| have a wonderful calculator that all parents should use to figure out their own, personal savings. It is available .
For some parents, the primary concern is the environment. Cloth is the greener alternative even when you factor in the cost of washing. In a similar fashion to switching over to cloth napkins, hankies and rags for the kitchen counters, families are turning to cloth diapers and cloth wipes for their babies. We have moms who use cloth menstrual products as well and we are happy to sell those too.
One of the first things many people think of when the words "cloth diapers" are mentioned are pins, plastic pants and big, beige flat diapers. Those all still exist in one form or another but cloth diapers have changed a great deal. They come in many different fabrics, prints and colors now. Innovative diapering systems have been developed that make diapering easy and stress free. Even diaper pins have been replaced. Now diapers are attached by aplix, snaps and, best of all, Snappis!
What is the difference between different diapers?
- Flats: Flat diapers are large square diapers that need to
be folded. They can be pinned or Snappied and placed in a diaper
wrap. These diapers are extremely versatile and once you are
finished using them as diapers, they can be used as household rags.
If you are unfamiliar with folding flats and need some help, there are some great videos on YouTube.
- Prefolds: Rectangular diapers that are slightly thicker in
the middle. These need to be folded and can be pinned, snappied (a
special plastic device that replaces the use of pins), or layed into
a diaper wrap. Here is a good video on folding these.
- Contours: A diaper that has a shape, does not need to be
folded. Can be pinned, snappied or just layed in a wrap.
- Fitteds: A shaped diaper with either a velcro or snapped
closure. This diaper needs a cover to be waterproof. Some fitted
diapers come in a variety of sizes while others are "one
size" designed to fit your baby throughout his or her diapering
- Pockets: A shaped diaper that is a waterproof cover with an
inner layer of microfleece or suedecloth. The fleece or suedecloth
keeps baby feeling dry by wicking moisture away from the skin.
Between the microfleece and the outer layer is a pocket. You'll need
to stuff the pocket with an insert or a prefold. Inserts come in
microterry, hemp or organic cotton. These diapers are extremely
versatile because you can place one insert in the diaper for daytime
or more inserts for nighttime use or for long outings. These diapers do not need covers and come in a variety of colors and prints.
- AIOs: All In One's - A diaper and cover all-in-one! No need
to use a separate diaper or insert. No cover needed with these and they can be found in a variety of colors and prints.
- Hybrids: Hybrid diapers have taken the best of many different other diapers. They consist of a waterproof outer shell similar to a diaper cover. Into the shell, an insert is either placed or snapped. This super-absorbent insert can then be switched out when wet or dirty and the shell can be reused several times before needing to be washed. Often, disposable inserts are available that are biodegradable and compostable providing parents even more flexibility.
PUL: PUL (polyurethane Laminate) covers come in velcro,
side-snap, front-snap, and pull-on. These are laminated waterproof
covers to use with prefolds, contours, fitteds or inserts. With wrap style
covers you can simply lay a prefold or insert into your wrap and close and go
(no pins or snappi needed).
Wool: Wool is a wonderful material. It is completely
breathable, natural and leak proof. Depending on the style of the
cover, these work very well for both day and night. They should be
hand washed every couple of weeks or when soiled. They will need to
be lanolized once a month. These come in pull-on types commonly
called "soakers" or front snap, front velcro, & side
snap. You can also purchase wool "longies" which are great
nighttime covers and pajama bottoms as well!
Fleece: These covers work like wool, in that they are
breathable, but they are made from a synthetic material. These are
usually thicker than PUL and some wools. These make good night-time
covers. These can be washed in the washing machine.
This really depends on the age of your child. For a newborn 24+ is a
good number to start hour stash. Depending on how often you wash, you may
find that you need up to 36 diapers in the newborn period. You will need
to choose what type of diaper you will using or you may choose to use a
variety. For prefolds, contours, or fitteds you will need 24+ diapers
plus 4-6 covers.
Some people find that it is good to have a few AIOs on hand for the
diaper bag. AIO's and pockets are the easiest to use for quick changes.
They are also easier for baby-sitters to figure out since there are no
extra steps required.
We also recommend having at least two wool covers. Wool let's air circulate
and because of this it keeps baby's skin from getting too warm. Wool is
breathable and is an all natural fiber. It makes the perfect diaper
cover. Wool is especially good for night, but we also enjoy using it
during the day.