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Cloth Diaper Experiment: I Put Them on Her BUTT!

This morning I sat on my bed and nursed my daughter. I felt something slightly wet on my thighs and realized her diaper was leaking.

Yuck. I thought. Well, maybe it’s a good thing I’m switching to cloth.

I had put cloth diaper covers over my baby quite a few times to see how they looked, and measure them for size. I also had tried the flushie liners in the gDiapers to get a feel for a different type of diaper, and to get used to dealing more with poop. But I had never actually full on put a cloth diaper on my daughter’s bottom and let her go to the bathroom in it.

Just a few months ago I blew my nose in a wash cloth because I couldn’t find a tissue, but then didn’t have the nerve to wash the wash cloth. Instead, I threw it away (eco-fail, I KNOW!). I’m definitely not one who is good at dealing with bodily fluids, so I’ve been a little chicken to give these a try–to say the lease. Nevertheless, today was the day I set to do it! ALL DAY, no matter what.

I grabbed the white Sprout Change diaper cover/shell first, stuck an organic insert under her bottom and buttoned her up. The inserts did seem to get a little smaller after washing and drying them a few times. Before they would have been hanging over the edge. Now I only fold them over a little.

I ended up only doing the wash/dry cycle twice. They may not be to their maximum absorbency yet, but I guess they’ll get there soon enough.

Lil' J in cloth diaper

Getting the diaper on was easy. It actually didn’t take much longer to put the diaper on than it does for me to put on a disposible, which was a plus.

Then I got her dressed for the day. I put her in a onesie dress from Piggies and Paws and worried it wouldn’t snap close over her fluffy bottom. But it did!

I went downstairs and set up my webcam for my MomTV webshow. Not long after I stared broadcasting I her the dreaded sound “BRRRMMMMPP!!!” The dreaded first crap in the cloth! I knew I’d have to experience it sooner or later. Now was my chance.

I waited until my show was over, but luckily it was only another 20 minutes or so until I got to change her, and she was glad to get out of the mess! The first thing I noticed was how soaked the insert was. So she was definitely feeling the wetness. Which I guess is good for both of us. One of the main reasons babies get diaper rash with disposibles is because the diapers aren’t changed often enough. With cloth you really HAVE to change it when it’s wet. Which I suppose is a good thing. And there’s not much guessing. You know it’s wet.

Second thing I noticed was the poop didn’t contain itself to the insert. This I was bummed about because I only have 8 reversible shells and I’m hoping to use only 3-4 a day so I can go a day without washing. Seeing that the shell got poop on it too made be worry I’d have to change the shell every diaper change.

Now, I had read some of the comments in my last post suggesting I hang on to the insert and flush it in the toilet. I opted not to do this because we have toilet cleaner in there, and I’m not sure it’s a good idea to mix that with the diapers. They’d probably turn blue.

So what did I do? I threw it in the bathroom sink, turned the water on and poked it. Yes, with my finger. I know. Ew.

I have no idea what I was thinking but I was hoping if I ran enough hot water on it for a few minutes the poop wouldn’t stain. And all I could think was ‘please don’t stain the pretty shell, please don’t stain the pretty shell!!’.

Meanwhile my daughter is kicking laughing, and I’m praying she won’t pee or poop again before I get another diaper on her.

I let the water run (I know, not so green. I’m thinking about getting a toilet sprayer soon) while I grab another diaper. This time I try the microfleece. (Which is like microfiber stuff on one side, and cotton stuff on the side that goes up against her butt). Maybe it’s more absorbent? And a pink cover.

I’m in a hurry now. We’re getting ready to drive up to Ikea, then go to a friends house. When I packed my diaper bag I added 3 more covers, about 6 inserts and a couple of plastic grocery bags to stuff the wet diapers in. Hey, I put my dog’s poop in them, I figure they’d work for people poop too.

I know I was overpacking but you just never know! I purposely didn’t pack any disposables because I wanted to force myself to go through this the whole day using only cloth (of course I already had a few stuffed at the bottom of my bag from before though).

We made it to Ikea, shopped, and when we left I nursed and changed her in the car. She was wet, and only pooped a little. The shell didn’t even get wet. It was perfect! I pulled the insert out, and since I don’t have a wetbag (a bag people use to keep wet cloth diapers in while they’re out) I just stuffed it in my grocery bags, and set it in my car. Adding another cloth insert was a piece of cake, and her bottom never had to come out of the diaper shell the whole time. Snapping it back up was easy peasy and we were set to go.

I think I could argue cloth diaper changes (at least with this system) are faster than disposable changes. Of course I haven’t gotten to the washing yet, but I’m just talking about the changes now.

