Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Cloth Diapers: Easy as 1-2-3 (and 4-5-6)

Save money. More attractive. Better for the environment. Better quality. Easy.

If I told you that by using one product, you could achieve all of the specifics listed above, you would be interested in that product, correct? Through my research and experience with cloth diapers, I have discovered that all of these qualities describe cloth diapers!

Save Money: My original interest in cloth diapers began before I even was pregnant with Sophie. I had heard about cloth diapers from a few friends, and began to research them online. To me, the most intriguing quality about cloth diapers was and continues to be the money-saving factor. I have spent around $500 on cloth diapers. This includes both my newborn diapers as well as one- size diapers. I am an amazing bargain shopper though, so I’ve gotten a good deal on almost all of my diapers. I’ve read the average that people spend on cloth diapers is between $600 and $800. Disposable diapers for one child costs, on average, $2000 (some spend less, some spend more, depending on brand and child). This means that I should save around $1500 for diapers on Sophie! But wait, it gets better!! I should be able to use most of my cloth diapers on my second child as well which means I will save even more! Saving $3000+ over the years sure does sound like a bonus to me! I absolutely love saving money.

More Attractive: Have you ever seen cloth diapers? They are super cute. I have solid colors as well as printed ones. They definitely are more attractive than disposable diapers. Of course, they are only diapers, so some might ask why it even matters. But if you can save money WHILE choosing a more attractive option, why not?! J

Better for the Environment: When I originally decided to use cloth diapers, I admit that the environment wasn’t the factor at the forefront of my mind. However, the longer I use diapers, the more I feel good about what I am doing for the environment. Let’s say a child goes through 7 diapers a day (which is on the lesser end, to be honest) for 2 years. They would go through 5110 diapers. While I admit that I am not the most environmentally conscious person, 5110 diapers from one child sitting in a landfill still sounds like a lot to me! It is estimated that it takes 250-500 years for a disposable diaper to decompose.

Better Quality: When I say that cloth diapers are better quality, I mean that they are better for a baby’s bum. They are soft against a baby’s bottom. They also do not contain the chemicals that disposable diapers contain. Also, when used properly, cloth diapers result in fewer blowouts than disposable diapers! We had a few leaks in the beginning when I was still learning how to cloth diapers, but it has been months since we have had leaks of any kind! For more information on chemicals (and other cloth diaper info), read here.

Easy: I know cloth diapers are intimidating to some people because they think they will be too much work. Some cloth diapers can be a good amount of work, but I use pocket diapers, which are really easy! I have to wash the diapers, but other than throwing them in the washer and then hanging them on my drying rack, the washer and dryer do most of the work. They come with an insert inside that adds extra absorbency, so I have to stuff the diapers with the insert after they are washed. Otherwise, they work just like disposable diapers! I grab one at a diaper change, snap it on (they have Velcro too which is even easier, but I prefer snaps), and the diaper is good for another 2-3 hours! Another thing people wonder about is if the diapers really come out clean. The majority of the time, I just have to put the diapers through the wash one time, and they come out looking white and fresh!

Easy 6-Step Process of Cloth Diapering:

1. Stuff the insert into the pocket diaper

2. Take the old diaper off and position the new one

3. Snap on the new diaper

4. Discard the old diaper into the pail liner or wet bag

5. Throw the diapers (1-3 days worth) and pail liner into the washer

6. Hang the diapers to dry (dry the inserts in the dryer)

Summary: I am so glad we decided to do cloth diapers! My husband bought disposables for a trip we took last week, and when he came home he said, “Do you know how much those cost?!” He couldn’t believe it. As a result, he told our friend last night that he was glad we use cloth. For my husband, the price is definitely what wins him. I love saving as well, but I admit I’m also addicted to the cuteness factor. My favorite two brands of cloth diapers are Bum Genius and Sunbaby. I have tried MANY brands, but Bum Genius is the best for their quality, fit, and appeal. Bum Genius diapers are GREAT quality and are my favorite nighttime diaper. They also have some beautiful colors and a few cute prints too! My absolute favorite website to buy cloth diapers and accessories from is I have bought a few new diapers as well as some used diapers from this site. This is where I buy my Bum Genius diapers, and I have gotten some really great quality ones from them for just $10! They also have excellent customer service, and they constantly have great deals in their clearance section and used section. We are in Bible school right now and hope to go into missions in a few years. Cotton Babies supports missionaries by giving them diapers, so I absolutely love supporting such a great company!

