Cloth diapering 101


So I get a lot of questions about cloth diapers. A lot of people are interested in switching or starting with cloth for their baby. So I've decided to write a cloth 101 blog and give you the run down of all the details.

First of all-
We LOOVEE them. I know it is weird to love diapers so much but we (Dan included) truly do love them.
So we use bum genius 4.0 brand. They are one size (OS) and adjust from about 10lbs-until you grow out of diapers. Fuzzibuns also has a similar style that people like equally well.
Ours snap to fasten them closed but they also have velcro.


In the front of the diaper there are snaps that snap up and down. So when your child is tiny you can have them smaller and as your child grows you can go to the next snap to make them bigger. So these diapers should be the only ones you have to by from 10lbs to potty training.
Snaps in front that adjust size of diaper. Snap all the way down for small, middle for medium, and leave unsnapped for large.

Bum genius is a pocket diaper. So that means that when your child soils the diaper you change the whole thing similar to a disposible diaper. There is a pocket in the back of the diaper that a fleece pad slides into.  The pad is the absorbant part of the diaper.  The lining of the diaper is also very soft and absorbant. I was worried about Emmaus getting diaper rash with cloth but they are so absorbant that when I take even her nighttime diaper off her bottom is usually completely dry.
Pocket in back of diaper with pad that slides into diaper.

When a diaper is dirty/wet we take it into the bathroom and put it in the diaper pail. If it is wet we simply pull out the pad and place both the diaper and pad in the pail. If the diaper is poopy we take out the pad put it in the pail, and then use our handy dandy diaper sprayer and spray off the yuckyness into the toilet.  Then when it is cleanish we put the diaper into the pails.
The pail has a pail liner that decreases odor so the bathroom doesn’t stink. And of course use a covered pail.

When we are out and about we take a wet bag. That is a bag that we put our dirty diapers in. Then when we get home we do the above routine.
Wet bag

We wash diapers every other day.  We use a cloth diaper recommended soap called charlie’s soap.

So here is the deal with washing.  You have to use a special soap so that the oils from regular soap don’t break down the absorbent-ness of your diapers. Infact, those oils can cause such issues that they recommend using the cloth diaper soap on all your clothes. So far we have really liked this soap. You get a lot of bang for your buck and it has done great with all our clothes.
So it is kinda a downfall if you have a fabric softener that you LOVE cause you can’t use that anymore either. (We still use dryer sheets on our clothes and that hasn’t caused any problem) Some people use regular detergent on their normal clothes, but it isn’t recommended- so do this at your own risk...but DEFINITELY use a cloth soap on your diapers.

So the washing routine looks like this

11.     Wash in cold no soap.
22.     Wash in hot with soap (just use ¼ of a scoop)
33.     Rinse 
33.5 (We sometimes spin again so we can dry for less time)
44.   Hang dry diapers. Tumble dry pads 
55. Once a month we use 1/4 cup of bleach on all our diapers

So I know I have talked before about the benefits of cloth however lets review.

1. It is cheap! After the initial start up I spend about 4 cents per diaper (which is water and detergent) and with disposable a good deal is 17 or 18 cents. (I figured it out in a previous blog that it takes 5 months of successfully cloth diapering to pay for your investment)

2. Its good for the earth. Yep...all those disposable diapers end up in a land fill...which isn't the best for mother nature.

3. We have had NO diaper rashes. Emmaus has been on several antibiotics for ear infections, gotten two teeth, and with all that poo still no diaper rash. 

4. It really isn't that hard. Just a couple extra loads of laundry a week. 

5. We don't really have blow outs or leaking

Here is a list of what you will need to start up with cloth diapering
18-24 diapers
2 pail liners (one is the wash, one in the pail)
2 wet bags (one is the wash, one in your diaper bag)
Diaper sprayer
Diaper pail (aka trash can with lid from walmart or target)
Diaper Soap

We get our diapers HERE. or you can also buy them Here

A few last helpful hints
*If you get a diaper rash at first you may be using too much detergent. MAKE SURE TO ONLY USE 1/4 scoop of detergent
*You cannot use traditional diaper rash creams so we occasionally use this product to keep her bum healthy. 
*If you are having problems with blow outs or leaking it might be time to make the diapers bigger or switch from the newborn pad to the regular pad. We use a newborn pad along with the regular pad at night for increased absorbency. 

 I hope this is a resource of any of you thinking about cloth.



  1. Great post! Thanks for breaking it all down...super informative:)

  2. Thank you for the info!! Super helpful. We've started a "fund" with extra cash from Etsy, sewing lessons, and alterations to save for the 24 pack of Bum Genius. It's a tupperware with a print off of a diaper taped on the front. Haha! Love it. PS I reference your love for cloth constantly. My people know you.

  3. As Grandma, I can also add that I have had no problems adjusting to these cloth diapers. I used disposables on my kids (the archaic cloth was just too much for me!) but these are supper easy to use.

  4. What pail liner do you use in the pail in the bathroom? Have you tried other soap? I've read some good things about Rockin Green.

    1. We use planet wise diaper pail liners in the bathroom. We also use their brand of wet bags. And We have only used Charlies soap, but I have also heard great things about rockin green.

  5. Yay for cloth diapers! My two oldest were "cloth babies" due to issues with diaper rash. Saved lots of money and two lovely hinies! (Ask Will??) Much Love! Indy Hupp

  6. Love how super simple you made this! I have been trying unsuccessfully :/ to figure out how to best diaper both my 4 1/2 daughter who has a disability and my 19 month son on cloth. I have a selection of different brands and types of diapers-I still have not figured out a good wash routine, I have lots of leaks and diaper rashes to boot BUT I will keep trying because I think this is all user error. So anyway I'm now looking into a diaper sprayer and I just wanted to know what sprayer has worked well for you. Oh and I like the bathroom pic-great setup!

    1. Not sure if you have read much of my blog- but my daughter has a disability too- so I am guessing we will be in diapers for a WHILE. Since writing this we have started having some leaks (like I always pack multiple pairs of pants when we go out- and sometimes use disposable if I just really don't want to chance it). I think it is because my daughter holds it and goes so much at once- she sometimes leaks in pampers too.
      1. Rash- use a little less detergent- that is probably the issue. I also highly recommend the diaper ointment I linked to above. Eco bum I think is what we use. (I call it but chapstick- you have to have one for each kid)
      2. Diaper sprayer- we first had one from fuzzibunz that worked great but broke in our move- so I just googled how to make one and went to the hardware store and bought all the pieces. It was a little ambitious-and a pain in the but for my not so handy hubby to get together-so I would recommend just buying one.
      Happy diapering! And thanks for reading! Hope you stick around!


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