So here are our needs: neither one of us has patience to fuss much with a diaper (and if I expect to keep hubby on board, we need to keep this simple!) so a simple, easy to use system is needed. The less mess we come in contact with, the more my husband will stick with it. My son is very active, so I prefer slimmer, less bulky designs. As to baby "output", current son is a "super soaker". He is also an adventurous eater (current faves are curry couscous salad, diced tomato and avocado with basil and oregano, and sushi - with our pediatrician's blessings). What goes in is an adventure, and what comes out is too. We don't really have diarrhea problems, but there's no telling what consistency or quantities will be and I'm not going to restrict my son's diet just to make diapering easier for me. I'm not a fan of poo duty, but I'll deal! #2 will be exclusively breast fed until starting solids. As to build, boy #1 is a peanut. He started 5lbs, 13 oz (3 weeks early). At almost 16 months he is 31" and 19 lbs. He is muscly and thin. Our ped says based on mine and hubby's build, skinny kids seem to be what's normal and expected for our family (hubby is tall, I'm short, so we'll see what happens height wise. Right now he's not looking like star of the basketball team!). Given that, #2 will probably be skinny too, though he may surprise us. And given past history and the fact that he has a single umbilical artery, I'm guessing he'll start off a peanut, as well.
Our other dilemma: how do you guys handle dirty diaper storage? Keeping stink down is a huge concern for us. We have a diaper genie 2 elite for disposables and it still stinks to high heaven every time you open it and mild to moderately when closed. That's one of the final pushes to switch to cd (we opted for disposables due to odor control and convenience. They don't seem really any more convenient than a good cd system and if I have to smell diapers anyway, disposables have totally lost their edge with us). And any laundering tips or anything else you guys come up with is great too.
The simplest system given your requirements would be all-in-one (AIO) or pocket diapers. There are many brands that would fit the bill. An AIO is just like a disposable - one piece with an absorbent inner and a waterproof outer. Easy on, easy off, just toss in the diaper pail. A pocket diaper is similar, but has an opening between the inside and outside layers where you "stuff" the diaper with an insert, prefold, microfiber towel, or some such absorbent material. When wet or soiled, you remove the insert and toss everything in the diaper pail.
Pockets might be the way to go if DS1 is a "super soaker" since you can always add additional stuffing during naps/night time. Both styles come in one-size and sized options. The sized options are less bulky. The one-size options could conceivably fit both boys. If I were diapering two at once, I'd consider using Bum Genius or Fuzzi Bunz pocket diapers in the one-size options. Maybe a mix of the two.
For a pail system, we use hanging wet bags. Everything goes in there (except wool) and then the whole thing, bag and all, gets tossed in the washer every other day. We sprinkle a little baking soda in the bottom of the bag and have no issues with odor. Cold rinse, hot wash with Charlie's Soap, extra rinse, and hang to dry.
I would definitely recommend pocket diapers. AIOs can be kind of fussy. I don't think you can really go wrong with either bumGenius or Fuzzibunz, I'm less familiar with the other brands.
My favorite wet bags are the Goodmama ones. I had hanging pail wet bags, wipes wet bags, and medium wet bags from her. They were great.
I just went through the same thing, switching my 2 year old to cloth. He sounds a lot like yours in the output area. I'm always afraid to open a poopy diaper because I never know what to expect! And he's a super soaker, too. After trying different types and brands, we settled on bumgenius, and I wish we would have just used them from the beginning. I started with Flips, and I still use them occasionally, but I always go for the BGs first. Prefolds and covers did not work for us.
For a diaper pail, right now, I'm just using a Fuzzibunz hanging pail in the bathroom. It has a little piece of fabric inside that you can put a few drops of essential oil to cover the smell. Sometimes I put a drop or two of tea tree oil on it. I haven't had any issues with smell, and when using disposables, I have to use a diaper genie or wear a gas mask! I also like the Fuzzibunz pail because it has a zipper opening on the bottom, so when it's laundry time, I just unzip over the washing machine and throw it in.
