Many new parents would have thought of switching over to cloth diapers but ended up ditching the idea. Most parents have a preconceived notion about cloth diapers being down and dirty and more effort-taking than a disposable diaper because that is what traditional baby cloth diapers used to be. Once upon a time, conventional cloth diapers would mean swaddling a square/rectangular piece of cotton fabric around the baby's bum and securing it with safety pins. But gone are those days! Thanks to modern tush-covering technology, cloth diapers have considerably changed for good.
Statistics show that around 95% of parents still use disposable variety. But there is an increase in the production and popularity of reusable diapers in recent years. The reasons for choosing the latter are apparent; cloth diapers are eco-friendly, cost-effective, comfortable, and, most importantly, not harsh on a baby's sensitive skin.
We know that making decisions for your baby is a difficult task, and as parents, you would want to understand the pros and cons before diving into any baby product. Keeping that in mind, we have curated a guide for you on how to use cloth diapers for your baby, whereby we give you insights into different types of cloth diapers available, the pros and cons, and directions to use these eco-friendly diapers.
Types of cloth diapers
Before we get to the nitty-gritty of the topic, we did like to give you insight on different types of baby cloth diapers available in the market:-
All in one (AOI)-
AOI diapers, as the name suggests, provide both an absorbent layer and a waterproof outer shell all in one piece. There are adjustable closures fasten at the hip with Velcro, snaps, or hooks, thereby requiring no additional inserts from your end. As per research, parents find AOI diapers the apt option whenever babysitters, friends, and extended family care for their baby.
How to use –
You can remove the diaper and toss it in the laundry when it's soiled.
Disclaimer- However, AOI diapers take a longer time to dry and may be bulky underneath the baby's clothing.
If you do not want to remove the baby's poop, this type of cloth diaper gives you that flushable option. As the name suggests, this is a combination of disposable and reusable cloth diapers with a waterproof outer layer and two inner layers for absorbency. At the same time, disposable inserts are single-use but do not contain any harsh chemicals. As per research, parents say that this kind of diaper with a disposable insert is a great option when you are on the go.
How to use-
To change your baby's diaper, remove the soiled insert and snap a new one in its place. Parents will have to use inserts such as cloth or disposable inserts. The cloth inserts are available in different materials such as cotton, hemp, and microfibre fabrics.
All in two -
Like hybrids, this type comes with a two-part system with a waterproof outer shell and a detachable absorbent inner insert that snaps into place. These are less bulky than AOI.
How to use-
You can remove the soiled insert and replace it with a new one or wash the inserts.
Disclaimer- It is more time-consuming to change and not always good at containing the mess to just the removable insert.
It is a single-use cloth diaper with a waterproof exterior and an interior pocket where you stuff an absorbent insert. As per research, parents say that pocket diapers are fewer bulkier underneath a baby's clothing and dry quickly.
How to use-
The inserts are washable and reusable. Inserts are available in materials like cotton, hemp, and microfibre. No additional cover is required; however, you will need to remove the insert, wash them separately and replace it with a clean cover.
These are contoured in shape and very absorbent, ideal for overnight use and heavy wetters. They come in different forms, sizes, and materials.
How to use -
It does not require any folding, and there is elastic around the legs. Once the fitter diaper is soiled, remove it and replace it with a fresh fitted one, reusing the cover.
These closely resemble the traditional cloth diapers as they come with a thicker center of extra fabric layers stitched together. These are amongst the least expensive option in cloth diapers.
How to use-
They are usually held in place with a cover, which waterproofs the absorbent prefolds by containing the wetness. Wrap them around your baby's bum like a diaper, and it has a hip and crosses over Velcro to prevent drooping and leakage.
These are the most basic reusable diapers that are sizeable square pieces of fabric that come in different materials such as cotton, hemp, bamboo, etc. These are super light, fast to dry, and simple to use.
How to use
You can use them by folding them in different styles that range from super simple to a little more origami. They can be secured in place with a safety pin or other clasps. You will need a waterproof cover to contain the wetness.
How to use cloth diapers – Essential Tips
You have got a wide range of cloth diapers to choose from, as explained above. But the question lies how do they work? Well, changing them is not as tricky as it might seem to you, especially if you opt for the ones with comes with Velcro closures.
Most washable diapers for babies come in one size that has a snap-down rise. This means there are snaps along the top of the diaper to adjust the waistline and then a line of snaps down the front to make the diaper bag or small as need be.
In addition to the above information, have a glance at some essential tips-
Permanently close the tabs before throwing the soiled diaper not to get stuck to each other.
Snaps along the top of the diaper are meant to adjust the waistline.
Photos down the front of the diaper are intended to make the diaper big or small as needed.
Cloth diapers hang down or become stiff when they need to be changed.
Cloth diapers should be changed every 2 hours to avoid rashes.
Remove any solid waste from the diaper, fold or insert and spray it down with water.
Put the rinsed-off diaper in a bag with other soiled diapers until you are ready to wash them.
Wash dirty diapers every day to avoid staining. Line dry for optimal results.
The bottom line-
Gone are those days when cloth diapers were considered painful for their complicated folding and pinning. Modern-day cloth diapers are so much more eco-friendly and are the best for your baby's sensitive skin as they are not laden with harsh chemicals, unlike disposable ones. Choose what is best for your baby. If you are looking for storage for your cloth diapers, here is an organizer carrying bag with a diaper pocket for storage.
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