For many new parents, the amount of stuff needed for such a tiny human being can seem overwhelming! From carriers to cribs and car seats, adding cloth diapers to the list might make some people want to just throw their hands up in the air and give up.
If you're feeling overwhelmed by the virtual cornucopia of cloth diapering accessories, here's a handy list of Essentials and Extras to consider!
EssentialsWet Bags: Unless you plan to stay inside your house 24/7, you will also need some travel goodies. Wet bags are the perfect solution for storing dirty cloth dipes on the go. They are zippered bags lined with waterproofing to keep the mess contained. When you get home, you can throw the diapers and the wet bag in to the wash. I always suggest buying at least two wet bags so you always have a clean one to stuff in a diaper bag. Plus, wet bags are super handy to keep in the diaper bag beyond diapering years to hold wet clothes and other messes: potty training, swimming, car sick kiddos...
Pail Liner: Okay, you probably could get away with not using a pail liner. But you will have to scrub down your pail pretty regularly if you don't. Pail liners are on my essential list because it will simply make your job of transporting diapers from the pail to the washing machine so much easier. Another benefit is that you can just throw the liner in the load of diapers to get it clean so you won't have to scrub down your pail. Some people just skip the actual pail altogether and just hang their pail liner or wet bag up in the nursery or washroom.
Changing Pad: Make your life a little easier and purchase a small travel changing pad. Toss it in your diaper bag and experience the freedom to change your child's diaper anywhere and everywhere (that has a safe and solid changing surface- don't get too crazy now!) Also, these changing pads from Kanga Care are super soft and cozy and backed with the same waterproof material used on their diapers. A lot of parents use these as crib sheet liners just in case your baby's diaper leaks in the middle of the night, you can avoid having to change all the sheets at 3am!
Diaper liners: Whether you're protecting your diapers from meconium or non-cloth diaper friendly diaper cream, or if you're in the infamous peanut butter poo phase, liners make cleanups a breeze.
Diaper Pail: Dirty diapers need some place to go until it is time to wash. A basic diaper pail with a lid (no diaper genie nonsense) will do the job. Rather than buying a pail with an airtight lid, it's actually a good idea to get one that will allow air to circulate so that the ammonia in the dirty diapers can evaporate. The odor is extremely minimal (especially for breastfed babies) and if you CAN smell the diapers, just wash them. Problem solved. It's infinitely better than having an entire week's worth of poopy disposables sitting around in your house waiting for trash day!
Wipes: Cloth wipes are far superior to disposables- surprise! Once you've used it, just tuck it in the dirty diaper and wash them together. Disposables also are a hidden cost of disposable diapering and can add several hundred dollars to the diapering budget! You can make your own with basic flannel from a fabric store or even by cutting up an old flannel sheet.
Safe detergent: Many detergents are not appropriate for using on cloth diapers because they leave behind a residue that will decrease absorbency. Other detergents are not strong enough to really do the job of removing ammonia, fats, oils and lipids from the fabric. If you're using the right amount of a good detergent, it should be really easy to care for your diapers and you shouldn't have to strip them, or put up with ammonia burns! Kanga Care has simple and clear wash and care instructions, but not all cloth diapers are made equally. They all have slightly differing recommendations so make sure you're following your brand's guidelines!
We think they are so cute that we are giving away a whole bunch of Boingos right now!
All winners will receive an email with a link to claim their prize! If you see your name listed above, then go check your email!
Wool Covers: Wool is sort of magical. There is actually a very scientific explanation but my basic understanding is that a lanolized wool cover turns pee into soap. (I'm not making this up, I swear.) I love to use my wool cover over our night-time diaper because wool is waterproof, breathable and magical.
Wool Dryer Balls: Dryer sheets leave a residue on cloth diapers that can not only reduce absorbency but also irritate baby's skin and cause damage to diapers and clothing. Wool dryer balls are a cloth diaper safe solution that also helps to move clothes around in the dryer and break them up to allow for faster dryer time.
Diaper Sprayer: A handy spray attachment for your toilet to help you spray the poop off! Personally, I have never used a diaper sprayer and have gotten by just fine without one. After I change a poopy diaper, I just dump the contents in the toilet and wash the diaper. Some moms absolutely love their sprayers, though!
Drying Rack: The sun is a secret weapon in cloth diapering. Sunning your diapers for a short time (less than two hours at a time!) can help remove even the most stubborn stains from diapers. A handy rack like this makes it easier to sun your diapers. You can also use racks to allow diapers to air dry but be careful because hanging diapers can cause them to stretch out and lose their shape. (Learn more about mistakes to avoid!)
Do you have an necessary accessory that we missed?
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About this Kanga Care Guest Blogger
Kari is the cloth-diapering Mommy to Elodie, a rambunctious, joyful and goofball of a two year old. She loves to blog about her adventures in motherhood and living life beachside in sunny San Diego. When she is not washing cloth diapers or blogging about them, Kari can be found relaxing with a nice cup of tea, snuggling with Elodie or browsing Pinterest.