Sunday, September 04, 2011

Cloth Diapering - It's All About Choices

As I might have already mentioned, I cloth diaper my baby.  I do it mostly because I'm cheap, and I just can't imagine spending money every week on diapers to throw away.  Of course, it doesn't hurt that it saves a ton of waste from polluting our landfills, and that cloth diapers come in so many adorable prints and colours!  Plus, with all the easy to use cloth diaper styles that exist nowadays, it's no problem at all to get other caregivers on board.

When my son was a baby, cloth diapering wasn't really a "thing", I didn't know anyone else that was doing it (at least not til after I started), and I didn't do it all the time.  I bought disposables to use for naptimes, overnights, shopping trips, family visits, and so on.  We used a mix of Kushies AIO cloth diapers (all-in-ones), Kushies fitted diapers plus waterproof covers, and other generic brand fitteds that required covers.  I didn't dislike the process, but there were definitely things that bothered me, such as:

1) The Kushies AIO's I used took FOREVER to dry (even in the dryer, I had to run them through two cycles to get them dry)

2) After many cycles in the dryer, the Kushies AIO's started to leak, it seems the heat from the dryer cracked the waterproof exterior fabric

3) The hook & loop closures got gummed up with fuzzies and threads in the wash/dry cycle and were less & less sticky as time went by

4) Although you are supposed to be able to reuse the waterproof covers several times before having to wash them, I found they got smelly and had to wash them more often than not, so I needed more of them

5)  Being oblivious to the concept of a diaper sprayer, I was at a loss as to what to do with the poo... I ended up using popsicle sticks to scrape it into the toilet, which was effective but then at the end of the day I'm stuck holding some sh*t on a stick (pardon my french)...

Despite all of this, I was really happy to have made the decision to cloth diaper my son.  So, this time around when we found out we were expecting a new baby, I was excited to check out the new options in cloth diapering.  The local industry had certainly come a long way since the last time I was buying diapers - there were multiple cloth diaper stores within driving distance from my house.  I sold all of my old Kushies and paraphernalia, and decided to start fresh.

This time, I educated myself about my options.  I got a larger diaper pail so I could do diaper laundry every 3 days.  I got 2 Planet Wise pail liners so I wouldn't have to rinse the pail.  I invested in 37 one size pocket diapers (OS pockets) of various brands, and a number of extra liners for overnights.  I bought and hooked up a BumGenius diaper sprayer, and got a number of rolls of diaper liners to use on days where some bum balm/cream is required.  I bought a number of wetbags to allow cloth diapering on the go, and I made my own diaper wipes out of some old receiving blankets I had retired.

I'm proud to say that my daughter has been in cloth diapers since her umbilical cord fell off, and I haven't once missed disposables or regretted my decision to go 100% cloth.  I'm so pleased with how cloth diapering is going this time around that I am going to start a series of reviews on my blog in the month of September so I can share some of my favourite items & lessons learned with all of you.  There will even be some great giveaways, so be sure to enter for your chance to win!

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