Friday, July 8, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: Ragababe Easy AIO, Small (newborn)

Yes, I love Ragababe diapers like everyone else!  I got pre-loved ones to try, because it's (still?) exceedingly difficult to buy them new from the Ragababe shop. (They sell out in minutes . . . seconds?)
Images are mine from listing to sell
I actually scored a couple new size Larges for C. at a stocking recently (a future post!), but when I was first wanting to try this brand that everyone raves about, I looked on Spots' Corner for sure!

(Side note: what is happening with the crickets at Spots lately?  It appears all the action is over at ClothDiaperTrader . . . can anyone comment with reasons why Spots is so dead?  Is it just that Rags are slightly more available currently? Does this bode ill for Hyenacart as a whole?? I want to start my shop there, but not if nobody's using it anymore!)

The first diaper to fit Miss C. (of a few Ragababes I got) was the size Small AIO.  I think I tried it on her at one week/8 lbs.-ish (after her cord was gone) and I loved it!  It was just like my beloved BumGenius Small AIOs -- I was always sad changing her out of it and waiting through a wash until I could put it back on her.

How can you not love the cuteness of the star, of course, and I think it was my mom who commented that it was C's "little goth diaper"!  Ha ha ha!



The long, stretchy wings are great; they give a great fit.  The stay-dry lining is great.  Absorbency is great!!  Unlike most of the other newborn diapers that failed on absorbency before failing on size, this one kept absorbing until around 9 weeks/13+ pounds (gasp!  Longer than the BG Smalls!!) but my long-torso girl outgrew it.  The rise was too short and it wasn't covering her bum!  But then again, it's a Small and that is what the next size up is for!

A note about sized diapers: This time around, I REALLY LIKE SIZED DIAPERS.  For little little babies, some of the snapped-down one-sizes are still ridiculously big and poufy/bunchy.  It is so nice to have a trim diaper that just fits the size a baby is at!

I ended up preferring the Ragababe AIOs more than their 2-Steps.  The 2-Steps had too many "moving parts" with the snap-in pads, and the AIO was basically perfect.  The only "issue" was that you can't really add anything to the tiny size Small pocket . . . but I didn't need to!

Also, they dry magically fast!  No needing to turn inside out or leave it overnight on the back of the couch.

Here is a bonus tip:  Ragababe has either added to the confusion, or made things less confusing (I'm still not sure) by naming their sizes Small, Medium, Large, XL for their AIOs, and Size 1, 2, and 3 for their 2-Steps.  I had a lot of confusion when I was trying to decipher the used listings!

Anyway, yes, Ragababe AIO diapers are pretty fantastic.

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: Thirsties Duo AIO size 1 (newborn)

Yet another discontinued diaper that served me well for Miss C!  I got a TON of these from a friend with twins (thanks again, J!) and ended up giving them to another friend.
Image from Thirsties

The Thirsties Duo AIO size 1, was, in essence, a newborn diaper for my girl.  I used them on her on the smallest snap-down at one week old! (8 lbs.-ish)  After 2 weeks old, there was no need to snap it down anymore.  The company says it's meant to fit from 6-18 lbs., but we certainly didn't get close to that!

My friend had warned me she had absorbency issues with these, so I did what I had advised her to do: stuff the "tunnel" with a thin hemp booster.  We did this at around 10 lbs. and it worked for a while.  Also, a Ragababe liner fit in the tunnel perfectly!

The tunnel was a novel idea, but it didn't always dry thoroughly and needed some inside-out airing.

By just over 11 lbs. (just over 1 month), Miss C. was maxing out the absorbency even with a booster, and they were getting snug.  Time to retire! Around this time we brought out some of our one-size diapers.

This was great to have on hand (and in such quantity) so I could have all AIOs, and they did their job while they fit.  I didn't like having to stuff them with an extra loose piece, though -- because then it's hardly more than a pocket.  Anyway, now Thirsties makes a One-Size AIO (which I will review in the future!) and that design worked a lot better.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: BumGenius 3.0 Small AIO (discontinued)

Ah, the BumGenius Small AIO: the best diaper!!!  Too bad they discontinued it awhile back!  It's the perfect size between newborn diapers and one-sizes.

Photos are mine from listing to sell
According to the company, these were made to fit from 8-16 lbs.  I found that it was still too big right at the beginning, but it definitely fit at just under 10 lbs. -- the 3-week mark -- right when C. was outgrowing the BumGenius Newborns!

With Big Sister, I had ONE of these diapers.  Just one!  (A light pink one that was on clearance at the Cottonbabies store.) Remember, I was trying to be economical with prefolds and covers back then?  I loved that little AIO, though.  I remember being sad when I had to change it and wait to put it on E. again!  It just fit so well and was SO EASY.


