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Here are answers to the most commonly asked questions about cloth diapers. If you have other questions that are not answered here, please do not hesitate to contact us. If we don't have the answer, we will find it for you!

Why should I choose cloth diapers?
How much do cloth diapers cost?
Is cloth better for the environment?
Is using cloth diapers a lot of extra work?
What are the different types of cloth diapers?
What’s the difference between doublers, inserts and liners?
What do I need to get started?
What’s your favorite type of diaper?
My child is already almost a year old, is it too late for me to start using cloth diapers?
Can I use both cloth and disposable diapers?
What is the difference between a wet pail and a dry pail?
How should I wash my cloth diapers?
What do you do with the poopy diapers?
What types of detergents should I use with my cloth diapers?
What causes detergent build-up or residue?
How do I get rid of detergent residue or build-up on my diapers (also called stripping)?
How do I get stains out of my cloth diapers?
How do I wash and lanolize my wool products?
Should I wash my new diapers before using them on my baby?
What do I do with my clean diapers?
Do I need to clean my washing machine regularly if I use it to wash my cloth diapers?
My diapers have a harsh ammonia smell when my baby wets them, what can I do to get rid of it?
My diaper pail stinks, what can I do?
Are cloth diapers bulky?
Do cloth diapers leak a lot?
Do I need to change my baby more often if I use cloth diapers?
Won't my baby get a lot of diaper rashes if I use cloth diapers?
Is it true that babies in cloth diapers tend to toilet train earlier?
What do I do if I go out?
Can I use cloth diapers overnight?
Can I use diaper cream or Vaseline when using cloth diapers?
Can I use disposable wipes when using cloth diapers?
Can I use my wipe warmer with cloth wipes?
What are disposable liners and do I need to use them?
What types of inserts should I use in my pocket diapers?
How do I fold and fasten prefold/flatfold diapers?
What is a better fastening mechanism, aplix (Velcro) or snaps?
How do I know what size to order?
What are the different types of fabrics used in cloth diapers?
Can I come and see your products in person?


Why should I choose cloth diapers?

Please see section Why choose cloth? for answers to this question.

How much do cloth diapers cost?

Please see section Why choose cloth? for answers to this question.

Is cloth better for the environment?

Please see section Why choose cloth? for answers to this question.

Is using cloth diapers a lot of extra work?

Not really. Other than doing 2-3 extra loads of laundry a week it is not much more extra work than using disposable diapers and it can actually be fun with all the new styles of diapers, patterns and colors! We’d rather do laundry than run to the store to get diapers. Plus the cost savings and benefits to the environment make it well worth the extra effort.

What are the different types of cloth diapers?

These days there are a variety of types of cloth diapers you can choose from allowing you to choose what works best for you and your baby.

Flat diapers
Flat diapers are old-fashioned one-layer rectangular diapers usually made of 100% cotton gauze. They require folding and pinning and need a waterproof cover. They dry fast and fit various sizes. Flat diapers are not a very popular choice these days and most sellers do not carry them.

Prefold diapers
Prefold diapers are a very affordable way to cloth diaper. These are rectangular diapers that are divided lengthwise in three sections. They have more layers in the middle and fewer layers on the sides as opposed to flat diapers which are the same thickness throughout. Prefolds require fastening with pins or a snappi (plastic fastening mechanism used instead of pins) and need a waterproof cover. They can also be used in pocket diapers as inserts for extra absorbency.

Prefolds come in various fabrics, sizes and weights. The number of layers used is identified as such: 4X8X4 (the first and last number tells you how many layers of fabric there are on the right and left sides of the diaper and the middle number tells you how many layers of fabric are in the middle). You should always opt for a minimum 4X6X4 prefold diaper or for even more absorbency use a 4X8X4. You can purchase bleached (white) or unbleached (natural) prefolds made from organic or regular fabric. Unbleached prefolds will usually last longer than bleached. The most common fabric used for prefolds is 100% woven cotton. A woven fabric is usually a better choice than a knitted fabric since it holds up better for pinning. Another popular choice of fabric used for prefolds is a blend of hemp and cotton. Hemp is more durable and more absorbent than cotton but takes longer to dry and is more expensive.

Given their versatility, no matter what type of diapering system you choose, families usually add at least a couple of prefolds to their diaper stash.

