Baby · parenthood

Reflections on a year of cloth-diapering

Our little hobbit turned one yesterday (where did the time go?!) and we have been reflecting all week on the year that has passed. It certainly wasn’t easy. There were so many things we had to learn and many more sleepless nights but we loved every minute of our first year as parents. One of our proud parent highlights of the year was our very positive experience with cloth-diapering. After one year of successful cloth-diapering we highly recommend it to anyone and everyone considering it. However, that doesn’t mean we didn’t learn a thing or two along the way so here we present to you 5 things we wish we knew or did from the beginning to make our cloth-diaper journey a bit smoother and less stressful.

CD3

 1. Print a schedule and keep track of laundry days

When you have a million other things to juggle it’s quite easy to forget the last time you did the diaper laundry. Trust us, it’s not so fun when you realize you’re out of diapers as you are preparing baby for bedtime. Keeping a schedule helps you keep the load of remembering off your shoulders and clean diapers on hand when you need them most.

2. A little bit of bleach goes a long way

Over time cloth diapers eventually start to smell even if you wash them consistently. Whether it’s ammonia or bacteria build-up, the smell can be extremely unpleasant and linger after several washes. Don’t worry, it’s not  necessarily something you are doing wrong. You just need to switch things up and find something that gets the smell out. We started adding a small amount of bleach to our cycles just once or twice a month and it was like hitting the reset button. The diapers not only smelled great but looked bright and clean too! Be careful not to overdo it with the bleach though. After all, it is a harmful chemical and should only be used sparingly.

3. Diaper liners will be your friend when baby starts solids

Remember when we wrote a post about how diaper liners sucked because they ruined our plumbing? While we still don’t recommend them for flushing, they definitely come in handy when your little one starts pooping solids. After several weeks of rinsing smeared poo off the inside of diapers, we decided to bring back the liners and we haven’t looked back since. Just toss the liner with the poo in the pail and you are good to go. No extra whiffing or rinsing required.

4. Some diaper rash creams leave stains

This one just bothers us because we had kept our diapers in such great condition for so long. If you’re like us and you care about keeping your diapers looking clean then know that certain diaper rash creams (non-water soluble like Desitin) don’t wash away. At least we haven’t yet discovered a way to get rid of them. We are definitely going to be using these diapers again for a baby #2 but if you are planning on selling them once you are done (we know many do) then this is something you might want to watch out for.

5. It’s okay to cheat once in a while

If you’re going on vacation or out longer than a few hours and you don’t have access to a diaper pail or laundry machine just go with disposables. That is unless you’re taking an extra luggage to haul back some reeking souvenirs. My brother got married recently and rather than lugging around a bag for dirty diapers to makeup, pictures, and the reception, we opted to use disposable diapers that day for the convenience. I’ll admit I did feel guilty but I eventually got over it. Look, you will have circumstances where it will be near impossible to cloth diaper and that’s completely okay. Don’t be too hard on yourself, cloth-diapering was never meant to make your life difficult.

CD2

If you already cloth diaper these will just have made you nod your head in agreement (we hope) but if you are just starting out then we really hope you find these tips helpful. And if you have any questions or comments we would love to hear from you 🙂 Until next time.

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