Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cloth Diaper Guide

How many diapers do I need?
We recommend having about 3 dozen diapers for a newborn and 2 dozen diapers for an older baby or toddler. This will allow most parents to wash every 2-3 days.

How do I wash the diapers?
Wash routines can vary based on the type of washing machine and the type of water that you have. However, most people find success with doing a pre-rinse or soak and then a hot wash. Some prefer to do an additional wash but that is personal preference. We recommend experimenting until you find the wash routine that works best for you.

What type of detergent should I use?
This is also a personal preference. We recommend against using baby detergent because it has fabric softener in it that might coat the diaper and make it less absorbent. We also don't recommend using any fabric softener on the diapers for the same reason and don't recommend bleach as it can break down the diapers prematurely.

How much detergent should I use?
We recommend using enough detergent to get the diapers clean but less than what you would use on your clothing. Too much detergent could leave buildup. Usually a 1/2 cup in a full washload works well for most people. Make sure you are using enough or the diapers won't get clean!

Do I have to wash covers separately?
PUL covers can be washed and dried with your diapers. Line drying will extend the life of the cover longer but occasional dryer use is fine too. Wool covers need to be washed separately. We recommend handwashing with a wool wash product and line drying.

Do I have to "dunk"?
No, you do not need to dunk your diaper in the toilet before washing. If your baby is exclusively breastfed you don't need to rinse the diaper at all. The poop will wash right out. If your older baby is eating solid foods, then you will need to dump most of the solid waste into the toilet before washing. Some parents keep a scraper under the bathroom sink and scrape the solid waste into the toilet, others find success with buying a diaper sprayer that attaches to the toilet. After the bulk of the waste is off the diaper, follow the same wash routine.

Should I use a wet or dry diaper pail?
We recommend a dry pail because a wet pail can breed bacteria as well as cause a hazard in the home. A regular kitchen-style garbage can with a closing lid works best for cloth diapers. We sell reusable diaper pail liners which keep the pail clean.

What do I do when I am away from home?
We recommend purchasing some wet bags that are reusable, waterproof bags to store soiled diapers in. Upon return home, just throw the dirty diapers into your home diaper pail.

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