Monday, November 7, 2011

Cloth Diapering 101. Our handy little "Diaper Dictionary"

Confused about the different types of cloth diapers? Have no idea what a snappi, insert, or hyrbid is? Have no fear, T2B is here! Here is a list of some common cloth diapering "lingo". Don't worry, it's not as confusing as it seems! A little research goes a long way when you are first starting to use cloth. We are always here to answer any questions you may have! For those of you new to cloth, here is a little lesson in Cloth Diapering 101. If you are a visual learner, click on the type of diaper for a link to our website.

Prefolds- A prefold is what you think of when you think cloth diapers of the past. Before diapers were equipped with snaps and velcro, you used to pin them. You would be pinning a prefold diaper. You put the prefold diaper on your baby and use a waterproof cover over it. Gone are the days of pins, although if you want the diaper snug to your baby, you can use a Snappi. A snappi is a Y shaped plastic piece that hooks to your prefold to secure it. Prefolds are the most economical way to cloth diaper. You can get away with just having 2 dozen prefold diapers and 5-6 covers. You can reuse the cover for a few diaper changes, as long as it's not soiled. The pros? Very economical, very absorbent. The cons? More work to have to fold diaper and place into cover. Tip:if you are going the prefold route, make sure you buy a good, strong, absorbent prefold diaper (sometimes called "Diaper Service Quality") the prefolds you can buy at the store are usually better used as burp rags and NOT as diapers :) Prewash prefolds 4-5 times before using. This will cause them to fluff up and be more absorbent.

Hyrbid Diapers (also called All-in-2 or AI2 diapers). These are great diapers for people that are just getting started in cloth diapering. These diapers come in 2 parts. A waterproof shell (cover) and an insert that snaps or lays inside the shell. They are the best of both worlds. You have the choice of either a reusable insert for at home, or a disposable insert for on the go or daycare.

Pocket Diapers. Pocket diapers are a soft diaper that you “stuff” with an insert. The pro’s? You can stuff the pocket with as many inserts as you need. This is great for heavy wetters, or for nighttime use. The cons? It’s a little bit more work to have to stuff the diaper before each use.

All-in-one Diapers (also called AIO) These diapers are as convenient as they come. They are the most similar to disposables in the sense that you just take off the dirty diaper, and put on a clean one. No stuffing of inserts like pockets, and no snaping in inserts like hybrid diapers. The pros? Easy to use. The cons? This is the most expensive way to cloth diaper. Also, AIO diapers take longer to dry.

Fitted Diapers. Fitted diapers are very similar to prefold diapers. They are often made with the same material and, like a prefold, you use them with a cover. They usually Velcro in place so you don’t have to fold them or snappi them like you would with a prefold diaper.

Inserts. Inserts come in all shapes, sizes, and materials. All diapers come with some sort of an insert. whether it’s attached to the diaper (AIO), stuffed into a pocket (Pocket diapers) or placed into the diaper (AI2/Hyrbid). You can buy inserts in microfiber, hemp, bamboo, organic cotton. Natural fibers tend to be more absorbent, but are often pricier. You can also buy disposable inserts that fit with your hybrid diapers for times when you are “on the go”. The disposable inserts differ from regular disposable diapers because they are chemical free and biodegradable. That’s better for your babies bum and our earth!

Cloth Wipes. Cloth wipes are WONDERFUL! Not only do they save you a TON of money, they are soft on your baby’s bum. We wet our wipes and place them in a Wipes Warmer (I recommend the Prince Lionheart Wipes Warmer)

Laundry Bag/ Wet Bag- Laundry bags are where you store your diapers before washing. They are waterproof and can store a ton of dirty diapers and wipes. We place our laundry bag in our *bin in the bathroom next to our toilet. (*Our bin is a covered garbage can with foot pedal)

Diaper Sprayers. Diaper sprayers are a “must have” in our house. They simply attach to your toilet and allow you to spray down your diaper before putting it into you laundry bag. Although not everyone wants or needs a diaper sprayer, I find that this helps with staining to do this extra step before washing. We spray, then place the diaper in the laundry bag. They are easy to attach to the toilet, no plumber required.

Flushable Liners. These are an optional liner that you can place inside your babies diaper. They come in a roll (usually about 200 per roll) and look a little bit like dryer sheets. Liners are a great way to contain the poop and make clean up a breeze. You simply put the liner in the diaper, baby soils the diaper, take out the liner and flush it. Easy as that.

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