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Must Have's for getting started with cloth diapers

Posted by Bert on 9/12/2013 to Cloth Diaper How-To
Recently I've had a few expectant moms ask me what I would suggest when it comes to cloth diapering. Since I've only cloth diapered two babies I can tell you that I'm definitely cloth diaper sprayer not an expert when it comes to experience, I am, however, very well researched since I write about it frequently. Without further ado, I give to you my cloth diaper must haves before the baby comes:

The Diaper Sprayer - Is it absolutely essential for you to purchase a diaper sprayer? No, however, I will argue that it will be one of the best purchases you will make during your cloth diapering journey. I like to call it a necessary luxury and believe that it will enhance your chance of success. Plus, you can clean your screens with it (trust me I've tried!).
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Kelly Wels' Changing Diapers Book - This is a real gem for the cloth diaper world. Kelly has easily laid out many aspects of cloth diapering from the various types of diapers to troubleshooting problems. It's an easy read with big font!

Diaper Pail Liners & Wet Bags - I have a Planet Wise large wet bag in my guest bathroom that serves its purpose for the diapers that get changed on our main level. Then I have a Thirsties pail liner (yes, it's awesome!) upstairs that I use in my dry pail. One wet bag is always in my car, just in case the one I have in my purse is forgotten diaper packages,deals,cloth diaper kits at home.

A Trial Set of Diapers - In Kelly Wels' book she talks about not sticking to one kind of cloth diaper. It was the first time that I had heard that suggestion and I have to agree. I used bumGenius 3.0's exclusively with my son. Then when I started writing about cloth diapers I was introduced to so many other kinds of diapers that I didn't even consider before because I was intimidated by them. After being forced to give them a try, including prefolds, I found that I really liked other kinds of diapers more than I liked pocket diapers. I think that the beauty in a trial program like what we have here at the store is that you can test out so many different kind of diapers and decide what you'd like to have.

You'll probably notice that I did not choose a specific brand or type of diaper that you must have. The reason why is because every child  is different and every home situation is different. What works for one child may not work for another.

Do you have any other suggestions for someone who's starting out with cloth diapers?



Kimberly Rimrodt
Date: 9/13/2013
I would suggest getting "stashing up" gradually: get what you can afford when you can afford it. I started by buying a pack of flats one payday. A wool cover the next. Over the next couple months, I made another wool cover (Just TRY to find the time when wrangling a crawler, LOL!). Then I got another pack of flats. Then a couple swim diapers. Then some PUL covers. You don't have to get it all at once. You can make your own, but you don't have to.
Date: 9/13/2013
A diaper sprayer is a definite must! And a Spray Pal!
Kim H
Date: 9/16/2013
When we started I followed none of these, but would have appreciated the advice! We just recently were given a diaper sprayer (oldest is 20 months). So for the last year & half we have been using the dunk method, which isn't as nice but it does the job! We also only bought prefolds & wraps because of economics, so we haven't tried anything else, but have had amazing success with them & our limited knowledge!
Melissa C.
Date: 9/16/2013
We have made it a year and a half without a sprayer and still going strong :-)
Date: 9/17/2013
I'm with you Melissa C. -- no diaper spray being used for over a year now. We have one that was given to us but just have not needed it. We just flip anything off into the toilet then spray the rest into a bucket in the shower with the shower sprayer then soak them for an hour or so.
Maggie Martin
Date: 9/22/2013
I don't really think any of those are must haves. Most people I know who cloth diaper do it to save money and they don't have a lot of it to spare. I think all of those items are " luxury" items. We bought a cheap but cute garbage pail thing with a lid at Wal-Mart to store dirty diapers in, no pail liner. We used plastic grocery bags in the diaper bag for a wet bag. At the time we had basically no spending money so we got super cheap diapers (prefolds and covers, half of which were given to us by a dear friend.) you can build your stash and try new diapers when you can afford it and if you even want to, there is nothing wrong with only using and liking one kind. Right after they pooped we swished poopy diapers in the toilet and then rinsed them off under the bathtub faucet and it worked great. All off the items you listed are nice to have, although I don't have the book. We only recently aquired a diaper sprayer and wetbag after a few years of already using cloth. Still don't have a pail liner. I'd say the must haves are; a baby, any cloth diapers you want/ can afford, something to store dirty ones in, something to put dirty ones in while out and about, and cloth wipes ( although we didn't have those until my second we just rinsed off my 1st in the bath under the faucet) you can use anything for a while, a wash cloth, one of those cheap receiving blankets cut up, or but then for pretty cheap. Cloth safe detergent and cloth safe diaper cream. Those are my must haves.
Date: 1/13/2014
I'll agree with Maggie that most of these would be nice but they are by no means essentials.
Katie M
Date: 1/17/2015
I don't have any suggestions since I'm starting out cloth diapering when little one comes next month but these are great tips. I already have the cloth diapering book and it has been so enlightening because researching all the information can be overwhelming at first.

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