Fitted diapers/contour diapers
Fitted diapers have a contoured shape and have elastics or gathered edges around the legs and back. They look like disposable diapers except only cuter and softer. They are much easier to use than prefolds but are also more expensive. They fastened with either aplix (Velcro) or snaps and require a waterproof cover. Fitted diapers are made from various fabrics such as organic cotton, hemp, Sherpa and bamboo. Contour Diapers are similar to fitted diapers except they do not have elastics around the legs or back and require pins or a snappi to be fastened. They also need a waterproof cover.

Diaper covers
Diaper covers have a contoured shape and fasten with either aplix (Velcro), snaps or like underwear. They come in various forms, sizes and prints. The most common fabric used for diaper covers is polyester or vinyl preventing wetness to pass through onto baby’s clothes. Other more breathable covers are made of polar fleece or wool which are often used for nighttime.

Pocket diapers
Pocket diapers have only been around since 1998 but are becoming one of the most popular choices in cloth diapers. They consist of a two piece system: a waterproof outer layer such as PUL and a stay dry inner layer such as milled fleece or suedecloth that has the ability to wick wetness away from baby’s skin. They have a contoured shape and fasten with either aplix (Velcro) or snaps. At the back (or sometimes at the front), they have a pocket opening allowing you to add absorbent materials such as microfiber inserts, hemp inserts and prefolds. The advantage of a pocket diaper is that you are able to customize the amount of absorbent materials you stuff in the pocket depending on your needs. They also dry very quickly since the inserts are removed for laundering. They come in various colors and prints and are oh so cute on your baby’s bottom!

All-in-one (AIO) diapers
All-in-one diapers or AIO’s are a one piece diapering system, the closest resembling disposable diapers. An AIO is basically a fitted diaper and waterproof outer layer combined into a single diaper. The absorbent material is usually sewn into the diaper but can sometimes be detachable. They fasten with either aplix (Velcro) or snaps and are definitely the easiest to use and a favorite for outings, babysitters and Daddy’s. They do take longer to dry and do not offer much customizing of absorbency other than adding a doubler. They also come in various colors and prints. All-in-two (AI2) diapers are similar to AIO’s except that the absorbent material is not sewn onto the diaper. It is usually a separate piece that is used with the diaper. The advantage to this diaper system over the AIO diaper is that the drying time is shorter.

Hybrid diapers
Hybrid diapers (or all-in-one hybrid or pocket all-in-one) are basically an AIO diaper that also features a pocket opening.  These are great because they can be used as a simple AIO or you can also use the pocket opening to add more absorbency as needed such as nighttime or during outings.   The term Hybrid diapers is also being used for diaper systems that offer a disposable alternative (i.e. Flip diapers from Cotton Babies and the Gro Baby diapers).   They also come in various colors and prints. 

Training pants
You can also get cloth training pants for your little one who is potty-training. These usually fasten like underwear or some even come with optional added snaps for easier messy clean-ups. They come in various styles, sizes and prints. The outer layer is usually made of PUL to hold in wetness. You can also get pocket trainers where you can add the needed absorbency to the pocket.

What’s the difference between doublers, inserts and liners?

Doublers are thick pads that can be used to add absorbency to your diaper. These are usually added inside a fitted, AIO or prefold diaper. They often have a fleece lining that lies against your baby’s skin to keep it dry. These are great when extra protection is needed such as nighttime.

Inserts are absorbent multi-layer fabrics that are placed inside a pocket diaper. These can be made of various materials such as microfiber, terry, hemp and bamboo.

Liners are thin layers of biodegradable paper that are placed between the diaper and your baby’s skin. These are used for easier clean up by keeping poop from sticking to the diaper. Once soiled, they are thrown in the garbage or flushed down the toilet. Another type of liner is polar fleece liners. These work great to keep the baby’s skin dry by wicking away wetness from the skin. They also help with poopy messes since stool tend to peel off the fleece. Once soiled these are machine washable.

What do I need to get started?

What you need to get started depends on whether you will be using cloth diapers full-time, how old your child is, how often you want to do laundry, what type of diapering system you want to use and your budget. The information below is meant as recommendations only and can vary depending on your needs and choices.

