new to "CD-ing"!

Melanie - posted on 03/17/2010 ( 8 moms have responded )

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I am a first time mom due in September and really want to use cloth diapers. My mom used them for all her kids, but she had a service bring her fresh ones weekly and haul away the dirty ones. Do you all use a similar service? I cant seem to find one in my area. I still want to use cloth, do you recommend any certain brand of diapers, how many do you need to purchase, and whats the best way to get them clean? Sorry I sound like such a noob, thanks for your help!! :)

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Majaliwa - posted on 03/18/2010

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Melanie - congratulations on your upcoming bundle of joy. Don't worry about sounding like a newbie - many of us started out the same way. You'll be pro when its all said and done. Below are a few things to think about to help you get started. I personally don't use a diaper service because they're fairly pricey in my area - so I just wash them on my own and I don't think its too challenging. The biggest tip I can give you is to not purchase all of your diapers before baby arrives. Each baby is different and you won't really know what will work for you, your family, or baby until you start doing it.

This link will help you determine what you need to buy and how much of it.

Other considerations:
When choosing the best cloth diaper for baby, consider more than just brand.



1. COST
- Consider how much you want to spend and what your budget can afford. Some diapers may be simpler to use, but will challenge your budget.



2. TYPE
- Choose the type of diaper that will work best for your family and your situation (i.e. most daycares prefer the use of All In One diapers).



3. MATERIAL
- Some babies have very sensitive skin. Synthetic materials like PUL and fleece can irritate their skin and cause diaper rash.



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Karen - posted on 03/28/2010

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I am so proud of you for making that choice to Cloth Diaper! I am a very frugal mom and I made that choice for the cost savings. Diaper services are more expensive these days, and I would not do that. I bought regular Gerber prefolded white cotton diapers at Walmart. You can also get them at Walmart.com. Then you need a plastic cover. I bought this velcro-on cover called a diaper wrap... on ebay. This Work At Home Mom sews them for cheap. www.monkeybunsdiapers.com She sold me a few through ebay. They were great covers. No fancy tricks on folding.... just get the white diaper on the baby any kind of way and hold it in place with the diaper wrap. I was only folding the diaper into three layers, so it looked like one long pad in between his legs, ( leave extra in the front fold for boys) and spread a bit around the waist, and velcro the wrap shut. It was as easy as disposables. It took some time to get the hang of it as I was a new mom too. I bought about 30 Gerber diapers, and 4 small wraps. Then when I realized that this was working well, I ordered the 4 medium size wraps. He wore those almost a year. Now my son is two and 32 pounds and we are up to a large size wrap. The wraps are made of a soft plastic with a fabric edged so it won't hurt the baby. As an infant we used about 12 diapers a day. I kept a 5 gallon bucket in my bathtub and filled with water and a cup of vinegar and kept adding diapers till it was full. Almost three days worth of diapers makes a load of laundry. I washed with any detergent that has no dye and perfume. "All" free and clear, or Store Brand free and clear. I also started making my own detergent at home. You do not NEED to buy the Brand name baby detergent. That is a gimmick and a very expensive one. If your baby is very sensitive to your soap, wash the diapers a second time with water only. I use my washer and dryer all the time and I don't care about stains, but I do hang the stained ones in the sun, to bleach them out sometimes. The sun whitens everything even if there was a pattern on the diaper. My little guy rarely ever had a rash. We still have the original tube of diaper rash cream from my baby shower. We are doing well, and will probably be in diapers for another year or less. I carry ziplock bags in my diaper bag to carry the stinkies home when we go out. I also spent less than any mom I know, so I felt no guilt when I bought 8 pair of all-in-one diapers to send my son with to daycare. All-in-ones are cloth diapers that work exactly like disposables they are just very thick since the more cotton is needed to absorb wetting. I bought the Kushies brand at Walmart.com, and that was a bit of an expense, but it was better than buying disposables for daycare. They only last about a year and break down from washing and drying, so I recommend the 30 Gerber Prefolds and the 4 Wraps in each size, (S,M,L)for regular use. Presoak in a bucket of vinegar and water. Hang in the sun for stain removal. Check on ebay, there are lots of moms who sew at home to keep the cost down.

Leslie - posted on 03/25/2010

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I will be CDing in about a month. I learned alot from http://theecofriendlyfamily.blogspot.com...
She does great reviews on diapers, different styles, cloth diaper approved detergent, homemade detergent (which is awesome), how to deal with stains and/or smells. Great tried and true resource, who has nothing to gain b/c she doesn't sell anyone's diapers.

