Sunday, January 9, 2011

Cloth dipe & wipe update

Now that we've been cloth diapering S for almost 1.5 months, I thought I'd comment on how it's going and what we like and dislike about the different types of diapers we're currently using. We've also been using cloth wipes for over a week now and loving it! I'll post some specifics on what we're doing here too.

The "workhorse" dipes we use day to day are her Bummis prefolds and covers (from the infant size diaper kit we ordered in October). In a nutshell, these are terrific! I commented on some of the theoretical benefits in my earlier entry (before I actually started using them) and not only did these all turn out to be true, but the cons I listed (learning curve, not as convenient as pockets and bulkier) weren't at all a problem in practice. We found them quite easy to start using, and I actually feel they're MORE convenient than the one size pockets; although the change itself may take slightly longer, they don't require stuffing and snapping/unsnapping the rise so overall time investment is actually a bit lower. Finally, they turned out to be less bulky than anticipated - they're about middle of the road relative to the diapers in our stash. And one more HUGE pro - we haven't had a SINGLE leak (poo or pee) outside the cover. All in all, a fantastic diapering system and I'd wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone considering cloth diapering options for a new baby. I'm currently surfing Kijiji for larger prefolds and covers for when she outgrows the infant size (at about 15-16 pounds) - time will tell if we continue to prefer these dipes when she's older or whether we gravitate more toward pockets then.

We also use our Kawaii snazzy minky one-size pockets pretty often, mostly overnight. As you may have read, I bought a bulk set of these on eBay back in November. These are as adorable and soft in practice as I was hoping they would be, and they can hold a LOT of pee when stuffed with even a single microfibre insert! They also appear to be well-made and I believe they'll endure a lot of wear. Another nice thing (especially for overnight wear) is that they seem to draw the liquid away from baby's bum better than the prefolds. Downsides of these diapers is that they're super-bulky and some of them leak through the leg holes. Strangely enough, they don't all fit exactly the same as one another - some are more snug than others even on the same snap settings. (I've read other reviews commenting on this as well.) All in all, though, at less than $6 a pop, we're happy with these, and so is Baby Pebbles!

We currently have 8 of these dipes in our rotation and 5 still in the packaging. We'll likely end up selling the 5 as 8 are more than enough assuming they continue to be mainly night dipes. If any readers in the area are interested in trying one or more, let me know - I'll sell them individually at the bulk price.

Finally, we have a couple AMP duo pocket diapers which we've only used a few times so far. Unfortunately we've had a big leaking problem with them. I suspect this is because she's too small/skinny at this point to fit them properly, as I haven't read about this being a problem in general - knock on wood! I'm really eager for them to fit though as they're super cute diapers and by far the trimmest of the lot, so I'd like to see them become the go-to diapers for her "special outfit" events!

A note about cleaning/stains - we've continued to mainly follow the method I blogged about last month but we've changed the first cycle from delicate to light wash as our washer temporarily crapped out during the delicate cycle a few loads ago. I think the load was too heavy for what it was expecting, so it just stopped running! Aside from this, the method is still working well. In terms of stains, we use our Buncha Farmers stain remover stick when she has a touchdown on one of the Bummis covers, and this helps take the stain right out! We only treat the covers; the prefolds, pockets and inserts go right in the washer. As a result, a few of the prefolds have mild staining but this should come out in the warm weather when we can line dry them, or perhaps if/when we do a full strip.

Next topic - cloth wipes! Our system consists of wipe solution in a squirt bottle (specifically the "peri" bottle I got at the hospital which I no longer need for its original use!) and baby wash cloths - the thin variant (e.g. these). When baby's bum needs to be cleaned, we simply shake the bottle (to mix the ingredients), squirt solution onto a wash cloth, wipe her up and toss the wipe into her wet bag to be washed with the diaper laundry. We use the Olive 'n' Tea Tree recipe from the Zany Zebra site, but we mix up a much smaller portion each time to ensure it's always fresh and use slightly less olive oil and baby wash than the recipe recommends. We mix it right in the peri bottle and use a small funnel to add the oil & baby wash. Here's our specific recipe if you'd like to try it out directly:

Olive 'n' Tea Tree wipe solution:
1 cup water (filtered if possible)
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp baby wash (we use Live Clean Baby shampoo & wash though any gentle wash would work)
1 drop tea tree oil

This recipe makes enough to almost fill up the peri bottle, leaving some room to shake it and mix the ingredients together before the first use:

We find this portion size lasts about 2 days (or 20-25 diaper changes), and the solution has a nice, fresh scent. Making our own wipes should save us about $100-150 per year, and the best part is that baby's bum has never looked better!

I'm sure the project manager and savings addict in me will continue to look for ways to improve life for our little one and live more economically to boot - stay tuned! :)

** UPDATE ** - Made a few adjustments to our cloth wipe routine since this post. Check 'em out here.


  1. I just threw out my peri bottle after it became a toy and Alexa pretty much chewed the tip off!!

  2. This post saved our (again Robin's wife...) 3 month old's bum! He'd had a terrible rash that I couldn't get rid of. I'd been using disposable wipes, waiting for our toddler to train so I didn't have to buy a second stash but when I read your post I switched over immediately and like magic, the rash is gone. Thank you!

  3. That's great to hear, Wendy! I love the recipe - so glad I found it!