The Great Diaper Debacle

When I first heard about the option of cloth diapering, I was an immediate fan.

It’s better for the environment, it’s less expensive (disposables are no joke), and it feels better for the baby. From all around, it sounded like a win-win-win situation.

I mentioned it to my mom and she was all about it –usually she’ll go ahead and tell me when I have crazy idea- because I wore cloth diapers when I was a baby, too. From all of the things I’ve heard about it, I was totally on board, especially from moms I’ve talked to who cloth diaper their children. They’re serious fanatics about it.


So I started to read more about it to get more info,

and I became overwhelmed and well, a little grossed out.

There are SO many options out there. It’s kind of insane. The different brands, the pre-folds, the inserts, the covers… with all of the other books I’m reading, it was enough to make my brain explode. It made it seem like a LOT of extra work, and from what I’m expecting, a new baby already is a lot of work and responsibility… why add more chores to the mix?

Also, I started to think about actually cleaning the diapers. Something about having dirty diapers sitting around in a bag inside of a pail (even for just one day) raised a major sanitary red flag to me, and also the thought of washing said diapers in the same washer with our other clothes. [I know the washer sanitizes the bin too, but just thinking about our clothes going into the same machine gave me the heeby jeebies.] What was a going to do when we were out and about and the baby would inevitably have a dirty diaper to change? I’m not sure how I feel about walking around with all of that in a baggie in my purse, ya know?

I was really excited to ask Sabrina about cloth diapering last night, because I feel like it’s one of the things you can read about, but don’t truly understand until you talk to someone, actually see the diapers, and learn what the tricks are. [I wanted to ask my madre for more tips, and while she knows how to use them, she had a diaper service so didn’t have to worry about washing them.]

These are the diapers she has:


The Bum Genius organic.

I love the fact that they have so many adjustable snaps (so they’ll fit the baby for a long time), and they have the cover attached to the insert, so there’s not the extra task of stuffing the diapers. That right there made the entire cloth diapering thing seem much easier. So apparently I put the diaper in the washer on rinse cycle, run a hot cycle, then rinse again or something like that? Obviously I need to do more research.

I’m still not sure about:

What to do about having the diapers sit around until I wash them. [I’d imagine I’d have to do a diaper load every day?]

What to do with the diaper if you’re out and about.

How many to buy before the baby arrives. [What if the brand I like doesn’t agree with the baby for whatever reason?]

Some solutions we’ve discovered:

Using our old washer for diapers only. [We have an extra hook-up in the garage, so we’ll wash the diapers in there and all of our other clothes in our regular washer]

Using bleach-free disposables for a few weeks after the baby arrives to get into a groove before we start cloth diapering. We’ll probably use disposables for traveling, too.

It’s nice to have so many resources in the blog world, and I still have so much to soak up (pun?) and learn 😉

Did you or do you plan to cloth diaper? Any awesome tips or resources I should check out?

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  1. Corrie on August 22, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    I don’t know if you’ve looked into the diaper services (I didn’t go through all the comments here) but I did a quick “cloth diaper service arizona” google search and this came up
    I don’t remember exactly where you are in AZ, but if that isn’t in your area there might be one that is?

  2. April on August 22, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    OMG, i am with ya, my head is spinning on whether to CD or not too…i know i WANT to, but not sure i can handle all the info, ha ha. This is an awesome post, i love all your readers responses, so informative!
    Good luck with your decision!

  3. Andrea of Care to Breed on August 22, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Whatever you do, do NOT buy a whole stash of diapers (I know Sabrina did and I hope she doesn’t regret it). I bought a few of each I wanted to try and now I’m trying to swap or sell the ones I don’t like and feel I wasted my money on. You won’t know what really works until you start! I registered for a whole stash of the BumGenius elementals and I am SOOOOO glad I didn’t end up getting them as gifts – I can’t stand them because they take forever to dry. Turns out, I’m not an All-in-one gal! Also, figure out what is important to you in a cloth diaper – easy to launder, easy to put on, cheapest, etc. then go from there.
    I’ve been doing it for almost two months now and I think it’s a breeze. I never use disposables, even when going out – I just use a small wetbag for the dirties. Even my husband thinks it’s easy. When Bronwen starts eating solids, I know there will be an adjustment period there, but I’ll just tackle that when I get to it!

