Cloth diapers have numerous benefits over disposable. I outline those benefits here and how to minimize your upfront investment cost here. Given that disposable diapers are the norm, most of the advice that you will get regarding diapering will be from people who are familiar with disposable diapers. Therefore, it’s hard to recognize and know that the same rules don’t always apply to cloth. When you decide to cloth diaper you do need to be aware of the special precautions associated with cloth diapers. The key to being able to realize all of these benefits is to properly care for the diapers to avoid ruining them and needing to repurchase. At about $20/diaper you definitely don’t want to repurchase!
These are a few of the lessons that I learned while cloth diapering my twins. Hopefully these tips will help you to preserve your diapers and avoid the cost of repurchase.
Pay attention to the manufacturer’s instructions. Read the instructions before you wash your diapers for the first time prior to use on your baby. The instructions will tell you exactly how to care for the diapers. Additionally, read the instructions of the cloth diaper detergent prior to use. If you have any questions, call the baby store where you purchased your diapers, the manufacturer, or a specialty baby store.
Avoid putting creams and ointments on your baby’s bottom. This is critical. Products like Desitin, Boudreaux’s Butt Paste, baby powder, and lotions are common amongst moms and pediatricians to protect against and to heal diaper rash. However, you cannot use those products with cloth diapers because they contain petroleum and or mineral oil. Those ingredients will get into the cloth fibers and block the absorbency, which ruins the diapers. If you do need to use a diaper rash ointment or a healing product, then use Mamma’s Bottom Balm. This product doesn’t interfere with the diaper’s absorbency. If you do need to use standard creams and the ointments, then temporarily switch to disposable diapers until you no longer need those products.
Use the right detergent. The right detergent is critical as it helps to protect and sanitize your diapers as they are cleaned. I have used Allen’s Naturally and the Bumgenius brands. Both clean my twin’ diapers and are good at removing stains and discoloration. Do not use regular detergents as they are too harsh for your diapers and are too harsh for baby’s skin.
Keep enough diapers in rotation to minimize wear and tear. At one point I only had about 10 – 12 diapers in rotation and I had to wash and reuse the diapers daily. What I noticed is that the constant recycling of the diapers caused my diapers to stretch. Then I had to make the diaper tighter on my babies to ensure that the diaper didn’t leak. Plus, if I mistimed washing the diapers, then I needed to use disposables to carry me over until the cloth diapers were clean. Once I increased the number of diapers in rotation, I was able to wash diapers less, save time, reduce the diaper wear and tear, and nearly eliminate the need for disposable diapers. I recommend for one child you invest in 20-24 diapers and 35-42 diapers for twins.
Wash diapers 12 at a time. Be careful to avoid overloading your washing machine. To ensure that your diapers get clean, only wash about 12 at a time. However, before you wash, please read the detergent manufacturer’s instructions because they may recommend washing more or fewer diapers depending on the type of washing machine that you own.
Since this is a part 3 of a 3-part series on cloth diapers, do you now feel as if you can do it? Do you believe that you have the right amount of information to try it? Be sure to let me know in the comments.
Aisha Taylor is a single mom of twins, personal financial coach, work from home entrepreneur, and #1 Amazon Best Selling Author of the book “5+5 FNPhenomenal Ways to Save $100 This Week Without Killing Your Lifestyle.” Aisha has been featured in ESSENCE and Jet Magazine. She is also the Founder of FNPhenomenal (Frugal –n- Phenomenal), a movement designed to give you the tools that you need to totally transform your finances, enjoy your life, and stop living from paycheck-to-paycheck. It’s time for you to be Financially Phenomenal! Book your complimentary 20-minute financial clarity session with Aisha here.
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