Frequently Asked Questions
| 1. What type of cloth diaper should I
2. How many diapers do I need?
3. How do I convince my husband to use cloth diapers?
4. Help...My pocket diapers are leaking!
million dollar question. Unfortunately, there is no black and white answer to that question. Fortunately, the cloth diapering industry has entirely redefined itself over the past 20 years. Parents are now offered the flexibility of choosing from a plethora of options to meet their cloth diapering needs.
One thing I have noticed as a mom and a retailer is that no two moms (and dads) have the same cloth diapering preferences. While one person likes a particular type for one reason, another prefers another kind for another reason. We suggest trying a variety of cloth diapers, at first, to experiment with all the industry has to offer and to discover what works best for you.
|I have set out to attempt to simplify the choosing process. Below, I have rated the various types of diapers based on
6 factors: Affordability, Ease of Cleaning, Degree of Bulk, Absorption, Durability,
and Ease of Use.
Keep in mind that this isn't an exact science. You may decide that Prefolds are best for you for most of the time but prefer to have some All-In-Ones on hand for Grandma or for day trips. Your choice ultimately depends on your family's lifestyle and your family's needs.
Diaper Comparison Chart
Highest Rating ****** Lowest Rating *
|The number of diapers that will suite your needs depends on 3 factors:
|Generally, your baby will start out at birth needing highest frequency of diaper changes. As your baby matures and begins solids, pees and poops will be less frequent necessitating less changes. Fewer changes means you will not need as many on hand.|
Diaper Quantity Chart
The chart below shows the preferred number of diapers you'll need at any age based on full-time cloth diapering.
How Many Covers Do I Need?
|This question also depends on a few factors:
|Generally speaking, most parents prefer to have on hand 1 diaper cover for every 4-6
diapers. So if you plan to have 24 diapers on hand, you will want to
have between 4 and 6 covers. The covers themselves will not be soiled enough between every use to necessitate laundering after each time. Most parents find they are able to use one cover up to
six times before they need to be washed.
The number of covers may also vary depending on the type of cloth diaper you will be using. Diaper covers are not needed for All-In-Ones or for Pocket Diapers. You will only need covers based on the number of flats, prefolds, fitted, or contoured diapers you will be using.
|Listening to Grandma’s story of washing her old-fashioned cloth diapers in the bathtub by stomping on them did not exactly convince me to choose cloth. In fact, upon learning of our decision to hop on board the ‘cloth diaper wagon’ we received a ‘fair warning’ from Grandma against the tribulations we were about to encounter. But back in Grandma’s child-bearing years, hand-washing of flat diapers, cumbersome pins, and the inhumanely non-breathable rubber pants were the only option. It’s no wonder the movement towards disposable diapers caught on so quickly after its introduction in the 1960s.|
good news is that the cloth diaper has been completely revolutionized
over the past 20 years! The
cloth diapers of today are dramatically different than the cloth diapers
of even your parent’s generation. Fitted diapers featuring
elastic, built-in fasteners, and waterproof (yet breathable) exteriors
have transformed cloth diapering into a convenient option for today’s
busy mom. Even so, the
question remains: Why would you even consider a washable diaper when you
could use a disposable? A few good reasons to consider cloth
diapers follow below:
will go through about 8 -12 diapers a day ~ or about 6000 diaper changes
by the time he/she is potty trained. At $0.24 a diaper, that
adds up to about $1,440! By using disposable wipes, it will
cost at least another $400. In contrast, purchasing your own cloth
diapers and cloth wipes to wash them at home will cost somewhere between
$250 and $750. Considering
your laundering costs (about $.50 a load or $120 over the course of 30
months) you will still save about $1000 - $1,500 over this 2 - 3 year
period! Translated into an hourly
wage, you will earn over $20 an hour with the additional time cloth
diaper laundering will take.
Most people underestimate the ability of the skin to absorb all with which it comes in contact. There is a reason pharmacologists created a birth control patch that adheses to your skin and releases chemicals that alter the hormonal functions of your internal system: Your skin is like a sponge. Consider what you will be putting against your baby's vunerable skin for the next 2 - 3 years, 24 hours a day.
exception of the pricy natural disposables available at your local
health food store, disposable diapers contain sodium polyacrylate which
absorbs liquid and turns it into gel. Many parents who use
disposable diapers will recognize the polymer as the shiny gel-like
crystals that often make their way onto your baby’s bum. Sodium polyacrylate works well to absorb and contain baby messes
but is commonly linked to allergic reactions, skin irritations, and
possible reproductive organ dysfunction. It was banned from use in tampons in 1985 after it was linked to
toxic shock syndrome and caused hemorrhage, cardiovascular failure and
death in rats who were injected with the gel. Ingested, sodium polyacrylate is deadly to children in amounts as
little as 5 grams. Cloth
diapers are inexpensive and gel free!
In addition, the dangerous chemical dioxin is reported by the EPA as the most toxic of all cancer-linked chemicals, and is a byproduct of the paper bleaching that is used in disposable diapers. Whitening through the use of dioxin has been banned in most countries…but not in the U.S.
toxic chemical exposure of disposable diapers, it is no shock that a
study by a major disposable diaper manufacturer shows that the incidence
of diaper rash rose from 7.1% to 61% between 1970 & 1995, coinciding
with the increase in disposable diaper use.
Have you ever read the following warning on a package
of disposable diapers? IMPORTANT: When
disposing of soiled diaper, empty contents into toilet. I
did not realize myself that disposable diapers should be emptied into
the toilet before being discarded…but as inconvenient as it may seem
it does makes sense. The
diapers end up at the landfill, containing
viruses from human feces (including live vaccines from routine childhood
immunizations) that can leak into the Earth and pollute underground
water supplies. In addition
to the potential of groundwater contamination, air-borne viruses carried
by flies and other insects contribute to an unhealthy and unsanitary
situation. One way or
another, the waste caught by cloth diapers is likely to enter our sewer
systems and is properly treated before re-entering our water.
The solution saturated by most disposable wipes is
also toxic. In contrast,
reusable cloth wipes can be used and laundered alongside cloth diapers
and are a great alternative to disposable wipes. Cloth wipes allow the flexibility for you to use plain water to
cleanse your baby’s bum or for you to mix up your own chemical-free
As mentioned before, a single baby goes through about 6,000 diaper changes before they are potty trained. That adds up to about 2 tons of used, non-biodegradable waste per baby when disposable diapers are used! In addition, estimates suggest that 82,000 tons of plastic and 1.8 million tons of wood pulp (1/4 million trees) are consumed each year in the production of disposable diapers. In contrast, you will only need about 50-60 cloth diapers for the entire diapering period! What a difference!
The truth of the value of cloth diapers is self-evident upon inspection of the facts. Your child’s health is so important to you; so too is the health of the planet upon which he or she will depend; and hopefully generations will carry on this Earth with the respect, economy, and healthfulness of your choice of cloth diapers today.
Help! My pocket diapers are leaking.
A. The microterry is likely providing enough absorbency, but not the right type of absorbency. Microterry is a fast absorber and will absorb A LOT. But it also acts like a sponge. So that if you put compression on it the liquid will squish out the sides. This is likely causing your leaks.
Hemp is a slow and stable absorber. Meaning, it takes a bit to soak in but once it does, its not going anywhere else, even under pressure.
So my suggestion is to continue using a single microterry insert in your pocket diaper closest to your daughter's skin. Add a hemp insert or a hemp doubler behind the microterry. This should do the trick.
If you are still having leaks, and the inserts are seemingly not fully soaked, then I would suspect your diapers need to be stripped of residue build-up.