the ins and outs of our research and purchases for cloth diapers
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After we decided to do cloth diapers FOR SURE, I did more research to try to figure out what kind would work best for us and how to actually fit cloth diapers into our lifestyle.
David and I ultimately decided to buy a small assortment of diapers to start with and then purchase more once we determined what style and brand was most effective and easiest to use and clean. (See my diaper comp chart below.) We also opted not to buy any new newborn cloth diapers. I got a few used ones on eBay, but we chose not to really start cloth diapering until Baby Girl was a few weeks old. They just didn’t fit right, and I didn’t want to spend all that money on something that would only last for a month or so. Regular cloth diapers are adjustable, so they grow with the baby. But newborn dipes are only meant for babies 5-12 pounds.
After much research and YouTubing, here’s what we bought in terms of accessories:
- Bumkins Cloth Diaper Sprayer – This attaches to your toilet so you can spray off those poopy diapers. Then you just have to flush and toss the dipe into the pail! I think one of the most difficult things to overcome with cloth diapers was squeezing out the excess water after rinsing a dirty diaper. It’s a little gross. But, for us, it works better than having a dry pail and a wet pail (where the poopy ones are put in a pail of water to pre-rinse before throwing them in the wash).
- Planet Wise Wet Diaper Bag – LOVE these!!! We have a few for diapers, and I also use one for my pump supplies. I’ve tried other brands and have found Planet Wise to be the best. There’s an extra layer of PUL (Polyurethane Laminate) fabric inside the bag, so it’s flexible and easy to wash. Plus, the patterns are SO cute! I’d recommend at least one large bag and one medium bag. I’ve found the medium bag is plenty big for a day at the sitter’s; it holds about 6-8 diapers. We use the large bags when we’re gone for the whole day or even on a weekend trip, as they hold 15-18 diapers.
- Planet Wise Reusable Pail Liner – This fits nicely in your diaper pail. It contains the smell, and you can just throw it in the washer with your diapers! I’d get two so you have one to put in the pail while the other is drying.
- Dekor Classic Diaper Pail – I didn’t know I could feel so strongly about what is basically a glorified garbage can. This pail really knows how to keep the stink away! It can be used with disposable or reusable bags and is hands-free. It also has a flap on the inside of the lid that can be locked so little hands can’t go digging through the mess. NOTE: This pail holds approximately 10-15 cloth diapers. If you’d like something larger, the Dekor Classic Plus is the way to go.
- Lysol No-Touch Automatic Hand Soap Dispenser – If you go with the diaper sprayer, I would HIGHLY recommend an automatic soap dispenser. This way you don’t have to touch the soap with messy hand.
- You’ll need a drying rack, like this one or even this. You can throw any inserts in the dryer, but the covers need to be line-dried. The wet bags, pail liners and AIO diapers should not be put in the dryer either.
- You can use regular detergent, like All Free & Clear, for your diapers as long as you don’t use too much. After some trial and error, we’ve landed on the brand Rockin’ Green. We use both their Classic Rock Detergent and Funk Rock to keep our diapers fresh and as ammonia-free as possible.
Okay – now for the diapers.
We decided on a mix of Grovia and Bum Genius. I was able to get a good deal on bundles of Bum Genius Flip diapers (all-in-two) on eBay (new, not used), and we bought a package deal of Grovia diapers (all-in-two) at The Green Nursery. We also bought one Bum Genius Freetime diaper (all-in-one) and a couple of Bum Genius 4.0 diapers (pocket).
Ultimately, there is some trial and error involved. Because cloth diapers truly are an investment and can be pricey up front, I would advise not buying too much to start. It will take some time to figure out what works best for your family. You want something you feel good about using, not an inconvenience.
I personally prefer Grovia for their coverage and ease of use, but all of our diapers suit us just fine. The babe is now a year old, and they still look (almost) new! 😉