1.30.2013

Why cloth diapering doesn't disgust the hell out of me

Despite being vegan, a little hippie (the 60's peace and love version, not the body variety, although I am that too) and kind of what you consider a "natural" momma, I never for a second considered cloth diapers while I was pregnant with Pearyn. It's not that I had anything against them, they were super cute and obviously a much better option for the environment, I just didn't think I had the time to bother with them (or the patience).

Then I went to a family gathering with my husband and his niece (who is the mother of four boys nearly under four) started showing me how absolutely awesome they were. Not just how cute or how environmental (although the good looks gets bonus points), but how much more economical, rewarding and honestly, better for SOME babies they could be. Plus, if a homeschooling, self-sustaining farm-living mother of four could manage to cloth diaper without losing her mind, I could do it too, right?

So I delved into the world of fuzzy buns, genius bums and thirsty diapers, trying to tread my way through the seriously saturated cloth market. Who had any idea there were so many options when it came to things your baby pees and poos in!?

A lot of friends ask me how we went about selecting our "favorite" diapers, how they know which ones are right for them. I usually direct them to one of the several online cloth diaper "trial" programs, that allow you to test out several of the most popular brands for a nominal fee. If they're nearby, I advise them to talk to the owner of a natural parenting store in town. Ultimately though, we didn't do too much of any of this.

I knew that if I was going to cloth diaper, stick with it and appreciate it, I would have to find the best diapers and method that worked for OUR family. So while a lot of women absolutely swear by all-in-one diapers (they're essentially like a disposable diaper in that every time the baby pees or poops, you change the ENTIRE diaper and put a whole new one on), I steered clear of them.

The idea of covers with inserts appealed to me, because as long as you were adamant about changing baby's diaper (and by adamant I mean you don't let your baby sit in their pee all day), you could use the same cover all day and just keep using new inserts or tri-folds.

Needless to say that narrowed down our options QUITE a bit. Again, I wish I could tell you that we had some definitive, responsible way of selecting what brand and style of covers we chose, but in reality, I picked the ones that had the cutest patterns. We use Thirsties Duo Wraps, which come in two different sizes:   6-18lbs and 18-40lbs. I can report that they grew perfectly with Pearyn, we rarely had leaks (and if we did it was more often than not my fault) and they're still in amazing enough shape that we'll be using them with Braeburn as well.

When we switched to cloth, Pearyn's diaper rash was reduced, the patterns were adorable, her little butt was padded and I really, really felt good about our decision. On top of that, we saved more than $2,000 in the two years we used them with her.

Some people think it's gross, I get it. Who wants to "handle" a bunch of cloths covered in pee or poop? Better yet, who wants to put them in their washer? The truth is, it's not much messier than disposables. My handy hubby constructed a diaper sprayer for our toilet (imagine a dish sprayer that you have on your sink, only on your toilet). So now, anytime we had a poopy diaper all we had to do was spray it off and toss it in the washer. Plus, my husband's best friend has found many other uses for it, but that's a story for another time. Not to mention, if the baby is just breastfed (and hasn't started on formula or solids), their poo is completely water-soluble and doesn't have to be sprayed or rinsed, just thrown in the washer!

I get it, you still think it's gross. Well, have you ever smelled a Diaper Genie in need of a serious changing? It's bad folks. Not to mention those plastic bags you wrap around the stinky disposable poo can only contain that smell for so long. And to be honest, it's just really, really nice to know we're not contributing a bunch of poop and magical absorbent chemicals to some landfill somewhere.

Did I mention they were cute?

At a month old we just started Braeburn in his cloth, he looks so handsome (after I may or may not have raided a recent cloth diaper sale event at the local store). Don't worry though, Pear didn't leave empty handed. She may be out of her cloth diapering stage, but now she's in her girly, dress me up in tutus, glittery shoes and bows phase. So she walked out of the store with a brand new pear headband, fit for a ... PEARyn?

Oh I'm so funny.

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4 comments:

  1. I'm planning on using the Thirsties Duos with my baby too!

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  2. I used cloth with my little girl from day dot. Terry cloths with nippa grips rather than the old fashioned pins till she was six months then a combination of AIO and covers and inserts. Found them so easy to use.

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  3. I've been using cloth with my daughter since birth (she's 8 1/2 months now) and I'm still really happy with the decision. I've tried out loads of brands and separate wraps/ inserts have been the best for us too - really reliable!

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  4. I am glad you posted this! Thanks!

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