Help from Cloth Diaper Users Please!

Updated on July 17, 2008
R.H. asks from Oklahoma City, OK
17 answers

I could use some expierenced mom advice on using cloth diapers. I used disposables with my son because I couldn't afford the price of cloth when I had him but now I am in a position to provide them for the little one on the way and I'm VERY confused. I would like to use fitted or all in one diapers but I am getting lost with the inserts and diaper covers and fitted and all in ones. Anyone out there who can help please send advice my way :)

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answers from Jackson on

I am going through the cloth diaper decision as we speak. One site that you may want to try is Mandy is super with helping you make choices, determinng sizes, and they have a try it program that you can try several different types of diapers and send back the ones you don't like. Good luck with it.

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answers from Oklahoma City on

Hi R.! Cloth diapers are SO FREAKIN' CONFUSING in the beginning! I used prefolds, pins and snappis and plastic pants with my daughter, owing to the initial expense of cloth diapers, but I got lucky with my son and had a friend who was potty training twins. She handed on several different types of diapers for me to try out, and the ones I've stuck with (and am getting ready to buy more of, including larger size covers) are Motherease. They absorb and absorb and keep on absorbing! In the beginning, they were fine on their own, no matter what, but now that he's bigger (he'll be a year on Saturday), I have to use a liner at night.

The internet is a great resource to check out the different types of diapers. Just google cloth diapers and you'll be overwhelmed by what comes up.

This site has different reviews on different types of diapers.

This one has TONS of pictures, which can give you an idea of what they're all like.

And THIS one has TONS of good ideas to hold down costs on buying and washing and everything else.

To be honest, I was afraid cloth would be too much hassle. I'm so used to the two-piece diapers now that it seems like no big deal. I have just started soaking the "soiled" diapers in a baking soda/vinegar soak (since he finally started solids). The whole pile of liners, diapers, covers and the bag that lines my not-wet diaper pail, plus the contents of the lidded trashcan that I soak the others in, all goes into the washing machine. A quick spin cycle to remove the icky water, two washes, one with vinegar, one without, in regular detergent and hot water, throw the mess into the dryer (sometimes I'm game for hanging up the liners, but I don't have a clothesline to hang them all up, shame on me), pull them out and drop them in the plastic box I keep clean diapers in. Ta-da, done.

For wipes, I cut squares out of a receiving blanket and I use those cheap baby washcloths that come in a big package. I wad them into an old plastic wipes box and mix water with a few drops of baby bath soap and a few drops of lavender oil (which is a great antimicrobial, plus smelling WONDERFUL), dump the solution over the wipes and roll with it.

A big plastic zipper bag or one of the pretty cloth bags with waterproof lining is great for on-the-go diaper changes, to bring the icky ones home without the smell or damp getting in your bag.

And, last but not least, what I like best about the Mother-ease is that they go from newborn through potty training without having to get all new diapers. I never worry if they're going to fit (only the covers, which he's starting to outgrow because of his meaty, meaty thighs. Maybe when he starts walking they'll slim down a bit???). AND, having covers along helps. I didn't pack a diaper for a quick trip to get my oldest son from school. Of course, the baby wet THROUGH HIS CLOTHES, since he had just napped. So I looked in the back of my car, found a clean cover and an old, clean t-shirt. Folded the shirt into the cover, wrapped it around the baby, and went! See, there are other advantages to cloth diapering other than the environmental thing and the cost LOL

Take care! Hope this helps



answers from Fayetteville on

Hi R.,

I used cloth diapeers with a diaper sevice for almost two years...and LOVED it!! They used a cloth diaper in a fitted cover and they work great! Also have a friend who used the covers with the cotton inserts and laundered them at home.Her system seemed very involved and she didn't use it with her second child. If you are going to launder them at home, I suggest you go with the cotton pre folded daipers and velco covers...I started with about 50 diapers for the week and 8 covers. You can store the dirty diapers in a vinager water solution to nutralize the oder until you wash them.




answers from Mobile on

Hi R.! If you go to they had a excellent article on how to make your own last week. They had all sorts of patterns where you can make any style you like. I only used cloth with my little ones when we were at home. It was just way too hard being out with wet or stinky cloth diapers in 95 degree weather.

I used the prefold when we were out of the velcro tabed ones. I never used the inserts because they were too pricy, plus you just did not need them if you had the padded plastic pants (Gerber makes these). You can get them at Babies R US but I never could find the padded ones anywhere else.

I now make my own now that tipnut has free patterns listed on the site.

Another tip for you is to hang dry your diapers! They absorb 40% more if they are not put in the dryer plus they last longer! The dryer fluffs the cotton and it will not hold as much. If you dont have a clothes line invest in a drying rack and sit it either on your deck or in the laundry room. If they are put outside the sun kills any odor that is left on them and it whitens them also.

