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Modern Cloth Diapering

03/19/2014 11:01AM ● Published by Hood Magazine

Photo courtesy of Finished Vision Photography

Gallery: Cloth Diapers [3 Images] Click any image to expand.

By Jessie Brower Image title

When we found out that we were expecting our first child, I started to think about every little thing that would affect our baby. I did my research, both in store and online, talked to many trusted, like-minded parents, and decided that cloth diapering made the most sense for us for many reasons.

Being a professional in the banking industry, it was natural to consider the costs of each choice. When you cloth diaper, you usually purchase about 20 diapers, a wet bag (a moisture and odor resistant zipper bag you use to store dirty cloth diapers when you are away from home) and a diaper sprayer that you attach to your toilet. Those items will cost about $450 right away. That might seem like a big investment, but stay with me and read on. We decided to purchase everything brand new directly from a local store, although there are other less expensive avenues. We knew that if we diapered our child until the age of 2 we would spend at least $2,000 on disposal diapers, and that is assuming they are potty trained by that age. Instantly, we knew we would save money because we were committed to this. It wasn't just something that we were going to try. When you cloth diaper, all children after your oldest are diapered at no cost. We now have a second child and did not spend any additional money to purchase cloth diapers.  So now we are set to save the second round of $2,000 for disposable diapers. Just a quick tally on the savings for our household so far: $1,550 for our first child and $2,000 for our second totaling $3,550. I can think of many things I would rather spend $3,550 on!

Saving money was not the only benefit we found using cloth diapers. We have saved many trips to the store to purchase diapers resulting in a huge time savings. There are no late night diaper shopping trips at our house. We simply plan ahead and wash them when we have about five left in the changing table. Time is valuable when you have little ones, and if you could choose between loading up your baby and driving to the store or washing and drying a load of laundry in the comfort of your home, wouldn't you choose to stay home and play with your precious little one every time? Consider the additional amount of cargo you would need to carry into your house after a trip to the store after you purchased disposable diapers. Those boxes are huge, and most parents have the baby carrier in one hand and the baby bag in the other making it necessary to make an additional trip from the car to the house to collect the diapers. We have a very busy life going in many directions all week; anything we can do to simplify, we do it.

Wash, did you say wash? Yes, you do need to wash cloth diapers. This is the part where most people tend to think there is a lot of work involved. Actually, you just use your diaper sprayer that is attached to your toilet, spray off what you need to, and throw the diapers in a plastic tote with a lid until you wash them, which is usually every second or third day. No presoaking is necessary unlike cloth diapers from 30 years ago.  I rinse the load of diapers on cold for 20 minutes with no soap and then run them through a hot water cycle with natural soap. We use a natural laundry powder because it doesn't have fillers and dyes. We have a front load washer and dryer, so the energy cost is minimal. If you choose to dry your diapers on a clothesline, you would be able to save that energy cost. Because cloth diapers are washed, your garbage does not fill up with stinky diapers, and the need to purchase a diaper genie is eliminated. This also saves money and time.

How much time does it take to maintain cloth diapers? I am a multi-tasking mama. I usually wash diapers every second or third night. I would estimate that I spend about 5-10 minutes total between spaying the dirty diapers, putting them in the washing machine to rinse, going back to wash, and then drying and putting them back together. We have the pocket diapers with two pieces, including the outer waterproof cover and the cloth insert that needs to be replaced in the pocket after each cleaning. As your child grows, if you have the one size adjustable diapers, you will need to resize the adjustable elastic bands on the waist and legs. This probably takes about an hour when you decide to adjust them. We have adjusted our diapers twice as our second child is using them now and we needed them to be the smaller size again for her.

Cloth diapers come in many styles, colors, fabrics and brands. There are a few stores that sell them locally, or you can purchase them online. I recommend purchasing locally because our stores have good customer service and they are happy to answer questions.

Because cloth diapers are made of soft cloth, not crunchy paper-like material, they are not able to hold the unnatural amount of liquid that disposable diapers can. Have you ever seen those toddlers walking around with a disposable diaper that is so full it is literally making them walk funny? That doesn't happen with toddlers wearing cloth diapers because you do need to change them a little more often. This is actually a good thing because the increased changes and the type of natural cotton or hemp material that is against the child’s skin reduces diaper rashes. Your child is going to dirty their diaper just as often no matter what type of diaper they are in, and most parents would want to change their child’s diaper as soon as they knew it was dirty. We actually haven’t had a diaper rash incident in the two and half years that we have used cloth diapers. No diaper rash means happier kiddos and family.

Another benefit of cloth diapers is that cloth diapered children usually potty train quicker, and you can get out of this stage faster. The reason is because they can feel that they are wet and that is uncomfortable. Therefore, they potty train more quickly.

