Cloth Diapering Frequently Asked Questions
Diapering on the Go
Cloth Diapers on Vacation
What is a good wash routine?
There's no one 'perfect' wash routine for cloth diapers, as it depends greatly on your water quality and washing machine. A good routine that works for many people is to do a rinse or light wash with no detergent and a warm/hot wash with detergent. Follow with an extra rinse if necessary. For detergent amounts and water temperature, follow the diaper manufacturer directions. This will keep your cloth diapers under warranty for the maximum amount of time.
I’ve read about stripping my diapers. What is
Stripping, as it pertains to cloth diapers is a term people give to the process of removing build up on diapers. This can happen with use of too much rash cream or oils, with improper rinsing of detergent, or with certain water types. To strip, some people add a dab of Dawn to the load and rinse until all bubbles are out. Others use several water-only washes to rid diapers of built-up detergent. It's important to remember that some people never need to strip their cloth diapers. Don't change your laundry routine unless you're experiencing problems. Otherwise, it's easy to create problems that weren't there before.
What do I do with the poop?
When your child has a bowel movement, you can try shaking the poop out of the diaper into the toilet. This works best for older babies and toddlers. For breast-fed babies, no special treatment of the diaper is required. You can rinse your cloth diaper, but it will easily wash out in your washer. For babies with sticky bowel movements, you can try using flushable or fleece liners or a diaper sprayer.
Should I use diaper liners?
Diaper liners are not necessary for cloth diapers. Some parents like them to control messy bowel movements. Other parents use them with certain rash creams to protect the diaper and extend the life of their diapers. Fleece liners can be used to add a stay dry top to natural fiber diapers.
Can I put my diapers in the dryer?
Follow the diaper manufactuer directions. Some will allow dryer use on low heat, others do not recommend it. In general, any items with elastic will have a longer life if you line-dry the diaper. Prefolds, flats, inserts and wipes often can go in the dryer without a problem.
What detergent is best?
This really depends on your water type. Start with a good diaper-safe recommended detergent and go from there!
We were doing fine and all of a sudden we are
getting leaks. Why?
If you're going along without problems and all of a sudden your diapers start experiencing leaks, try to think of any recent changes. If you changed detergents, you might have some build-up. If your child is wetting more, you may need to add absorbency. It might also be time to size-up or adjust your one size cloth diaper to the next size.
I notice that the diaper leaks after a few
hours. How can I stop this from happening?
All diapers, cloth and plastic, have limits in terms of how much and how long they can hold liquid. A few hours is what you can expect from a cloth diaper. If the diaper is full when you are finding it leaks, you will need to change more often or add more absorbency to the diaper.
Do daycares allow cloth diapers?
Daycares vary widely based on policy and state laws. You'll need to check with your state's requirements or the personal preferences of the daycare. When asking about cloth diapers, it's best to bring a sample diaper for the daycare to see. They may not realize how easy they are to use!
What are the best cloth diapers for daycare?
Most daycares prefer all in one or pocket-style diapers with velcro closures, since these are most like disposables.
What are the rules governing cloth diapers at
You'll need to check with your state. Most states allow for cloth diaper use in daycare. Some require a doctor's note.
Diapering on the Go
Where do I put dirty diapers when I’m out?
A wet bag is a waterproof, smell-proof solution that can help keep your diaper bag mess-free and dry.
How big should the wet bag be?
Most small size wet bags are designed to hold 1-3 dirty diapers. This is usually fine for a few hours. For day trips or daycare, you might want a larger bag that can hold 8-10 diapers.
How can I use cloth wipes when we are out?
Many parents dampen some wipes before leaving and put them in a small wet bag or wipes bag. After using, they toss in the wet bag with the dirty diaper.
My child’s night diaper is so bulky It looks
uncomfortable. What should I do?
If your child is sleeping comfortably with cloth diapers, there's probably nothing to worry about. You can also try absorbent fabrics like hemp and bamboo. They offer great absorbency without a lot of bulk.
I notice the night diaper gets smelly really
quickly. How can I stop this?
Rinsing the night diaper in the morning can help alleviate this problem.
Cloth Diapers on Vacation
Will my baby be able to wear regular clothing?
In most circumstances, yes. You might find with a onesie that need to fasten the middle snap only. With fabrics that don't give as easily (jeans), a sized, side snapping cloth diaper like Knickernappies custom fit or Swaddlebees simplex can work really well.
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