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Saturday, March 1, 2014

Cloth Diaper Review - Newborn Version

I described my first experience with cloth diapering Jonah here.  He was about 25 pounds and 16 months or so when I started with him.  Everything in that post remains true, although I have switched to these Bummis bio-soft disposable liners because they are softer.  I have used both sizes.  The small works just fine because he has very solid poo that will stay on the liner.  The large would be better for the transition when baby begins eating solids and has those yucky mushy poos that may leak out if not contained.
Bummis liners

I also mentioned in that post that I had ordered some Sunbaby and Alva diapers, and I have been loving them both on Jonah!

I did not attempt to cloth diaper Karis until she was 3 weeks old.  People had given us newborn and size 1 disposable diapers enough to get us through the first 3 weeks, and my mom bought some disposable size 5 diapers for Jonah to help out so I wouldn't have to do any cloth diaper laundry right after we got home with the baby.  This worked really well for us.  I am very thankful for all the people who gave us the diapers!  Because I knew we were going to do that, I did not invest in any "newborn" size cloth diapers, like Little Joey's or anything, but I have heard they work well.   I have also not tried the cotton prefolds and covers yet because Karis pees so fast! We were told many times with Jonah "Watch out! Little boys will pee on you in heartbeat when you open their diapers!" However, this has only happened to me twice with Jonah in his entire life.  Karis has done it like eight times already, and she's only 6 weeks old.  I'm not ready to try to put a prefold on her fast enough.  We like our pocket diapers in this house!

At her 2 week check-up Karis weighed 9 pounds, 4 ounces, so I am guessing at 3 weeks she was in the upper end of 9 pounds.  This first Sunbaby picture was taken the day she turned 3 weeks, most of the rest are taken throughout that week.  Here's the low down:

Sunbaby Size 1:
3 Weeks/Sunbaby Size 1
6 Weeks/Sunbaby Size 1 - now she has an open snap in the middle!
I love these diapers!  For the cost, they are super cheap, less than $5 each, and extremely soft on the inner liner.  There are a ton of adorable prints to choose from, as well! They fit really well right off the bat.  I have them snapped up to the smallest size. I am amazed at the difference in just 3 weeks in how all of the diapers fit, but this brand still look the cutest.  Jonah is in the Sunbaby Size 2 diapers, and they seem to fit just like an Alva diaper, no complaints!

BumGenius (BG) One Size (OS) Pocket:
3 Weeks/BumGenius OS

3 Weeks/BumGenius OS

1 year, 26 pound Jonah, the same diaper, 3 week 9 pound Karis

This would be my next favorite for her after the Sunbaby diapers.  I like the way these fit her, although they do cost considerably more.  I was surprised that I didn't even have to snap them on the closest setting. I have them snapped up to the smallest size as well.  If I was advising someone to cloth diaper I would highly recommend these because this is the exact same diaper on Jonah from the last post.  They are very easy and "Dad-friendly" as well because they only have 2 snaps on each side, so it eliminates the third snap mental dilemma I see John go through when he changes the diapers. However, BG only sell solid colors that I have seen. No cute prints there. 

Alva One Size Pocket:
3 weeks/Alva OS
4 weeks/Alva OS

These work well, but they're slightly bigger than the above two brands, even using the overlapping snap.  She didn't seem uncomfortable in them, but who wants something down to your knees?  It's OK, she grew into them a little better.  By 4 weeks, we did not have to use the overlap anymore, and they don't look as big now.  Her baby acne was wreaking havoc, but her thighs sure were bulking up during Week 4-5! These also come in many cute prints!

Kawaii Bamboo Minky One Size Pocket:
3 Weeks/Kawii OS
3 Weeks/Kawaii OS

They fit like a size between the BG's and the Alva, but they are soooo soft inside and out!  They do seem very absorbent as well with their bamboo lining.  The longest sleep stretch she gives us right now is about midnight to 5 or 6 am, and I usually try to have one of these on her with a bamboo and a microfiber liner inside, or a BG.

Cheap Zulilly Diapers with a weird name I'd never heard of:
3 Weeks/Zulilly cheap-O
I am not impressed with these on either of my kids.  They have 2 snaps on each side, but they are horizontally placed, and this is not effective.  The 2 BG snaps are vertical and far more useful.  These look like they're always falling off of Jonah, and even on the smallest setting for Karis, they still seem too big and I have one unused snap that just sticks up in the air.  I do not recommend purchasing diapers with no name brand listed.  These had some tag with a word that began with an "ig" or "iq" that promptly fell off after a few washes, so I can't even tell you what it was.

For all of the diapers, during the daytime, I just use ONE insert for Karis or else they are just too bulky for her little frame right now.  I use mostly one bamboo insert, but we don't have quite enough and so some of her diapers have a microfiber insert.  Jonah still requires two (one bamboo, one microfiber) as mentioned toward the end of the first post.  She goes through more than double the diapers Jonah does daily.  An extra liner would not help with this because she just hates to even feel wet, and she pees and poos a lot! I  have to wash diapers every other day or she doesn't have any left.  The washer is completely full and she uses 20-24 diapers in that time frame while Jonah uses 9-12, depending on if he's left the house (we use disposable diapers in the diaper bag for ease of changing them in public).  

Winter has sort of changed my wash routine because line drying outside in the sun is impossible, and we keep the house set at 64, and the diapers just take too long to dry inside.  Drying them in the dryer doesn't seem to hurt them, but they don't ever smell fresh like they did when I line dried them.  I look forward to Spring and being able to let them sun dry again!  Right now I was them on a cold/cold cycle with 1/4 cup of vinegar every time, and about 5 drops of tea tree oil on the cloth tab on the Fuzzibunz wet bag.  After the cold wash/rinse, I do a hot/warm cycle and use the Seventh Generation detergent.  I use about 3/4 the cup full.  We have very hard water here.  I think if we had soft water I could use less detergent and they would smell better.  Sometimes I do an extra cold rinse after that if there are a lot of Jonah's diapers in there (his smell a lot worse when dirty - a lot more ammonia).  I have been pleasantly surprised that the breastfed baby poo does completely wash out! No disposable liners needed, no extra rinsing usually unless the washer is super packed.  A few times the liners have had a faint stain from the breastfed poo, but never the diapers themselves.  This confuses me a little.  As soon as I can line dry them I will treat with lemon juice + sun + extra rinse then wash, if the problem persists.

I hope that helps someone!  Again - they DO have cloth diapers for newborns, but I decided it wasn't worth the cost since she'd only be in them for a week or two.

If you're on the fence about cloth diapering though, this is a great explanation of why it's basically better long-term:

All the disposable diapers it saves

Disposable Vs. Cloth Debate

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