    • Sabrina on August 22, 2011 at 5:46 pm

      uh oh… did I make a booboo by buying a bunch of one kind? I hope they work well with bambino!

  4. Fallon on August 22, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Both my girlfriends back in Vegas were for the cloth diapers.. but when it came closer to having their first baby the expense and the hassle of washing them came into the picture and right out the door. They found it so much easier to just use disposables. I don’t have any kids yet but I have thought about what I’d want to use. I don’t think I could use a cloth diaper, you kind of had the same thoughts I was going with. I’d try to find a brand that is disposable but more environmentally friendly. But in the end if expenses play a part I will have to go into what will work best for us and the baby. They always say you will need lots and lots of diapers.

  5. Jen @familyfoodfitnessandfun on August 22, 2011 at 5:36 pm

    I used disposables! 1. I was way too tired to even think about washing more (crap) 2. It was easier when we would go out 3. I’ve heard that all the water used to wash them costs just as much as using disposables.
    That being said, I have friends who used cloth and didn’t mind it. All I can say is….good for them 😉

  6. Liz on August 22, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Actually disposable diapers are more environmentally sound than the cloth diapers if they are disposed of properly. Think about the how you will be contaminating the water. Not only do you need to use detergent (contaminate), but you are also releasing fecal matter into the waterways as well. Sure the water goes to a water treatment plant, but so much of the feces is still left in the water. Now, if you remove the inside liner of a disposable you are only throwing that out and all of the waste material. The outer portion of the diaper is 100% recyclable. As long as you do not mind separating the liner, this should be a whole lot easier than laundering poopy dipers. Just something to think about.

    BTW Gina, love the blog….read it every week! Just felt like leaving my 2 cents today.

    • Casey @ Pocket Full of Sunshine on August 22, 2011 at 10:06 pm

      Wow this is so interesting! I didn’t know any of that!

    • Kelly on August 22, 2011 at 11:15 pm

      What if you used environmentally friendly laundry detergent?

      I don’t understand how it would be different than regular people pooping (when you mention that the feces is still left in the water). From what I understand, doesn’t the solid stuff get put into the toilet and flushed before laundering?

      I’m not trying to be argumentative, just very curious!

      • fiannafritz on August 23, 2011 at 10:03 am

        Unless you’re utilizing your grey water from your laundry (most of us aren’t), laundry water goes the same place as the toilet (which is why sewer gallons on your water bill = used water gallons) – which means laundering diapers is just like adding another person to your house – more laundry and more waste. Also, conventional disposable diapers (huggies, pampers), take about 500 years to decompose in a landfill.

        I think we’re going to go with gDiapers – they have cloth liners and flushable / disposable liners that are compostable in 150 days – which means they won’t sit in a landfill for years and take up space. We’ll probably use more conventional disposable for out of town travel, but not everyday.

        Interesting note: Disposable diapers came out in the late 70s / early 80s – if you’re 30ish, your parents probably did not use them (they were expensive when they came out).

        • fiannafritz on August 23, 2011 at 1:17 pm

          *I’m not trying to tell anyone what to do – please use the best method for you. I’m only in my 2nd month – We’ll be exploring each option and weighing costs, convenience, etc. before making a final decision. 🙂

    • ilovefetacheese on August 23, 2011 at 1:13 pm

      Its not much different from flushing a toliet so you don’t need to be worried about contaminating the water. I’m a water treatment engineer and ALL water from toliets and laundry go to the wastewater treatment plant first. Its not a lot of extra fecal matter in the grand scheme of the wastewater treatment plant which serves probably 10-20 million gallons a day.

  7. Alisha @ Wee Foodie Fashionista on August 22, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    You must read this blog:

    Like the name says, it’s everything about cloth diapers you’d ever want to know. April is a wealth of information, hints, tips, etc. She has recommendations, guides for beginners, etc. I don’t have kids but I think I’ve read everything on her blog just because it’s such a different world than the disposables we’re so used to.

    A few things I can tell you:
    Get a diaper sprayer (attaches to the water line near back of toilet) and spray clean/rinse diapers when you’re changing them, or just after.
    Dirty diapers can be put in a pail full of water or in a ‘wet bag’ which holds them until they’re ready for washing.
    If you’re going to use an old washer for diapers only, you could simply dump the rinsed diapers in it and turn it on every night/morning instead of using a pail or bag.
    When you’re out and about, you can use disposable inserts. Or they have travel wet bags. They’re waterproof so you can toss a dirty one in and seal it up!