We drove down to my friends house to play dressup and take pictures. I told her about cloth diapers and showed them how they worked. I’m not sure if she’s a believer yet–Heck, I’m not sure I am yet–but she seemed intrigued like I’ve been. It was different being on the other side of the fence. Being the one telling someone why they’re cool, and I’m not crazy.

I changed my daughter again while I was at my friend’s house, and again, she didn’t wet the shell so we were getting back on schedule to how long they’re suppose to last.

I bagged the insert and put it in my plastic grocery bag. … Who needs a wet bag when you’ve got grocery bags?

When I got home I told my husband how the experiment was going.

“We haven’t used disposables all day,” I told him proudly.
“Oh yea? You’ve been using cloth?” He asked.
“Yea,” I beamed.
“Where’d you put the diapers when you were out?”
“In these bags.” I held up my makeshift wetbags.
“That stinks.” He lied about the smell.

I say he lied because they didn’t stink. They weren’t even poopy.

“It’s just pee,” I told him.
“Well pee stinks.”
I put them to my nose to make sure I wasn’t loosing my mind. “Whatever, you can’t even smell them, put them in there,” I pointed to our diaper champ, which was now being used to hold these cloth diapers.

He opened the container and looked inside. I was waiting for him to smell the big poopy diaper from earlier.
“So you want to put the diapers in here?” He asked.
Yay! I thought. He didn’t smell it!
“Yep! That’s where we’ll put them” (see where I’m going with this?) “So tomorrow, when you change her, you just take this part out of the diaper, stick it in the pail, and put a new one under her.” I instructed.
“How many of these do we have?” He seemed to be going along with this.
“Thirty.”
“Cool.”

Cool? Is he being serious right now? He’s really on board! That was easy!

Then the light went off. I could see it on his face.

“This is going to effect me more than you.” He realized.

This is true, but I had to make it not seem that bad.

“Yea, but I’ll get a hose for the toilet and you can just spray it and set it in the diaper champ. I’ll wash them when I get home.”

This seemed to satisfy him, and he agreed to doing a diaper changing lesson later.

sprout change cloth diapers

So day 1 in the diapers has been a success. We only needed two covers and about a third of the inserts. I am interested in seeing if the poop comes out of the white shell since it got all in the sides. I’m tempted to try spraying Shout on it before washing but people seem to be very picky about what products they suggest using on cloth diapers so I need to look into that a little more.

I think I’ll get a toilet sprayer (it looks like the hose on your kitchen sink) off ebay for like $20 this week. A few commenters mentioned it in my last post. I hear it’s nice once the baby begins solids, which we’ll be doing in a month (cereal). It could maybe also help with giving the diapers and extra rinse.

I’m also trying to decide if the cloth diapers make my daughter’s butt too hot. We DO live in Texas, and it’s adding quite a bit of fabric down there. She never had rash before, and I haven’t noticed any now, but I’m keeping my eyes open to any developments. I bet it’s nice and comfy, especially in the winter, but I am sorta wondering if it’s a little uncomfortable in the summer. I dunno.

Overall, day 1 of wearing the cloth diapers went well. I didn’t experience much poop besides the first change. Baptism by fire I guess. Tomorrow is daddy’s turn!


Rachael says:

So many pretty colors!! I wish I had a washer/dryer so I could try this system out. It sounds so simple. Keep up the good work!! 🙂

Katie says:

OK I am a little confused….

You can’t put micrfiber up against baby’s skin. Did you stuff the insert IN the diaper and then stuff anther in the same diaper? If you’re using a pocket and stuffing, you have to change the ENTIRE diaper… I’m not familiar with your brand here, so I just want t make sure you’re doing the “right” thing, only because microfiber can dry out her butt really really bad and I don’t want that to happen to yall!!!! & I just want to make sure you’re using them correctly so you have a great experience with them! 🙂

Sounds like a good first day! The weirdest part for me was the first poop. I stood there, holding this poopy diaper, thinking, “What now?” It’s such an odd thing to NOT wrap it up and throw it in the trash.

We’ve been CDing for about 6 months now, and I will admit there have been a few poops bad enough to make me consider just tossing a cloth dipe. I haven’t done it yet, but it’s been tempting…

I hope washing goes smoothly for you. That’s where we ran into snags. Not too bad, though. We got through it.

Katie says:

Also, as for stains, just set it out in the sun for a couple of hours. That poop stain will be history!

