I have an issue with urine on my diapers sometimes, so I have to buy disposables for occasional use. (I always use 7th Generation and get them from Diapers.com...see my sidebar, if interested.) Diapers are so expensive and I'm JUST using them for nighttime use. I cannot imagine buying them all the time.
I just LOVE cloth diapers.
These diapers are not your mother's diapers. These diapers are more like disposables. They are easy to use and easy to clean. I know what you are thinking, you want me to do what with the poop??? NOTHING. Seriously. You never have to touch poop. I give you my word, you will touch more poop (from blowouts) in disposables than you EVER will in cloth. You don't HAVE to swish, swipe or eat. (TOO MUCH?) You just have to drop it in a pail or cloth bag and then later in the washer. (If you are a Duggar, just reserve a washing machine for diapers. Yes, Michelle reads my blog, faithfully, every day. What?) As they get older and (EWW!) their poop gets chunky (told you it was about to get EWW!) open up the diaper over the toilet and flush. That's it...completely hands off.
First let's have a little tutorial for those cloth diaper newbies who may be reading. Please remember that this is just my opinion and everyone will have different results.
There are 4 basic kinds of cloth diapers: prefolds, AIO's, fitteds with covers, pockets.
Prefolds-These are your mothers diapers. They are just the soft cotton square/rectangular diapers that you lay baby on and fold up. Now they make Snappis to fasten them with so you don't have to use pins. These come in basically one or two colors; white and off-white. But you can tie dye them or color them.
Advantages: CHEAP, you choose absorbency
Disadvantages: time consuming to put on, several steps, bulky
AIO's-These are almost exactly like disposables (sposies for the cloth diaper snob like myself). They either snap or velcro. One step and you are done. These Berry Plush are especially soft and comfortable and cute. Every print and fabric imaginable can be found. These are best for short periods of time or when you feel lazy.
Advantages: quick, simple, slim
Disadvantages: can't choose absorbency
Fitteds with covers: The first diaper is either snaps or velcro and goes under a cover. These must have a cover or they will get the clothing wet. They come in various fabrics and designs, as will the covers. Usually the covers are plain, but as you can see in the picture, they aren't all plain. These are Kissaluvs (one of my faves) and Gen Y covers. I've never actually used the Gen Y cover but if this next baby is a girl, I am FOR SURE getting some. (You know how people say they just want a healthy baby and don't really care whether it's a boy or girl. Well that AIN'T me. I want a boy. But I'll be nice to it if it's a girl.) These diapers are so pretty. And did I mention that's one of the main reasons I love cloth? It's like buying clothes. (Except these clothes will eventually get peed in and pooped on making them not quite as fun.)
Advantages: ease of use, can choose absorbency
Disadvantages: two steps, can be bulky
Pockets: These are great for overnight and car rides. There is every imaginable print or fabric. These are Blueberries which is a wonderful brand and one of my faves. Blueberries are fantastic at all stages and sizes...they make fitted for newborns and they are THE BEST newborn diaper. They also make AIO's.
Advantages: Lasts all night because you customize absorbency, they usually grow with baby a little better than other kinds
Disadvantages: STUFFING them gets tedious, dads hands can be too big (I kind of assume your husbands hands are bigger than yours and that they aren't freakishly small like mine.)
With cloth diapers there are "name brands" and then there are "generic brands". Name brands are Bum Genius, Fuzzi Bunz, Kissaluvs and there are other brands (but that would be boring to list), which are made by bigger companies and get national advertising. Generic brands are the work at home diapers like Loving, Caring, Anointed, and Kuddly Kreations. Basically moms who work from home to make a little extra money.
There are LOTS of places to buy diapers but let me suggest the three places I do most my buying: Abby's Lane, Diaper Swappers, Kelly's Closet. (Which is over in my sidebar and gives me a little kickback...which reminds me to do my plug...don't forget to click on my ads...I make millions, or more like, pennies...but 100 pennies is a dollar...for those who don't know math.)
Abby's Lane and Kelly's Closet sell new diapers of all the name brands. Diaper Swappers is a mother to mother forum used to sell and trade diapers. There you can buy every conceivable diaper for a reasonable price. You DO run the risk of getting a diaper past it's prime. BUT I have not receive any I could not use for a long time. Almost without fail, the diapers I have received have been exactly as described. (Minus a poop stain or two...kidding, just kidding, but you know someone else has pooped in a used diaper. Just try not to think about it.)
I suggest trying out many different kinds and styles of diapers to find what you like. Every diaper will fit babies differently. And what you like for one baby may not work for another. (If you decide to get diapers from any place I've recommended will you just mention my name in case they give referral bonuses? I could use new diapers, and hey, you never know!)
This post has already gotten extremely long but I did warn you. (Are you still there?) I hope you will ask any questions you have. I have now been using cloth diapers for three years and plan to always use them, even with the urine issues. If you have a question I can't answer, I have many, many friends who make, sell, and USE cloth diapers. And we'll find you an answer.
What about you? Have you ever considered using cloth? Why or why not?
Don't forget to check back in the comments as we discuss the pros and cons.
(And as always, I reply to every comment and visit every blog and comment on the comments. Just come back and be ready to be amazed!)