My Cloth Diaper Stash: What I Plan to Use

by Kate on July 6, 2013

in Frugal Living, Natural Mom, Simple Home

Types of Cloth DiapersSince I’m on a cloth diaper kick these days and nearing the time when I’ll start using them (t-minus 2 months until d-day!), I figured I’d run down what I’ve got in my stash. So without further ado, here we go…

I plan to use predominantly prefolds or flats with covers during the day, but am glad to have the All-in-One’s for nighttime changes when I’m just too tired to fold prefolds or flats. I figure the AIO’s will also come in handy with my husband, who I doubt will take to the folding needed for prefolds and flats.

Why I Plan to Use Mostly Prefolds and Flats

Once our little guy outgrows the newborn sizes I plan to buy 5-6 One-Size Pocket Diapers to have on hand for nighttime changes, hubby changes, or on-the-go.  Otherwise, I’d really like to stick to prefolds and flats with covers? Why? They’re more affordable, will clean up easier and dry faster, and will most likely last longer than pocket diapers or all-in-ones. Plus we can use the prefolds and flats to stuff pocket diapers so in theory I could simply buy the pocket shells and save money on inserts. Furthermore, prefolds and flats are generally made out of cotton (and sometimes bamboo or hemp), and I like the idea of keeping only natural fibers against my baby’s skin. Many all-in-ones and pocket diapers are only available with microfiber or other synthetic materials, which can cause rashes in sensitive babies and also supposedly hold on to stink more than cotton or bamboo.

Making Cloth Diapering Easy

When I first decided to cloth diaper, my only thought was “I want this to be as easy as possible. If I can’t make it easy and convenient, then I won’t do it.”  I wasn’t terribly concerned with cost (because generally no matter which cloth diapering method you choose, you’ll still save money over disposables). I didn’t even care too much about keeping it healthy for my baby (I figured simply by choosing cloth at all, I was already choosing a much healthier alternative). I just wanted it to be EASY. And I still do! I’d say ease of use is still my biggest priority.

When I first started researching cloth diapers, I thought All-in-One’s sounded the easiest. AIO’s have everything built in, so basically you just put the diaper on the baby just like you would a disposable. When you wash them, there’s just one piece to wash and dry–no stuffing or unstuffing inserts like you would have to do with a pocket diaper! Sounds pretty easy right?

Laundry Matters When it Comes to Cloth Diapering Ease

But then I started reading about cloth diaper laundry. With an AIO, you can generally wash it on high heat, but you have to dry it on low heat so you don’t destroy the PUL (the plastic-like waterproof outer layer). Thus drying these diapers takes FOREVER. I washed the Nana’s Bottoms AIO’s a few times to prep them and it literally took 3.5 hours to dry them on low heat. Plus, with an all in one, all those absorbent layers are stitched closely together, so it’s harder for the water and soap to get into those deep layers and really get them clean. You hear far more stories about people having issues getting AIO’s clean than prefolds or flats. Not to mention, I have a HE front-loader washer-dryer AND hard water, both factors which make cleaning cloth diapers doubly hard. Once I weighed the difficulty of laundry with All-in-One’s against the “difficulty” of having to take an extra minute to fold prefolds or flats and cover with a cover, I started to realize the latter would be much easier and require less time overall.

Which Cloth Diapering Supplies Do I Plan to Buy Next?

So like I said, I imagine my next cloth diapering purchases will be a half-dozen pocket diapers for hubby, grandparents, and babysitters, and either more flats or prefolds in the next size up. I hope I can really get into a groove with flats because they wash up so easily and dry in about 30 minutes!  Plus flats are about $1 each and basically one-size-fits-all (prefolds are not as versatile), so you can use them from birth to potty training–super cost-effective!

Finally, I’d really like to try some wool cloth diaper covers. Wool, as opposed to the PUL covers, is a natural, biodegradable fabric and it’s breathable so it’s less likely to cause rashes! It also has the ability to actually absorb wetness (rather than just hold it in like the PUL) which helps prevent leaks and keep your baby drier.  You do have to hand wash most wool covers, BUT because of wool’s inherent antibacterial properties you generally only need to wash your wool covers once every few weeks!  Since I’d prefer to wash and dry my prefolds and flats separate from the covers anyway (so I can use super hot water and a hot dryer cycle), I feel like wool could really work for me.

So that’s the run-down on my collection! Any of you other cloth diapering moms or dads out there have any thoughts for me or suggestions of what I should add to my collection?

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*In the spirit of full disclosure, links to products in this post may be affiliate links, which means that I may receive a commission if you decide to purchase any of the products I recommend. Know that I only recommend products that I have used and love myself.

*I am not a doctor, a nurse, or any kind of health practitioner. I’m just a gal with a pretty keen intuitive sense, great research abilities, and curiosity that is easily peaked. Please understand that my advice is really just another opinion and it’s for you (and your doctor) to decide the best course for your health and well-being.

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