Beginners Guide: Cloth Diapers
If you've ever toyed with the idea of cloth diapers but were afraid to jump in, here is your crash course!
To start, there are a few different types of styles to consider. There are flats and prefolds, pocket, fitted, all-in-ones, and hybrids.
The flats have an advantage of using the same waterproof cover for more than one diaper change since the waste is contained to the flat pieces of absorbing fabric that sits against baby's skin (these are the very old-fashioned type but usually the most cost-effective).
The fitted are, as you would assume, very contoured to the baby - especially in the legs and waist area but also require a waterproof shell around them. The pocket design is a waterproof shell that has a pocket sewn into it so you can add or subtract a prefold depending on whether you know the baby will be in for long or short (overnight or long car trips for example).
The all-in-ones are the whole thing, the waterproof shell is sewn to the absorption pads so when you change baby, you change the whole diaper.
Hybrids are all-in-ones that have snaps to accommodate either disposable absorbing liners or just other cloth liners so you don't have to change the whole diaper if you don't want to (traveling purposes or economically speaking, fewer shells).
Now that you know the difference, there are a few leading names in the cloth diapering world.
Bum Genius has been around for a while and they are known for their all-in-one diapers.
Charlie Banana's (my personal favorites because of the soft fleece material) are a hybrid so traveling with the disposable inserts makes life easier.
For another hybrid leader, GroVia is highly suggested by fellow parents with so many snaps that allow the baby to grow with the diaper, thus saving even more money.
Kanga Care Rumparooz has a versatile snap system to configure the diaper to the baby for the best fit and is another favorite among parents.
Kanga Care Rumparooz Cloth Diaper
All of this info is important to have, but just like most things with being a parent, a little trial and error helps to get the right product for you. Cloth diapering is making a come back and not just for eco or budget reasons but also to save babies with sensitive skin from getting those diaper rashes that can be so painful. Be sure to research the care needed for your diapers as well since that can also affect the absorption and durability of them in the long run.
- Genevieve Nino