Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Cloth Diapers: My Approach



I just wanted to add a couple things about how I went about choosing these various diapers, and why.  Because there are certainly MANY MANY MANY other brands out there that I did not try!  These thoughts crossed my mind as things that you, the internet reader, might want to know.

* Through my research I decided at the outset that I mostly wanted pocket types (which did prove to be my favorite!). I didn't want the alleged long drying times of AIOs (all-in-ones), nor the super high price of fitteds that would still need a cover, too.  Not being patient, I knew I wouldn't be doing any prefold wrapping/snappis/pinning.  And I wanted to be able to put ANY insert in ANY diaper -- so the all-in-twos had potential compatibility issues that I didn't want to deal with. Since I was going all cloth, I didn't consider any of the disposable liners like with g Diapers.  I wanted everything to be reusable! (I've also read that flushing some of that stuff is actually pretty bad, and even eco-disposable-liners still have chemical yuck in them.)

* My mindset was "you get what you pay for", so I pretty much went for pricier diapers, not the cheap knockoffs.  I was careful in my selections and tried to stick to a budget at first.  But then, experience (need more of a certain type!) and obsession (ooh, it's so cute, too!  Need a rainbow of color!) did push me to buy more.  Most of the diapers I got were in the $14-18 range. I think twenty and up is pushing it for the price of a diaper, but I do have a few of those, too.  I have a couple Kawaii (knockoff) diapers -- because reviews on those were positive -- that have held up well, but I was too wary of leaks/falling apart/poor quality to get cheap diapers overall.

* I went with established brands.  At first I did look at some WAHM (work at home mom) made diapers, but again, I chickened out on actually buying them.  The fabric selections, wait times, weird "restocking" schedules, etc. scared me away.  I wanted to be able to a) read tons of reviews on a brand, and b) get more, reliably, if need be.  Now that I'm 2 years into the diapering process, I am way more open to indie/homemade diapers, and have purchased a couple.  But if I had to do it over, I still wouldn't base my stash on indie makers, unless I found someone who was really good.  My friend did make me two diapers (the blue/green spotted one and owl one in the above photo), which were awesome -- and of course now I'm contemplating making cloth diapers myself (whee!) -- but anyhow, starting out I went for the big brands.  I think what makes a brand "big", though, is different from person to person, as there are so many out there!

* I'm really glad I went for the variety approach.  There really are situations when you want different options. The fit on Eleanor changed over time -- for example, the Smartipants fit great for a long time, went through a phase of leaking because her leg had changed shape somehow, and then fit awesome again later on, until we had to retire them as being too small.  Also, sometimes you want diapers that are easily triple-stuffed for nighttime (Mommy's Touch), or that will reliably hold everything in when you go out (Rumparooz), or that are easy for nursery school to use (Bum Genius -- we have a bunch of those, so consistency won out there).  Suffice it to say, if I had bought 24 of one type, hoping to cover all situations, I'd have been pretty screwed.  On the flip side, I probably didn't need so many types, but I had to learn my favorites by using them!

* I tried to buy diapers that were made in the USA or Canada.  A lot of them are!  With cloth diapers having so many positive attributes, why not add another to the pile? :)  And again, more recently, I've supported some indie makers right here in WA!

More reviews to come!  Yay!

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