  8. Cat on August 22, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    I am completely on the cloth diaper band wagon and I think I take a pretty balanced approach most of the time. Here is what we do and please feel free to email me with questions.
    1. Use disposable diapers for the first week. The “tar poop” is pretty gross. It is hard to get off the baby, much less a diaper. We figured we did not want to add that headache to our first weeks.
    2. We use all in one with inserts – the BumGenius 3.0 – and I LOVE them, easy to stuff, easy to put on and great colors. In the summer, I let my little one run around in just a diaper at home and they are way cute!
    3. Our little guy is fairly regular so we bought rice paper liners to put in during for his-most-likely-to-make-a-mess diaper. Try some out – if they just pee you can wash them. Otherwise, they are flushable as long as you do not have a septic tank. These really keep the diapers cleaner, but some brands are softer than others so get what you like best.
    4. Use a diaper sprayer – no dunking – just spray the solids into the toilet and flush. This is MUST HAVE for us and has made a world of difference. It’s easy to install and no one really notices it at our house.
    5. Use a disposable at night – GASP! (I probably just made all the cloth diapers only folks heads explode.) This works for us for two reasons. a) Our little one gets awful diaper rash when teething and you cannot use diaper cream with cloth diapers. So we apply at bedtime and it is gone by morning (All Natural Butt Paste is the best!). b) Disposables are more absorbant and he doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night wanting to be changed like he did with the cloth diapers. For me, sleep is more important that cloth diapering.
    6. Buy a couple wet bags and keep them in the diaper bag. Put the wet/dirty diaper in there and take care of it when you get home.
    7. Check with your desired day care. Some do not allow cloth diapering, so you may not save money if you go that route. Our sitters are fine with cloth.
    8. Give yourself a break. We use disposables when we travel – airplanes and hotel rooms with a baby are hectic enough and I didn’t want to do laundry on vacation. I use disposbale swim diapers. The baby doesnt go in a pool enough to justify the cost of a cloth swim diaper. If we are leaving the house for a few days, I wash all the diapers and then use disposables so I don’t have dirty diapers sitting while I am gone.

    I love cloth diapering and my husband is totally on board. I don’t think you need another washer, but to each their own. Seriously, babies blow out all the time, you’ll likely have poop in your washer at some point. I don’t know a mom who hasnt been peed, pooped, spit up, drooled and thrown up on. It’s part of the job requirement.

    • kristi on August 24, 2011 at 2:46 pm

      I agree with this, except there are certain creams that ARE safe to use with cloth (Grandma El’s being our favorite).

  9. Hillary on August 22, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Have you checked out Sherry’s experiences on Young House Love? I know she’s talked about how/why they use cloth diapers!

  10. Kate on August 22, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    I’m expecting my first baby in October, and while we were originally all about cloth diapering, we’ve decided to go with disposables for a few reasons. I need to go back to work after my 12 weeks are up (or else risk losing my job) and the daycare that we selected for our daughter will only do disposables due to sanitation concerns (but, on the plus side, they are only 3 miles from my place of employment and will let me stop in to nurse whenever I want). Also, I have a feeling that the first several months of motherhood are going to be overwhelming enough without needing to worry about MORE laundry and housework on top of taking care of my husband, child, dog, job, etc. Who knows, maybe I’ll change my mind a little ways into it and decide that I’m willing to take on the challenge during times when we are at home, but for now I don’t think it’s realistic for us.

  11. Julia on August 22, 2011 at 5:54 pm

    I really wanted to cloth diaper, but my husband preferred disposable… I erred to him because I wanted help with diapering! Ultimately, we’ve been doing great with disposables. We also have a pretty active social life and felt it would be easiest for us and our son to use disposables.

  12. Felicia (Natural + Balanced) on August 22, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    well i don’t have any babies, but i do take care of triplets at my nursing home care job… which gives me a good idea of how much children poop hahah. i use disposable at the house (what the mom prefers), and go through a lotttt of diapers per child, and the cost definitely adds up. so, perhaps do both? i mean, some days it might be just easier on your life to do disposable, and then maybe some days cloth..that way you can still save money, not feel like your cleaning diapers all the time, but still helping the environment. just giving a random idea 🙂

  13. Colleen on August 22, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    My sisters and I all wore cloth diapers, but my mom got them delivered through a diaper service. She’d bag all the dirty diapers, and once a week they would disappear and a new bag of clean diapers would appear. If I had a baby, I’d definitely do diaper delivery!