What if my daycare provider doesn't like the idea of cloth diapers? This can be a tough topic, but I would challenge parents to talk to their daycare provider about it. It would be a deal breaker for me. You are the parent, and need to do what you choose is best for your child, which includes not changing your ways to accommodate someone else. Do not be afraid to look for daycare options that support your choice to cloth diaper. You ultimately want a daycare provider that supports your parenting choices and what is best for your child. Cloth diapers do not take any additional time or energy. They do not need to be sprayed off immediately. They just need to be placed in the wet bag and zipped up until the parent arrives at the daycare that evening. It’s actually easier for the daycare because your child is not contributing to the amount of diapers filling their garbage. Think about why you chose to cloth diaper your child, and decide if you want to find someone who supports your choices.

Etiquette is also an issue with disposable diapers. If you are at a friend or family member’s house and have to change your child’s disposable diaper, it is usually left in their garbage. If you cloth diaper, you take it with you in your wet bag that fits discreetly in your child’s diaper bag.

 

Here was our list of pros and cons when considering our diapering options:

 Pros

  • Savings
  • Cute colors/prints and styles
  • Better for child’s skin
  • Reduced or no diaper rashes
  • Softer/natural material
  • Time savings
  • Etiquette

Cons

  • More laundry
  • Uncooperative daycare
  • More frequent changes – this may equally offset the time savings

 

Myths busted: The washing machine does not smell like diapers, and cloth diapered children do not walk bow-legged.

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    01/29/2018
    11:00AM — 01:00PM

    Scheel's Family Open Ice Skate Open Skate Rates: Admission – $6.00 $4.00 for ages 12 and under...


  • Open Hockey

    01/29/2018
    11:00AM — 01:00PM

    Open Hockey Monday & Wednesdays 11-1:00 pm Friday 2:00-4:00 pm $10.00 - per session $100 -...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    01/29/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • Hood Night at the Sioux Falls SkyForce

    01/29/2018
    07:00PM — 09:00PM

    Come join The 'Hood Magazine at the SkyForce game!


  • Join us at the Museum of Visual Materials for these free activities. No registration is required ...


  • Skyzone Toddler Time

    01/30/2018
    09:30AM — 11:30AM

    Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. A time for your little ones to di...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    01/30/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • Ladies Night

    01/30/2018
    05:00PM — 08:00PM

    Ladies Night! Receive 20% off your purchase.


  • Kindergarten Round-Up

    01/30/2018
    06:30PM — 08:00PM

    Sioux Falls Lutheran School invites you to get acquainted with our kindergarten program at our an...


  • A GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO LOVE & MURDER

    01/30/2018
    07:30PM — 10:00PM

    Getting away with murder can be so much fun… and there’s no better proof than the knock-‘em-dead ...


  • Join us at the Museum of Visual Materials for these free activities. No registration is required ...


  • Toddler Jump

    01/31/2018
    09:00AM — 12:00PM

    Join us for one of the highlights of our week, Toddler Jump at Air Madness. During Toddler Jump, ...


  • Scheel's Family Open Ice Skate

    01/31/2018
    11:00AM — 01:00PM

    Scheel's Family Open Ice Skate Open Skate Rates: Admission – $6.00 $4.00 for ages 12 and under...


  • Open Hockey

    01/31/2018
    11:00AM — 01:00PM

    Open Hockey Monday & Wednesdays 11-1:00 pm Friday 2:00-4:00 pm $10.00 - per session $100 -...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    01/31/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • Open Skate Discount Night

    01/31/2018
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Open skating session for all ages at a discounted rate! Admission is $3. Regular skate rental fee...


  • Discount Skate Night

    01/31/2018
    06:00PM — 09:00PM

    Skate for $1.00 an hour every Wednesday during our Discount Skate Night! Wednesdays • 6-9pm A...


  • A GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO LOVE & MURDER

    01/31/2018
    07:30PM — 10:00PM

    Getting away with murder can be so much fun… and there’s no better proof than the knock-‘em-dead ...


  • Tot Time

    02/01/2018
    05:30AM — 10:30AM

    Tot time is designed for toddlers and other little tikes, 6 years and younger, who may not be com...


  • Walking Program

    02/01/2018
    08:00AM — 10:00AM

    Location: Morningside Community Center, 2400 South Bahnson Avenue Walking is one of the best w...


  • 2018 Spring Classes

    02/01/2018
    08:00AM

    Register for spring classes at the Community Learning Center at your Washington Pavilion! We want...


  • Skyzone Toddler Time

    02/01/2018
    09:30AM — 11:30AM

    Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. A time for your little ones to di...


  • Toddler Time

    02/01/2018
    09:30AM — 11:30AM

    Toddler Time is a great shared experience for child and parent. A time for your little ones to di...


  • Little All Stars

    02/01/2018
    10:00AM — 10:50AM

    LITTLE ALL STARS (Walking to 6 years )


  • Wee Play & Learn

    02/01/2018
    10:00AM — 11:15AM

    Come with your child to play, meet other families, and talk one-on-one with child development exp...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    02/01/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • New Baby & Me

    02/01/2018
    01:30PM — 03:30PM

    This group for new moms and their babies meets weekly. Moms can join in open discussion on topics...


  • Creative Kids

    02/01/2018
    03:15PM — 04:00PM

    Elementary-aged children are invited to join us for books, activities, and a craft. For more info...


