How can I get started with cloth diapering?
Real Mom Problem
“I want to switch my daughter from disposable diapers to cloth diapers. I don't know anything about the different types.”
- 1. Try out different types of cloth diapers before you commit to one type or brand
- 2. Learn the difference between pocket diapers and pre-folds
- 3. Wash cloth diapers appropriately; make sure to use less detergent than a normal wash cycle
- 4. Consider extra padding for overnight
Real Mom Solutions
To cloth or not to cloth? Is it more work? Is it cheaper? Which is better for the environment? Find out everything you've ever wanted to know about cloth diapering from moms who know!
Start with the Basics
I've found the "Pocket Diapers" are the best buy to start with, and a pack of good "Pre-folds"... like "Unbleached Indian pre-folds" (you can stuff the pre-folds into the pocket diapers for better absorbency.)
Experiment with Different Types
I recommend you look at all the options and decide what you would like. Then get a couple in those kinds and try them out. Then choose which one you like. Because what works for me might not for you. They all fit babies differently.
You just want to try them and see what you like. From there, the options are endless, really. Pre-folds are the most basic, but the basic theory with all cloth diapers is the same: absorbent inner and waterproof/repellant out-er. The difference is in the materials and how they're put together.
Watch Your Costs
There is a large variety of cloth diapers, all with different price points. I've been using cloth on my (now 26 month old) little boy, ever since he was 4 months old, and I've been lucky to find sales like "free shipping", "buy 1 get 1 free" etc. PLUS if you or a loved one can sew, it may be worth it to make your own. It's easiest to get them at the different online shops, but depending where you live, there might be a shop that sells them. Also you can usually score great deals on ebay or craigs list - good to think about if you're not sure about what you want to use.
Wash Them Right
Wash the diapers with diapers, not with other laundry. Diapers need an extra rinse cycle or two, and diapers need far LESS detergent than regular laundry. Every third or fourth day I have about half a load of diapers so it's really not extra work.
Use Extra Padding for Overnight
For overnights you may want to buy a few stuffers (or you can use a folded up washcloth) these just add a few extra layers of absorbency.