Your cloth diaper "stash" can be made up of only one kind of diapering system but it can also comprise of various types and styles. We recommend using a combination of types and styles of diapers. This offers more flexibility for various occasions. For example, you might want something different for nighttime versus outings or everyday at-home use. Remember also that different styles and brands will vary in size and fit from baby to baby. We recommend trying 1-2 before purchasing a large number of the same diaper. We offer a diaper trial program that allows you to try various types and styles of diapers before choosing what to purchase.

If you intend to use cloth diapers full-time this is what we recommend:

  • 16-24 pocket diapers, all-in-ones (AIO’s) or fitted diapers (16-20 if you want to do laundry every 1-2 days and 24 or more if you want to do laundry every 2-3 days)
  • If you decide to use prefold diapers, we recommend you purchase approximately 24
  • If using pocket diapers you will need the same amount of inserts plus extras (we recommend 4-6 extras for nighttime or other occasions when added absorbency is needed)
  • 6-8 doublers for heavy-wetters (not needed if using only pocket diapers)
  • If using fitted or prefold diapers you will need 6-8 waterproof covers
  • 1 or 2 diaper pail liners (two is nice for when you are washing the other one or if you want to have one in your laundry room as well as in your baby’s room or wherever you change your baby’s diapers)
  • Small waterproof tote bag for outings (optional)
  • 2-3 dozen cloth diaper wipes (optional)
  • 1-2 changing pads (optional)
  • Roll of biodegradable liners (optional)
  • 1-2 dozen fleece liners (optional)
  • If using prefolds or contour diapers you will need 3-4 snappi fasteners or diaper pins

When deciding how many diapers to buy, consider the age of your baby. Newborns and infants usually need 8-12 diaper changes a day as opposed to toddlers who usually need 6-8 changes in 24hrs.

Some diapers are now available as "one-size" diapers that can fit babies from approximately 8-35 lbs. If you choose these types of diapers, the total number of diapers you purchase will be less. Remember however that "one-size" diapers don’t always fit well for newborns and can tend to be bulky in the front. We love "one-size" diapers and we use them often for our son but you might find you also need a few other styles and sizes in your collection for other occasions where you need a trimmer fit.

To make your life easier, we have created cloth diaper packages.

What’s your favorite type of diaper?

I can’t say that I have a favorite style. I use different types of diapers for different circumstances. For example when I go out or if I leave my son with his Daddy or a babysitter I prefer using All-In-One (AIO) diapers since they are as easy as disposable diapers. For the rest of the time I will use either pocket diapers or AIO’s. If I know I won’t be able to change the diaper for 3-4 hours I might add extra stuffing to a pocket diaper or add a doubler to an AIO. At night however I prefer using fitted diapers with breathable covers such as fleece or wool or even prefolds with waterproof covers. I also use pocket diapers for nighttime making sure the pocket is stuffed to the max. What I like about cloth diapering is that there are lots of choices making it possible for you to choose what works best for you and your baby. I also really like the hybrid diapers since they offer not only the ease of an AIO but they also give you the option of adding absorbency as needed.

My child is already almost a year old, is it too late for me to start using cloth diapers?

Absolutely not! It’s never too late. We started using cloth diapers when our son was 5 months old and it was still worth it! You can start using cloth diapers at any age. A lot of parents start with disposable diapers because they didn’t have time to look into cloth diapers during pregnancy. Once they have their baby and take a few minutes to do their homework they decide to make the switch or at least try it. No matter what age you start, you will still be helping the environment by reducing the number of disposables sent to landfills and you will also save money. Cloth diapers usually pay for themselves within 6 months or less!

Can I use both cloth and disposable diapers?

Absolutely! A lot of families these days choose to use both. They usually choose to use cloth diapers at home and disposables for when they go out and/or at nighttime. Of course, the less disposable diapers you use the better for the environment and your wallet but what’s most important is what works best for your baby and your family. Don’t worry too much! If you need to use disposable diapers for certain occasions such as nighttime that’s ok. Every little bit helps whether you use cloth all the time or part-time.

What is the difference between a wet pail and a dry pail?

Wet pail: Covered (sealed) diaper pail half-filled with water. Dirty diapers are placed in it to soak until wash day.

Dry pail: Covered or uncovered diaper pail (with or without a liner) or simply a hanging laundry bag. The way to go these days is a dry pail. They are much easier than wet pails. Dirty diapers are placed in it until wash day. By doing a presoak or a rinse in your washing machine without detergent before doing a hot wash you are eliminating the need for a wet pail. Let your washing machine do all the work instead of you!