  • S.T.E.A.M. -N- Thursdays

    02/01/2018
    03:30PM — 04:15PM

    Discover science, technology, engineering, art and math through activities. This month's theme: S...


  • A GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO LOVE & MURDER

    02/01/2018
    07:30PM — 10:00PM

    Getting away with murder can be so much fun… and there’s no better proof than the knock-‘em-dead ...


  • Walking Program

    02/02/2018
    08:00AM — 10:00AM

    Location: Morningside Community Center, 2400 South Bahnson Avenue Walking is one of the best w...


  • 2018 Spring Classes

    02/02/2018
    08:00AM

    Register for spring classes at the Community Learning Center at your Washington Pavilion! We want...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    02/02/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • First Free Friday

    02/02/2018
    05:00PM — 08:00PM

    Join us for Free First Fridays, whether you are new to the area, new to the Pavilion, or even a r...


  • Little All Stars

    02/02/2018
    06:30PM — 07:20PM

    LITTLE ALL STARS (Walking to 6 years )


  • Teen Night at Skate City

    02/02/2018
    08:00PM — 11:00PM

    This session is directed toward, but not reserved for, middle to high school aged skaters.


  • MallWalk 2018

    02/03/2018
    08:00AM — 10:30AM

    Pre-register your team for MallWalk 24--Saturday, February 3rd at the Empire Mall! Here's how! ...


  • Walking Program

    02/03/2018
    08:00AM — 10:00AM

    Location: Morningside Community Center, 2400 South Bahnson Avenue Walking is one of the best w...


  • MallWalk

    02/03/2018
    08:00AM — 11:30AM

    Join us as we Walk and Roll for people supported at LifeScape. 100% of Mall Walk proceeds will he...


  • 2018 Spring Classes

    02/03/2018
    08:00AM

    Register for spring classes at the Community Learning Center at your Washington Pavilion! We want...


  • Ice Fishing 101

    02/03/2018
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    Winter is the perfect season to explore your frozen waterways while enjoying the cool calming atm...


  • Little All Stars

    02/03/2018
    09:00AM — 09:50AM

    LITTLE ALL STARS (Walking to 6 years )


  • Tai Chi

    02/03/2018
    09:00AM — 10:00AM

    f you are looking for a way to reduce stress, consider tai chi (TIE-CHEE). Tai chi is a gracef...


  • Decorating Days

    02/03/2018
    10:00AM — 02:00PM

    Call us by Friday and you can come in and decorate cookies on Saturday! We do cookie decorati...


  • Saturday Morning Family Skate

    02/03/2018
    10:00AM — 12:00PM

    Spend Saturday morning with the whole family at Skate City! Parents skate for FREE admission with...


  • Morning Skate

    02/03/2018
    10:00AM — 12:00PM

    This session is directed toward, but not reserved for, beginner skaters and their parents.


  • Pioneer Day

    02/03/2018
    10:30AM — 12:00PM

    Bring the family to experience our prairie heritage. Churn butter, make newspaper twists and butt...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    02/03/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • Open Gym

    02/03/2018
    12:00PM — 01:00PM

    OPEN GYM (Ages 6-18) $80/10 punch card


  • Bookworms Reading Program

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 01:30PM

    Join local celebrities and Zoo Educators for a free story time and animal encounter. Bookworms Re...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/03/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Saturday Cookie Decorating Days

    02/03/2018
    02:00PM — 04:30PM

    Call us by Friday 605-978-0991 and you can come in and decorate cookies on Saturday! We do cookie...


  • SUPER SATURDAY

    02/03/2018
    06:00PM — 08:00PM

    Join us for SUPER SATURDAY each Saturday from 6-8pm! 2 hours of RUNNING, JUMPING, PLAYING FUN! ...


  • Walking Program

    02/04/2018
    08:00AM — 10:00AM

    Location: Morningside Community Center, 2400 South Bahnson Avenue Walking is one of the best w...


  • 2018 Spring Classes

    02/04/2018
    08:00AM

    Register for spring classes at the Community Learning Center at your Washington Pavilion! We want...


  • Sensory Sensitive Sundays

    02/04/2018
    09:00AM — 11:00AM

    Chuck E. Cheese's is proud to support families who have children with autism and special needs. W...


  • Sensory Sensitive Sundays

    02/04/2018
    09:00AM — 11:00AM

    Join us from 9AM-11AM Chuck E. Cheese's now offers a sensory-friendly experience on the first Su...


  • Yoga

    02/04/2018
    09:30AM — 10:30AM

    Bring your yoga mat for a one-hour session in the warm, lush Butterfly House. It's a peaceful, se...


  • Inflatables and PlayDome

    02/04/2018
    11:00AM — 08:00PM

    The County Fair has family entertainment for kids of any age—from our inflatables and Play Dome j...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/04/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/04/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/04/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/04/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...


  • Weekend Open Gym and Game Room

    02/04/2018
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    Open gyms are a time for people to drop in to play basketball. If space allows, volleyball may al...