How to wash cloth diapers

Probably one of the biggest questions around cloth diapers is “what about the poop?” Now the instructions for cloth diaper poop and disposable diaper poop are the same. As per the box the instructions state to remove solids into the toilet before disposing of the diaper. now I had used disposables for about four years before I made the switch to cloth and I never once read the instructions on the box.

So what do we do with the poop? The answer is it depends. If your baby is exclusively breastfed then nothing. Their poop is water-soluble and will just wash away. (some people say this also works with formula-fed babies although I cannot attest to it.) if your baby has started solids this is when you must wash it off. There are a couple of ways that you can do this. Amazon sells sprayers for your toilet and you can purchase a bucket-type thing with clips. you can make your own. Or you can choose my preferred method in which you swish the diaper around in the toilet to rinse it off. If it is solid completely I will just plop it in the toilet and call it a day. That's it! It really is not that much trouble and I do not mind it knowing I am saving $20+ a month and keeping possibly harmful chemicals off of my baby.

Now for the wash routine, probably the most controversial topic in this post. Some people have ways they believe are the end all be all. Honestly, it really is just a trial and error process. Everyone is different and everyone uses different detergents and has different washing machines. It really is a hit and a miss for a little while until you can find one that works for you.

Now there are things that you must not do or you risk ruining your diapers. (I have done this and it is seriously not fun fixing it) Never use fabric softener on your diapers. I thought it would be nice to use the softener to make them smell nice. Well, the softener creates a barrier around your clothing and the diaper was repelling liquid. After a couple washed when I would go to change my daughter the diaper would be relatively dry but her pants would be wet. The way I fixed this was by filling up a bathtub with very hot water, adding in borax, and washing soda. Then you leave the diapers in the bathtub all day agitating them every hour or two and then wash them on a normal cycle and then dry. This fixed my diapers.

Now the wash routine. On a wash day, I gather up all the diapers in my house into the bathroom. Then one by one I take them out of my wet bag and remove the inserts from the shell and put them in my washing machine. Then I add in some detergent and set my washing machine to heavy-duty and add 2 extra rinse cycles, and set it for presoak. Once that is done I then wash it again on normal with a small amount of detergent and an extra rinse cycle. When I transfer them to the dryer I put it on normal and when that is done I take the shells out and then dry the inserts for another thirty minutes.

This is just what works for me. If you are feeling like you are going crazy trying out different routines and nothing is working that's okay I felt that way too. Look around at different people's routines and try them out. That's what I did and I brought together different aspects of various routines to make my own.

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