Good luck!



answers from Oklahoma City on

we used fuzzi bunz with pretty good success until my daughter was about a year, then she became too heavy of a wetter for them. we could have used a doubler or gone up a size, but we switched to disposables then. you can also check out it has a really good comparissons of all the different brands.



answers from Tulsa on

we use bum genius 3.0s. thy are a pocket diaper, which is the kind with inserts so that you can make them more absorbent for night time use. the other nice thing is that they are one size diapers, which means that they are adjustable so that they will fit him until he is potty learned. As for being expensive... they are more expensive up front, but look at it this way. I spent $300 and I have all the diapers my son will need until he doesn't need dthem any more (and diapers for any future children.
Washing them isn't that big a deal, especially if you breast feed.
check out the website that is were we got our diapers (an 18 pack). the site also has tons of articles about how to get started. also check out there is a forum dedicated to cloth diapering where people a lot more knowledeable than me can give you some good answers.



answers from Fayetteville on

Take a deep breathe. There are a lot of options and it can be very confusing to wade through the options. The Cotton Babies website, has comprehensive articles titled Cloth Diapers - Just The Basics and Cloth Diapers: Terms and Definitions. They are located under the Information section under How-To's. Also, Terra Tots (on the square next to Java Joe's in downtown Fayetteville)carries a selection of cloth diapering products.

Personally, we use a combination of prefolds, covers, and a Snappi to close the diaper at home or friends homes. Out and about we like to use All-in-Ones. At night we use Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers as my son doesn't typically wake up for us to change him.

Why the variety? Prefolds are economical and make sense for us to use for the most part. We love the Snappi because we feel the fit is better (less bulky, forms a poo pocket)than trifolding the prefold in a velcro cover. We have covers that velcro and also pull on covers. Either way works, but we actually prefer the pull-on covers. The AIO diapers are great for errands but take a while to dry and are expensive. Pocket diapers have a layer of fleece or suedecloth to whick moisture away from the baby's skin, which helps prevent diaper rash. They are kind of expensive and need to be stuffed prior to using.

What I would change about our system is to use BumGenius pocket diapers (sold at Cotton Babies online or Terra Tots locally) instead of Fuzi Bunz. We do like our Fuzzi Bunz and purchased them prior to BumGenius being sold. The advantage we see to the BumGenius is that they are one size diapers that can be used longer in terms of the baby's size, not each wear! is a great website that has reviews on each type of diaper. Sine the initial outlay of $ is expensive, you may find it helpful to read other moms experiences. Country Save detergent is great for washing diapers as it doesn't build up thus creating leaky diapers like some detergents can.

I hope this helps!



answers from Lawton on

Hey R.,

I use the Bumgenius all-in-one cloth diaper on my 4month old daughter. My husband and I both felt like they would be a great purchase and since they are environmentally friendly, I decided to give them a try. I LOVE using them. The same cloth diaper that will fit an 8lb baby will also unsnap and "grow" to fit a 35lb baby. I love the way they fit her frame, we NEVER have leaks or as I like to call them "blow-outs". This particular brand is the only brand I've ever tried, but I can tell you its the only brand I'll ever use. They come clean like a dream, and you can't even tell they have been used.. even when they are very dirty. They have laundering instructions printed on a tab on each diaper, so you don't have any excuses to get them clean properly. The Bumgenius diaper has an insert and you don't need to use rubber pants outside of the diaper. It has an outer shell that is like neoprene (wet suit material) so nothing escapes the shell. They are fitted, and have velcro, so there is no need for pins, and you don't have to worry about folding them. We bought 24 diapers and that is plenty for one baby. I wash a load of them about every other day. The up front cost may be a little expensive, but it pays off in the long run when you aren't buying diapers every week. Think about cloth diapers.. if you try them you may like them.



answers from Fort Smith on

First of all...WOW!!! I didn't know how many moms were still using cloth. Good for you. I used cloth diapers on 5 of my children until we moved to the country and didn't have enough well water to do laundry. By the time we got a water line run I decided to finish in disposable. There really is nothing like holding a baby with a (dry) cloth diaper on. So soft and cuddly. I even made my own with velcro closures but didn't like them as the velcro got caught on the fabric in the dryer. But on to your question. It's been 15 years since I've used cloth diapers so don't know what's out there. I used the diapers with the extra thickness sewn in the middle and hung them on the line to dry whenever possible. The sun really pulls the stains out. If you use lots of fabric softener and a breeze is blowing they are very soft. The last time I checked they had vinyl pants to go on the outside that are soft. If you start with cloth and decide it's too much of a hassle (rinsing in the toilet is NO FUN)and you need to change them a little more often, don't feel guilty about going to disposable. Or even using disposable on outings. Good luck!



answers from Tulsa on

This may not be advise, but a little experience from the past... My dd is 14, and I used cloth back in the day. They were rectangles that were double padded in the center. I had 2 dozen and they lasted through the 1 year old phase and I had to buy more for padding. I didn't have a choice of new stuff because I was on DHS assist and the reason I did cloth was that the churches would help with food and laundry soap, but not clothing or diapers. I used gerber everything, that was all I could find. Good luck and enjoy your baby.



