The pros and cons of using cloth diapers…

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I don’t remember when and where I first heard about cloth diapers.  Nor do I remember the exact moment I decided to use them for our baby.  But somehow I was exposed and decided to do it before she was even born.  We have some friends that use them so I was able to see them in person and ask questions.  Plus, I did a TON of research on the internet.  My husband was on board from the start and has no trouble diapering.  Here’s my list of pros and cons of using cloth diapers:

Pros

  1. Saving money – it’s true that the initial cost is more, but over time the savings really adds up.  I haven’t done the math myself; however, I read other articles from people who have.  I am taking their word for it because it makes sense.  Disposables can get expensive.  And I can reuse the cloth ones with each baby.  We also use cloth wipes which saves us more money!
  2. Environmental – we’re not adding to the landfill.  From what I’ve read, diapers take a long time to decompose.  It’s one small thing to make me feel like I’m doing something good for the planet.
  3. So Cute – the diapers are adorable!  I love all the different colors and styles.  I had a lot of fun picking them out.
  4. Convenient – I never have to make a mad dash to the store for diapers.  We don’t run out.  I have a good supply; so even when I need to wash them, I still have some back-ups.
  5. Hardly any “blow-outs” – I got some disposables one time for traveling and every time she pooped, there was an explosion.  That doesn’t happen with cloth diapers – maybe once or twice – but rarely.
  6. Lots of options – cloth diapers have evolved since the days of pinning.  I don’t own any diaper pins because I don’t need them.  The all-in-ones are so easy.  I bought a lot of different styles and brands so I could figure out my favorites.  There are also great hybrid versions which are great for traveling.  Both my husband and I love the brand GroVia.
  7. Easy to use –  I hardly had to show my husband or babysitter how to use them.  They both asked me a few questions, but pretty much figured it out on their own.  In fact, the babysitter didn’t know about cloth diapers when she started with us, but recently told me she wants to use them one day when she has kids!
  8. Fewer rashes – I don’t have much to compare with here.  Zoe has sensitive skin so she does get mild redness from time to time; however, we haven’t had any major problems.
  9. Easier potty training – so I’ve heard…I don’t have first hand experience with this yet.  I’ll let you know when I’m there.
  10. Great support – I’ve found a bunch of awesome on-line resources to turn to when I have questions.  There’s a huge community of cloth diapering families out there so I never feel alone.  The DiaperShop.com fb page is my favorite.

Fluffy Butt

Cons

  1. Extra Laundry – it wasn’t bad when we had our own washer/dryer, but now that we share – it’s not as cool.  For some odd reason I actually like doing laundry, but with a baby I’m already doing more laundry in general.  With cloth diapers, I’m doing 2 – 3 extra loads a week.  Thankfully, laundry is free where we live.  Furthermore, it’s the one thing my husband won’t do when it comes to our baby… he did it once, then realized he had to unstuff the dirty pocket diapers and said never again…
  2. Overwhelming at first – I mentioned above that I did a TON of research in the beginning.  I spent hours and hours learning about the difference between all-in-ones and pockets, the best brands, etc.  It was a little confusing, but now that I have the hang of it, it’s no big deal.
  3. Nighttime leaking – just lately she’s been leaking some nights.  We’ve tried a bunch of different things, but I think she just has a bladder like her mama.  I’ve read that it’s a common issue and I’ll continue to trouble-shoot.
  4. Upfront investment – I did go a little crazy in the beginning because it was so fun shopping for the diapers.  I may have spent more than most and know I could have done it for less money, but I’m very happy with my stash.  The more you have, the less laundry you have to do and the longer they last.

The pros far out way the cons, though I may be a little biased.  But I wanted to show that it’s not a perfect system.  There certainly has been frustration with the leaking.  It can take a while to find a nighttime solution since there are so many possibles causes and fixes.  All-in-all, it works for our family and I am continually happy with the decision!  Once I saw how cute they look on Zoe, there was no turning back!

I love the colors!

2 Comments

  1. um yeah….cloth diapers and babylegs to me, are a very expensive obsession! I have tried covers and prefolds, AIOs, sleeves (smartipants-love that the insert removes itself in the wash!) and pockets, etc. We had some leaking issues as well, some of it was fit (changing from chubby thighs to leaning out, or vice versa) Do you have any bamboo inserts? I had 2 and it is true, they definitely absorb a LOT. And liners, do you use them? I LOVE liners. They’re biodegradable and flushable, like a soft dryer sheet look to them, so you can just pick up the pooped on liner and flush/toss, instead of having to shake, spray, etc. the diaper.

    • I remembered you told me about Babylegs when I was pregnant, so I got a whole bunch when they were having a 75% sale. But I always forget to use them!

      Yes, we have some bamboo inserts – and they are great. I think the leaking at night was from a few different things. I just avoid those diapers now. And the prefolds and covers have seemed to be fine so far.

      And yes, we got liners. They are great! I got them on Babysteals – one of my first purchases!

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