(the little miss sporting a "Fuzzi Bunz" diaper at 7 months)
It's been almost 10 months that we have been using cloth diapers and I'm here to report back on a few tricks and tips and other little things we have learned along the way. I'll try to not be too poop-descriptive ; ) If this topic pertains to you, read about my cloth diaper experience after the jump!
Setting out on the cloth diaper trail:
After heeding advice from multiple sources, we decided to wait until the baby was 6 + weeks old until we began using cloth diapers. For 1) the first few poos are meconium = black tar like poo that can be difficult to get out of cloth. And 2) usually babies' legs for the first few weeks are skinny little sticks and some cloth diapers wont fit snugly around their crotch/leg region until they get a little more meat on their bones. And 3) sometimes it's just easier to focus on one new thing at a time!
Ready for Cloth, Now what to choose?:
I'll admit, the many cloth options can be overwhelming, but we just bit the bullet and bought a slew of prefolds and about 4 covers. But if you need more help deciding Jillian's Drawers offers a trial package where you can try a slew of cloth diapers for 21 days and then choose the diaper that best suits you and your baby!
For us the first size of prefolds lasted for about 4-6 weeks then we bought a bigger size that lasted much much longer... and as far as covers go, we enjoyed using the ones that have multiple snaps that adjust for different sizes. We also enjoyed using the velcro thirsties cover and ImseVimse velcro cover. Each cover is different and ultimately you will find one that works best for you. The most important universal feature that your cover SHOULD have is leg gussets- these help keep the prefold tucked in and will avoid leaking!
A great video on how to use and fold a pre fold with a cover!
The 6th month Switch:
Once the little miss was 6 months old, her diet consisted of a balance of solids and breast milk. This ment her B.M.s were less frequent and were pretty solid-ish and thus easy to empty her diapers into the toilet. (TMI, but this will help with your diaper knowledge- ie you will need more diapers at the beginning.) Also at 6 months she was more mobile thus the idea of laying relatively still while we put on a prefold then a cover was no longer a reality. That and sticky, humid, summer was fast approaching and the thought of having a soaking wet diaper on her was not pleasant.
Conclusion: This is when we switched to a pocket/ all in one diaper. After hearing great reviews from friends, we chose Fuzzi Bunz and bought ours at Everything Birth (a Maine based business who is currently having a great promo buy 5 get 2 free, plus you can earn points to use towards future purchases). So we stocked up and have about 20 of these bad boys! The adjustable elastic and snaps will fit a baby as it grows! And the fleece lining wicks away the moisture which is more airy for summer. You can even double up the diaper with two fleece inserts for longer trips or to use overnight. We love the pocket diapers so much we often wonder why we didn't use them sooner. We concluded that it was partly a money and demand issue. Babies require more diaper changes at the beginning and thus using prefolds was a more economical option for us. Also we tried an all in one diaper when she was 8 weeks old and she peed out of the side, so she wasn't ready for that kind yet. (See here for more pocket diapers.)
But I think for the second time around we might just use the pocket all in one diapers from the beginning, we'll see!
** an important confession- we do use disposables- for long car trips, at night, when my mom watches the baby, on laundry days, and when we go to the shore. I just wanted to let you know that this cloth diaper thing is not always 100% but about 95%. I once heard from someone that incorporating disposables into your cloth diaper routine will actually help to make cloth diapers in your life more sustainable... I can see why, it takes the goody-two-shoes pressure off, etc.
Anywho I hope this helps those that are thinking about cloth diapers! Feel free to ask any questions, happy to be a resource.