answers from Tulsa on

I used cloth diapers with my daughter (because she was allergic to disposeables). I LOVED the diaper covers that went over the diaper with velcro closures. This way I could change the diaper and re-use the covers (sometimes). I am sure there are a lot fancier things out there now...but for me these were fabulous.
Good luck, the environment thanks you!



answers from Alexandria on

We've been using cloth diapers for 2 years now & love it (even my husband!). It is very confusing at first & to be honest none of it made sense to me until I actually started using them. At home during the day we use prefolds (no pins, I just fold them & the little pocket in the cover helps keep them in place) with Bummis covers. I like fitteds at night because I can add a prefold for extra absorption, but it's not as bulky. Right now we also use Swaddlebees pockets & Bumkins AIO when we are out. The Bumkins is the only AIO I've liked; b/c of the way it's made it dries quickly & its easy to add an insert or a prefold for extra absorption. We use the Bumkins when we leave our daughter in the church nursery, since they are only 1 piece & use velcro they seem to be the one people have less problems with. We used Fuzzi Bunz pockets at first but as my daughter grew her legs got chubbier & they started leaving marks. The swaddlebees are great for chubby legs! A lot of what you will like will depend on your own preferences & how the diapers fit your child. For example, I heard great things about Happy Heiny's, but they didn't fit my daughter well. Same as with the Fuzzi Bunz, they worked great until her legs got really chubby. Diaperpin is a great resource & I would recommend ordering a sample pack (several online retailers offer this) or one each of the diapers you are interested in because you really won't know what you like until you use it. GOOD LUCK!



answers from Birmingham on

I haven't used these, but a friend of mine does. I've been thinking about trying them...g Thanks fir asking because I have lots to check out before I make the decision on waht to buy.



answers from Norfolk on

I started out with cotton prefolds and PUL covers with velcro closures and using them to stretch my disposables. I moved on to picking up a box lot on that had a little of everything. I found I liked pocket diapers and AIO's for a while. Then I learned to knit because I wanted to try wool covers but couldn't afford $30 each, but could afford $5 for yarn. Now I'm sewing my own fitted diapers and knitting and sewing from recycled sweaters my own covers. I know that may not be an option for you with your busy schedule. You can find awesome deals on diaperswappers. If you're low income you can try For a small shipping fee you get a loan of the size you need. They pay for return shipping. It takes about 2 months to complete the process, but it's better than throwing your money in the landfill with disposables.



answers from Tulsa on

Hi R.! I used cloth diapers with all three of my kids but deliberately stayed away from AIOs because of their thickness. Drying them outside during warm weather was no trouble but they were an energy sucker in the winter. They are also very expensive.

Here's what I did. A friend gave me her supply of T-shaped diapers and Nikky covers. I bought several samplers from diaper catalogs and discovered very quickly which ones I prefered. By the time child #2 came the original supply of T-shaped diapers were in bad shape (they had already been used by two or three other children) so I bought my sister's supply of Y2K diapers, all pre-folds. I also bought a few Snappy's (I'm sorry if this is the wrong name but it's a blue rubbery thing that attatched on both sides and the middle of a pre-fold diaper) and a pack of Dritz diaper pins. With these I used the remaining wraps from my sampler packs and a few Nikkys someone else let me have. Now that #3 is here I have almost none of the original T-shaped diapers and he's using mostly pre-folds. Again, I have Nikky covers and some nylon diaper covers. I double the pre-fold with another diaper or a liner.

To me, using inserts sounds like a lot of extra work since I tend to be very minimalist. But, whether you use AIOs, prefolds, inserts or some other form, cloth is better than disposables any day. If I were to do it all over again I wouldn't hesitate to go cloth.




answers from Monroe on

Hi! We used Fuzzi bunz - it was easy- my husband found it easy as well. The diapers are expensive, but have great resale value, so in the long run are very cost effective. We only used diapers regularly for the first few months- then we began elimination communication (can be done from birth, we just didn't know about it then). A great book is Diaper Free. We did not do EC with our first child and my husband (a physician) thought it was nuts, but is now a strong advocate. We used very few diapers prior to 12 months and none at all after that. We now know several family members and friends who use EC. It is great for the baby, the enviroment and is the most cost effective. Whatever you decide, congratulations on your baby! A great overall resource for many parenting issues is Mothering magazine. Blessings, R.



answers from Jackson on

Have you decided on which diapers to use?
I love mommystouch diapers. They are one size pocket diapers. Meaning they are stuffable with inserts or microfiber towels and the diaper itself drys super fast, just hang up on a line and they dry in less than an hour. They fit babies from 7 lbs to 35 which is great too b/c you don't have to buy new ones for each size. They are just like fuzzi bunz just one size! If price is an issue, kushies all in ones are avail on with free to store shipping and they are only 7 bucks each. They dry fairly fast also if line dried. Also, you can PM me if you have any questions.

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