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Old 07-07-2012, 10:35 PM   #11
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Re: HELP! First Time Mom

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Originally Posted by BBGunns View Post
AIO?? and when it comes to the pocket diapers I was a little confused on how they work when it comes to cleaning. I mean the pocket soaks the waste, but there is still waste on the pocket so do you have to wash the pocket diaper every use. I looked up a video, but my computer is broken and has no sound so didn't really get all I needed.
...And pre-folds, covers... This is a whole new territory for me if somebody is willing to private message me that would be great. I am a first timer at all of this I have no previous knowledge to go off of
I'm new too, but I'll try to help!

Don't be intimidated mama, and don't worry, people were constantly telling us that we'd give up cloth diapering immediately. We were so worried that for the first 2 months we used a diaper service. After 2 months we realized it was not that much work and that we could totally handle this.

1) Prefolds and flats are the cheapest options, but they are the least like disposables. Flats are big flat pieces of cloth that need to be folded to be absorbent and to fit baby. Prefolds are like several layers of fabric sewn together with an overlapping "fold" in the middle so it's smaller than a flat, more absorbent in the middle, and requires less folding. However, both methods require some knowledge of folds to get a good fit. YouTube has lots of videos showing you how to do this, and we had it down in no time.

Both flats and prefolds can be held on baby using pins, but the newest method is a hook device called a Snappi. It can't poke or harm the baby, and it's cheap and flexible.

Flats and prefolds both will feel wet when baby pees or poos, so to keep clothing dry you need to cover the flat or prefold with a laminated cover (PUL) or a wool cover. Laminated covers are thin, light, and virtually 100% waterproof. You can use the same cover several times without washing unless poop has gotten on them or the edges are damp with pee. Laminate can be washed with the diapers. Wool is not totally waterproof and it is 2-3X the cost of laminate, but it is more breathable than laminate, more "natural" and more eco-friendly. Many prefer the look and feel of wool, and if you are inclined you can sew your own wool covers from old sweaters or knit/crochet them from wool yarn. Wool covers must be washed separately from your other diapers, and occasionally they require lanolin (the same stuff you use on sore nipples) to help them stay water-resistant.

Our daily diapers are prefolds held with snappis, under laminate covers. I have made my own wool covers from sweaters, but I find laminates cheaper and easier to care for.

2) Fitteds are shaped like disposables, and may be closed by snaps, pins or the Snappi hooks. Fitteds are like if a disposable was made of all cloth, even the outside. It fits snuggly and may have an extra pad sewn or snapped into the middle for more absorbancy. Because fitteds are all cloth they will also need a cover (laminate or wool). To wash a fitted you can simply put the whole thing in the washer.

We use fitteds when visiting family and for naps. Fitteds are more absorbent than flats or prefolds, and they are easier for novices to use. Of all the kinds of diapers, most moms see fitteds as the least likely to leak, since they fit snuggly and are very absorbent.

3) Pockets are like a laminate cover with a piece of fabric inside it forming a space between the cover and the fabric. That space is the pocket, in which you can place absorbent cloth. That's all there is to a pocket diaper: a cover/liner combo, and a pad that goes inside it. Pockets require no special folding or pinning/hooking, so they are very easy for newbies. Because you add the absorbent padding yourself, you can place more or less cloth inside the pocket depending on your needs. Pockets are very waterproof, but they may not prevent leaks as well as a fitted diaper. To wash a pocket you must first remove the absorbent pads (called soakers) from inside, then when both the cover/liner and the soakers are clean you stuff the soaker back inside the pocket. You must wash both parts with each diaper change.

We prefer pockets stuffed with 2 soakers for night time. Prefolds are not absorbent enough for our baby, and fitteds seem to stay very wet next to our baby's skin. Pockets usually have liners that dry quickly so moisture is pulled into the soaker and away from baby's skin. Our only complaint is finding a pocket that fits our baby well enough that it doesn't leak.

4) All-in-ones are like the pockets above, except you do not need to add or remove the soakers. The soaker has been sewn in. Imagine a laminate cover (waterproof) with a thick pad in the middle (absorbent) and a liner on top of that (keeps baby dry). To wash an AIO you put the whole diaper into the wash as is, and don't need to reassemble afterward.

AIOs are the most like disposable diapers.

We have a couple AIOs, but seldom use them because they don't seem to fit our baby well. Also, I don't like having to wash the entire diaper for just a little pee, when I could wash a small prefold instead. AIOs also take a long time to dry because of all those layers.

5) Others...
There are also other types of diapers, All-in-twos, hybrids that have disposable inserts but reusable liners... the list goes on. But the above are the most common types of cloth diapers and the ones I know best. I do have an All-in-two system that I LOVE, and I really expected to dislike it. It's a cover with snap-in soakers and an optional liner. I decided to just try whatever excellent-used-condition diaper I could find for a good price, and if I didn't like it it's only a few dollars lost. Plus you can resell or trade on here if it doesn't work out.

All those people who tell you it's stressful are wrong... cloth diapering is ADDICTIVE! It's cheap, easy, and sooo much fun to try new kinds. You'll do great!

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Last edited by Palooka; 07-08-2012 at 06:56 PM.
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:42 PM   #12
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Re: HELP! First Time Mom

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Originally Posted by jenn.mcc View Post
All those people who tell you it's stressful are wrong... cloth diapering is ADDICTIVE! It's cheap, easy, and sooo much fun to try new kinds. You'll do great!
Totally agree!! My little man isn't even here yet and I'm completely addicted!
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:54 PM   #13
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Re: HELP! First Time Mom

Great advice everyone! I'm addicted to CD-ing, too, which is driving my hubby nuts! Scaling back now, until I can sell my pockets that just didn't work for my boys with sensitive skin!
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:55 PM   #14
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My best advice would be watch the 7 part series called cloth Diaper 101. The info there is great. She shows you all the different types and how to use and care for them on you tube. I do demo classes for new moms. If you are near Los Angeles I can show you.

Here is the link for part one.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=gVo6SMebcX8
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