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Prefold cloth diapers are a simple and easy way to get started with cloth diapers and many moms stick with this system as their baby grows.
Stephanie lives in the Colorado Rockies with her husband and super cute little man, Aekley. She is a crafty mom who loves living in the mountains.
Here she tells us about how she came to use cloth diapers, and how she and her husband make them work for her son.
How many children do you have and what are their ages?
We have 1 child – he is 6 1/2 months old.
How long have you been cloth diapering?
We started cloth diapering on the day of his birth.
Why did you decide to use cloth diapers?
When I was pregnant with my son, I became interested in using cloth diapers. My reasons included saving money, being more earth-friendly, and avoiding chemicals used in disposable diapers.
How did you get started?
At the time, I did not know anyone currently using cloth diapers so I had to look for information on the internet. In the beginning, I felt very overwhelmed by all of the options in cloth diapering. Who would have known there would be so many choices these days?
Slowly I weeded through all of the information and finally purchased some diapers. All of my purchases were made online since we lived in southwest Louisiana at the time and didn’t have a cloth diapering store near us.
What are your favorite types of diapers?
We have tried prefold cloth diapers with covers, fitted diapers with covers, pocket diapers and all-in-one diapers.
The fitteds come in handy for when we are away from home, but we primarily use prefold cloth diapers and covers. We like the simplicity of them, the longevity, and ease of use. Folding them is quite simple and allows for a great fit on any shape and size of the baby.
At night time we use a pocket diaper because it can get him through the night feeling dry and usually without leaks.
Tell us what’s in your diaper stash?
- 2 dozen premium prefold cloth diapers (he’s outgrown the infant size prefolds already)
- 5 fitted diapers (various brands)
- 6 PUL diaper covers (mostly Thirsties)
- 1 wool diaper cover (knitted by me)
- 6 pocket diapers for nighttime (BG 3.0’s)
- A one-size-fits-all AIO by Bumgenius
What are your favorite diaper brands and why?
I have purchased prefold cloth diapers from 4 companies and they all work great.
My favorite covers are made by Thirsties. I love them because they have leg gussets and they can be wiped clean and used more than once between washings.
Our nighttime diapers are Bumgenious 3.0‘s (one size fits all pocket diaper). They came with 2 microfiber inserts. For each diaper, we use 1 of the microfiber inserts and either a thick cotton insert or a hemp flat diaper folded into thirds. Both combinations work well for us and we have very few leaks.
What does your washing routine look like?
Dirty diapers are placed in our diaper pail which has a fabric liner in it that I purchased from a work-at-home mom online. Our pail is a medium-sized trash can without a lid. The liner is cotton fabric on the outside and PUL (Polyurethane Laminate = waterproof) on the inside. We use cloth wipes and those go in the pail as well. My son is exclusively breastfed, so poopy diapers can go straight into the diaper pail.
I usually wash every other day. I throw everything (including the pail liner) into the washing machine and run a regular hot wash cycle (with detergent) and a cold water rinse. If there are bubbles present in the rinse, I run another cold rinse to make sure all of the detergent is gone. I use Allen’s Naturally detergent and have had great success with it.
After the diapers are clean, I usually line dry them. This is a great way to get rid of stains naturally! Sometimes I will throw the diapers in the dryer for a few minutes to soften them up a bit.
Also, about once a month I use 1/4 cup of bleach in addition to detergent to wash my pocket diapers and their inserts. (The instructions that came with them said to use a small amount of bleach on them once per month.)
Do you have a diaper store you prefer to buy from?
Now that we live near a cloth diaper store, I prefer to buy there. Baby Cotton Bottoms provides good customer service and I enjoy seeing the diapers before I buy them. They also have a very good selection.
What problems or issues have you had while using cloth and how did you fix the problem?
When we first started cloth diapering, we had issues with the diapers not smelling clean. I remedied that by changing laundry detergents. Allen’s detergent works really well for us.
If my son begins to get a diaper rash, I use a stay-dry liner (made from micro-fleece) or a piece of regular fleece cut into a rectangle on top of his diaper. This allows the area to stay dry and helps to get rid of the rash.
If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?
I would have started knitting wool covers before my son was born. I also wouldn’t have agonized over spending money on newborn size prefold cloth diapers, as they were well worth the money. It was nice to have a trim prefold when we were first learning how to use them on a newborn.
What’s the best advice you have for someone just starting out?
Keep it simple. Start out with prefolds, a Snappi (or pins if you prefer), and a few covers. If you think cloth diapering will work for you then purchase the more expensive diapers. Also, if you have a local cloth diapering store then go check it out and ask lots of questions.
Anything else you want to share about your cloth diaper experiences?
I heard so many negative comments from friends/family (none of which had ever used cloth themselves) before my son was born. I started questioning my decision, but I am SO glad we chose cloth. It’s been a great way for us to save money and feel good about the diapers we use on our son. I truly love cloth diapering and would recommend it to anyone.