EDUCATION: LEARN ABOUT CLOTH DIAPERS

Click on each section to learn more about cloth diapers. You can download our Quick Start Guide here as well.

Each kit is made up of a variety of styles of diapers. For instructions on how to use each type, see the Types of Diapers Section.

Putting a cloth diaper on is very similar to putting on a disposable diaper – just put it on baby and fasten.

To make sure you are getting a good fit, check around baby’s legs. You shouldn’t be able to see any gaps, but it should be loose enough that you can slide a finger underneath it.

Prefolds– To use prefolds, choose your favourite fold of the ones below, and then place a waterproof cover over top.

prefold-bikini-twist

prefold-fan-fold

prefold-pad-foldPocket diapers – Pocket diapers have a pocket in the lining of the cover. Stuff the insert into the pocket and then put on baby. No separate cover is necessary.

All-in-ones – These are similar to pocket diapers, but the insert is attached. Some styles need the insert stuffed into the pocket, while others go straight on baby.

Pee diapers – can go directly into the diaper pail. They do not need soaking or rinsing

Poopy diapers – for exclusively breastfed babies – put directly into the diaper pail. They do not need soaking or rinsing

Solids/formula fed babies – get the majority of poop off of the diaper by shaking over the toilet, or swishing in the toilet bowl. A pair of rubber gloves is very handy for this.

  1. Do a rinse cycle on cold
  2. Hot wash with detergent (any detergent without fabric softener will work) with cold rinse
  3. Either air dry or put in diaper on low heat

Tips for shared laundry (e.g. laundromat)

  • Rinse diapers at home before doing laundry
    • In tub or sink, add diapers, warm water and ¼ amount of detergent you would use for a load of laundry. Wring out diapers well.  This step will get rid of the majority of waste.
  • Air dry at home to save money on drying
  • Use warm water setting on machine (hot is usually too hot)

Hand washing diapers is an awesome alternative to machine washing if machine washing isn’t easily accessible. You can use your bathtub or sink, or a large bucket. A ordinary toilet plunger can also be used to agitate the diapers.

  • Fill tub or sink with hot water and detergent
  • Add diapers and swish until they are all wet
  • Let soak if desired
  • Put on rubber gloves and agitate diapers for a few minutes
  • Drain water
  • Rinse with warm water until rinse water is clear
  • Wring out and hang to dry

Tips:

  • Make sure you aren’t using too much detergent. You should be using enough that the diapers are coming out clean, but that it doesn’t take ages to rinse all the bubbles away
  • To conserve water, use the kid’s bathwater as a prerinse. When they are done bathing, put the diapers in to soak before washing.
  • Consider washing every day. It is less overwhelming to wash less diapers at a time, and they generally take longer to dry.

Line drying your diapers is a great way to save money on laundry costs. You may consider washing daily, as it does take longer to air dry.

If you don’t have an outdoor clothesline, there are plenty of alternatives, even for small spaces

  • Indoor drying rack
  • Shower rail
  • Hanging drying racks
  • Laundry detergents with fabric softeners
  • Bleach
  • Fabric softener or dryer sheets
  • Diaper rash cream containing petroleum or zinc oxide

LEAKS

Leaks don’t have to be part of cloth diapering. If you are experiencing leaks, here are some steps to troubleshoot:

  • Check if the inserts are soaked. If they are, add an extra layer of absorbency or change baby more often.
  • Check that the fit is good. You should not be able to see gaps around the legs or waist, but not tight enough to leave red marks (pink marks like the ones your socks leave on your legs are fine)
  • Check that there isn’t any of the interior of the diaper sticking out. This will wick moisture out onto baby’s clothes
  • If you are still having problems, contact us. We will help you troubleshoot.

RASHES

Diaper rashes happen with many babies, whether in cloth or disposable diapers. Only a doctor can diagnose and treat a rash, so if a rash stays for more than a couple of days, looks painful or you are concerned, go to your doctor.

Some ways to deal with rashes are:

  • Change baby often, especially while they have a rash
  • Change detergents in case baby is allergic
  • If baby has been diagnosed with a yeast diaper rash, contact us for instructions to deep clean your diapers
  • Use a cloth diaper safe diaper cream at change time
  • Make sure diapers are rinsed thoroughly when washing
  • If a rash is accompanied by diapers that don’t smell clean, contact us.

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