Our favorite is a hanging waterproof laundry bag (also called a pail liner). On laundry day simply turn the bag inside out so the diapers fall into the washer and throw in the bag in the wash at the same time. No more washing dirty pails! What we do at home is place our pail liner in a covered basket. This way it can still breathe and control odor. (See question on how to control diaper pail odors).

How should I wash my cloth diapers?

If you search the web, you will find MANY MANY cleaning tips on washing cloth diapers. We suggest you keep it as simple as possible then adjust your routine as needed. First, store your soiled cloth diapers in a dry pail with liner and wash them every 2-3 days. You should never leave them for longer than 3 days. Second, let your washing machine do all the work!

When throwing your dirty diapers in your diaper pail (or before washing), always unfold your diapers, remove the inserts from pocket diapers and don’t forget to fold down the aplix (Velcro) onto the laundry tabs so they don’t catch onto your other diapers.

On laundry day, take your pail liner to your washing machine, turn it inside out so the diapers, covers, inserts, cloth wipes etc. fall into the washer and throw in the bag at the same time. Do a cold prewash (or soak) with no detergent followed by a HOT wash cycle using a small amount of detergent (1/4 of the amount recommended). (See question on what type of detergent to use for more details). If you can you’re your water level, set it to high. After the wash cycle, run an extra cold rinse cycle with no detergent. Once clean, your diapers should not smell like urine or detergent.

Toss everything in the dryer and dry on medium or high. You can also hang your diapers to dry to prolong their lifespan especially your diaper covers, PUL and fleece fabrics. Hang them outside in the sun, this will bleach out any stains and sanitize them. Once clean, you can fold and pre-stuff your pocket diapers if you choose to. You can also use baskets/bins to organize your diapers, inserts and covers or leave it all in the laundry basket - whatever works for you.

Optional: Every few washes you can add ¼-½ cup of baking soda in your wash cycle to help neutralize and absorb odors. If you do this, make sure you use ¼-½ cup of white distilled vinegar in your rinse cycle to restore the pH and prevent any diaper rashes.

NEVER use bleach, borax, fabric softeners or dryer sheet. These can cause build-up in your diapers affecting their absorbency, cause skin irritations or damage your diapers.

For proper cleaning, do not overload your washer.

NOTE: These are general washing guidelines only. Always read your diaper manufacturer’s instructions on how best to care and wash your diapers since their recommendations may vary from these.

What do you do with the poopy diapers?

Contrary to what most people think poopy cloth diapers are easy to care for. If you use disposable liners in your diapers then simply shake the soiled liner into the toilet and flush it away. Then simply throw your dirty diaper in your dry pail. No rinsing or soaking needed. If you don’t use disposable liners this is what we suggest. Shake off any solids into the toilet. Don’t worry about what stays smeared onto the diaper since it will come out in your first soak/rinse cycle. Let your washing machine do the work! Breastfeeding stools are water-soluble, you don’t need to rinse these at all, they will wash right out of the diaper. To avoid any stains we suggest you wash your diapers every 2-3 days. If you leave them for longer than this you probably want to rinse your poopy diapers by swishing them in the toilet while flushing a few times then throwing them in your dry pail (no soaking required). There are also diaper sprayers available that attach to your toilet if you choose to go this route. Personally, we love the ease of disposable liners.

What types of detergents should I use with my cloth diapers?

This is a difficult question to answer since different detergents will work well for one person and may not satisfy another. Our recommendation is to use fragrance free detergents. Also avoid detergents with added enzymes, brighteners, stain guards, dyes, natural additives and/or softeners. Our choice of detergent for our cloth diapers as well as all of our laundry is Nellie’s laundry soda. It cleans all the way to the fiber, rinses thoroughly and leaves no residue. It is also front-loader/HE compatible and is not expensive. Other good choices are Claudia’s Choice and Allen’s Naturally Powdered & Liquid Laundry Detergents. Do not use Borax or bleach since these products will break down the fibers of your diapers and are also harsh on your baby’s skin. Do not use fabric softener or dryer sheets as these products will leave residue on your diapers causing you to have to strip your diapers now and again. Choose detergent over soap. Soap products will also create residue on your diapers reducing their absorbency (not too practical for diapers). Also, make sure you use ¼ of the amount recommended when laundering your cloth diapers (maybe even less for front-loading washers.

