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Eco-Friendly Diapering: How to Cloth Diaper

Updated: Dec 8, 2023

Cloth Diaper for beginners, understanding what you need to start thinking about before you start your journey.

For environmental reasons, costs, or simply convenience and fashion, many parents are choosing to make use of cloth diapers today. Before you commit a huge amount of money to a particular brand, test a range of different designs and styles of cloth diapers to determine which one is best for your baby.

Discover if cloth diapering is the best option for your family.

how to cloth diaper

In reality, cloth diapers require more effort than throwing disposable in the garbage. They're not the best option for all families. However, with the advancement of modern technology to cover tush, they may be more beneficial than you think.

The use of cloth diapers today is easier than you believe, after all, these diapers were designed by mothers just like you! Here are some advices for beginning your journey.


How many cloth diapers do I need?

As a newly-wedding parent, are you thinking "How many new born cloth diapers do I need?" Babies indeed need lots of diapers and obviously, you'll need to have everything ready. The new born baby uses the smallest sizes of diapers and, naturally, the most diapers compared to older babies.

To be prepared for this occurrence many parents make an inventory of diapers before when the baby is born. This is a daunting task for experienced and first-time parents. There are numerous aspects to think about when you are stocking up including the baby's weight, diaper size, and of course financial situation.

You've likely made the final choice of selecting cloth diaper or disposable one. If not yet, you'll need to make plans ahead of time. It's impossible to stockpile items you've not yet decided on which you'll need.

Here is a quick chart that shows how many cloth diapers approximately you'll need depending on the age of your baby:

how to cloth diaper

Most Common Cloth Diapers Types

The cloth diaper has come quite a far way, with more than a dozen kinds available for sale at present. These are the most popular:

Prefolds Diapers + Cover

Prefolds with cover are my favorite type of cloth diapers for when baby is a newborn. These diapers look more like the old fashion ones and are very soft and absorbent. While the baby is still a newborn, they don't need much absorbency yet, so these will absolutely do the job. It will also be soft on their tummy as their umbilical cord heals.

My favorite brand for prefolds is the OsoCozy Unbleached Prefold Cloth Diapers. These are 100% cotton cloth made from pure, unbleached, 100% cotton. Middle panels are constructed of 6-8 layers of cloth and outer panels of 2-4 layers, offering plenty of absorbency plus better fitting sizes for when baby is small.

how to cloth diaper

All-in-one Diapers

All-in-one (AIO) cloth diapers may be the most well-known type of cloth diapers. This is because they are simple to use and are suitable for beginners. All-in-one cloth diapers are available in a range of styles and types of fabrics.

A one-piece cloth diaper can be described as a single diapering system that has an absorbent layer that is bonded to a waterproof outer shell that makes this diaper extremely simple to throw away as disposable diapers!

Like their name suggests the word "all-in-one" refers to a cloth diapering method that is comprised of just one piece. Due to their shape, they can be the most expensive cloth diaper, yet they have fewer pieces to purchase. This is a great option for new born infants.

how to cloth diaper

Pocket Cloth Diapers

Pocket diapers are like All-in-one diapers. However, they have an inside pocket made of wicking fabric and have a reusable absorbent insert. You can differ the amount of absorbency you want by trying various inserts you're filling the pockets with.

The separate pieces of pocket diapers have a shorter drying time than All-in-one diapers that are thicker. The pocket cloth diapers are designed specifically for the three months and beyond babies, because you'll require more absorption for them.

As I have mentioned before, my favorite brand is Alvababy pocket diapers, as I used them for over 2 years with the most durability. Here is my overview and opinion on Alvababy cloth diapers.

how to cloth diaper

Types of Cloth Diaper Inserts

Inserts for cloth diapers are crucial to ensure that cloth diapers are effective at soaking up liquid spills and increasing overall absorbency, making parents wonder which kind of cloth diaper insert is the most effective. A cheap insert could really make a mess for both the child and parent, so it is best to not cheap out when it comes to choosing inserts for the diapers.

