Tuesday, July 28, 2009

A Cloth Diaper Carnival!!

I joined in on a Cloth Diaper Carnival at Dirty Diaper Laundry and the rest of you are all invited along, too!

What I Wish I Knew Then That I Know Now

I began cloth diapering shortly after I returned from my Bradley Teacher's Training in Atlanta in October of 2006. Piggy was 4 months old and one of the girls at the training told me about Bum Genius. I couldn't believe that what she had showed me (a regular looking diaper that happened to be cloth) was actually available. On our way home from Georgia, my husband and I talked about it and he had some reservations. It went down like this:

Todd: Honey, you don't really do much laundry now. And I don't want to be the one who has to wash all these diapers.

Me: TODD!!! Pleeeeeaaaaase! Pretty pleeeeease?? With sugar on top?? Think of how much money we can save!

Todd: Baby, this is how you made me get you the dog that you don't like anymore, who is now my sole responsibility.

Me: But TODD!! Diapers are for my baby! And we got the dog before the baby and my priorities have changed!!

Todd: Can laundry be part of your changed priorities??

So, we ordered 24 of the Bum Genius and I was totally lost. I'm thankful that I went ahead with a fairly low maintenance (in my opinion) diaper, even though they were a little more expensive they were easy to use and have lasted a really long time. But I had to do diaper laundry every other day, and I was not that great at keeping up. It was a little overwhelming and I always made sure to have disposables on hand in case I fell too far behind. Then I stupidly used diaper cream on my teething baby's bottom (just like the directions tell you not to do) and effectively made every single one of the diapers waterproof from the inside out! Armed with an old toothbrush and the original Dawn, I spent the next 4 hours stripping those diapers and making them usable again.

After adding several different types of diapers (BGs, Rocky Mountains, and Smartipants- over 40 in all), another baby, and a clothesline to the mix, I've finally got down my diapering routine and it has worked tremendously well for us. I only wish I had figured it out two years ago! Here it is:

Separate the inserts from the covers and place in separate containers.

When both containers are almost full, begin washing the covers.

Rinse and spin covers in cold water. Then do a full cycle on warm with a little detergent and add and extra rinse to the cycle. Hang covers out to dry.

Then start on the inserts. Rinse and spin on cold. Then add a little detergent and a splash of bleach (I know, I know, bleach is so bad!! But we only use a splash...) and run a full cycle with an extra rinse. Place in the dryer.

We have separated everything because we have a high efficiency washer and have found that washing both together takes a whole lot longer to get everything clean. I'm hoping to eliminate a few steps, but right now, it's working for us!! Clean diapers every day and no back up disposables...


  1. Wow, I'm SO going to try separating my covers and inserts now! I'm still figuring out my HE washer and this may be the ticket! Thanks!

  2. Hmmm, I never thought of doing the inserts & covers in two different loads, I'll have to give that a try!!!

  3. I would so not be able to keep up with it if I had to do laundry every day and two loads at that - wow!! You may just be my hero. :)

  4. Oh gosh, Upstatemomof3, I do diapers only twice a week now... if I had to do two loads every day I'd go completely nuts!!

  5. LOL about your diapering debate! OH, bleck about stripping the diapers. We've been using liners with our diaper cream, but I think those BumGenius need to be stripped anyway... :D Yay for more work for me!

  6. Ammie, I totally despise stripping diapers, but always forget about doing them. I have gotten into a mini-habit of stripping them every 6-8 months, just to make sure they stay healthy and absorbent. I wish I had known to use liners that first time around... and I wish I had a picture of me with all those diapers surrounding me, cleaning every last one of them with that toothbrush... argh!!

  7. good post! I don't seperate mine but they wash up just fine :) I too started with BGs & have moved on....mainly cause R takes them off! I love me some snaps!

  8. Wow two separate loads, dedication! Glad you found some variety too! Thanks for posting!

  9. The best way to clean cloth diapers is to pre-rinse them off in the toilet using a Hand Bathroom Bidet Sprayer. So convenient and if you are trying to help the environment (and your pocket book) you can give it a double whammy by virtually eliminating toilet paper use by using it on yourself also. I'm not sure how many people know this but that is what they were originally created for. I think Dr. Oz on Oprah said it best: "if you had pee or poop on your hand, you wouldn't wipe it off with paper, would you? You'd wash it off" Available at http://www.bathroomsprayers.com they come in an inexpensive kit and can be installed without a plumber. Now we're talking green and helping the environment without any pain. One review: http://jonathanandandrea.blogspot.com/2009/04/spray-it-or-scrub-it.html