Here’s what you need to know.
Cloth diapers seem to be one of the latest millennial trends- for good reason. They are more affordable, environmentally friendly and comfortable for baby. Unfortunately, it is very easy to become confused by all of the modern-day diapering options – especially if this is your first baby. There is no shortage of information when it comes to diaper recommendations and it’s no wonder that hours of research may leave parents feeling more confused than ever.
So, if the idea of using cloth diapers seems daunting, read on, it doesn’t have to be. Cloth diapers have come a long way in the last few years and there is a lot to sift through. We’ve done our research and created the chart below which compiles a list of the pros and cons of going cloth. I hope that the information below is helpful and that it enables you to make the best diapering decision for your family.
Experienced cloth diapering parents, feel free to reply with any other advice or resources!
Pros & Cons of going cloth, (excerpt taken from Newborn 101):
Cloth Diaper Pros
- Cloth diapers do not add to landfills
- Cloth-diapered babies tend to potty train sooner, likely because they can feel the wetness more than babies wearing disposables
- Less-frequent diaper rash, because cloth diapers don’t contain chemicals and are more breathable than disposables
- The investment can take you through more than one child, or you can sell the diapers
- Can be recycled as household rags after babies are done with them
- For parents who need to know their baby’s urine output, cloth makes it easier to monitor
- Opinions vary, but studies suggest that cloth diapers, washed at home and line-dried, can have the lowest environmental impact while being the most cost-effective
Cloth Diaper Cons
- Laundering diapers uses energy and water
Babies will likely need to be changed more often in the course of a day
If you hope to use a diaper service, they are becoming more and more difficult to find, even near larger cities
Soiled diapers need to sit in a diaper pail until they are washed or the diaper service comes; odors can be very strong, especially after the child begins eating solid food
- Even with a diaper service, you still have to rinse the diapers, which means more hands-on time with diaper contents
Can leak more frequently than disposable diapers, though this problem can be mitigated by experimenting and finding the right style and fit for your baby
- Inconvenient to carry home soiled diapers when you’re on an outing, since you can’t throw them away
- Leaks on clothing will lead to more laundry overall, which can mean higher electricity bills and additional costs for detergent
- Start-up costs are higher than with disposables, though the investment can pay off over time
Nicki’s Diapers has a great video for those feeling overwhelmed by the types of cloth diapers on the market. What are prefolds, pockets and flats? Which one is right for my baby and my family? Watching this quick (and cute) video will give you a run down on all of the lingo you need to know to make an informed decision! https://www.nickisdiapers.com/overwhelmed.html
Green Mountain Diapers is a small business out of Brattleboro, Vermont. They are an online retailer but are an integral part of the cloth diapering community. Green Mountain offers a great FAQ section of their site as well as informative videos, and just the right amount of information for someone wanting to start out with cloth diapers. https://www.greenmountaindiapers.com/
Fluff Love University is considered to be a holy grail among many cloth diapering families. Newbies beware, there is a lot of information to digest here but just take it one step at a time!Their website has a ton of information including understanding the types of diapers and their benefits, how to wash your cloth diapers, but most importantly their site has a comprehensive list of detergents and their ingredients- making it easy to select one that won’t ruin your cloth diaper stash! http://www.fluffloveuniversity.com/