers and they come out smelling clean.  We are on our third gallon in 14 months of using it to wash ALL laundry.  I think that is kind of impressive. I make sure to use recommended amount for my normal laundry by the way. 

   Gallon jug o' white vinegar to be used in the final stages of washing diapers.  Helps remove residuals of washing liquid and softens the diapers.

   Seventh Generation Bleach Alternative to add to the main washing cycle.  Charlies doesn't have any disinfecting qualities to it so I use a little bit of this every time. I also use hot water.
   Cotton Prefolds need to be washed and dried about 7 times before using them.  You don't need to use detergent after the first wash time when you do this. You are just getting them to shrink down and become more absorbent.  You will need approximately 2 dozen bare minimum to get started, or more if you don't want to do laundry as often.  When they are lil bitty they pee frequently (we averaged about 14 per day) so you will be changing diapers more often in the beginning. I have gotten all of my prefolds at Green Mountain Diapers and I love them!  I get the organic cotton variety and they are just top notch.  I also like that they are color coded so as you phase into larger sizes it isn't hard to keep them all separated.  

   Doublers are good to have in your diaper stash.  These are essentially inserts you put in the diaper. They are great to use once your babies bladder starts to mature and you will need more absorption power.  I use these during the nighttime and for when we are out and about.  My personal favorite are Baby Kicks' Joey Bunz made of hemp. 

   Snappis for your pre-folds.  This is the greatest invention EVER!  Say goodbye to using scary pins on a squiggly baby and hello to easy.  

   Diaper covers you will need and this is where it gets crazy because there are so many different choices.  In fact, I am going to have a seperate post explaining  the different options. Having a minimum of 5 covers is a good idea.  More just makes your life a little easier.  I personally LOVE Wild Child Woolies and Sustainablebabyish wool diaper covers.
   Cloth baby wipes are much better at getting the bum all clean in my opinion. They are great to have around for runny noses, dirty faces/ hands and just general messes lil ones make.  I have tried using the disposables and just don't care for them.  You can purchase these or make these yourself out of any soft fabric.  Flannel seems to be a preferred cloth for the DIY method.  I would have at least 4 dozen.  I purchased mine at Green Mountain Diaper.

   Wipes Solution is a good idea.  I make my own using a alcohol-free witch hazel with a bit of jojoba oil that I infuse with baby friendly herbs.  I just spray it on and wipe with a warm wipe.  I am in the process of working out some small details and should have available to purchase in the near future!  Sensitive baby butt tested.

I believe that is it for my list of essentials for cloth diapering must-haves.  What are some of your can't live withouts for cloth diapering?  Thoughts?  Suggestions? Look for my next post about the different type of cloth diapers available and more about what kind of diaper covers are out there.