Monday, August 23, 2010

True Confession

So, while it’s not exactly a secret, I’ve been putting off announcing the fact that we are now cloth diaper people.  I was kind of waiting to make sure it was a success before broadcasting it to the world.  And while I have absolutely no intention of pushing other people into cloth diapering, it’s something I’m pretty excited about right now. 

I have to tell you, when Ben was born, the topic came up once with Jon and I totally wrote it off saying that there was absolutely no way that I was going to spend large portions of my life cleaning poop off of cloth.  Jon, being the good husband he is, dropped it and happily supported me in using disposables.  One day, I saw a deal for some hybrid cloth diapers on babysteals and was curious.  Hybrid diapers are basically a waterproof cloth cover with disposable inserts, either cloth or disposables.  The disposable inserts are biodegradable and compostable, unlike normal disposables.  Jon and I had been talking about trying a more environmentally friendly disposable, but it was out of our price range.  The deal made it pretty affordable so I decided to give it a try.  It worked out pretty well, but I was still using normal disposables a lot. 

I was still scared of trying cloth because I was already buried in laundry and still hated the idea of cleaning poopy diapers.  Then, as I was rinsing the poop off of yet another outfit of Penny’s after yet another blowout, I realized that it was silly to not use cloth because I didn’t want to deal with cleaning poopy diapers.  I was cleaning baby poop off of something or other every day.  So I started doing some research and discovered that cloth diapers are not what they used to be.  There are TONS of options out there.  In fact, there are altogether too many options.  And, while the upfront costs are more expensive than a pack of disposables, you definitely save money in the long term.  Plus, it’s better for the environment.  There are some great online stores that will let you try cloth diapers and return them if you don’t like them. 

Long story short, after a LOT of research and several returned items, I found a convenient, affordable option, and we’ve been using them for a couple of months.  I really like it so far.  It’s really not that bad cleaning them.  We got a little sprayer that attaches to our toilet and I just spray off the messy diapers and toss them in a diaper pail that has a waterproof fabric bag in it.  Every other day, I pull out the bag and dump the diapers and the bag in the washing machine.  I do a quick cold rinse to get rid of the gross stuff and then wash on hot with a small amount of detergent and two rinse cycles (it’s important to keep detergent from building up in the diapers).  Throw them in the dryer, and it’s a done deal.  It’s really only a couple of extra loads a week, and with all the laundry I do, it doesn’t feel like much.  Plus, it’s actually helped me establish a more regular laundry routine, keeping me from falling behind and getting crushed under a mountain of laundry, as I’ve been known to do.

I still use the hybrid disposable diapers for when I take Penny to the gym or for babysitters, but I haven’t bought any more traditional disposables since our last bag ran out a while ago.  Penny seems to like the cloth diapers just fine.  I was worried that since cloth doesn’t absorb as well or as fast as disposables, Penny’s skin would get irritated.  I was wrong.  She’s actually had fewer diaper rashes in cloth.  I got some fleece liners to put in for naps and night time, and they wick the moisture away from the skin really well.  Plus, the covers/diapers we got are pretty cute.  Check out the album of Penny modeling her newest cloth diaper:

Seriously, so cute.  And Penny seems to like them.


Geri said...

Penny is just so cute. I admire you for many things, cloth diapers being one of them.

Melanye said...

Yeah! I just started using cloth diapers and I'm a big fan. They are a bit bulky on Brady right now (he's only 10 1/2 lbs) but we haven't had any leaks so I think they will get even better as he gets bigger. I'm using Flips - super affordable and easy to use. I'd love to hear more about the type you use and the detergent you use to clean them. Take care! Melanye

kaheels said...

Melanye, I assumed you had your baby by now, but you guys went private with your blog and I can't get access to it. Is there any way you could send me an invitation ( Belated congrats. We mostly use gusseted, flannel fitteds (from babybunz) with thirsties covers. They've worked really well and were pretty reasonably priced. I put in a fleece/hemp inserts for naps. Now that she crawls, though, the elastic on the covers kind of chafes her chubby little thighs, and she's kind of grown out of them. I'm thinking about going to all in ones or pockets that have softer linings around the legs. I'm going to try and make my own. We'll see how that goes.