(Not) Cloth diapering Twins

19 July 2011

Remember way back when I dabbled around with the idea of using cloth diapers at nights and on weekends for my twins? Well I took the plunge and... there was no water in the swimming pool. Considering how a lot of cloth diapering mamas online wax poetically about how great it's been, I'm hesitant to share my experience. However, the spirit of honesty and full disclosure compels me so here's how it all went down

  1. Prepping. Cloth diapers need to be prepared by washing up to six times to get to full absorbency and on some of the forums, I've read 10 times for the hemp diapers I bought. As I was on a goal of doing baby laundry not more than twice a week, prepping took me right about one month. It didn't make sense to run up an electricity bill for the "cheaper" diapering option
  2. Before the babies came, I switched detergents to Tide free and clear so I could use just one detergent for all the family laundry. Apparently Tide free and clear is not really good for cloth diapers and the  special detergent is waaaaay too expensive for family laundry
  3. Night time diapering is one of the biggest challenges when it comes to cloth diapers. Most recommendations are to stuff the diaper with up to 4 layers of absorbency. That makes for a very hot tushie. Hot tushie = ammonia burns, diaper rash, yeast. I'm not messing with any of those
  4. First weekend in cloth diapers ended with tell-tale redness in Spice's diaper area for the first time ever. Granted, it could have been a coincidence, it could have been the tomato or mango baby food but still, it happened.
  5. I remained undeterred. Still tried the diapers for a few nights. First night in the Grovias, I was bathing Sugar when I heard Spice screaming blue murder in her crib - you know that girl can bellow right?! I pick her up and she's leaked right out of a diaper I just put on 20 minutes before. I changed clothes and sheets and concluded maybe I put the diaper on backwards, or I hadn't washed it enough times to reach full absorbency. Still I persevered
  6. First Saturday in diapers, Daddy said "Are these the nappies you were talking about" Me:"Yes" Daddy: "It makes them look like bugs". Me: "Bugs as in flies and spiders?" Daddy: "No. As in bugs with big backs". Okaaaay!
  7. I have a high-efficiency washing machine. High efficiency = little water used = Not enough water to wash cloth diapers in
  8. Tried the dry pail method with overnight diaper, then washed it in my HE washing machine complete with pre-wash and extra rinse cycle. Came out of the dryer smelling exactly the same way it smelled before washing
  9. My cloth diapers needed an additional drying cycle. Line drying is not an option in my apartment complex
  10. Honestly, cloth diapers are not comparable alternative to disposables and that's just it.
It actually took using cloth diapers to make me appreciate the depth of technology that has gone into making disposables as trim, absorbent and dry as they are. The chemical engineer in me tips off her hat. I feel so un-green and un-crunchy writing this post, but I can't help it: Cloth diapers are not for me right now. I still reserve the right to change my mind in the future though.

I shall seek redemption by linking up to Amanda and reading from some of the marvellous mamas in her linkup

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