Microfiber Inserts

The majority of families can make good use of microfiber in their cloth diapering experience, however it is not the most popular material used in the cloth diaper community. I personally think that this material absorbs liquids very quickly. It's inexpensive and does a good job as an insert for cloth diapers, this is the reason why many companies use them and adds them as default with cloth diapers packages. In general, when you put it layer by layer it could do the job just fine especially in the first months of baby.

how to cloth diaper

Bamboo Inserts

The material is extremely absorbent and is commonly employed together with Hemp Blend. You'll see a lot of Charcoal Bamboo inserts used in cloth diapers. Bamboo is an very popular choice to use with cloth diapers. It is extremely soft, less bulky, absorbs moisture quickly, and keeps your baby dry all night long. Can hold up to 10oz of liquid.

how to cloth diaper

Hemp Inserts

Hemp inserts are an absolute must in the world of cloth diapers they're durable and extremely thirsty! There isn't much hemp-based fabric that is 100% hemp it is typically mixed with cotton, making it soft and more comfortable. Hemp insets could be a bit pricey but they serve their purpose well.

how to cloth diaper

Bamboo charcoal Inserts

Bamboo charcoal inserts have a few advantages, such as giving an incredibly dry feel and being effective in hiding stains. If you're seeking bamboo's lightweight absorption then their charcoal insert wont leave you disappointed. This are my ultimate personal favorites, they last longer and baby barely feels the humidity. They are incredible!

how to cloth diaper

Stuff to Consider as Must Haves for Cloth Diapering:

Reusable Baby Wipes

If you decide to do also reusable wipes, I highly recommend OsoCozy Flannel Cloth Baby Wipes. They are specifically designed to protect your baby's delicate skin.

I use them most when baby only pees. I do use disposable for when baby poops. These reusable wipes however, have save me money in the long run. They are made of Unbleached/Natural 100% Cotton and had also lasted me for over 2 years.

how to cloth diaper

Wet bag

Wet bags are a must for cloth diapering parents. I recommend starting with 2-3 wet bags, small and large. You can use them for your diaper pail while at home and also for when you are traveling. These are bags that are made with a high quality polyurethane laminate (PUL) leak-free fabric and are very easy to dry when you wash them. Most of them have zippered compartments pocket design to keep moisture and odors inside the bag while diapers sit there waiting to be washed. Wet bags are easy to carry and multifunctional. You can hang it anywhere like door knobs, towel rails, door hangers, hooks. It is great for storing cloth diapers between washes, traveling with cloth or as a laundry bag for the whole family.

how to cloth diaper

Cloth Diaper Friendly Anti-Rash Butt Cream

The importance of the Anti-Rash cream is that it's a great multitasker. Not only it protects your baby’s skin around legs but also it could be used on their body to restore a smooth and healthy skin. Using Anti-Rash cream with every time you change diaper could protect your infant’s skin from wetness, acidity and rashes.

Finding the right anti-rash cream that works with your cloth diapers can be a bit trick, here are some of the most Mom recommended cloth diaper friendly rash ointments:

how to cloth diaper

Diaper Sprayer

A diaper sprayer is used for the purpose of pre-washing off and eliminating difficult-to-remove "debris"off your cloth diapers. Therefore, you must ensure that the model you choose is an efficient, and has adjustable pressure spray that can do this effectively. The one I decided to use and will continue to use with my second daughter is the Aquaus Spraymate. Highly recommend it and you can find out why HERE.

When baby start solids, you definitely don't want to take poop diapers straight to the washer machine. I always rather spray them, pre-wash them and let them drain for a few min before I move them to the dirty diaper can. This will make the washing process a breeze, just like washing any other clothes.

how to cloth diaper

Checking Hardness of Water and Detergent

The harder your water is; the more cleaning products are less effective because hard water makes it difficult to make a soapy lather and can contribute to build up. Most places in the US have hard water. If you get a yellow ring in your toilet or around fixtures, it is likely you have hard water. Hard water isn't really bad, it just needs to be addressed.

You need to get the right wash routine for diapers because either mineral build up (hard water) or detergent build up (usually softer water) can give bacteria a place to grow in diapers or cause ammonia build up, both cause rash for baby. The best way to test this out is using testing strips. Clorox testing strips are the most recommended around the CD community, however the ones below are very inexpensive and will do the job just fine. The detergent and measurements you can use is baed on your water hardness.

Disposable Bamboo liners

My favorite brand is hands down the Disposable Cloth Bamboo Diaper Liners. They protect the skin of babies by removing the mess caught by the liner and helps to avoid diaper blowouts. The Liners bamboo diaper is secure to use in all types of diapers. They are ENVIORNMENTAL FRIENDLY which is an awesome Plus. The universal liner goes great with most diaper brands and sizes. Always useful for extended use conditions such as naps and long travels via car. Great accessory for travelling. The flush-capable bamboo diaper liners make the cloth diaper washing process easier. Helps minimizes allergy and diaper rash risks.

how to cloth diaper

Final Words:

Using of cloth diapers may seem a difficult and tedious work in the start, but once you give it a try, you would know how effective it is in reality. It can easily absorb a good amount of waste in it. It has an easy learning curve for parents, and it is safe for infant’s skin.

Cloth diapers are way better than normal diapers when it comes to infant’s skin and rashes. They are soft and comfortable and especially very effective at what they do.

how to cloth diaper


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