Beginners' Guide to Cloth Diapers

Beginners Guide to Cloth Diapers
Modern cloth diapering is not your grandma's safety pins and some wash cloths...or those ugly plastic pants at Wal Mart. Reusable diapers have come a long way, with a plethora of options. This is great, except it leaves parents feeling overwhelmed.

Cloth diapering can be a wonderful experience with the right information and tools. I have compiled some info to get you started.

Different Cloth Diaper Types

There are different types of cloth diapering options, because we love to make it overwhelming, right? No, really, it's just like there's a variety of disposable diapers. Every parent, baby, and lifestyle is unique and that's why there are so many options of cloth diapers. What's perfect for you might not be the right fit for your neighbor.

Overwhelmed by Cloth NappysAll In Ones

Also called AIOs.  AIOs are cloth diapers considered to share the most similarity to disposables. They're all one piece and most are somewhat customization because of a pocket option to add extra absorbency.


Pocket diapers are basically a "shell" of a diaper that has a pocket to put whatever inserts/absorbency you want in them.


Covers are PUL, waterproof diaper shells that you can use with folded prefolds or flats laid in them or with fitted underneath. You can typically reuse covers multiple times in one day by simply wiping out the shell and allowing it to dry.

Hybrids/All in Twos

Hybrid systems and AI2s are combination systems. The most popular are cover-like systems with snap in inserts, but there are other kinds that combine multiple cloth diaper options.

Related Post: 4 Reasons to Cloth Diaper

Washing Cloth Diapers

When it comes to cloth diapers, this is probably one of the biggest reasons we lose parents. People are often 'grossed out' by the thought of washing poopy diapers or completely overwhelmed with the often contradicting advice.

I wholeheartedly recommend Fluff Love University as a resource for washing cloth diapers. The website also has a plethora of other information and a facebook group where you can live feedback!

For a beginner, here are some important and relevant cloth diaper washing facts:
  • You do not need to rinse out diapers of exclusively breastfed babies. Breastmilk poo is water soluble.
  • Older toddler poo often rolls right off into the toilet without you having to rinse the diaper.
  • Fabric softener is not cloth diaper friendly.
  • Homemade detergent is a no go.
Related Post: 6 Ways Babies Benefit from Babywearing

Start Cloth Diapering

Buying Cloth

You can buy cloth diapers used on facebook buy, sell, trade groups like Cloth Diaper Swap or on You can buy new cloth diapers from a variety of places online and, if you're lucky, a local retailer. Places like Kelly's Closet and Diaper Junction are good starting places.

So, now you have some info to get you started. I hope you're not feeling too overwhelmed. Feel free to drop a comment or question and I'll do my best to answer!

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