As you might have guessed, we are a cloth diapering family.
From day one, our baby has had a fluffy bottom and she’s still going strong at 13 weeks.
For me, the primary reason to cloth diaper is environmental. There is a huge amount of waste associated with disposable diapers both in terms of their production (the water, raw materials, energy, etc. that go in to making them) and where they end up.
If that’s not enough to make someone consider cloth diapers, disposable diapers also contain chemicals that may be harmful to baby, they can increase the time it takes to potty train, they cost a lot more ($2000 on average), and they’re not that much easier.
The hardest thing with cloth is a few extra loads of laundry. They aren’t more difficult to put on, there are no longer pins to poke anyone, and yes, even husbands can figure them out! (Plus, let’s be honest, they’re pretty darn cute.)
And if laundry really is a big concern, we have found several reasonably priced diaper services in our area. They provide the diapers and do the laundry. Nice!
For a more comprehensive overview of why cloth diapers are amazing, I encourage you to check out Small Footprint Family’s review of the subject.
I’d like to share with you one other tip to reduce waste and chemicals associated with diapering: an easy to make diaper wipe spray. It’s really beyond easy!
- a spray bottle
- an anti-bacterial essential oil
- liquid Castile soap
There isn’t an exact science to this, but what you’ll want to keep in mind is that water is the best thing to clear away diaper messes (some cloth diapering families only use water in their spray).
Our spray bottle probably holds a little less than a quart of water and to this we add about 1 teaspoon of liquid Castile soap and 5-10 drops of essential oil. Eucalyptus, tea tree, and lavender are excellent choices.
Now, to be honest, we do use gentle, more-natural wipes when we’re on the go, but our spray and wipe system has worked very well at home.
Here’s our full diapering set-up:
To the right of her we keep the diaper wipe spray, a bottle of olive oil which we turn to first for any sign of irritation and to help keep her bottom soft, and I have a jar of plantain salve if things start to chafe or redden more than we’d like (this has been very infrequent because of the cloth diapering). However, it’s very gentle and I don’t hesitate to apply if need be.
Also, in terms of the actual cloth that we use for wipes, we have been primarily using another super simple DIY project: squares cut out from old T-shirts. I used pinking shears for the edges and it was a great way use up the backs of t-shirts that I’d saved after making t-shirt quilts! However, any old t-shirts would work just fine and it’s a great way to re-purpose them.