Spoonful Test Blog

Saturday, October 19, 2013

I like big butts. Part dos.

In my last post, I answered so many questions that I commonly get about cloth diapers.  Like, around a million questions.  Or eight ish.  One of the two.

In this post, I'll explain some of the different components of cloth diapering.  It's a lot of information.  Sorry.  And there will be a quiz at the end, don't worry.  The person with the highest score gets all my love and affection forever and ever.

Hopefully Danny gets the highest score, because I already promised him that.

The first thing you need to do once you decide to use cloth diapers is to decide what kind of diapers you want to use.  It's hard to know what will work for your baby until you actually try the diapers, but you have to start somewhere!  You can't just wrap your baby in a pillowcase covered in a trash bag and call it a day...there's a lot of thought to put into cloth diapering!

...I guess you could technically wrap your baby in a pillowcase/trash bag diaper.  If you wanted to be a crazy person.  I don't really care.

Here are some of the different kinds of (non-pillowcase) diapers that are available!

All-in-one (AIO):  AIO diapers are the easiest to use, and are generally the most expensive option for cloth diapering.  These are basically a cloth version of a disposable diaper.  You get it out, put it on, and you're good to go!  The absorbent layers are sewn in, so you don't need to add any inserts.  They do take a long time to dry since the layers don't come apart.  The one AIO diaper we own currently has a large poop in it, so here's a link to the one we have (bumGenius Freetime).

Pocket diapers:  A pocket diaper is also very easy to use!  The diaper itself has a water-resistant outer shell, and is usually lined with suede cloth or microfiber.  There is a pocket where you stuff an absorbent insert between the liner and outer shell, and then you put the diaper on the baby.  Easy!  When the diaper is dirty, you take the insert out and throw both parts in the wash.  We use bumGenius 4.0 pockets and Alva diapers.

bumGenius 4.0 on the left, Alva baby diaper on the right

"Feed me an inserrrrrt!"

Also, this diaper looks like Shamu.

Or a tuxedo, according to my husband.  Such a fancy diaper.

All-in-two (AI2):  These diapers consist of a water-resistant cover and an absorbent insert, and are one of the least expensive options for cloth diapering.  The water-resistant cover does not have a lining like pocket diapers do; the absorbent liner is the part that touches the baby's skin.  This means that you can reuse the diaper cover when the diaper is dirty (as long as the shell doesn't have poops on it and isn't too wet) and just throw the insert into the diaper pail.  Because of this, you don't need as many diaper covers in your stash of diapers, thus making it less expensive!  Ta daaaa!  We mostly use the Flip system for our AI2 diapers.

The outside of a Flip cover

 The inside!  Sad with no insert.
With a stay-dry insert!  Ready to be filled with my son's poo!

In order to make pocket and AI2 diapers absorbent, you'll need inserts.  This will be a quick run-down on inserts, and I'll do a more in-depth post about them next time!

Basically, there are two kinds of fabric available for inserts: synthetic fibers and natural fibers.

Most pocket diapers come with a microfiber insert, which is synthetic.  Microfiber absorbs quickly, but does not necessarily absorb a lot.  It cannot directly touch a baby's skin (it removes the moisture from their bottom!), so you cannot use this kind of insert in an AI2 diaper (unless you put another insert or liner on top).  Microfiber is also prone to compression leaks; basically, if it is squeezed, it will let liquid out.  These inserts work well for young babies who don't move much or pee a whole lot, but don't work so well for heavy wetters.

Natural fiber inserts are generally made from hemp, cotton, or bamboo.  Natural fibers absorb more than microfiber and don't have compression leaks, but they don't absorb as quickly.  These can go against your baby's skin!

I tend to use natural fiber inserts underneath a microfiber insert; that way, the urine is absorbed quickly through the microfiber and is held by the natural fiber.  Gibson pees straight through microfiber these days, so I have to double up!  Silly pee-filled kid.

So.  That is a REALLY short explanation of the components of cloth diapering.  There is so much more to it that I'll explain later...if I tried to explain it all in this post it would take you a week to read it.  And you would hate me for writing such a stupid long post and probably be really bored and sad.

Next time we'll talk a little more about the types of inserts...because there's a lot!  Flats, fitteds, pre-folds, doublers...seriously.  The list goes on and on.  Well, it doesn't go on much beyond that.  But it's a lot to explain, I promise.

And now for your quiz: who is the cutest baby in the world?

Correct answer:

My sweet helper.  He loves being covered in diapers!

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