Saturday, August 25, 2012

Frugal Cloth Diapering Update

Children grow, families change, and cloth diapering needs evolve!  Two years ago, when I described my frugal cloth diapering system as one of the cheapest and simplest methods around, I didn't know what I'd know now...

That I was totally right!

 Or, more accurately, headed in the right direction.

Now, on baby #3, I wouldn't diaper any other way.  We still have all our trusty pre-fold diapers from Green Mountain Diapers that I bought for Einstein 4 years ago.  They are going strong, still sturdy and white (thanks to bleaching in the sunshine, not to impeccable washing skills).

We also use our old cheap-o Prorap Classic diaper covers, which look exactly like they did the day we bought them.  Clean, white, velcro intact.  I am usually careful to pull these out of the wash if I tumble dry my diapers, which I think has helped them last so nicely for so long.

So, what's the update to our system, you ask?

Well, it's not a very eco-friendly one, I'm afraid.  But it's been a huge sanity-saver, and little baby Euclid's bottom sure thanks me for it.

We have added a thin fleece liner to the diapering routine.  Specifically, the Bummis Reusable Fleece Liner.  I know, I know, why in the world would I adulterate a beautiful cotton-on-skin set-up by adding a petroleum-based synthetic fabric to the mix?

Because my Euclid hated my cotton-on-skin set-up.  I was sure it was just my imagination.  I was sure the sweet voice of reason at Green Mountain Diapers who assured customers that "babies don't really mind the feeling of wet cotton as long as they are changed promptly" was right, and I was wrong.  After all, Einstein and Miss Euler didn't have any problem with how I diapered them.

But no.  Every baby is different, and my current one is quite insistent that any wet cotton touching his skin is cause for immediate panic and loud screaming.

So the Fleece Liner, it is.  The fleece doesn't add any absorbency to the diaper, which is fine, but it is hydrophobic, and feels "dry" against baby's skin, while allowing the liquid to pass through and be absorbed by the cotton.

Basically, the upshot is that with this new set-up, I can actually go an hour between diaper changes instead of 15 minutes, like before.  So worth it.

Now, if you by chance have taken a look at this particular product and thought, "What a waste of money, it is just a fleece rectangle.  Why not just go to the fabric store and buy a yard of fleece to make your own?" I entirely sympathize with your sentiment.  But trips to the fabric store are not a part of our normal routine, I was unsure of the quality of fleece I would find, while Bummis are certified BPA, pthyalate, and lead free, and I am not very good with scissors.

Just checking to see if you are still reading with that last phrase...

Also, I was able to buy my liners on Amazon using gift cards redeemed from using Swagbucks.  So they were basically free.  And they came in the mail.  Fantastic.

So, this is what works for us.  As I mentioned before, we are cloth-diapering slackers who only do cloth at home, not around town.  So if you plan to cloth diaper on the go, there may be a better alternative for you (or maybe just an on-the-go alternative).  For example, my friend Laura uses some type of fleecy one-size all-in-one cloth diaper all the time for her little guy, and it is super compact and convenient in her diaper bag.  I don't know how sturdy it is, how well it will last in the long run, how well it cleans, whether she'll keep dealing with the poo smell in the wet bag once her baby is no longer exclusively breastfed, etc., but it is definitely more compact and portable on the go than my system would be.

If you are thinking about cloth diapering for the first time, or just looking for some alternatives or new ideas, I would really recommend checking out Green Mountain Diapers.  They have a huge variety of products and prices, and they have a ton of intelligent and experienced description about every single product on the site.  And I secretly wish I could afford their $60 merino wool diaper covers...

What's your take on cloth diapering?  Have you done it, or do you know anyone else who has?  What kind of diapers did you/they use?  Did they enjoy the process?

Posted at Simple Lives Thursday and Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways


  1. I'm so happy to hear that you are such an environmentally conscious Mom! We are well past the diaper stage in our household, but we also used cloth diapers for our son.
    Found you on Frugal Days...keep up the good work!

    1. We try hard, and are always looking for new ways to improve. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. So true that every baby is different! I think that is the number one thing I've learned in the past 10 months. I realllly just did not get it before.

    My son doesn't mind the damp so it hasn't been a problem but I'm glad to know that the fleece liners help in case a subsequent child has a dislike of wetness. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Thanks for stopping by, Annie. Our kiddos teach us so much, don't they? :)


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