My daughter is now 7 months old. When she was 2 months old I decided to investigate the world of cloth diapering.
While I was pregnant, the idea of cloth diapering just didn’t cross my mind. I was one of the many people that thought cloth diapers were the funny, rectangular pieces of cloth that you had to fold just right and fasten with a pin. I had no idea how you would avoid soiling baby’s clothing, bedding, toys, etc. Cloth diapering was just not something I had any interest in and was definitely not the type of challenge I was ready to take on.
Well, when my daughter, Sofia, was about a month old I noticed a friend had pictures of her son in this diaper-like thing but I had no idea what it was. So I asked her. It was a gDiaper, but that is all she said. gDiaper? hmmm… I looked it up but I didn’t understand the concept.
We were almost out of size 1 diapers for my daughter so I went to the store to pick up some more. I went to the diaper aisle and was looking at all the choices, the “green” and “environmentally friendly” disposable diapers, Huggies, Pampers, the store brand and then I saw them. The gDiaper. I looked at them and the instructions, and I decided to buy them. I started with just two gDiaper covers, some reusable inserts and some biodegradable inserts. That had to be greener (and I recently decided to do my part in being more environmentally friendly) and more cost efficient (in the long run) than the diapers I had originally gone to the store to buy. I was really excited about these gDiapers.
Well, I started off alternating the gDiapers with her regular disposable diapers. For pee, they were great. When she was ready to be changed all you had to do was change the insert and use the same cover. Easy! Well, when the poo came it was much more difficult and got all over the liner (which was part of the “convenience” of a gDiaper) and I’d have to change the whole diaper. They were really cute and stylish and went nicely with Sofia’s outfits. gDiapers come sized. So Sofia was a small at first. The smalls were supposed to go to 14 pounds but when Sofia hit 12ish pounds the diapers would leak. This became problematic.
I started to research cloth diapers. At first I was a little overwhelmed. Cloth diapering has come a long way from the folded cloths with pins! I had no idea! There were so many options! And there was just so much information and so much to take in, that at first I was a little overwhelmed. Overtime the information has made sense and I no longer feel overloaded. I calculated the cost savings in just a year and then for two years and decided to go for it. You can see a cost breakdown here. Although there isn’t a cost breakdown for the one-size diapers… which would allow you to save even more than the chart shows. (More about this in my next post.)
One of the hurdles I came across with the gDiapers is that my husband and mother-in-law wouldn’t use them because they didn’t quite understand what to do with the diapers, the inserts, the liners, etc. I decided I wanted to find something that worked really well, that would be easy to use, that would be Dad and babysitter friendly, and most of all something that would remain cost effective and save us money.
I came across a website, which I found through facebook. It’s called Mom’s Milk Boutique. It’s based out of Illinois and I have never paid for shipping on anything I have ordered through them. Sometimes shipping does apply, but it has yet to apply to anything I have ordered. Ha! I LOVE this site/store. I visit it EVERYDAY! They offer options for a 30 day cloth diapering trial. I was so excited! They send about 10 options of diapers to try on your baby and see what type works for you.
I opted for one of their trials and when I received the diapers in the mail it was like Christmas! There were all sorts of options; from fitteds to sized, pocket diapers to prefolds… I found that I liked the one size diapers the best. Sized diapers were great, but in the long run you end up spending more because as your baby grows you have to replace your stock of diapers and the savings over time isn’t nearly as great (another hurdle with the gDiapers). I didn’t want to do the prefolds with covers, that was just something that didn’t appeal to me. The fitteds were a neat option. (Fitted means it is a full cloth diaper but requires a cover – they can be sized or one-sized.) I liked using the fitteds over night with Sofia, because paired with a leakproof cover, Sofia was in for a dry night. 🙂
I have a pretty good stock of diapers now, most of which are one-size “pocket” diapers.
At first, my husband was reluctant to cloth diaper. He was used to the disposables. I mean, they are easier. When the disposable diaper is soiled, you just take it off and throw it away. With cloth diapers you have to wash them (I handle this so he doesn’t have to worry about that part of it) but then with poop you also need to rinse the diaper and get rid of the excess mess. Oh, he still hates this part. He has only had to do it once, though, and I am sure he is thankful for that.
Overtime I have learned how to properly care for and launder the diapers. It does take more time than throwing away disposables but the benefits of cloth diapering are so much greater.
Cloth diapering is so great for the environment. I was reading my friend’s blog and she cited some research that I’d like to share with my readers as well. Did you know, disposable diapers take 500 years to break down in a landfill? So, since they were invented in the 1960′s, not one single diaper has broken down. And with over 100 diapers being used a month per baby… there are a LOT of diapers filling up our landfills.
Cloth diapers are also great for sensitive skin. Baby’s skin is so sensitive and tender and cloth diapers provide a softer and more sensitive alternative to the disposables. That being said, there are chemicals and toxins in disposables touching and being absorbed into baby’s skin. There are so many things I want to do right for my daughter, and I don’t want her to absorb those toxins into her system at such a young age.
In the next Cloth Diapering post I will let you know what cloth diapers I chose and why. 🙂
Have you considered cloth diapering? Do you cloth diaper? What are your favorites? How long have you been cloth diapering?