Monday, April 5, 2010

What's Up With the Diapers?

Remember when I posted back in January about my diaper dilemma?  Have you been sitting on the edge of your seat wondering what I did?  (Oh, you haven't?  You mean to tell me that you are not entirely wrapped up in my life?  Humph.)

For those curious minds, this is the post for you.

Testing Days

After my father-in-law sent us a starter package of cloth diapers, I decided I would devote one day to each child for testing. The first day I used them only on Andrew.  Only one of the diapers leaked out.  I was delighted.

I stored all his diapers in the convenient washable dirty diaper storage bag and declared the day a success.

After I washed the diapers, I tried them on Emily.  To avoid sauntering into the too much information category, let me sum it up in one word: disgusting.  I will not use cloth diapers for my toddlers.  Ever.  I ended up throwing the one cloth diaper I used on her that day away.  Kind of counteracts the whole waste aspect, doesn't it?  For Emily, or any child of mine that is eating anything more than breast milk, I would much rather go through the potty training messes than use cloth diapers.


Since I am perpetually behind on laundry, I thought this would be a tricky issue.   Luckily, my dryer takes two cycles before things are completely dry so in between washing sessions I put in one load of cloth diapers.  The cloth diapers came out clean and smelled quite fresh! I hung them up to dry and continued with my on going laundry fight.


While doing my part in helping the enviornment is nice, I would be a liar if I didn't fess up to the luring aspect of saving money in this whole venture.  After I decided to change over to cloth diapers for Andrew, I looked at the prices.  I almost fainted.  I knew it would be an investment, but the investment was a bit too much for our small budget.  It would require that I save money for 3 or more months or else that I completely stop buying diapers.  Since both options weren't feasible, I decided to stick with disposables.


Since I am a germophobe and hand washing fanatic, I was slightly afraid of how the whole cloth diaper mess.  I found, though, that changing a cloth diaper was as equally as disgusting as changing a disposable.   (How's that for a description?!)  Since I wash my hands like a million times before and after changing a diaper and doing laundry, I found that aspect to not be an issue.

Using cloth diapers wasn't nearly as dreadful as I once thought. The clean up was easy (with Andrew) and the laundry manageable.  The initial cost, however, does require certain adjustments.  I think that if I prepare before our next baby is born, we would end up saving money in the long run.


  1. I am old enough and am have siblings young enough to remember when cloth was the only way we had. All I can say is I am deeply glad our child-in-diapers years fell in the era when everyone did disposable and no one thought anything of it. Good luck!

  2. Despite what you say, I think you are a brave, brave woman. Glad you aren't finding it TOO taxing!

  3. We go back and forth about which kind to use with each kiddo. I'm curious, what brand did you try??

  4. We were given a starter package that had 4 different brands: Happy Heiny, Flip, and 2 others that I can't remember. I believe that I preferred Happy Heiny over the others. What about you?

  5. We've been using cloth for just over a year, and I LOVE it. I never thought I would - but I wish I had started w/ Fynn instead of when Paige was a baby. We use BumGenius 3.0's (and though the velcro wears, they sent me replacements for free, I just have to sew the darn things on...... I'd probably go w/ the snap kind if I were to do it again)
    It's so convenient, and though the initial sticker price was hefty, I know it's saved us in the long run. And I don't have the dump full of dirty diapers guilt stuck in my head :)

  6. I used cloth on my second son when we lived in CA in the 90s and I was trying to find my inner-environmentalist. The poor guy had a yeast infection for months and months. Sorry, landfills, but I am/was completely sold on disposables.

  7. I'm with Braden on this one. Glad it was a nonissue for me! I had forgotten you mentioned this before, thanks for the update!

  8. It's funny, there's always this idea that cloth will be so low-cost, like you can just take a dish cloth and wrap it around the kid, but like you said, there are a lot of costs involved in it, like diaper services or buying them all, or whatever.

    Me? Very glad the day the last diaper was used! Long, long ago.

  9. If I were ever to raise another baby, I'll cloth diaper. I was too intimidated to try it with Bella and didn't even consider it with Javi. Hearing that it was that bad from several places makes it seem much more approachable.

    I can't imagine how bad that toddler diaper was!

  10. Amber, the part that resonates with me most? That your dryer takes two cycles to dry. Mine too (on a good day). We use it as little as we can, but there is a strange feeling of comfort knowing that I am not the only one with a less-than efficient dryer. Oh, and I use a combo of disposable (for night time mostly) and gDiapers (with the compostible inserts).

  11. I admire anyone who attempts to work with cloth diapers - I am a disposable girl - and am SO close to being done with diapers (my almost three year old disagrees with me here)!


  12. Yea.... I pass.
    I think it's great that other people do it, but it's just not for me.
    Very brave of you though!

  13. Also admiring your attempts. (Also perpetually wed to multiple cycles of the dryer - and yes - even all these years later.)

    I'm all for environmental friendliness, but then there's sanity. And relative costs. And relative sanity. Disposables. Pullups. They were invented for a reason, but I'm no less impressed by those who went the other route.

  14. My dryer takes 2 cycles, too! SO ANNOYING.

  15. I have been toying with the idea of switching to disposables for some time now. I probably would already be using them if my husband was more encouraging. He thinks anything that can make more work than we already have with our two kids is insane regardless of money savings or environmental benefit.

    Also, baby # 2 is now going on 14 months and we are not positive we will have any more kids. Not sure if at this point the investment will pay off. I know, I know it is the environment that really matters. It is true, but we have bills to pay and mouths (and college funds) to feed.

    Still, I LOVE the idea of cloth diapering. If we have another I will absolutely do it. A friend of mine has an awesome boutique here devoted to cloth diapers and breastfeeding and birthing classes, etc. She has inspired me.

  16. I started out with disposables...invested in the cloth and hate to admit majormommyfail...I only lasted two days! Cloth takes so much time and committment. Hats off to those who can do it, but I was not one of them. Even if I had a diaper service, I don't think I would have lasted. I just liked disposables better.

  17. Diapers. ugh. Changing diapers. ugh. Changing poopy diapers. ugh ugh. Potty training. ugh.

    Bravo for trying something new.
    Bravo for "next kiddo" talk. Love it.
    Diapers? Don't love them quite so much as the little bums that they cover.

  18. Ha! I am so glad that our dryer difficulties gives you a comfortable feeling!! I do know what you mean, though, often the part of a post that really catches my eye is the human part. You know, the part that shows this person whose words I read daily really is human. Really is someone I could sit and chat with. That is what your posts do for me.

  19. Oh man...I wish I had seen you were trying this experiment sooner. I went through this whole thing nine years ago and it was quite a learning curve!

    I learned quickly that eBay and garage sales were my friend, that liners were non-negotiable at bedtime, and that no matter how much I explained to my mother why I was using cloth diapers, she was never going to use anything but disposables.

    If you still want to use cloth for Andrew, I've got a bundle of AIO's and Chinese tri-folds I can send you.


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