What causes detergent build-up or residue?

Detergent build-up or residue is a film on your diapers that is usually caused by additives in your detergent such as enzymes, brighteners, softeners, soaps, dyes or natural additives. It can also be caused by the use of diaper creams and lotions especially if you don’t use liners. This film can lead to leaks, wicking, fluid repelling or beading, harsh odors when your baby wets his diaper and skin irritations. The best way to prevent detergent residue is to use detergents that are free of any additives as well as to use only ¼ of the amount of detergent recommended. We also recommend always doing an extra cold rinse at the end of your wash cycle.

How do I get rid of detergent residue or build-up on my diapers (also called stripping)?

If you suspect detergent residue or build-up to be the culprit of your leaks, odors, rashes, etc. than try stripping your diapers. First wash your diapers as you normally would (you might want to change detergents since your current one is obviously causing residue on your diapers or you might just be using too much detergent, in this case, reduce the amount you use). Following your regular wash, run a HOT wash cycle with no detergent. (If deemed necessary, you can also add a couple of drops of Dawn dish detergent to help get rid of oily build-ups or you can also add a ½ cup of baking soda to help neutralize and eliminate any odors). Following the hot wash, run an extra rinse cycle (with optional ½ cup of vinegar) to get rid of any leftover residue. Lastly run as many rinse cycles as needed with no detergents until no suds appear (usually 2-4 rinses). Once you are done, dry your diapers in your dryer on the HOT setting or hang them outside in the sun. The sun will sanitize your diapers and get rid of any stains. Repeat the stripping process as often as necessary.

How do I get stains out of my cloth diapers?

If you wash your diapers every 2-3 days stains are usually not much of an issue. If you do get the occasional stain, just expose your diaper to sunlight to bleach out the stains and you will be amazed how well this works. We do not recommend using bleach or other chemicals since they may irritate your baby’s skin as well as damage your diapers. You can also occasionally use a small amount of oxygen bleach (with no additives) in your wash if you choose to but make sure you rinse your diapers well. Note: Newborn baby’s first poops called meconium tend to stain a lot. We recommend using liners for the first week of life to avoid any stains.

How do I wash and lanolize my wool products?

Wool needs to be handwashed in lukewarm water using a wool wash such as Eucalan ni rinse wool wash (see diaper accessories for more information) or other mild soap such as baby shampoo.

Soak for 10-15 minutes without rubbing or wringing the fabric. Rinse until water runs clear (unless using a norinse wool wash such as Eucalan). Squeeze out excess water by rolling the cover in a dry towel then lay flat to dry (no dryer!).

This can be done every 1-2 weeks or when the cover is soiled. In between uses, simply hang your wool covers to air dry.

Before 1st use and then once a month or every 10-12 wears, you will need to lanolize your wool. This is done by using approximately 1/8 tsp of 100% lanolin with your wool wash and warm water. You can purchase lanolin at any drugstore. Let it soak for approximately 1/2 hour then squeeze out the excess water (do not wring fabric) and lay flat to dry.

Should I wash my new diapers before using them on my baby?

Since the diapers have been sitting on shelves and potentially have been manipulated by other customers, we strongly recommend you wash them at least once (hot water cycle with small amount of detergent) before using them for the first time. Prefolds, hemp, bamboo and any unbleached products should actually be washed at least 3 times before using them to attain good absorbency. Some of these products won’t reach their full absorbency until washed approximately 7-10 times. We also recommend you wash hemp, bamboo and unbleached products separately from your other cloth diapers (for the first few washes only) since these fabrics repel a natural oil that could potentially cause build-up and affect the absorbency of your other cotton/fleece products.

What do I do with my clean diapers?

Whatever works for you is fine! Some parents like to organize their clean diapers by neatly folding them and pre-stuffing the pocket diapers so they are ready to go (especially for Daddy’s and babysitters). Others just pull them out of the dryer and toss them into baskets or bins (you can use different baskets for different styles of diapers, covers, inserts, etc.) It’s really up to you.

Do I need to clean my washing machine regularly if I use it to wash my cloth diapers?

