Tell me about reusable diapers! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So, I'm still trying to convince my husband that we should try reusable diapers. It wasn't an option last time due to the dreaded laundry schedule in our building, but now we have our own laundry room.

 

In any case, I'd mainly like to try reusables because I'd imagine they're better for baby's skin. For all I know, that's not true, but it sounds comfier than paper to me. smile.gif

 

According to the Environment Agency study, disposables and reusables have about the same environmental impact unless reusables are used under certain conditions, namely the use of an energy efficient washing machine, washing at 60C or lower, washing with full loads, line drying, and reusing diapers with other children. We do most of that already, besides line drying (need to go shopping for one!) and reusing on other children (our 1st was in disposables).

 

How practical are washing diapers under these conditions?

 

Also, any insights on the best type of reusables (material, style, etc.) on the scale of things like convenience/ease of use (I've never used anything but disposables), comfort for baby, cleaning, fit, and so on?

 

I saw these wool ones from disana, which should be available for us here (we're living in Europe), as they are a German company. They look nice and cute, but are they any good?

 

Finally, are baby clothes hard to fit over reusables, which I assume are thicker than disposables? I'm really confused by all the layers, liners, overpants, and other things listed!

 

Thanks!


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#2 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 12:29 PM
 
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I'm at work so don't have a ton of time to share but the Pinstripes and Polkadots website has a TON of info about different options, how to wash, etc. In general, we only washed full loads and even though we did not line dry, I still feel like the impact on the environment was better than disposables, especially since we're reusing diapers for this one. Also, you can buy used, which helps as far as the production impacts and/or  resell your diapers once you are done with them!

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#3 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 04:23 PM
 
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There's a forum on MDC that probably has the answers to a lot of your questions! I'll be CDing for the first time with our first child, so I'm probably not much help... I will say that I use our high-efficiency washer for some pretty gross stuff (dog pee cloths, for example, after both big and small dog started "marking" the new house) and it seems to get the stains AND smell out at low temps. (It's all about that crazy spin cycle ;)

 

I found in my research on cloth diapers that there are as many opinions as there are types of diapers! We are doing a mix of prefolds with covers and pocket diapers. The pocket diapers mainly because they supposedly fit up to 30lbs (from about 10lbs on as near as I can figure from talking to other mamas), we got such a good deal buying them used, and to me they hardly look worn! Normally they are $15-20 each in Canada which was really unaffordable for us.

 

The prefolds just seemed the most economical route, as I can reuse them to stuff the pockets of the pocket diapers once baby outgrows them, as well as the covers won't always need to be fully washed as we are using a combo of wool and PUL. The prefolds I bought are cotton, the pocket diapers seem to be a fleece of some sort and the inserts they came with are a combo of cotton/hemp. Again, I found opinions all over the place in terms of style/fabric/washing preferences.

 

My favorite piece of advice was to buy a variety if you can, or find a service that offers rentals (would have been great for us but nothing in our area) that you can use to find out what works best for you and your family. Cloth diapers do tend to have good resale value on DiaperSwappers.com from what I could tell. The site is more useful if you're in the US though. 

 

Other sites I found helpful were the Diaper Jungle site, and Green Mountain Diapers. It's amazing how many products are out there (I mean, when it comes down to it, they are just diapers!)


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#4 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 04:47 PM
 
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I'm not a BTDT mama, as this is my first time, but I know for me, the idea of every. single. diaper. this baby ever uses just sitting in a landfill somewhere just never biodegrading doesn't really work for me.  Although, where you are, they might incinerate trash?  Also, like you, I much prefer the idea of cloth against baby's skin then some unknown chemical combination to wick away moisture.  As far as the nuts and bolts logistics of which is better for the environment, I do think cloth has a major advantage in that they can be reused with the next babe(s) (in case you think there might be another in the future), or you can also purchase them used.  I don't plan on spending a whole lot of money on getting a trial cloth diapering program going, I don't think you necessarily have to.


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#5 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 05:21 PM
 
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My advice would be to get 24-36 Indian prefolds (start with newborn size), 6-8 bullet-proof diaper covers (check out FLIP diaper covers) , 2-3 Snappis and 4-6 doublers (Thirsties hemp are good) and go from there. It's economical, user-friendly and easy to launder. 

 

 


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#6 of 13 Old 11-30-2011, 06:49 PM
 
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You can also contact the ladies at Jillians Drawers.  It's an American company, but they do tons of international orders and are really helpful.

 

One thing to think about re: the environmental impact is that you will probably reuse most of your diapers if you have other children or you sell them, so the stats are off.  The baby I'm pregnant with now will be the fourth child in some of the diapers that we'll be using.  She'll be the second or third in most of them.  They really are much, much better for the environment and they're way better for baby because they don't contain all of the nasty carcinogens. 