And cloth is a lot more breathable than sposies, that’s why babies never have rashes (for the most part) compared to sposie babies. She will be cooler in cloth that disposables. It’s like wearing a plastic bag vs spandex (trying to compare something with the PUL of cloth hehehe)

Ashley T says:

I’m glad it went well for you… there is def hope for me! LOL I was planning on putting Ity Bity in cloth when we leave the hospital.

You are giving us encouragement to give CD a chance!

Jenna says:

You know, breastmilk poop dissolves in the wash. You can just stick it directly in your washer.

Tresa says:

I am so happy to hear that you had a positive cloth diapering experience with your lil one!

Cloth diapering, as mentioned, is much better for your daughter than sposies because sposies are pretty much plastic and don’t wick away the moisture like cd’s. I also recycle my grocery bags to hold dirty dipes because I only have 1 wetbag and sometimes it is dirty.

The Sprout Change diapering systems is in comparison to the Flip diapering system and I thank you for introducing it because I didn’t know it existed. I do enjoy using organic inserts more because they seem to hold more moisture.

If you have any questions or concerns please contact me, Tresa Casey-Calhoun-Cloth Diaper Consultant (http://www.gobabygoshop.com/page54.html). I enjoy truly enjoy educating people on the simplicity of cloth diapering.

Thank you for sharing your experience. I hope it inspires others to make the change.

Lyndsey says:

One bit of advice is that you don’t need to rinse out the breast fed poop. It is water soluble and it will rinse out in the first rinse without detergent that you do. I started out rinsing them and then just started putting them into the pail and they stain just the same. Since you are in Texas don’t worry about the stains just hang dry them in the sun while they are wet and it is like magic!!!! I am totally a believer and I love them! Another thing is if you get discouraged with these diapers try some other brands, there are tons out there. Some that may be even more daddy friendly, such as all in ones… That is what a lot of dads prefer they are even easier! Good luck and I am so glad that you are giving them a chance and letting people see how awesome they are!

Maria says:

Right now you don’t need to do a thing to them (spraying, dunking etc.) Breastfed baby poop is water soluble and will wash right off.

If you have any stains, a little sun will whiten them right up!

I used cloth diaper for my daughter’s first five months. It was easy because I was home, but once I went back to work it became very difficult.

MommyJ says:

I’m not a cloth diapering mom… I say whatever works for you is awesome, so go with it.

But… as a Mom that has potty trained four kids, I just wanted you to know eventually, you’re gonna get really good at getting poop on your hands. 🙂

he he… I mean that in the most supportive, loving tone possible.

You’ll probably want to ditch the toilet cleaner, because eventually you are going to have to use the toilet to rinse out diapers and the cleaner would damage the diapers.

Don’t use any sort of stain remover on the diapers. They could cause the plastic part (PUL) to delaminate from the fabric, which would then cause leaks.

Chantel says:

We do cloth part time. I’m not brave enough to venture out in cloth yet. We do them at home, and do disposables for overnights and outings. If I’m just going to the store in town (I totally live in the middle of nowhere) he goes cloth, but if we’re taking a trip into Minneapolis or something, disposable all the way. I do notice that he gets a rash much faster in the disposables now whenever he’s in them, so I try to be much more diligent in my disposable changes. You do want to be careful about putting any kind of brighteners, soaps or stain removers on the liners or diaper shell. It can cause the liner/shell to become water resistant and urine can bead on it and leak out.

Well done Mama for getting right in there!
We’re cloth nappying with Oscar and just loving it. It is SO addictive though.

Are you using prefolds at the moment, inside your shells? I prefer using wraps that have wipe clean PUL on the inside and no bamboo flaps – that way if you DO get a small amount of poop on the wrap, you can wipe it right off.

I’ve thought about doing cloth for #2 but then changed/cleaned my daughter many times when she was potty training. Oh Nasty! I’ll be curious to follow your experiment, maybe my mind will be changed. Great blog post!!

dropcqueen at yahoo dot com

Casey says:

I agree with everyone else– no need to do any rinsing right now, just throw them straight into the diaper champ, then do a cold-water rinse before your hot-water wash with detergent. (Also if you are going to rinse them in the sink, I would advise you to use cold water, not hot water which can make stains set– for lots of stains, not just diapers!)

We’ve been using the Flip system, which is similar. I’m interested to try out the sprout which I had not heard of– I just got a used one on diaperswappers, so we’ll see how they compare!

Good luck!

Tori says:

You’re doing good Mama! And yes, the sun is your friend when it comes to staining 🙂 I’ve been CDing for over a year now, and even with toddler poo, my inserts don’t have a stain on them. Really, you’ll be surprised. Good first day!!!