This is really your choice but it isn’t a bad idea to run a cleaning product such as CLR or vinegar through your washing machine every month or so. Just ensure you follow the manufacturer’s directions if you do this.

My diapers have a harsh ammonia smell when my baby wets them, what can I do to get rid of it?

If your cloth diapers smell like urine even after cleaning or if they have a harsh ammonia smell as soon as your baby wets them, this is likely due to detergent residue or build-up. See question on how to get rid of detergent residue (also called stripping). You can also try ½ cup of baking soda in your wash cycle followed by ½ cup of vinegar in your rinse cycle. Note: The problem could also be caused from not using ENOUGH detergent in your wash cycle.

My diaper pail stinks, what can I do?

Believe it or not the best way to diminish odors from your diaper pail is keeping it open to air. Get rid of your lid! The smell worsens when urine turns into ammonia. You can prevent this by allowing air to circulate. Try it, you won’t believe the difference! You can also use a waterproof hanging laundry bag (pail liner) to store your dirty diapers instead of a pail with lid. We like using a pail liner in a covered basket which still allows for air to circulate. Some pail liners offer a little piece of fabric inside where you can add a couple of drops of essential oil to freshen the smell. A good choice of oil is tea tree oil (anti-bacterial properties) or lavender. Only use 1-2 drops to prevent any build-up on your diapers during washing. You can also sprinkle some baking soda in the bottom of your pail/bag and add some as needed when throwing dirty diapers inside. Baking soda does not interfere with your diaper absorbency and is good for your wash. Note: if you use baking soda ensure you rinse your diapers well or use vinegar in your rinse cycle to prevent any diaper rashes (see question on washing tips). On wash day, just turn your laundry bag inside out emptying the diapers then throw the bag in the wash with the diapers. Also, to avoid smells and stains we recommend you not leave your dirty diapers sitting in your pail for more than 2-3 days.

Are cloth diapers bulky?

Yes and no. With so many different styles and choices these days, you can definitely find the right fit for your baby. Some styles are trimmer than others. Cloth diapers are a little bulkier than disposables but not enough for anyone to notice most of the time. The bulkiest is usually at night when you require extra stuffing for babies who sleep for long hours or for heavy-wetters. The bulkiness will depend on the style you choose and how much material you stuff in your pocket.

Do cloth diapers leak a lot?

No. If you choose the right absorbency and a proper fitting diaper or cover for your baby, leaks are no worse than with disposable diapers. If your diapers were fine and you notice that they are leaking more and more it might be due to detergent residue. In this case you will need to strip your diapers to fix the problem (see question on how to get rid of detergent residue). If your diapers are new and they are leaking you probably need to wash them a few more times before they reach their full absorbency. This is especially true for prefolds, hemp and bamboo products.

Do I need to change my baby more often if I use cloth diapers?

Yes and no. It all depends on your baby and the diaper you are using. If you are a using a cloth diaper that is a good fit for your baby and that provides good absorbency for the length of time your child will be in it, you should not have any problems. Regardless of whether you are using cloth or disposable diapers you should change your baby’s diaper every 2-3 hours during the day to prevent diaper rashes and keep skin healthy. With cloth diapers it is easier to tell when your baby is wet making it easier to know when to change your baby’s diaper. Some cloth diapers also come with wicking fabrics such as milled fleece that will keep your baby’s skin dry by wicking wetness away from the skin into the absorbent fabric.

Won't my baby get a lot of diaper rashes if I use cloth diapers?

Not usually. Babies using cloth diapers have a tendency to have fewer diaper rashes then babies using disposable diapers. Diaper rashes are usually caused by bacteria, ammonia or chemicals coming in contact with the baby’s skin. Babies in cloth diapers are usually changed more often because it’s easier to tell when they are wet. This often results in less diaper rashes.

Detergent residue on cloth diapers that are not rinsed properly can irritate your baby's bottom so make sure you don’t use too much detergent and that you rinse your diapers properly.

Is it true that babies in cloth diapers tend to toilet train earlier?

Because a child in cloth diapers can actually feel when he or she is wet better than when using disposable diapers, some evidence has shown that these children have a tendency to toilet-train earlier. However, every child is different. The importance is that you be attentive to your child’s cues and start toilet-training when he or she seems ready.

What do I do if I go out?