  14. beth on August 22, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    This is something I’ve thought about too as an expectant mama, and I’m glad you wrote about it, because it’s not so cut-and-dry. Yes, cloth diapering will cut down on the landfill issue, and you won’t be spending as much on diapers. However, the flip side is that you will be paying just as much for all the extra water you’ll be using by washing diapers non-stop, which also is an environmental strain. And that’s not even touching the sanitation issue. Ick.

    As for us, I think we’ll be doing the disposable diapers, at least for our first baby. I’d rather focus on learning how to be a good mama for our newborn (a daunting challenge!) than worrying about if my diapers are clean enough and my washer is sanitized, especially when the money and environmental factors all cancel each other out.

    Thanks for writing about this!

  15. Ashley on August 22, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    I have zero interest in cloth diapering. I realize that disposables go to landfills, but cloth diapers also consume a LOT of water– so that’s something to keep in mind as well. Personally, I want something easy. If we need more diapers at 3am or out in public, I want to be able to pop into the nearest store and buy some. There’s enough to worry about with a new little one without adding in diaper confusion (IMHO). Also ditto whoever mentioned childcare, that is something to factor in as well if you’ll be returning to work!

  16. Ali @ urbanfruitbat on August 22, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    It sounds like they will be amazing for the environment, but yeah, a lot of work! Cloth diapers have come a long way though! When I was a kid, my next door neighbors used actual cloth. That’s it! No fancy anything, just a rag safety pinned. I am sure that you could just give them a really good rinse, and not have to wash them every single day, no?

  17. Hilary on August 22, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    Its not such a big deal! Dont stress too much about it. Get a few different kinds and see what you like. I use bum genius 4.0 for nighttime and prefolds with a cover during the day. One extra load of laundry is not much in the long run and once you do a few loads its second nature. I dont give the poo a second thought.

    Cloth are so much cuter, better for a babys behind (have you looked at the chemicals that disposables have in them?? Not what i want next to my babyfor 2+ years), and dont smell when the baby tinkles. In disposables, I can always smell right away when my son pees. Gross! In cloth i never know till i check. Maybe use disposables for a few weeks then gradually add the cloth in so you dont feel pressure or overwhelmed. Really its fun!

  18. Jill on August 22, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    What my mom did when I was younger: cloth diapers at home and disposable diapers for when we went out. She said that it worked out really well because having to change a cloth diaper in public is really awkward.

  19. Krista on August 22, 2011 at 6:48 pm

    We used cloth diapers with our first daughter and are starting again with the second. We used fuzzi bunz and had to buy two sets- small and medium. They didn’t have the “one size” when my older daughter was a baby, but would have got those if I could! If you do fuzzies, make sure you get them from a reputable site (not all the liners are made the same and some are super thin- were good).  I would recommend cloth diapering (it’s really not as hard or gross as it may seem!), but also using disposables in some instances. I would definitely recommend using disposables for the first month or two (the cloth may not fit yet anyway).  We used Seventh Gen disposables.  Amazon always has good deals- check out Amazon Mom ( You get 30% off all diapers with “subscribe and save”, as well as 3 months of amazon prime free two day shipping (you can get more months added on with more baby purchases).  We used wet bags and washed every few days. Wet bags worked great for outings too (smell was never an issue- disposables sit around too). I would highly recommend disposables at night when your baby starts sleeping through the night. We finally learned after many, many times of my daughter wetting through at night!  

    I love reading your baby posts! Good luck to you 🙂

  20. Stephanie on August 22, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    I don’t have any kids yet (someday soon…still waiting over here…any day now, please!). But I will definitely 100% use cloth diapers. My reasoning is very personal; I switched from disposable pads/tampons to washable cloth pads. I can’t even explain how much more comfortable I am! I had such sensitive skin when I wore disposables. Switching to cloth almost four years ago was a revelation, and I knew from the first month that any of my future children would wear cloth as well. And I realize that people’s first reaction to cloth pads – like cloth diapers – is often ewwwww, gross, but washing them is honestly not that big of a deal.