Well, for Baby Sister, my friend gave me a whole bunch of BG Smalls that she had used for her son! (Thank you, E.!)  I was so excited to now have 12 of them!  And sure enough, they were a favorite the second time around.  Here is what I like about these:

* They fit for that tricky time between newborn size being too small and one-sizes still being laughably huge.
* They have a pocket so you can feel if the microfiber is actually dry out of the dryer, AND if it's still damp, you can turn it inside-out for more air-dry time.
* Comfortable for baby!  Nice fit on a small bum -- roomy but not gappy or bunchy or poufy.  Also trim.
* They fit for a long time!!  These easily fit C. from 3 weeks to 8 weeks (about 13 lbs.).  Then they maxed out on absorbency.  (Thanks to the pocket, we were adding a Ragababe liner for a bit of a boost, but I finally had to retire them.  I sold the whole lot to a good home!)

Actually, I still have the pink one! You can tell I'm a crazy cloth enthusiast because I couldn't part with it!




Why did they discontinue this diaper??  If you have the chance to nab some of these used, go for it!  It is a much better choice than the BG newborns/Littles.

No matter; when I get my shop up and running, I will offer a diaper for this same convenient size range. :)

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: BumGenius Newborn AIO

I ended up with some BumGenius Newborns (now called "Littles" I guess) from a friend passing them on -- more like back -- from a gift I had given her!  Yay, cloth!  (Thank you, J!)  I think I may have stumbled on 1-2 of these at the consignment shop, too.

Photos are mine from listing to sell
These fit the bill for the convenience of newborn AIOs, but I surprised myself by not liking them all that much.  They fit C. right away, but without a cord snap-down, they were no good at first!  (The company description that they fit low under the cord is A LIE.)  I only used them when the cord fell off -- and even then I tried folding them down a bit and it was awkward.  The velcro was very stiff and scratchy and hard to fold.

She started saturating them around 2.5 weeks.  No leaks, though, but a bit of stink and need for more thorough cleaning.  I don't like how they are "sealed" shut; PUL-microfiber-suedecloth -- there's no way to feel if it needs more drying time out of the dryer.  I often set them out overnight just in case.





They are supposed to fit 6-12 lbs.  At just under 10 lbs. she was done with them.  Technically they still fit but it was tight and they were sopping.  Thankfully I had other more effective and cute options!

Also at that time, she started fitting the BumGenius Small AIOs.  Those fit soooo much nicer (roomy!) and for longer!  You could also feel if they didn't get all the way dry in the dryer and could turn them inside out to dry.  Too bad they have discontinued the smalls! (Don't worry; I'm planning on making a similar size diaper when I get my shop up and running!)

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: WonderWorks Baby

I got these diapers via Spots' Corner.  They were fairly ancient-feeling, but they held up!  They didn't have a cord snap-down, so I sort of folded them.  This brand is long gone (I think), but I like to be thorough!

Images are mine from listing to sell


They fit Baby Sister right away, and they're a good example of "stash fillers" for me.  I really, really wanted to have the ease of newborn AIOs instead of prefolds and covers!!  I loved it.  I would advise anyone to get as many newborn AIOs as you can (whatever brand) -- they just make life EASY!

And with the second child, your life is hard enough as it is, am I right?  My motives totally changed from "trying to be frugal" with E. to "trying to make life as CALM and stress-free as possible" with C.!  Also I knew I loved cloth, so buying more diapers?  Not a problem.


Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: Muttaqin Baby Newborn AIO

This Muttaqin Baby Newborn AIO was another hidden-PUL woven-outer and blue stay-dry inner diaper!  It fit Miss C. really well and I just loved that smiling sun.

Photos are mine from listing to sell


This fit from birth through just under 10 lbs (at 3 weeks).  Just like the Doodle Dypes, it began wicking/leaking (because of the hidden PUL with cotton outer, and maxing out the absorbency) before she physically outgrew it.



Apparently Muttaqin Baby has gone out of business (??), which is too bad because this was a great diaper!

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: Doodle Dypes Newborn AIO

The Doodle Dypes newborn AIO was another super cute, soft, well-fitting diaper for Miss C.!  I had her in newborn cloth right away after coming home (so from 2 days on).  Another difference from diapering big sister E. is that this time around, I was super curious to try WAHM styles (and I knew where to get pre-loved diapers at a discount!).

All images are mine (from listing for sale)
It had the cord snap-down and stay-dry interior.  Is there anything cuter than a newborn cloth diaper (aside from of course the newborn herself)?!  They certainly make the newborn look even that much cuter!





Miss C. outgrew this diaper at 3 weeks and just under 10 pounds.  Again, it still fit her, but didn't have the absorbency and it leaked.  Because this had a hidden PUL with woven cotton, I think that contributed to the leaking.


