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Beginner’s Guide to Cloth Diapers

Beginner’s Guide to Cloth Diapers

When my husband and I told our families and friends that we made the decision to try cloth diapers for our baby, Cab, everyone we told thought we were nuts. They also weren’t afraid of telling us how they felt…

“Oh, think of all the time you will spend washing!”

“Why would you want to make it more difficult for yourself?”

Being slightly stubborn, I refused to listen and kept on with our plans. Fast forward to today. Do we cloth diaper? Yes! Do we cloth diaper the way we had planned? No, and that’s okay. You know that saying that starts with “best laid plans…?” Well, you get the picture. (In fact, a lot of the things I expected to do when I became a mom turned out differently than I’d planned, something I’ve written about here, but I digress…)


There is so much information on the modern cloth diaper that doing your research can get overwhelming. So I’ve put together my top three things to remember as you’re making the choice between cloth and disposable (or a combo of both):

Mom shares her advice on cloth diapers

  1. There is nothing wrong with disposable diapers. To a true cloth diaper fanatic this might sound like heresy, but I assure you, the vast majority of cloth diapered babies happily use disposables at some point. Disposable diapers make my Monday – Friday work for me and my son’s daycare teachers. Was it my original plan? No, but I proudly wear the badge of “part-time cloth diaper mommy.”
  2. Similar to #1, do what is best for your family. Whether it has to do with how often you use cloth or the type of diapers you buy, what works is what you will stick to, so don’t fight it. For us, it was the specific kind of cloth diaper. This is where it starts getting exciting (and by “exciting,” I mean slightly complicated). I can name off the type of my head over six different styles of diaper, not including various fabric choices. I suggest that you check out some of the best internet resources on cloth diapering: All About Cloth Diapers & The Cloth Diaper Geek. They will educate you and help to steer you in the direction that works best for your family. My husband prefers all-in-ones with Velcro, while I prefer covers and flats. It’s the old “potato-potahto” thing, when it comes down to it they are both are designed to do the same thing.
  3. There is more laundry. I am not going to lie. I mean, you’re washing at least 7-10 articles more per day than the family down the street who is just throwing their diapers in the trash. In the grand scheme of things, babies make A LOT of laundry…like A LOT. (Were two sets of caps enough of an emphasis?) To me, what’s another load a few times a week? Bar none, the best authority on making your cloth diaper washing work for you, and having it be as enjoyable as possible, is Fluff Love & Cloth Diaper Science. They even have amazing washing tutorials. (And PS if laundry IS something you enjoy, please share your secret below, we need some laundry encouragement in our house!)

I was going to stop at three tips, but I cannot help to share one more. Nothing is cuter than a baby wearing a fun patterned diaper until your collection grows far too large than needed, and you’re up at midnight waiting to be able to put a special edition pattern in your online shopping cart just because. If you find yourself doing just that, feel free to join me in the “I have gone too far crowd.” I will be there waiting!

Aili Smith_HeadshotI am Aili, a first-time mom and lover of cloth diapers and cute baby fashion. As an avid bargain shopper who will stand in line to snag the right deal, if I’m not searching out an outfit for my little man, you can find me in the home décor. I am excited to share with you all my mishaps and successes as I navigate this thing called parenting. 

To read more posts written by Aili, head here.


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