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Cloth Diapering 101

Type of Diaper Photo Description Price
Prefold This is your basic cloth diaper. It is rectangular and thicker in the middle than on the sides. You can fold these diapers to make them appropriate for use on newborns and, unfolded, they can be used as baby grows, often up until potty training. These tend to be more affordable, and are generally sold in packets of 12. Remember, though, these must be used with diaper covers. $2 to $5
Contour Now we’re dealing with more design and, therefore, more convenience.  There is no folding involved here. These diapers are shaped much like disposables. They have thick padding in the middle for added protection. With contours, like with prefolds, you generally need to pin them and use diaper covers.  You will need to buy more than one size throughout your baby’s diaper days.  $6 to $7
Pull-Up Pants Thanks to advancements in technology and awareness, these pants are now available in alternatives to plastic. Polyurethane-laminated cloth keeps baby’s clothes dry. You will need a variety of sizes as baby grows.  $6 to $15
Wraps These covers combine an outer waterproof shell with a soft cotton lining.  They fasten with Velcro or with buttons. Unlike with the pull-ups, you do not need to use pins on your prefolds with wraps. Simply fold your cloth diaper and place it in the wrap. You will need to buy several pairs as your baby grows. $6 to $15
Wool Wraps and Pants Wool is naturally water-resistant, neutralizes urine, and lasts longer than other covers. As exciting as this is, it is also quite a bit more expensive. $10 to $40
Fitted These diapers have elasticized legs and waistbands and fasten with Velcro or snaps. You will need to purchase at least two sizes to fit your baby through his or her diapering days. That being said, you can find fitted diapers that can be adjusted to fit newborns through toddlers. You will need to pair these with diaper covers. These diapers make for a good deal in the long-run. $8 to $20
All-in-One Often referred to as AIO diapers, they pair a soft cloth, fitted diaper with an attached waterproof cover. These are an especially convenient option for outings, daycare, and traveling. These are often considered the most convenient cloth option available. $10 to $25
Pockets These diapers, like the AIO, consist of an outer waterproof layer and an inner soft, fitted diaper, often of microfleece. The two components are sewn together, but a pocket is left open in the back. A special absorbent layer is inserted into the pocket. This can be a specially made insert, a prefold diaper or even a rag. This allows the parent to adjust the absorbency of the material of the diaper according to need.  $15

How to Clean Cloth Diapers:

  1. Remove solid waste from the diapers by shaking it off in the toilet.
  2. Add water to the diaper pail and ½ cup of baking soda or vinegar.
  3. Soak the diapers until you're ready to wash them.
  4. When ready to do laundry, dump the soiled water.
  5. Put diapers in washing machine.
  6. Fill with cold water and add 1/2 cup baking soda. It neutralizes the urine and helps whiten the diapers.
  7. If possible, allow diapers to soak for a while or even overnight. A pre-wash cycle also works well for this step.
  8. Then, wash the diapers in hot water using a mild detergent on a regular cycle.
  9. Rinse the diapers in cold water. You can add vinegar to the rinse cycle by pouring it down the fabric softener compartment to help make      diapers softer and fresher.
  10. Check for stains. It's a lot easier to get them out if you catch them before they set.
  11. Some people soak their diapers for 2-3 minutes in a disinfectant solution. This could be a tea tree oil solution.
  12. Place the diapers in the dryer and dry on high heat or place in indirect sunlight to dry.



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Green Options › Shopping Guides › Cloth Diapering 101