I got some other, larger Doodle Dypes that I liked a lot, but that is a future post!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister: GroVia Newborn AIO

The Grovia newborn AIO was the first cloth diaper I put on Baby Sister, when she was 2 days old and home from the birth center! Awww! :)

These images are mine (from listing them for sale)
Aside from this print being ridiculously cute, I loved the fit on C. It was soft, teeny-tiny, had a snap-down for the cord, stay-dry lining, and attached soaker for quick drying.  Everything a newborn diaper should be!



I was glad to have some newborn AIOs this time around, since I had learned with big sister that prefolds and covers are not my favorite.  I got this diaper on clearance somewhere (Grovia makes them slightly differently now, I think with turned instead of serged legs) and I am glad I got to use it!

Little Miss C. fit this diapers until 2 weeks and about 9 pounds.  Then she exceeded the absorbency!  This is a trend on ALL diapers for her, I have discovered.  They may still FIT her, but she out-wets them.  Sigh!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Baby Sister! Intro!

OK, so if you've been reading this blog, you know that yes, I had another baby upon whose bum to place delightful, fluffy cloth diapers!  Now this baby is almost a year and a half old, and the cloth is going strong.

Some of sister's newborn stash

I did some things differently with Baby Sister, and some things the same.  I mean, I already had my whole stash from E., so I was good to go!  But I got some diapers as gifts, started sewing my own, and my preferences changed a bit so I bought new types to try.  Also, Baby Sister is of course a different person, so fit and function was/is a bit different with what I already had.

Gotta love those BumGenius Small AIOs on the right!

In these upcoming reviews, I will tell you all about my experiences cloth diapering my second child!

Sunning at our old house (we moved!)

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Cloth Diapers: CLEANUP! Bum creams, Wipes, etc.

I wanted to post about my cloth diaper "cleanup routine" and what worked for us.  It's true that if you're already using cloth diapers, cloth wipes naturally come next.  We did use the "natural" throwaway wipes from Costco (hubby prefers them), but we also had (and still have, with Baby Sister!) cloth wipes in the mix.  For, shall we say, lighter jobs, I think cloth is definitely the way to go.

Wipes

For E., we just used a pack of baby washcloths from Babies R Us.  They did the job fine, but in retrospect it could have been better.  They were super floppy, not all that soft, and I could never fold them neatly so they just ended up scattered all over the place.

Image from Lover Of Life Designs
For Baby Sister (C!), I got these amazing flannel cloth wipes from Lover Of Life Designs (mini size) -- they are the PERFECT SIZE!  (I also got some from MooCowMomma, I think her 4x5 size, but now she doesn't seem to have what I bought, which was a pack of only maybe 8-10 of them.)  The L.O.L.D. minis are 2-ply, and fun with different prints on the front and the back, and did I mention they are the PERFECT SIZE?!  Oh, how I wish I had found these for E!  Soft, durable, CLEANS WELL.  You can clean your baby with any old scrap of cloth, but these are MADE to do that particular job, and that just improves the whole routine.

Image from Lover Of Life Designs
(By the way, I also got lovely Unpaper Towels for the kitchen in a slightly bigger size from Lover Of Life, as well.  You can pick which prints you want!  I keep them in a stack (or a big bowl), each folded in half, and use as I would paper towels. When done, I toss them in my Monkey Foot Designs wet bag that hangs by my sink!  When I remember, I dump it into whatever load of regular laundry I'm already doing.  I'm SO GLAD I went down the unpaper towel route; they work SO MUCH BETTER than paper towels, especially for wiping up a wet counter after you've cleaned it.  Also as napkins. We still have a roll of paper towels around, but I cringe each time I use one and throw it away -- which is rare now!)

OK, back to the topic at hand.

Wipes Solution/ "The Spritz"

I bought a little travel size spray bottle at a drug store, and here is my magic formula for the wipes spray!

Squeeze in some alcohol-free witch hazel (yes, alcohol-free!  Do you want to sting your baby's bum?  NO!!) to within an inch or half-inch of the top of the bottle.  With E. I was using The Homestead Company, but I found Thayer's for C.  Thayer's seems to be essentially the same, but cheaper.

Image from Amazon.com

Image from Amazon.com

(By the way, the Homestead Lavender/Chamomile P.M. formula is luxuriously nice to use on your face before bed.  I had to try it, and I'm glad I did!)

Next, squirt in a quarter-inch of CJ's BUTTer Spritz!

