Cloth diapers are worth every penny. Take it from a mom who, at one time, amassed around 200 cloth diapers for one baby. Any sane cloth diapering family will tell you that having that many on rotation is unnecessary.
But we’ve exclusively used them from the time our baby was 3 weeks old until she was completely potty trained at 2. We’ve even used them when we traveled locally.
There is also so much joy in having a diaper for every occasion, including holidays such as Christmas, New Year and Independence Day. We eased the guilt of having way too many in our collection by telling ourselves that we are supporting work-at-home moms. The successful makers of cloth diapers don’t just download a pattern to copy online, they design their own. Sometimes, they even design their fabric, making their line of products rare and exclusive.
The hunt for different prints is what makes acquiring them exciting. Harry Potter, Star Wars, Dr. Seuss and iterations of the Philippine flag remain as some of the most sought-after prints.
But before buying multiple products from one brand, buy one to try first. This doesn’t even have to be brand new. Cloth diapers are supposed to be reused. There are ways to disinfect them, making them safe to use for your baby. The advantage of buying secondhand is that it’s significantly cheaper. A brand-new cloth diaper can range from P600-P3,000.
You should check for the fit. Every brand has different patterns and sizes. Diapers should fit snugly on the thighs and the waist area to avoid leaks.
You should look into diversifying your stash. Polyurethane laminate (PUL) covers are perfect for overnight use because they keep the moisture locked in. Some of the popular PUL diapers are Bumgenius, the locally made Cottonytail’s Quokka and the ones you can buy in Divisoria. We keep rashes at bay by bathing our baby when she wakes up and then putting on her a hybrid-fitted (HF) cloth diaper.
HFs are breathable, thus the expression, “presko time.” They became my favorite at the latter part of our cloth diaper journey because most of our HFs were locally made. The constant exchange of messages with the makers and our requests to customize a diaper have led to friendships. To this day, we still like each other’s social media posts of our kids’ birthday celebrations and share recipes and sale deals online.
We also kept and used the cover type diapers. We reuse the cover multiple times in one day and just change the inserts. This is perfect for when we’re traveling when we bring fewer covers with us. They are also easier to wash on the road.
As to how many pieces are necessary for one family, the recommended number is at least 12-14 pieces per child but you’d be comfortable with 24 pieces. With this number, you have to wash every day or every other day.
In our case, it came to a point where we only used each diaper once a month. We washed on weekends but we always prewashed the used ones right away to prevent them from stinking. Keep in mind that the older your child gets, the less often you have to change their diapers. Our daughter learned to sit on the toilet bowl when she turned 1 and so she no longer pooped in her diapers since then.
We also used fleece liners to keep our daughter’s bum dry. Cloth diapers already have this built-in but we still used liners for easy flushing. This also prevents the cream we put on her to transfer to the diaper. A polar fleece blanket that you can purchase from the mall at P200 can be cut by hand for 20-30 pieces of liners.
Now that we’re done with the diapers, we’ve given away half of our collection to family and friends. That’s the beauty of cloth. It can be passed on or kept for future use.