Back in January, we began our journey with cloth diapers (CD). It was a little tough at first to understand how long I can let them go before they leak and how to fit them just right to my little baby but within a week, I felt like I was a pro. It’s been about four months and I have enjoyed them quite a bit.
However, at the beginning of this month, we moved into a place that had no washer and dryer. Since we sold the ones we had two years ago when we moved into a place that had a washer and dryer last year, we now have no washer and dryer which has been one of the most miserable things (other than having no stove/oven for a few days, no internet for almost a week, and no power for a day) about moving into this new house. And we made a tough decision when we knew we wouldn’t have a washer and dryer for a month – we decided to go back to disposable diapers.
Gasp … I know, right?
I thought it would be fine – a lot easier and faster with a lot less laundry to do every few days but really, it has been so obnoxious. I’m taking the trash out every day or two to keep the stench down from the disposables, I’m filling up our garbage can which must mean I’m helping fill out the land fills, we had to shell out $30 for another 216 diapers (we had disposables left over from when we bought some in January), and although the babe’s bum looks a lot smaller nowadays, I don’t feel like it’s as comfortable for her.
I miss my cloth diapers. In fact, a few days ago I bought more. I think it’s just because I’m missing them so much … although I have been really interested in the bumGenius 4.0 diapers so that may have played a part in my buying some.
If there are any of you out there wondering if it’s a good idea to make the switch to cloth diapers, my suggestion would be: DO IT! It is so worth it and really helps save money … if you don’t keep buying CDs like I do.
I had a bunch of concerns about starting CDing and here’s what I think about them now:
- Gross: just the words “cloth diapering” made me cringe with disgust. People actually reuse diapers? Well, yes, and it’s not as gross as I thought it would be. All CDs go into some sort of pail of your choice and stay there until you’re ready to wash them (every couple of days so the stench doesn’t soak in too much). I have a pail with a lid so the smell is even better contained and it is easier than doing regular laundry. I just pour the contents of the pail right into the washer and never touch anything else. With regular laundry, I usually have to do a bit of sorting and never have the pleasure of dumping – I always have to grab the clothes with my hands since we have a big laundry … thing.
- Sanitization? So the CDs go into the washer and get washed, but are they actually clean when they come out? I think so. It’s all about the hot water. I was worried that my washer may not produce enough hot water but if I’m really that worried about it, I boil hot water and pour it into the washing machine to make sure it’s up to my standards. Plus when they come out of the washer and dryer, I would never guess that there was urine on any of it. Not only that, but there are liners you can buy (or make) to make the disposing of unwantables quick and painless to toss into the toilet. I bought some but haven’t used them since the first couple weeks of CDing. I’m sure they’re great but unneeded since my babe usually just uses the toilet. Besides, let’s be honest, you have to deal with that kind of stuff whether you’re using CD or disposables so really, CDing is no worse, in my opinion.
- Time consuming: I thought that CDing would take up way more time than I wanted to give it, but it really doesn’t. Sure, there’s an extra load of laundry that needs to be done every now and then but it’s not 100 years ago – I don’t have to sit over a washing board for hours on end to get the laundry done. All I’ve got to do is hit some buttons, make one change from the washer to the dryer, and I’m done. Plus if I’m really feeling lazy, I throw all of the diapers (the covers and the inserts) into the babe’s clean diaper bin and only worry about putting them back together as she needs them. Time consuming? Not at all.
- The upfront cost: Okay, this one was pretty bad for us. We ended up spending a lot more than I had planned on because I didn’t really know many others that did CDs and so I tried out a bunch of different brands and types. But really, if you want to go cheap, you could spend less than $150, have 24-30 diapers (probably more than you need), and you wouldn’t have to buy more diapers until maybe your 6-8th child. These things can last for ever. We’ve spent about $400-450 because I’m addicted to trying new brands but when you figure that a Costco size box of diapers costs roughly $35-40 and that’s what you’re spending every month … well, I think we’ve had a pretty good deal.
- Leaks: it all depends on the brand. Obviously more expensive ones prevent leaks a little better but as long as we’re consistent with changing her, we have no leaking issues.
Any other concerns? Leave us a comment or email us!