Rindy - posted on 03/25/2010

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The closest diaper service to my home was 3 hours away and of course wouldn't come pick up dirty diapers that far away so i washed them myself.I just put them in the high soil (long) cycle with our regular (Xtra) detergent and occasionally, liquid bleach (send through and extra rinse cycle when using bleach -just to be safe) and let them wash. They dont come back out looking perfect or anything but heck, the kids just gonna poop in them again anyway, right? I got diapers my mom still had left form her kids and she had about a week's worth. I enjoyed not having to wash diapers so much we just had mom's old diaper pail, filled it with water and a little ammonia and tossed the diapers in until washing time (rinse the poopy ones out in the toilet first) The number you need depends on how often you want to be washing diapers. start with a couple dozen and if you decide you need more get more, then you're spreading the cost out over time too. This way you'll also be able to try out different brands to see what you like.

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I definitly don't use a service and a lot of the moms I meet that cloth diaper here don't either. Mostly because it is more expensive than for any other reason. I wash my diapers with regular detergent using half what i would on the rest of my clothes and with an extra rinse because this is what I can manage. When I first looked into CD'ing I thought they were going to be complex to wash but in the end found that it can be as simple as you want it to be (and the material of your diapers allow). Keep in mind baby is BIG business so a lot of things marketed as a NEED really aren't.

I like Majaliwa's post on deciding which kinds of cloth diaper are right for your family and budget. Also I have 24 prefolds and 6 covers that last me long enough to do laundry every other day. I also encourage you to wait and see how big your baby is before getting too many diapers.

Vilate - posted on 03/22/2010

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Melanie,
Well, I will point you to links instead of ramble on... cause I could! :)
Firstly the service... I don't have that option where I live either! Don't know if I would use it even if they did though, then I don't have control over the detergent of the types of diaper I get. So I am all for buying a stash and then washing yourself.
As for types I have a list of types of diapers here:http://niftynappy.com/diapering-faqs/typ... *I suggest fitted with a wool cover! LOVE these!!!!!
Care of diapers: http://niftynappy.com/diaper-care/
Info on wool covers: http://niftynappy.com/wool/

I suggest between 12 and 15 for one baby. I never had more than 25 fitteds and I with 6 kids I often had 2 in diapers. We just washed about every other day.

Any other ?'s just ask!

Jan - posted on 03/19/2010

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I wash ours, there aren't any diaper services in our area and I don't think I would use one if there was really. How many diapers you will need depends on how often you want to wash them, for a newborn you want a minimum of 24, after that you can get away with 18 and still wash every other day, if you want to wash less then you will need more diapers. I have about 8 dozen assorted diapers in my current medium/large stash that means that if for some reaon I had to I could go about two weeks without washing. Normally we wash once a week since we both work full time, it's nice to only have to wash on the weekend. I always recommend people try out a bunch of different types of diapers before they buy a big stash of just one type. Some kids are sensitive to certain fabrics and some parents prefer different types of diapers. I like prefolds snappied or trifolded in a gdiaper but my DH prefers to use a fitted with a pull on cover. My DD can't tolerate synthetic materials next to her skin so we can't use most pockets or AIO's because most of them have microfleece or microsuede as the inner layer. A lot of cloth diaper stores offer trial programs and some online stores do as well, they charge you a refundable deposit and a small rental fee and you get to try out all different kinds of diapers for 2 or 3 weeks, then you return them and get your deposit back and have a much better idea of what works best for you and your baby. Since a lot of diapers don't fit newborns very well, you could buy 24 newborn prefolds and 1/2 doz newborn covers and use those for the first few weeks and then order the trial kit and decide what you want your stash to be. Newborn prefolds are cheap and you can use them later in either small gdiapers or as doublers in bigger diapers so you can get more use out of them.
As for washing it depends on what type of washer you have and the specific conditions of your water, it can take a little trial and error to figure out exactly what works best for you, but generally speaking most people use a natural cloth diaper friendly detergent (although because of allergies I have always just used regular tide HE on our and it works for us) you use 1/4 - 1/2 the regular amount of detergent called for and never use fabric softener. For my front loader my wash rutine looks like this
cold quick wash to rinse out the diapers
hot heavy duty wash with 1Tbsp liquid tide HE and double rinse
then dry on hot or hang in the sun.
Easy as can be. Oh and you don't need to soak your diapers or anything, just get a diaper pail or garbage pail and a pail liner, toss the dirty diapers in the pail and on wash day pull the liner out of the pail and dump the diapers and liner into the washer. You don't need to worry about rinsing out poop while you are exclusivly breast feeding either because EBF poop dissolves in the wash with no problems. Once you start solids then you can eith use a flushable liner in the diapers or shake the poop into the toilet and rinse or use a diaper sprayer to wash of the poop off.

Peggy - posted on 03/17/2010

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I wash mine myself. It's super easy. You have to get a cloth diaper safe detergent. I HIGHLY recommend Rocking Green detergent. Dipaerpin.com so to the sales and announcements section and you will find all sorts of online stores to shop from. I like to try different diapers. Each one has its uses. Prefolds are cheap and great for around the house, All in ones (AIO) are designed like deposables. They are super easy and great for when your out. I just shop the clearence and sales so I have lots of options.

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