    That said, you have to do what’s right for you. There’s no “one way” to do anything!

  21. Sara on August 22, 2011 at 6:51 pm

    My sister is law is the most eco chic you could meet. Her first baby was cloth diapered (he was also dressed in 100% organic cotton, only allowed to play with naturally died toys and.. generally kept away from anything unnatural. The problem was washing the diapers because her eco detergent and soaker were not up to the task. So, the dilemma became – to use a detergent that contains persistent evironmental toxins, or to use a disposable diaper (which actually will biodegrade, eventually). Second baby was in disposables, which was also more hygienic when she had a toddler to deal with at the same time. It may be different in the US, but here it is hard to get a good biodegradable washing detergent.

    • Sara on August 22, 2011 at 6:53 pm

      er.. *dyed toys. She was not so eco that her kids only played with dead animals. Sorry about that.

  22. Christie on August 22, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    I’m so happy to read this post and the comments. I’m 17 weeks today and I’m sooo on the fence about cloth diapering. I kinda want to but my hubs doesn’t. I think I might be able to convince him but, I don’t know if it’s really going to be as easy as I hope. If I’m going to do disposables, I’d like to go ahead and start stocking up now so that I have a good stockpile by the time LO arrives.

    What I’m thinking now is that I’ll do some of both. I’ll buy some cloth diapers and just have no pressure to use only them. I’ll also stock up on some disposables to use especially in the beginning. Good luck because this seems pretty hard to figure out to me too!

  23. Sara on August 22, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    er.. *dyed toys. She was not so eco that her kids only played with dead animals. Sorry about that.

  24. Krista on August 22, 2011 at 6:54 pm

    Oh I also have a Keurig and LOVE it. It’s great for coffee or tea. I would highly recommend!

  25. maria @ a life to Bragg about on August 22, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    YES! Something I can get on board with. We bought the bum genius All in ones and LOVE them. Granted, we haven’t actually used them but they’re really good quality and I can’t wait to start using them. We also plan to get some fuzzi bunz diapers to add to our ever growing stash. Poop doesn’t really gross me out so I’m down! Also, this is what helped convince me:

  26. Kristen on August 22, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    I work at a daycare that does allow cloth diapering. I’m not a mom and had always thought that the idea of cloth diapering was fantastic. Now working with them, I believe I will go with disposables. We have two cloth diapered babies and their blowouts are always legendary. It could just be the brand that their mothers choose, but it makes for a big mess. They do have inserts, which I actually think are grosser than changing actual diapers. It’s hard to change the insert without making getting stuff on your hands 🙁 That being said, a lady in my church has done it with all four of her children and swears by it, even making covers and selling them on Etsy. If it works, it works! If it doesn’t, disposables are just fine.

  27. charlene on August 22, 2011 at 7:03 pm

    Having raised 2 boys, here’s my recommendations based on my experiences:

    – cloth are great
    – get a (cloth) diaper service to start as you will be overwhelmed with ‘supporting life’ and being a new mom – I recommend 3 months, this way you don’t have to worry about numbers/sizes etc – they do it all for you and the service people really are great (and sometimes carry different brands you can try)
    – use disposables when you are out/about – trust me, carrying around stinky cloth diapers in a car (or even worse, forgetting them in the car) is something you don’t want to do (and won’t ever forget the smell)!
    – network with moms who are getting out of diapers and ‘try’ their outside/wraps to see what type you like best – truthfully, it has nothing to do with you but the size/shape of your baby
    – the liner debate is an interesting one as many liners are actually non-washable, so therefore non-environmentally friendly, I never used them as they never seemed to do anything better than an additional diaper change couldn’t cover

    Bonne chance!

  28. ashley on August 22, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    I’ve been reading your blog for awhile, but have never posted. My husband (he’s in the AF like your hubby) and I are expecting our first baby in February and have been doing some research on this as well. Just thought I would pass along the link for my friend Shawna’s blog (also an AF wife) on cloth diapering. She makes it look so easy!

  29. Megan on August 22, 2011 at 7:21 pm

    I just had to weigh in…

    I tried many different types of cloth before I settled on bambino mio, which has a liner to hold solids that gets flushed.

    There is a 100% biodegradable chlorine free disposable diaper – Nature Baby Care – I use these when out and about.