This is what we usually do when we go out. We always bring 1 or 2 extra cloth diapers in our diaper bag depending on how long we will be gone for. We prefer using All-in-Ones or pocket diapers for outings but you can also use fitted diapers or prefolds with covers. We also bring 2 or 3 pre-moistened cloth wipes that we place in a plastic baggie, a changing pad and a waterproof tote bag to place the dirty diapers in. We change our baby as usual, stick the dirty diaper in the waterproof tote and put it back in the diaper bag. When we get home we just throw it all in the pail liner. It really isn’t much different or trouble than using disposable diapers.

Can I use cloth diapers overnight?

Absolutely! Even for heavy wetters or babies who sleep long hours there is always a solution using cloth diapers. You might need to try a few different combinations first to see what works best for your baby. Enrolling into our diaper trial program is a good way to try out various products to see what works best for your baby during the day and at night before making a purchase. For our son, we’ve had good luck using fitted diapers with a waterproof cover or even better a fleece or wool cover for more breathability. We also use pocket diapers at night with lots of stuffing! Your baby might end up with a big bum but no one sees him or her at night but you, right? Besides we always get a good laugh out of our son’s big bedtime bum!

Can I use diaper cream or Vaseline when using cloth diapers?

Frequent use of diaper ointments, lotions or Vaseline can lead to build-up onto your cloth diapers which can cause problems with absorbency and odors. The key to preventing rashes or skin irritations is to keep your baby’s skin dry. The best way to do this is to change your baby when he/she is wet. Using fleece liners can also help to keep the skin dry. If you do need to use diaper ointments, lotions or Vaseline, we recommend using liners in your cloth diapers to decrease the chances of these products getting onto your cloth diapers. If build-up becomes an issue, you will need to strip your cloth diapers (see question on how to get rid of build-up).

Can I use disposable wipes when using cloth diapers?

Yes you can but why would you when you can use cloth wipes instead and decrease the amount of waste and save money! The problem with disposable wipes is not only the waste and money factor but also the long list of harsh ingredients that is added to them. Instead we recommend you purchase 2-3 dozen cloth wipes or facecloths. You can use them with plain water (our favorite) or you can make your own cloth wipe solution (see below). This way you know exactly what you are putting on your baby’s bottom. You can wash your cloth wipes with your diapers. You can also place them in a wipe warmer so they are ready to go or use a spray bottle to moisten them at each diaper change. When you go out, just pre-moistened a few cloth wipes and place them in a ziplock bag or an empty disposable wipe container and voilà you are ready to go! When you change your baby, just stick the dirty cloth wipe in the diaper and put everything in your waterproof tote. Once you get home, it all goes in the diaper pail. If using a wipe container, remember to frequently clean it with hot soapy water in order to avoid any mildew or contamination.

Homemade cloth wipes solution
Use plain water with either a couple of drops of lavender oil and/or tea tree oil (antibacterial properties). You can also use a bit of vinegar which helps prevent fungus infections. Other ingredients that can be used (in very small quantities) are baby oil, mineral oil and/or baby wash. Just be aware that these products can lead to build-up onto your cloth diapers and cause absorbency problems. If skin irritations occur, discontinue use immediately. Our personal recommendation is to use just plain water!

Can I use my wipe warmer with cloth wipes?

Yes. Just fill a disposable wipe container with water, place it in your warmer and add your cloth wipes to it. Don’t forget to wash it frequently to avoid any mildew. We wash it minimum once a week with hot soapy water and let it air dry.

What are disposable liners and do I need to use them?

Disposable liners are non toxic biodegradable liners that can either be flushed or disposed of in the garbage. The advantage of using them is that they make cleaning up poopy diapers a breeze. The poop sticks to the liner preventing dirty messes sticking onto the cloth diaper. When you change your baby just take the dirty liner and flush it down the toilet or throw it in the garbage. They are very thin, soft and comfortable on your baby’s skin. Using liners is optional. Cloth diapering without liners is still very easy.

What types of inserts should I use in my pocket diapers?

This is really up to you. It depends on your baby and how much absorbency you need. During the day you will most likely stuff lighter than at night. For example, during the day we usually use one or two microfiber inserts. Microfiber is known to absorb well and rapidly. However, at night, we will use one microfiber insert paired up with one hemp insert. Hemp is known to absorb lots of fluid but slower than microfiber. By placing the microfiber insert on top of the hemp we are sure that the urine will absorb fast and then the hemp will ensure to absorb lots of it! By trying various possibilities you will surely find what works best for your baby!

