“What else do I need besides diapers?”
Well, I’m here to show you a few useful items for your cloth diapering journey!
Wetbags/Pail liners: You need a way to store your dirty diapers until laundry day, both at home and when out and about or traveling.This is where wetbags and pail liners come in!
A pail liner in an open hamper or trash can is a great solution at home. It will easily hold several days worth of dirty diapers. Come wash day, you just throw the pail liner in with your dirty diapers to wash it. A popular brand of pail liner is Planet Wise, it’s one of my favorites too. I have 2 pail liners, so that one is always clean for when the other is in the wash.
Why is the trashcan or hamper better open, you ask? Wouldn’t that let the stink out? It honestly does the opposite. The more airflow they get, the less your pail stinks. In fact, people have walked into my nursery and had no idea there was a pail of dirty diapers right next to them. You might get a whiff of something as you empty the pail into the wash, but the ones at the bottom have been in there a few days, so that’s totally normal.
Wetbags are a very versatile item. In fact, they have many uses beyond just cloth diapering, but we’ll stick to diapers here. They come in a ton of sizes, and all have their uses. Smaller wetbags will only hold a diaper or two, and they’re great for short trips to the store – just throw one in your diaper bag. Larger wetbags are great if you plan to be out most of the day (or you’re sending cloth to daycare) and can usually hold 6-8 AIO diapers. Finally, there are hanging wetbags. These are great for travel. When we go home for the holidays one easily holds 2-3 days worth of dirty AIO diapers–it’s basically a replacement for a pail liner and bin. It could also be your home solution if you have a very small space and no place to sit a bin or hamper.
It’s worth noting that all brands vary in the way they label sizes. A medium wetbag in one brand could be much smaller than a medium wetbag in another.
Cloth wipes: When I first started cloth, I was using disposable wipes. I thought cloth wipes would just be too much extra work. In fact, it’s just the opposite. They’re actually easier than disposables when you’re using cloth. You throw them in the same bin as your diapers, and wash them the same way too! There are several companies that make cloth wipes, or you can sew your own out of flannel.
A very cheap option is baby washcloths- this is personally my favorite. I have 60 wipes, enough to wash every third day.
For when you are out and about, many people put water in a small squirt bottle and store it in a small wetbag with a few wipes. I use disposable wipes when outside the house–whatever works best for you!
Liners and Creams: Fleece liners might be one of the easiest and best things you can have on your cloth diapering journey. They are simple to make, cheap, and multipurpose! They are great because they help protect your diapers from creams and poo, and they keep your baby feeling dry.
I cut mine up from an IKEA brand fleece blanket. Make sure if you do this that the blanket you use is 100% polyester- the cheap fleece blankets Wal-Mart sells are also great for this. The fleece should let water pass through it with gentle pressure. If it continues to repel the water, you have polar fleece- which isn’t good for liners.
The green blanket is from IKEA. I cut a red one of the same type into liners, seen on the left. The white liners to the right are pre-made by Smart Bottoms (they’re a lot prettier than mine, but they both work the same). Just lay one in every diaper as seen above.
If you use fleece liners, you can use any rash or barrier cream that you want. If you don’t want to use liners, or your little one turns out to be sensitive to fleece (not common, but I’ve seen it), just make sure any diaper cream you use does not contain petroleum products. They will get in the diaper fibers and cause repelling. Some of my favorite petroleum free products are below:
It’s worth noting that there are several versions of the cream on the left- Boudreaux’s Butt Paste. The green tube is the only one you can use without a liner.
“I had a great nap time/nighttime solution, and now my kid is suddenly out peeing it–help!”
This is where boosters and doublers come to the rescue. They are usually very trim, and add a bit of extra absorbency to a diaper without adding a lot of bulk. They aren’t really good on their own, but in a diaper they can save the day. I currently add a booster to my daughter’s nighttime diaper because we were waking up with a saturated diaper. The booster is in there for extra protection from leaking on herself. Nobody likes to wake up to a wet baby and sheets.
I’d say it’s good to have half a dozen or so boosters in 2 sizes around, for the inevitable moment when you just need a little more absorbance, and not an entirely new diaper type for your solution.
If you are not exclusively breast feeding or if your child has started solids, you will need a way to spray the poo off the diaper–you can’t put poop chunks in your washer. Graphic, but true. Some people take a rubber glove and just dunk the diaper in the toilet, flushing as they hold on to it. I’d end up being the person that lets go and ends up with clogged pipes. Another solution is a sprayer.
This is probably the part of cloth diapering people have the most trouble with, but it’s really not that difficult. Keeping a hanging wetbag in the bathroom just for these diapers makes things easier; just spray and place in wetbag until laundry day.
A roomy diaper bag is a must, especially if you are using diapers that take up more room like AIOS or pockets. A couple of my favorites are below.
And those are the basic accessory needs for cloth diapering–hope to see you tomorrow for our next installment of Clothmas–Newborn Stashes!