    I love your site!!

  30. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga on August 22, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    Gina I could go on and on and on…

    I started out with disposables b/c when Skylar was first born, NO HELP from friends of family, nursing around the clock, a husband that was gone, there was NO WAY I could deal with the thought of washing diapers. Around the time she was 9 mos old or so, I transitioned from ‘sposies to Bum Genius 3.0’s

    I really liked them and ended up buying 6, then 12, then 24. The thing is is that even if you feel it’s not sanitary to have dirty diapers in a bag (I used a waterproof-lined big bag that zipped), if you DO decide to go with cloth, at 8 to 10+ changes a day, anything less than 2 dozen and you’re doing diapers daily, rather than every other day. Which is as much as I could handle.

    Go on and read the forums. Read what works for people, what they say..and they are HONEST on there. And if you want, you can buy diapers there. I sold off all my stashes on there and would occassionally buy diapers on there too.

    I bought all my BG’s brand new though b/c I wanted them as leak-proof as possible AND new. The older the diapers get, the more they degrade, stretch out, etc.

    I went thru this whole thing with Heabs. I even saved some of my emails with her I think. I can look thru and see.

    Just email any questions you have..I say it’s nice, it IS a lot of work, but the fact that your baby has a cute cloth diaper butt (always puffier and cuter than ‘sposie butt in pants…seriously little CD’ed baby butts are the cutest!) and the fact that she has CLOTH next to her butt not plastic is nice 🙂

    But if you go the disposable route for any one of a million reasons, you’re not alone.

    I would not go the prefold and covers route. I can get into it all too but it’s info overload for a comment field 🙂

  31. Felicia on August 22, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    Absolutely make sure you research your area. Sometimes cloth diapering is worse for the environment than regular disposables.

    Also, have you checked into a diaper service? Sometimes a diaper service can bring the cost of diapering down. In our area, diaper services are $65/month (which is LESS than how much our water bill increased with all of the washing) and it includes washing the diapers, covers, and cloth wipes. We were using the washing machine 2-3 times a day, sometimes even more, with the amount of diapers/baby clothes/adult clothes (you WILL be going through multiple shirts a day for quite a while) we were going through. It was ridiculous.

    • Fitnessista on August 22, 2011 at 10:50 pm

      that’s good to know! where did you keep the diapers until the service came to pick them up?

      • Felicia on August 23, 2011 at 2:15 am

        They provided a pail for us, then on the days they came we’d just place them on the porch. Easy 🙂

  32. Elizabeth R. on August 22, 2011 at 7:49 pm

    This is a great video on how one family uses cloth diapers for their children.

    • Fitnessista on August 22, 2011 at 10:50 pm

      awesome – thank you!

  33. Susan on August 22, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    I’m 37 weeks tomorrow and we have decided to try both disposables and cloth first and then see what works best once Baby is here. I bought some prefolds (Bummis), for which the covers look super cute and the inserts are made of 100% organic cotton. I also bought one Totsbots all-in-one, which seems a lot easier to handle than the prefolds. I’m also still waiting for Grovia all-in-ones and a Fuzzibunz pocket diaper that I ordered. Lucy, a young mom of three used Fuzzibunz with all three of her babies and she has a youtube channel with helpful vlogs on cloth diapering (her youtube name is xxxjoelpolexxx, if I remember correctly).
    Hopefully we will be able to figure out which ones work best for us and Baby and then I will get some more of our favourites. Personally, I think I would prefer the different sized diapers, just because the one-size ones seem crazy bulky on newborns and tiny babies.
    I think we will start with the eco-friendly disposables (different brands available at Whole Foods, etc.), especially in those first couple of days, dealing with meconium and just getting used to taking care of a newborn. After that, we are hoping to try cloth mainly because of the money factor. It’s a bigger investment in the beginning, but once your stash is stacked, you only need more diapers when your baby outgrows it.
    Good luck with your pregnancy – hope everything goes well for you!

  34. Julie @ Wearing Mascara on August 22, 2011 at 7:56 pm

    Hey! So, I’m not a mom, but when I babysat last year, the mom told me about an awesome website called Jillian’s Drawers ( It’s great because you pay a fee to try out a bunch of different kinds of diapers and then you return what you and your baby do not care for. You get a refund for what you don’t keep. Just thought I’d let you know. Good luck!