I'm putting in my vote for FuzziBunz! We've been using them for 13 months now and love them just as much as the first day we started. We have a pretty even mix of Perfect Size (Mediums) and One Size FBs, but for your situation I'd highly recommend the OS. If you DS1 is a super soaker, you might want to consider getting them with a hemp insert, and maybe pick up some doublers to lay on top of them for overnights, naps, etc. If you go here you can actually get them in all of the new colors (including Vanilla) with a JoeyBunz hemp insert included! And the more you buy, the more of a volume discount you get, so it would be worth it to buy them in a package. (That website also has free - and fast - shipping, plus a rewards program which you should definitely take advantage of... this is where I purchase all my FBs from).
The OS FBs are narrower in the crotch than the Perfect Size, which ensures that your new baby won't have a ton of bulk between his legs, and your oldest child won't feel chafed when he's walking/running around. They adjust from very small to fairly large, so you probably won't ever have to get another diaper due to your child(ren) growing out of them. They're also very sturdy, super soft inside, and really easy to adjust (once you understand the button-hole system).
To wash them, I do a cold wash/rinse (just water), followed by a hot wash with a few Tbsp of Tide F&G/cold rinse, and then another cold rinse. I hang the shells outside to dry (except when it's raining or snowing) and toss the inserts in the dryer. As for poop, I just plop it into the toilet and call it good, but a lot of mamas swear by diaper sprayers. And I agree with the hanging wetbag. I probably should get one, but I've just been using a little garbage can in our bathroom without a lid on it. Honestly, that method can stink sometimes, though, so I'd go with the wetbag, lol!
Sounds like you've received some good advice so far. I agree with the suggestion to use pocket diapers.
As for the diaper pail, I use a 13 gallon trash with a step-on foot pedal that raises the lid. I made my own liner bag, but you can buy them from various resources. The pail is really close to our bed and we don't smell it.
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I can't really help you with diapers. We use prefold/homemade fitted with wool.
BUt I will say that we use a trash can for a pail, a kitchen size with a PUL pail liner that gets washed with daipers every other day and it has never smelled, and its in our bedrrom with all the other baby stuff. Disposables stinkk nasty your cloth won't. EBF poo is fine in the pail, just shake solid poo into the potty (we start around 7-8 month when we start getting real poo from table food.)
CD preferences really vary by mama. I despise pockets and AIOs. I find them super fussy, with the stuffing, the cost, etc. My BF adores them and hated pre-folds.
My first son was long and skinny and a very early crawler/walker. With him, I preferred fitted diapers with a Bummies cover. The bottoms were bulky, but he was so mobile that it was the best option for staying put. Also, the fitteds almost always kept poop off the covers so I did not need as many covers.
DS2 is short and thick and average in terms of movement. For him, I am devoted to the (wonderfully priced) Imagine prefolds from Nicki's diapers. I don't use any fasteners or fancy folds, which means that the covers do get pooped on more often, but no big deal.
My been-there-done-that recommendation is not to commit to anything yet. Hunt the used forums and snag a couple of different styles and see what works for you.
Regarding dirties, I use a metal trash can with a hinged lid, and have 2 washable liners so that even if I'm washing one, my can is ready for more diapers. I also often air-out my diapers first before I chuck them in the pail - wet and dark = stink and stain.
Gypsy, I think that the FB OS will fit your LO, but they'll probably be bulky for the first few weeks. I don't mean so bulky that your LO's booty is raised up off the floor or anthing, but he'll definitely have a fluffy butt. So that'll really just be a matter of preference. They do make XS FBs, too, if you wanted to look into getting a few of those just to get a more tailored fit.
I haven't had any issues with the bag leaking. I don't spray or dunk diapers, though. I just shake off as much poop as I can, and if it's particularly... messy.... I'll use toilet paper to wipe off. Then I throw it in the bag!