When I was pregnant with Gracie, DH and I had several conversations about cloth diapers, and had decided that we would start with disposables until we got settled in, then switch to cloth after a few months. We didn't purchase any diapering supplies before she was born. When we were pregnant with Jenna, we had the same conversations and came to the same conclusion about when we would start. But I never really figured out what it was that I needed or wanted to buy. In fact, it was all kind of confusing to me and I had no idea which direction to go. No one that I come into face to face contact with on a daily basis uses cloth diapers, so I couldn't sit down and just chat with anyone about it. I emailed a few friends and got a few suggestions, and I also just looked around at some of the online diaper shops and picked a direction. There are lots of tutorials out there, but I really wish I had come across this three part tutorial on cloth diapering before Jenna was born... Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
I had eyed up gDiapers when I was pregnant with Gracie, and had actually gotten the size small started kit as a shower gift. We figured that we would start with those as a segway between disposables and cloth, and while we were using the gDiapers we (well, I) would work on getting the cloth stuff ordered. The gDiapers were okay. It took a few days to get the hang of opening the inserts to get them cleanly into the toilet, and I didn't like that the inserts basically have the a similar chemical composition as the guts of a regular disposable. The liners frequently got messy with poo, because the insert didn't hold its shape well in the liner - it tended to bunch up between Jenna's legs. No big thing - the liners are washable, so we just tossed them into the laundry when they were really messy. When we switched to the medium gPants, I ordered a case of the med/large flushable inserts, and I think we have used just a handful of them. I expect that most of them will be left over for the next baby, or perhaps to sell at some point. Someone had mentioned to me that they used the gPants with prefold diapers stuffed into the liner in place of the flushable insert. I was intrigued by that, and did a little more 'research' into this. I decided to buy a dozen prefolds and try this out. It works okay.
The pros to using prefolds in the g-diapers:
- easy for the grandparents (this is actually their preferred method, since it's less confusing to them than the diapers with snaps).
- washing the entire system is not necessary unless the poo escapes from the prefold
- pretty cost effective - prefolds are cheap in comparison to pockets or AIOs
- poo escapes from the prefold and makes it to the liner relatively frequently. No big thing, just toss the liner (and the pants, if necessary) into the washer with the rest of the dipes.
- the prefolds tend to bunch up between Jenna's leg the same way the flushable inserts did, which aids in the escape of the poo as noted above. I have found that putting a small hemp or microfiber insert inside the prefold helps to maintain its shape, and obviously, it also helps with absorbency.
- unless we use a fleece liner, the prefold holds moisture against the skin.
- I don't care for velcro, but so far it's holding up with no issues.
After reading a ton of information about various types of diapers, I narrowed it down to pocket diapers or all-in-ones. I narrowed it down to these options primarily because I wanted a diaper that was lined with microfleece or microsuede to pull moisture away from baby's skin without having to add liners on top of prefolds or other diapers. After narrowing it down to pocket diapers and all-in-one diapers, I debated and debated and finally decided on pocket diapers. I picked pockets because I felt that there were far more options in pocket diapers (more brands and designs to choose from), I liked having the option to adjust the absorbency level by adding or removing inserts, and I liked that the inserts were removed for washing and drying (in my mind, it just seems like the inserts would come cleaner if they could be removed from the diaper structure for washing). Before purchasing any of our cloth stash, one friend suggested that I investigate some of the cloth diaper 'trial' programs that are out there before ordering. I did not, but really wish I had. Here is a list of some of the more popular trial programs; Fluff Envy also has a Love 'Em or Leave 'Em program. When I finally placed my first order, here is what I got:
- One dozen unbleached Indian cotton prefolds
- One size-1 Thirsties Duo diaper (as opposed to the cover/wrap)
- One one-size Fuzzi Bunz pocket diaper
- One one-size Doopsy SD pocket diaper (I believe what I have is now marketed as the 'trim fit')
- One size-1 AppleCheeks envelope/pocket diaper
- One one-size RumpaRooz pocket diaper
- one one-size Katydid pocket diaper
- two perfect size Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers
- one one-size Kawaii overnight pocket diaper
- two one-size Go Green Pocket Diapers
- 4 hemp prefolds
- two more AppleCheeks - 1 size-1 and 1 size-2
- one set of AppleCheeks waist extenders
- six more RumpaRooz
- one more one-size Fuzzi Bunz
- two more Doopsy SD pocket diapers
- two more Thirsties Duos diapers - both size-2
- two sets each small and large Thirsties hemp inserts
- 2 sets of RumpaRooz hemp inserts
- two RumpaRooz wetbags
- Sigma diaper sprayer
The first store I ordered from (Bellalojo Baby) closed a few weeks after my second order. Since then, I have done most of my ordering from Abby's Lane, Fluff Envy and Kelly's Closet.
Check back later to find out what I think about all of this stuff!!