  35. Megan @ Notes to Hunter on August 22, 2011 at 8:01 pm

    I really, really wanted to use cloth diapers. But there is no way I could have used them for the first three months! In my opinion Babies poo WAY to often to use cloth diapers. There were some days when every diaper I changed have poo it in. Even if just a little bit.

    The one thing that has discouraged me from using cloth diapers after three months is the sprayer thing. My little one is pretty high maintenance and there is no way I could leave him to rinse the diaper n the toiled! He would either scream while I was doing it or crawl, pull himself up, or climb onto something he shouldn’t. I cannot leave him for more than two seconds. I already have enough stress!

    It does make me feel better to read that disposables may not be as bad as we think.

    Good luck with whatever you choose!

  36. Katie @ Pop Culture Cuisine on August 22, 2011 at 8:17 pm

    I am due in 3 weeks and researched pretty much every issue regarding becoming a mom to the n’th extent, including whether or not to cloth diaper. I just wanted to make sure I had all the full info before we made a decision. We originally thought we would cloth diaper, but eventually decided to go the disposable route largely due to not wanting to me more overwhelmed than I am sure I already will be with the newborn herself. Now that may seem like a cop out, but it was what was going to make me the most confident. I am all for those who decide to go the cloth route, it just wasn’t for us to start. I’ll be interested to see what route you choose.

  37. Bridget on August 22, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    I don’t have any kids but most of my friends do! Have you seen this site?
    I have heard great things about it!

  38. nicole on August 22, 2011 at 8:50 pm

    I used cloth diapers with both of my kids and I am planning on using them with soon to be # 3. I am a clean freak so I can totally identify with the sanitary issue that you are having….with that said it is not that bad. You rinse the poop off before it goes into the pail so it pretty clean when you put it in the wash. The liner option is wonderful because you can just put all the poop right in the toilet…so much easier. A word to the wise when you buy your diapers (or make them) use fabric like cotton, hemp, or bamboo because they don’t hold onto the smell like the ones that are made with polyester. I definitely agree with all of those whose say try a bunch of different kinds, they don’t all work the same. Also the ones that are made using a PUL outside layer have a tendency to leak after multiple uses. My favorite are wool covers with a fitted cloth diaper. they are more breathable and are really great. Also washing your diapers uses the same amount of water a toddler who uses the toilet so I wouldn’t worry about wasting water. If you know someone who sews or sew yourself you can easily make your own diapers for about 1/4 of the price and use whatever materials you want and make them to fit your baby perfectly…just a thought…it is super easy to do 🙂

  39. sarah on August 22, 2011 at 8:59 pm has a post about a 50 dollar or so fixture that can be easily added to your toilet which allows you to have a sprayer on your toilet and you can spray them right in there before putting em in the bucket to be washed.
    heres the link:
    I guess the washer thing is also by bum genius.

  40. Britney on August 22, 2011 at 9:01 pm

    I’m a long way from having kids so I know nothing about the options out there, but I absolutely plan to cloth diaper when I have babies. Less waste, and I already use cloth pads for myself so I’m pretty over the ick factor.

    Trent from The Simple Dollar has talked about cloth diapers – I think he estimates that you’re not financially ahead with cloth diapers unless you cloth diaper three kids, but you can also buy cloth diapers used and it’s something to consider if you plan to have more kids in the future.

  41. Susan on August 22, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I did the Jillian’s Drawers diaper trial and I think it is a great introduction. You can do a newborn trial or an older baby trial-I didn’t start using cloth until my son was around 5 months old. Just like everything else baby-related, what works for one baby at one age may not work for a different baby (or with diapers, even the same baby at a different age!). Truthfully, it’s not a big deal. We still use disposables at night and when traveling. I also highly recommend the for tons of video reviews of diapers. If there is a store near you that carries cloth diapers, go check them out so you’ll have a better idea what all the lingo means. Good luck!

  42. Sadie on August 22, 2011 at 9:48 pm Read this post on young house love – I feel like it answers so many questions and makes it seem so doable.

    Side story – I was born in Zimbabwe, in an area that did not have electricity. My parents were volunteering there. They had to go with cloth diapers, hand wash, and dry them outside on the line. However there was a fly that would lay its eggs on the diapers and then the eggs would hatch and the larva would crawl into the babies skin unless you ironed each and every diaper with a hot iron to kill the eggs. So imagine having to heat up irons on a coal/wood stove, to iron hundreds of diapers that you hand washed. Haha I can see why later my mom did not go the cloth diaper route when my sister was born in the USA.