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#7 of 13 Old 12-03-2011, 10:48 AM
 
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I love cloth diapering! I do have an HE washer and use a clothes line as much as possible. In the winter I dry one cycle on low and then hang them to dry the rest of the in front of the radiator. They won't dry fast enough if not. I always do a full diaper load. I do find the cruchy detergents don't work for us and use a small amount of tide powdered detergent for each wash, probably about 2-3 tablespoons for my HE machine. If you don't plan to have other kids to reuse the diapers you can sell or pay forward the one you have left over to Mommas in need instead of tossing them out.  For the newborn stage I'm mostly using prefolds and covers I was gifted some fitteds and AIO(all in ones) for the new born stage as well. After that I use One size pocket diapers and AIO. I like to order from Nickis diapers, I'm sure about how she does international shipping though. If you want to go the all nautral route I'd stick to prefolds and covers and some fitteds, you can do wool coers too but they are pricy. If you can knit or crochet you could probably make your own for cheap. You can also upcycle old wool sweaters into wool longies and shorties too. I don't really do wool, too pricy for my blood but many Mommas swear by it.

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#8 of 13 Old 12-03-2011, 10:54 AM
 
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ddcc

we did mostly pockets (but fitteds + covers early on) with dd, and are using those same ones again with this feb. baby!

no more anything to buy for us, it's already paying off. 

we have a HE machine.  i don't line dry, i have no time for that, and dh was a little skeptical at first... now he's totally on the cloth diaper wagon.

we've used sposies maybe once or twice ever, and dh really thinks there's no difference whatsoever in ease of use (but perhaps b/c i do the laundry). 

never had problems, never leaked at night (with one or two user-fail exceptions). 

baby clothes do fit more snugly and you will get a poofy butt appearance, but we tend to dress the kids mostly in super comfy knit stuff that stretches anyway; if you have the $$ or the craftiness, making longies or shorties out of wool will fix that, though-- if you have wool like that, it takes the place of both covers AND pants.  genius!


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#9 of 13 Old 12-05-2011, 10:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, everyone, for your replies. Sorting through, just trying to figure it all out. smile.gif

 

My husband is still against the idea, but I'm hoping to change his mind. I guess we'll see.


Mama to our little boy (3) babyf.gif , the amazing super squirmer, almost born in the taxi...

and our new baby girl stork-girl.gif, caught by her daddy in our bathtub!

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#10 of 13 Old 12-05-2011, 12:11 PM
 
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Sweet bee, my husband is a little against the idea too, as the very crunchy husband of one of our crunchy friends has said to him "just use disposables".  When it comes down to it, I will be doing 99% of the diapering and 100% of the laundry, so I really don't see where he has a say in the matter! ROTFLMAO.gif

 

I've been seriously shopping all weekend and I think I am about ready to take the plunge to purchase the diapes, and thought I would share. I decided to order on Amazon.com because the prices are good and for most items there will be no shipping charges.  They also have a few different "starter kits" to take all of the guesswork out.  Maybe this is a good option for you too in Europe?  In my cart now:

 

- 6 covers (mostly Thirsties as I like that size 1 fits until 6 months old, they have gender neutral colors and good reviews)

- 24 prefolds (a few different kinds)

- 30 wipes

- 2 pail liners

- 1 wet bag (I might not get this, do I really need it now?)

- 2 boxes of flushable liners

 

To the BTDT mamas, do we need doublers right away?

 


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#11 of 13 Old 12-05-2011, 12:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by element2012 View Post

 

To the BTDT mamas, do we need doublers right away?

 


I've never used a doubler on my kids...instead, I use them as mama cloth for me!

 

Ive also never used pail liners.  Sticking with wet bgs has worked great for me.

 

My husband isn't into cloth either, but I do the vast majority of diapering.  When he does it he just uses disposables.  No biggie.  I don't think it has to be an all-or-nothing concept.

 

 


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#12 of 13 Old 12-05-2011, 06:55 PM
 
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Beware of sizing - for my DS, up to 6 mos meant "up to 6 weeks" - ack! 

 

I used a dual purpose pail liner / wet bag, and liked that, I have two that I rotate. I never bothered with flushable liners. Those baby washcloths that people tend to give you a ton of at baby showers make great wipes, too.


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#13 of 13 Old 12-07-2011, 01:01 PM
 
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I just wanted to update this thread, as I received an email from Zulily today.  They are having a sale on Fuzzinbuns diapers, each diaper is $13.99 (usually $22), if anyone is interested...


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