Wow, all I can say, is that I congradulate you on this attempt. I would never have the courage to do this, and I’m a stay at home mom. lol. Best of luck. 🙂

Caroline says:

If you want my advice, I would get a bucket (like a pickle bucket or paint bucket (you know, 5 gallons). Fill it half full with water. Put a scoop of oxyclean in it, and put your diapers in that instead of the diaper genie thingy. Not only will it soak the stains out, but you also avoid mildew, for example. Just my thought. Works for clothes, too. We put the Bitlet’s clothes in water and soak them until we wash them and it cuts down on the number of stains on her cute little clothes

melifaif says:

Good for you!!! I am so proud….like a mommy! Ha!

lynzh says:

I am still on the fence about this one.. I had planned to bf, cloth diaper + the whole 9. But our LO was early and very small the hospital gave us tons of disposables and I have a few boxes of natural disposables at home so we where set for about 4 months. Now I am in the; green vs. $$$ debate we have a few cloth but I am still on both sides with water bills vs. diaper cost vs.environment vs. time to wash laundry… With all the crazy couponing going around diapers are pretty much free when I stock up and we don’t have a waste bill here so I am not losing $$ there. I may try it again also now that LO is bigger and has less bms.

Brooke says:

The cloth breathes better the disposable so yes it seems like more on her body but its actually better and more cool for her little bunz. I noticed a comment about microfiber against her bunz. The new hybrid diapers like gdiapers and the ones you are using are designed to go against her skin so yes it sounds like you are doing it right. I had a bad experience with gdiapers. I found like you did the first time that he always exploded into the cover and that defeated the purpose of using that type of diaper. I now use fuzzibunz but it sounds like you are having luck so far. A diaper sprayer would be good for you as well. I hope it keeps going well!

Bobbi Janay says:

As a Texan too, we have never had a problem with Ian and getting to hot in cloth.

YUMMama says:

Glad you all had a great first experience with cloth diapers. I thought about trying that with Moo, but her poop and pee were just too heavy and I didn’t want to have to be always changing her bottoms because the wetness soaked through her cloth diaper. But kudos to you and Lil J.

Wonder how Brian will do with cloth diapering? LOl.

LOVED this post! And I’m really curious to hear how the next week goes for you all with cloth diapers. My first is almost out of dipes, but we have another coming in Dec or Jan and I’m definitely open to the idea of using cloth diapers. I know one of my sisters-in-law did it with her youngest, and used a diaper service. She said it was affordable, and she felt the diapers came back extremely clean. Also, the service apparently used less water than it would take to clean them at home, between the flushing and multiple washings. Maybe you and your hubby would like to try a diaper service?? If washing them yourself becomes too much of a burden. 🙂 Best of luck with it all!!

~M says:

I’ve read that hot water sets the stains, so you should first wash in cold. Then warm or hot.

Also, you might want to find a cd-safe detergent…and I don’t think you’re supposed to use Shout/stain stick either. I’ve heard good reviews of Tiny Bubbles or Rockin’ Green detergent. And sunning the dipes.

http://www.kellyscloset.com/Cloth-Diaper-Information_ep_34-1.html#washing

Sharon says:

I used cloth diapers for my oldest! Loved it. It was during the time that we used diaper pins. I became adept at pinning her diapers without ever pinning her. Then we used plastic diaper pants. I had about 7 and would wash them by hand as soon as they got soiled. Loved it.

Well done Mama for getting right in there!
We’re cloth nappying with Oscar and just loving it. It is SO addictive though.

Are you using prefolds at the moment, inside your shells? I prefer using wraps that have wipe clean PUL on the inside and no bamboo flaps – that way if you DO get a small amount of poop on the wrap, you can wipe it right off.

You’ll probably want to ditch the toilet cleaner, because eventually you are going to have to use the toilet to rinse out diapers and the cleaner would damage the diapers.

Don’t use any sort of stain remover on the diapers. They could cause the plastic part (PUL) to delaminate from the fabric, which would then cause leaks.

Sounds like a good first day! The weirdest part for me was the first poop. I stood there, holding this poopy diaper, thinking, “What now?” It’s such an odd thing to NOT wrap it up and throw it in the trash.

We’ve been CDing for about 6 months now, and I will admit there have been a few poops bad enough to make me consider just tossing a cloth dipe. I haven’t done it yet, but it’s been tempting…

I hope washing goes smoothly for you. That’s where we ran into snags. Not too bad, though. We got through it.

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Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a former journalist, and lifelong creator striving to make the world a better place. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day by cherishing our individuality and celebrating our differences.



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