  43. Liza on August 22, 2011 at 9:50 pm

    This is my second baby but first time cloth diapering. My favorite is the Flip System. Quick and easy. Normally going out, I bring disposables but I didn’t buy any this past week so we’ve been out and about using the cloth. I’ve had to carry a #2 around a few times in a wetbag. Not my favorite thing to do but it wasn’t so bad. Some resources I found helpful: (I use the washing machine as a wet pail) (I had 30 assorted cloth diapers and covers before she was born).

    Having used disposables with my son (10 years ago) and now cloth with my daughter (5 months now), I don’t find them any more difficult than disposables. 🙂

  44. Kate on August 22, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    I always wanted to use cloth nappies, but decided that I would start with disposables until I had the hang of being a Mum and actually changing pooey nappies. So he grew out of the newborn size and still I wasn’t quite ready to go down the cloth route, then he started solids and there is a lot more “output” now than there was before. Needless to say I am sticking with the disposables for the time being! Also, I am a bit icked out by the thought of cleaning the cloth nappies. Maybe next bubba I will get my act together!

  45. meagan on August 22, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    I use cloth diapers, prefolds plus Thirsties covers. Honestly…I just don’t get it when people say it’s “a lot of work”. I bought 2 dozen of the NB, small and large, two sizes of covers (small and large) and two sets of snappis. Total that cost about $500.

    To wash them, we dump the poop in the toilet or spray it off. Then it goes into our dry pail with waterproof liner. I put in a few drops of lavender essential oil at the beginning of each bag and it keeps it fresh. In the beginning I washed diapers every other day. I always had enough. Now, I can get away with stretching it to every two days (or more, sometimes). I sun the diapers once a month to help with stains, though you could do it more often as the sun is a great cleanser.

    I wash them in our washing machine. I use a rinse cycle on cold, then the sanitation cycle with a bit of free/clear detergent. Then line dry them, which takes about 8 hours or so.

    Here’s the thing: you don’t have to be all or nothing. When we go out I use a disposable. When she sleeps she uses a disposable overnight. It works for us. We still have the majority of the savings of cloth (especially since we use prefolds) but with the convenience, when needed, of ‘sposies.

    Good luck. CD-ing can be super confusing and everything can seem so contradictory!

  46. Ash @ Good Taste Healthy Me on August 22, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    I basically have the same thoughts on the sanitary issue. We don’t have an extra washer either so it would be in the same washer. Yuck! haha. Buy a couple and try them out. If you like them you can get more. If not, use disposable. 🙂

  47. Katherine on August 22, 2011 at 11:08 pm

    I have a 6 week old and we totally thought we’d be cloth diapering (and maybe will do some at some point), but honestly we’re using 7th generation disposables…more environmentally friendly that other alternatives. Between breastfeeding, adjusting to new schedule, loads of laundry (without the cloth)….it is working for us now. Our babe goes through sometimes 12-15 diaper changes a day! We do have some cloth diapers and I hope to use them in the coming months. I think you do what works for you in the moment. There are so many things to debate about while pregnant and one baby comes it will all work out fine.

  48. lindsay on August 22, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    My LO is 27 months and we’ve been cloth diapering since day one. If you want to ask me anything, please feel free to email me, someone did that for me and I am happy to pay it forward.

    Just like with any new adventure, theres a learning curve with cloth diapering, but its so worth it!!!

  49. katie on August 23, 2011 at 12:08 am

    Great topic and great discussions! I think cloth diapers are great if you can swing them. That little extra effort is well worth it once you get a system down that works for your family. I find it odd how many people think it’s more of a strain on the environment to wash an extra 6-10 little cloth diapers. I mean in comparison to all the clothes, towels, blankets, sheets and gym clothes we wash daily it can’t really put the environment over the edge for a few extra gallons here or there especially when it’s saving landfills on the other end. Anyway, it’s not for everyone but worth the research !

  50. christina on August 23, 2011 at 7:55 am

    You’ll have enough to to deal with. I remember thinking “i’ll sit at starbucks reading while the baby sleeps next to me.” Right. Disposables.

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