How do I fold and fasten prefold/flatfold diapers?

Prefold and flatfold diapers can be folded in various ways (Birdseye, twist, newspaper, etc). The folding technique you choose may or may not require the use of diaper pins or snappi diaper fasteners (plastic fastening mechanism used instead of pins). Once folded, these diapers all need a waterproof outer cover. For pictures and details about  various folding techniques for prefold and flatfold diapers please see The Cloth Diaper Connection or Bummis user guide. 

What is a better fastening mechanism, aplix (Velcro) or snaps?

There are pros and cons to both. Aplix is more adjustable and very fast and easy. Some babies learn quickly how to undo aplix although some will also undo snaps. Some aplix will wear off over time. When putting your dirty diapers in your laundry bag, make sure you use the aplix laundry tabs to prevent it to sticking onto other fabrics. Snaps are not as adjustable and take a bit longer too fasten which can be tricky for those babies on the move. They tend to last longer than aplix. Personally, we love the adjustability and ease of use of aplix but we know other parents who prefer snaps.

How do I know what size to order?

Given that babies come in various shapes and sizes, sizing is approximate and will fit differently from baby to baby. You can usually estimate the size needed by using your baby’s weight. However for even more accuracy it is suggested to not only use weight but also, waist measurement (around the belly just above the belly button), thigh measurement (around the leg where the diaper elastic is) and rise measurement (from the top of the diaper in the front to the top of the diaper in the back, through the legs). Remember also that different styles and brands will vary in size and fit. We recommend trying 1-2 before purchasing a large number of the same diaper. We offer a diaper trial program that allows you to try various types and styles of diapers before choosing what to purchase.

What are the different types of fabrics used in cloth diapers?

PUL (polyurethane laminate)
PUL is used for diaper covers and the outer layer of pocket and AIO diapers. It is a laminated polyester fabric making it waterproof and non-breathable. It has the ability to withstand high temperatures and lots of use. It is also very easy to care for.

Windpro
Windpro is a polar fleece that is often used for diaper covers and AIO diapers because of its ability to repel water while maintaining breathability.

Wool
Often used for diaper covers due to its breathability and water repelling capabilities. Requires lanolizing to increase its water repellent properties and needs to be handwashed. Often chosen for its natural fibers.

Cotton
Used in most diaper fabrics either as 100% or mixed with other fabrics such as hemp and polyester. Durable, easy to care for, soft and absorbent.

Birdseye
Cotton gauze used mostly to make prefolds.

Sherpa
Mix of mostly cotton and some polyester. Super soft and absorbent fabric. Often used to make fitted diapers.

Terry cloth
Well known fabric for our towels and bathrobes but also used for pocket diaper inserts.

Microfleece
Made from 100% polyester fabric. Known for its super softness and its ability to wick wetness away from baby’s skin. It is often used as the layer next to baby’s skin in pocket and AIO diapers and it is also used as liners inside cloth diapers to keep baby’s skin dry.

Suedecloth
Appearance of suede yet easy to care for. Made from 100% polyester, it does not pill and looks new wash after wash. Known for its ability to wick wetness away from skin and its stain resistance. Often used as the layer next to baby’s skin in pocket and AIO diapers.

Microfiber
Used for pocket inserts and AIO diapers. Great absorbency. Known for its ability to absorb fluids rapidly.

Hemp
Hemp is becoming more and more popular in the cloth diapering world due to its absorbency capabilities, durability and anti-bacterial properties. The more you wash hemp, the more absorbent and softer it will get. It is often used for diaper inserts as well as fitted diapers. It is usually mixed with cotton. Expect shrinkage when washed.

Bamboo
A fairly new fabric to cloth diapers. Extremely soft, environmentally friendly and great absorbency. Used for fitted diapers and pocket inserts.

Can I come and see your products in person?

Absolutely! Just contact us by e-mail or telephone to make an appointment and we will be glad to show you our products, how to use them as well as answer all your cloth diapering questions. Come and see our products in our home showroom or we can even bring some products to you.

Your baby will love you for it!
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