Image from CJ's BUTTer

It is oil so it will float on the top.  Put back the spray cap.  Done!  Before each use, just shake it.  I personally spray it on the baby, but some people spray it on the wipe, then wipe the baby.  I'm pretty sure it doesn't matter, ha ha!  I like that just from spritzing, I'm also stealthily applying some CJ's at the same time!

Bum Cream

What is this CJ's BUTTer I speak of?
Image from CJ's BUTTer
It is the ONLY bum cream I have ever used on my babies, and since it's proven to be super effective, come in fun scents, and be 100% cloth diaper safe, I've never seen a reason to try anything else!  Call me crazy, I know! ;)  Over time, CJ's has reduced their number of scents (WHYYYY?), but Nicki's Diapers carries "exclusive" scents and CJ's also has a "scent of the month".  I used to buy sampler pack after sampler pack to try all the fun scents in mini form (perfect for the diaper bag and various rooms of the house, too!).  Now I know what I like, so I just go for the giant tub.  It is also worthwhile to have their PLUS formula around for the occasional really bad rash.  Smells a bit weird due to neem oil, but it's essential to getting bad stuff gone.

It's not only for baby bottoms, but can also be used on dry skin, tangled hair (or just curly hair as a moisturizer), or just any weird skin ailment you may have.  Now that E. is 5, when she comes to me complaining of a scrape or bug bite or something, I say, "Aww, let's put some of the bumbum cream on it!"

Diaper Sprayer

By the way, as far as cleaning off the diapers themselves, have I ever mentioned on here that you will want a diaper sprayer?  I made my own, using this set of instructions!  Or should I say, hubby made it!  We would probably not cloth diaper without it!


* * * * * *
Just as a little end note, I did use some other products in this realm with E. that I'm not using with C.

I loved the Homestead Baby Wipes Companion Spray, but that product is long gone.  I guess telling you now is akin to reviewing all those discontinued diapers.  It was great while it was available!  Smelled amazing.

I used Kissaluvs Diaper Lotion Potion Concentrate after the above was gone -- and I still have some of the same bottle 4-5 years later!?  It never smelled as good to me, but I had bought it so felt obligated to use it up.  I gave up and decided to switch to the nice CJ's Spritz with my second baby (Oatmeal Milk and Honey is one of my favorite scents that is still around).  I should have thought of switching way earlier, but I guess I never made the connection to it as a wipes spray.  Also, I know Kissaluvs has gone out of business now, so I wonder how long the Lotion Potion will be available.

I also tried the Grovia Magic Stick on E., but that thing was a pain.  It never seemed to go on smoothly without a lot of pressure (it's essentially a giant chap stick of bum cream).  I much preferred the consistency of BUTTer.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Cloth Diapers: wet bags

Since I'm doing all these cloth diaper reviews, I wanted to put up a recommendation for WET BAGS!

Image from Monkey Foot Designs
Specifically, Monkey Foot Designs!

I'm not sure where I first heard about her bags, but I have 3 (4?) of them now and I've never been disappointed!  They keep stink at bay, hold up over time, and are convenient to use.  The XL size with one strap was the main bag for E's room.  After washing this ONE bag for her whole diapering experience, it finally started getting some rips in the lining at the bottom.  It's still usable, but I got a new one just because!

I got one of the newer XLs with two straps and the gusset, which I don't like as much (only the outer is gusseted, not the lining, plus it hangs funny off the doorknob and falls down more often), but it's still great.

I will add here that I now have TWO of her medium double-pocket bags that I use as my everyday purse!!  They are SO cute.  I get compliments ALL THE TIME. She has done customs in the past (raises hand), though I'm not sure she's taking them right now.  Every so often she has done some made-to-orders out of fabrics she offers up (raises hand again!).


Image from Monkey Foot Designs; this is not one of the ones I have!

I also have a couple Planet Wise wetbags, which do the job, but I don't like them as much as MFD.  The zipper is harder to use (smaller pull) and my large one with 2 handles hangs off the door so weirdly that it can be hard to put diapers in there!  They also seem to let out a bit more stink.  The secret of course, with all wet bags, is to NOT close them all the way, or the stink gets stinkier!

Image from Planet Wise
(Ooh, Planet Wise now sells fabric by the yard?  I may have to get some to turn into other fun things!)

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Cloth Diapers: Potty Training: Flip

My photo from selling my replacement Flip trainer

Ugh, what a saga with the Flip trainers.  Long story short, I would never recommend these because they are poorly made (a snap broke off after about 3 uses), and are really difficult and annoying to use!  The velcro on the shell/pad was incredibly finicky to put in, and they made it so you can't use other pads in it (easily).  I've sort of put this out of my mind because I had such terrible customer service from Cottonbabies.  I do love their BumGenius diapers, but I kind of hate them over the shoddy Flip and my awful experience. :(

Don't buy the Flip trainer.