Our cloth diapering experience


I have always wanted to use cloth diapers to avoid putting all those diapers in landfills and exposing my baby to chemicals. My husband and I live in an apartment where we have to pay for laundry, so we decided to try a local diaper service.  The service is $20 a week, so I think buying the cheapest diapers possible would have been cheaper, but we are likely breaking even if we compare to using Whole Foods brand diapers or some less toxic one.

We had to use prefolds and covers because the service provides organic cotton prefolds. I looked into all the adorable cover options and settled on using mostly organic wool ones because they don’t have the polyurethane layer. I also got a couple of Imse Vimse diapers as backup if I’m washing the wool. They are organic cotton on the outside but PUL on the inside.

Wool diaper cover pros:

  • Really cute, and look adorable in picures
  • No chemicals at all if you get organic
  • Something in the wool neutralizes urine, so you only need to wash if poop gets on them
  • They can absorb a lot naturally
  • I only lanolize mine every 2 months or so, and they’re fine
  • You need fewer because you don’t wash them as much (we are fine with 3 plus 2 cotton backups)

Wool diaper covers cons:

  • Need to wash by hand. I’ve found the best is to wash immediately if they get poop on them with this which is way better than normal soap. Otherwise, the stains seem hard to get out.
  • Are more expensive (but you need fewer)
  • Are a little more bulky, but that could just be the size we have
  • Can’t get as many design options

Our method with using the prefolds (which is basically just a square of cotton) is to be lazy and just lay it flat on the cover and put it on, and then tuck the extra into the leg holes. If I think the baby will be pooping soon I’ll fold over the sides to contain it more. I honestly think that the cloth diapers are just as fast to change as disposables, or faster. I always have trouble unsticking the tabs on disposables. The few times we used disposables I also noticed how much worse they smell too (I guess the chemicals react with the urine).

Now that Jack is 6 months old and just starting solid food, we are considering stopping the diaper service and washing the diapers at home. I’m hoping his poop will get less liquidy and easier to put into the toilet, and maybe stain less? We’ll see… I’ve also looked up biodegradable liners which we could use in the mornings when he mostly poops.

I’m so glad we chose cloth diapers! Jack has never had a rash (and he has really sensitive skin). We just use coconut oil on him a couple of times a day. The cloth also looks so much more comfortable, soft, and breathable than disposables. Oh, and you can sell back cloth diapers for a pretty good amount, or use them for your next baby!