Cloth diapering 101


I’ve been cloth diapering now for almost three years, and I swear I will never go back. Yes, I love the environment, and yes, it feels really good to push a small, only-half-filled garbage can to the street every week, but beyond that, it feels really good to have very little to buy in the way of disposable products at the store each week. It feels awesome to travel and not be afraid that I don’t have enough of what I need. Laundry doesn’t stress me nearly as much as being unprepared does.

Never cloth-diapered before, and interested? It’s so much easier than you might think. Today’s cloth diapers are a breeze, thanks to the internet and lots of great design advancements. The pocket diapers we use allow us to choose how much absorption (a heavy pad or a light one) and to tailor the size of the diaper to the kid (very helpful when you have giant babies like mine).

What cloth diapers do I use? Bum Genius diapers from I have a dozen of these per baby in diapers. AMAZING.

  • Do I have to touch icky diapers? No. Unless I’m not paying attention and a little dude tries to run away or sprays me.
  • Do I have to wash a ton of diapers? With 2 kids in diapers, I wash one load of diapers, twice a week. Not bad.
  • Do we use them all the time? No. If we’re out and I’m expecting someone else to change them (like church nursery or grandma’s house, babysitter, etc), we go the disposable route. And then I use the generic Target brand.

What about a diaper pail? And diapers when we’re away from home?

  • For the diaper pail, I use a plain small white trashcan from Target with a lid, and a nylon laundry bag. I line the trashcan with a trash bag just to keep the yucks out, and then put the laundry bag in. When it comes time to wash them, I just turn the nylon bag inside out and wash it with the diapers.
  • When we’re away from home, I use a travel-laundry bag in my purse or diaper bag. But if we’re going to be gone for a long trip, I just take a pack of disposables with us and get back to cloth when we get home.

And washing them? Do we have to clean our washing machine a lot?

  • Washing them is easy. We just use regular powdered Tide and hot water, with a second rinse cycle. (Crunchy moms are feeling yuck about the Tide, I know- this is a pick-your-battles thing for me, and I just don’t pick to make my own detergent.) Then I dry the inserts and the laundry bag and hang the diaper shells to dry.
  • I run a bleach cycle after a diaper cycle- just half a cup of bleach and hot water rinse. That’s it. Nothing more exciting than that.


See? Not so bad. And it sure beats spending $30 a week per kid on diapers.

xoxo~ LWH