This is a Guest Post by Evelyn Langdon and Stay at home mom to Trevor and Scott.
Here’s an idea of what we have in our house and what works for our family:
My Diaper Stash
18 BumGenius One-Size 3.0 Pockets that I had snap converted (when I bought them, they only had Velcro closures; BG has since added the option to get snap closures)
8 medium-sized fitteds from various companies (my favorites are the 3 Short Rounds fitteds I lucked into – 2 were free, and the 3rd was only $7 including shipping)
3 medium-sized thirsties PUL covers
4 woolies – 1 recycled (pants made from the arms of a sweater), 1 interlock, on crocheted, and one knitted. My favorite is the interlock.
3 wetbags – One holds 2 diapers or 1 diaper and a set of dirty clothes, one holds about double that, and the 3rd holds about 40 diapers (I got that one for when we drove to Maryland from Colorado last summer and knew I wouldn’t have access to a washer for 3-4 days).
Diaper sprayer – hooked up to the toilet in the kids’ bathroom.
Diaper pail – really just a heavy-duty plastic trash can I got at Target.
(photo credit: My second son in a fitted diaper when he was about 10 months old)
Flannel liners – I have a few dozen of these that I use occasionally. If your little one needs to us a diaper rash cream or ointment, these liners are really great for keeping the goop off the inside of the diaper and causing stains.
Baby washcloths – I have probably 4 or 5 dozen of these, and they’re perfect for wiping my son’s little butt. I had about a thousand of them anyway, and I never used them. It seemed like the perfect solution!
8 oz. spray bottle – I use this to spray my cloth wipes before using them. I just fill it up with tap water, add a couple drops each of tea tree oil and peppermint oil, and keep it next to my pile of wipes.
Newborn stuff: 24 unbleached Indian prefolds, 4 thirsties PUL covers, and 2 or 3 Snappis
(photo credit: My Newborn Stash and BumGenius Diapers; I dyed the prefolds with Dylon dyes because I think white diapers are boring diapers)
Stuff I’ve Tried and Hated
Flushable liners – some people love them and think they’re great, but my kids have sensitive skin and complained that it made them itchy. It wasn’t worth the money I was (quite literally) flushing away for the convenience. However, if they hadn’t had sensitivity issues, these would have been GREAT for dealing with poopy diapers without having to spray them off.
Keeping cloth wipes wet – I haven’t personally tried this, but I’ve heard they get moldy in a day or 2, so I just never went there.
Closed diaper pail – can you say, “Pee-ew!” Yeah, that’s what I thought. Just don’t even try it.
Wet diaper pail – it encourages mold and mildew.
Rockin’ Green Cloth Diaper Laundry Products – soap residue builds up in your diapers (especially microfiber, yuck!) and makes them dingy, gray, and stinky. They make a product called “Funk Rock” which is supposed to help with this problem, but everyone I’ve heard of who’s tried it has told me it just made the problem worse.
Tips & Tricks I Love
Baking soda in the diaper pail – just a little sprinkle of baking soda after each diaper addition will help absorb smells and moisture while keeping the rest of your house smelling great. This is also why I do a pre-wash rinse – I don’t want to find out what it would do to my washer if I added vinegar to the mix! I get all the baking soda off first, THEN add vinegar.
No wetbags – once my son started having more solid poop, I stopped carrying a wetbag with me. If they don’t have liquid poo, you can just wrap the diaper up the same as you would w/ a sposie and stick it in the diaper bag. Some people like a wetbag anyway, but I’ve found the diapers are far easier to deal with (smell-wise) when they haven’t been in a waterproof bag for a couple hours.
My Wash Routine
This will vary from person to person. It’ll depend if you have a high efficiency or traditional washer and dryer, how many diapers you have vs. how many kids are using them, how much other laundry you have to do, and how much you hate doing said laundry. I only have 1 in diapers right now and we have a pretty large stash for him. I also own HE machines. I wash 3 times per week in addition to my regular laundry (I have 2 dedicated laundry days; I do NOT do my diapers on those days).
- Cold rinse, no detergent.
- Sanitize cycle with detergent. I also add white vinegar to the bleach dispenser.
- Cold rinse, no detergent
Every now and then (generally every 2-3 months for me), you’ll notice your diapers aren’t absorbing well or look dingy or smell. . . funky. You’ll need to strip them when that happens. It’s pretty easy, just tedious. I’ve never stripped anything other than my BumGenius inserts, which are white, and I haven’t needed to do it since I got my HE washer. That being said, here’s what I did in my top-loader for my white inserts:
- Normal wash routine, but don’t dry.
- Separate the inserts from the rest of the diaper laundry. Put all the non-insert things into the dryer.
- Add ½ c bleach and 1 tablespoon blue Dawn dish soap and run the hottest cycle.
- 2 additional very hot washes with not detergent, bleach, or anything else.
I do not use cloth when my son has diarrhea, and I use sposies at night, mainly because his pee has a lot of ammonia in it, and when we’ve tried him in cloth at night, he wakes up with chemical burns every morning. My older son didn’t have this problem, so he wore cloth at night.
I like to use prefolds with PUL covers or wool for newborns, simply because it’s the best way to get a good fit every time and prevent leaks while still protecting their little umbilical cord stump from getting bumped or irritated.