Fourteen months in to this cloth diaper journey... and we're loving it! Here are a few thoughts:
When to buy cloth:
A lot of moms tell me that they're going to start using cloth as soon as their disposable diapers from their baby shower run out. Don't wait!!
Keep a small pack of the newborn size to get you through the first little bit while you're figuring things out, but return the rest. You'll likely get a gift card in return for the diapers, so use that on the multitude of things that you'll need for the new little one. And the money that you're now saving from using the gift card-- use that to start your cloth diaper stash!
I'll admit it, that's what I did. I felt just a little guilty from returning all of the disposables, but when you really think about it, why did they get me diapers to begin with? Because it was a practical gift that they knew I would use. And boy am I using them!
Each of our diapers came with two microfiber inserts. They worked great for awhile! I used one insert during the day & two at night. But then she started to leak more often & putting two on her during the day was just really bulky. I looked at bamboo & hemp for a solution and it all the blogs that did comparisons, hemp always won by a long shot when it came to how much they would hold without leaking. I figured if I was going to invest more in my diapers, then it was going to be something I didn't regret. And I don't!
I searched around online for about a month to find a great deal. A friend gave me a gift certificate for Hazelnut's birthday that I used towards some hemp inserts, and then I found a lady selling a ton online & got them for less than 50% of the original price, which was amazing! Hemp is pricey, but well worth the money, and still cheaper overall than disposables.
Another bonus about hemp? They can be put in direct contact with baby bottoms!
At first it's super confusing, I'll admit. But after about a month, it was second nature. And now? Easy peasy. I could do it in my sleep! Here's my routine:
Pee diapers go straight into the wet bag (I pull the insert halfway out because hemp inserts don't come out as easy in the wash).
Poop diapers go into the small step trashcan in our private bathroom & I rinse them out as soon as I have a few minutes. Sometimes I forget & do it right before laundry but I always regret it because they're tougher to rinse out then! Once they're rinsed out I pull the insert halfway out & put it all in the wetbag.
When I'm running low, dump the wetbag in the washer:
Cold rinse, extra-large load size (Every now & then I'll throw in about half a cup of white vinegar to keep them from not smelling, but I haven't had to do that since using hemp inserts!)
Hot Wash with 2 tablespoons of Original Tide, Extra-large load size
Cold rinse, extra-large load size
Inserts go in the dryer, wetbags & diapers are laid out to dry.
I'll write more on another day, but those are my thoughts for right now!