Taking one step towards sustainable living, I decided I will reduce the use of disposable diapers on Cheeku. I learned about cloth diapers when Cheeku was about 3 months old. As a first timer, cloth diapering has its own learning curve. There were challenges in every step – prepping, putting the diaper, washing, and maintenance. After using the cloth diapers for a few times, there was a foul stink coming through it, and any number of washes wouldn’t cease the foul smell. I also had the thought of giving up on cloth diapering. Using the disposable diapers were hassle-free, just tear the ends and throw – Now this is easy isn’t it? I then researched the correct washing routine and after that cloth diapering has been smooth and fuss-free.
This is one such example of the many cloth diapering challenges. Here I am jotting down the challenges I faced and the solutions I found for them in my cloth diapering journey.
Challenges of a cloth diapering parent
You read all the benefits of cloth diapers and decide to give it a shot. Oh! So expensive. This is the first thought that comes to our mind or the partners’ when you first see the price of a cloth diaper. Trust me, If you plan to use diapers all day on your little one, using cloth diapers is the most inexpensive way. Buy 15-20 diapers, and you are sorted for 2 years or until you potty train your kid. Pssst… Did you know you can resell the diapers once your kid is potty trained? So this definitely is one of the best investment you could make to save the little bums from the harsh chemicals of disposables and get money back 😀
Choosing the right diaper
Since cloth diapering is a long-term commitment, investing in the right cloth diaper is crucial. Buy the diapers that will not rip-off after a few washes. Also, choosing the right type of diapers from the various options available is a task in itself. I was bewildered with the number of options available and confused on which to buy.
I bought the cover diapers for the daytime use which could hold the pee for 2-3 hours and for nighttime, I use the AIOs. 4-5 cover diapers and 2 AIOs are sufficient for a day.
Cloth diapers can stink
After using the cloth diapers for a few times, you might notice that they stink. And the stink doesn’t subside after a few washes. There could be many reasons for it – Pee buildup, detergent buildup, incorrect washing.
Washing Routine I follow
- Knock off the poop immediately, if possible. Rinsing the diaper immediately will avoid build up in diapers
- Storing in a wet bag until the diapers are washed
- I machine wash the diapers, so I do not soak them. I rinse the pee diapers before putting them along with other clothes in the washing machine
- Regular detergent (Surf) is used for washing the diapers
- Run the regular cycle and spin dry before I put them to line dry
- If you are hand-washing the diapers, make sure to agitate the diapers thoroughly to remove any pee/detergent build up
- I run the diapers on a hot water cycle after soaking them for half an hour once a month to disinfect and remove any build up
Cloth diapers are bulky
Disposable diapers are thin compared to cloth diapers. Especially if you are using AIOs, they are super bulky!
- Buy bigger size bottoms.
- Choose stretchy and loose clothes
Getting the right fit
I always encountered leak issues initially until I figured that the fit was not right. Here’s what I learned out of after many leak episodes
- The elastics around the thighs need to be tucked in
- Snap the buttons so that there is 2 finger gap
- Sometimes, the baby wiggling can make the job tougher, I often sing a rhyme (BINGO song for every diaper change). You can also distract them by giving their favorite toy. This makes life easier.
While the poop stains are easy to be removed by running the diapers under faucets, some stains are stubborn. Make a paste of the detergent and water and rub on the stains. Leave it for 30 mins and pop them into the machine.
Traveling with Cloth diapers
You might get a little perplexed at the thought of using cloth diapers while traveling. Use wet bags to store the soiled diapers. Using wet bags will contain the odor. Make sure to keep the wet bags in an airy place, a closed area can help molds breed. If there is an option to rinse the diapers, flush the pooped diapers and store them in wet bags. An alternative option is to use disposable fleece liners. You can dispose of the liners.
This blog post is a part of ‘Conscious Diapering and Sustainable Living‘. A blog train sponsored by Bumberry hosted by Genevieve from worldofgen.wordpress.com (@Life.of.Gen) & Rashmi of http://notjustmommying.com (@notjustmommying). Here 18 Supermoms have joined hands to share their perspective on cloth diapering and living an eco-friendly sustainable lifestyle.
I hope I have answered a few of the challenges that you could face while cloth diapering. What were the challenges you faced with cloth diapers? If you have any inputs, please feel free to comment below.
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