I wrote this blog entry because I love cloth diapers and would love to convert the whole world! But I also wrote it to get entered into a contest. One winner will be chosen, and the winner will receive 12 free Bum Genius diapers! One person who comments on the winner’s blog entry also received 12 free diapers!!! I’d love to help someone who is new to cloth diapering get 12 diapers, so comment below! (I am not receiving any compensation for writing this blog entry).

I have a Word document typed up with even more information about cloth diapers that I’d love to pass onto anyone who is interested that gives more information about specific brands, washing and cleaning routines, and sizing of diapers. Please leave comments if you have questions, would like more information, or simply love cloth diapering yourself!


  1. Ok Alisha, you do make this sound worth while. I always said I would transfer over to cloth diapers after I got the nursing stage down, and went through all the diapers I was given at a baby shower, and I passed both of those mile stones a few months ago. So... maybe it's time for me to make my first bum genius purchase, how many do you reccommend for a newbie? Plus what's nice about now is that there aren't any blow outs at all!! Love the fact the diapers aren't messy, don't love the fact that they smell a whole lot more! Can you email me the document at:

  2. Please share all you can with me! I'm very interested! We haven't had to buy any diapers yet bc we are still using the ones from our shower, but I'd love to be more educated on cloth :) kaila

  3. Great post! I love all of the things that you love about cloth diapering, and I'm also a fan of the same brands that you listed. It always takes me back when for whatever reason (usually a vacation) we use disposables for a while, how much they cost. I know that I've saved SO much money on cloth diapering. I'm on my second kid and I'm still using the diapers that I made for the previous one.

  4. I'm glad you're still happy with your decision; we're so glad we use cloth diapers, too! It was good to hear that it's only gotten easier for you guys. Also, that chart that you posted--I remember reading that number back when we started, but I had forgotten by now. Wow! We're saving so much money AND helping our environment! And I will say, though I'm a Smartipants diehard, those printed patterns are absolutely adorable!! I did a mini-series on our family blog about our experience with cloth diapering (thanks, James, for giving it over to me without a complaint! ;)) that you can read here:

  5. Alisha, this post is awesome! Even though we don't have kids yet, I'm completely sold on this idea. I've mentioned it to a few people and they think its gross...but I think it'd be awesome to save that much money!
    Thanks for the info!!


  6. What a great post Alisha. I am so glad you are enjoying using cloth diapers on Sophie, it is was so funny to read this, it was like listening to myself talk about diapers, LOL.

  7. Thanks so much for sharing, Alisha! Christa has been helping me as I've been "entering the world of cloth diapering", but it still has seemed so overwhelming to me (partly because our baby isn't born yet, so I haven't had a chance for any "hands on" yet :). But reading your blog was so helpful and makes me excited about going in this direction! :) Now I'm so pumped about looking for some good deals and getting our baby boy's diapers ready before he arrives! By the way, I loved all your pictures as well as your cost analysis of cloth vs. disposable diapers. I can't wait to show that chart to my husband! I think it will help me 'sell' the idea and concept of cloth diapering to him! Thanks again! Best wishes! <3 (P.S. Thanks, Christa, for referring me to this post! :)

  8. Thanks for this great post, Alisha! I really enjoy using cloth, too, for the reasons you listed. And pocket diapers really aren't much more work than disposables!

  9. Really appreciate the list..and it's got many of the reasons I'm glad to be able to finally CD my little one, even if it's #3.

  10. I like your six step photo selection. Creative. And I've never heard of Sunbaby diapers, I'll have to check them out on google sometime.

  11. Okay, the diaper in the top picture is soooooo cute! Thanks for the easy 6 step list you made, it makes cloth not seem scary or intimidating at all when you put it like that.

  12. Thanks for all of the responses!! I've passed on more information to several of you. If anyone else wants more information, please let me know :)

  13. i also got my husband on board by reminding him how much we save. whenever we go somewhere for a few days he suggests when we are at the store that we buy disposables, i say okay lets take a look and when he sees the prices of disposables he changes his mind and says "lets just bring the cloth..."

  14. My mom used cloth diapers on all 4 of us kids (born in 1988-1993)...she did it to save money and to be more green/natural. I have to say though, after reading your blog, cloth diapers have come a long way! Ours were all plain white (no cute patterns) and my mom used SAFETY PINS instead of snaps/velcro. :O I think snaps sound a little safer than that ;)

  15. Emily, they're definitely easier now, thank goodness! I don't think safety pins would be that much fun to use, especially with how much my daughter hates diaper changes!! Plus, I'm all for the cuteness factor!