If you’ve read my previous blog posts, you know that we’ve switched to mainly cloth diapering our youngest. We still use disposables when we’re away from home and, sometimes, overnight, but cloth is the go-to. I wanted to cloth diaper our oldest as well, but she likes to play with the velcro and, well, we’re working on it.
Today was diaper washing day. Using and washing cloth isn’t a huge deal, but you should find a routine that works for you because it *is* another load of laundry, and it does require a bit more attention. I wanted to take a few minutes and explain my current wash routine, and review two pail liners that I purchased a while back.
My wash routine is subject to change, but it seems to be working for us nicely right now.
One of the most important parts -to save you the trouble later- is making sure you put your dirties in the pail correctly. If the diapers have velcro tabs, there should be a loop you can place them through. This keeps the velcro from attaching to all of the diapers and creating a diaper chain.
When it’s time to wash (if you’re using a washable pail liner) pull bag and all out of the pail and to your washing machine. Empty those smelly contents into the machine, turn the bag inside out and toss it in as well.
I start out with a simple rinse and spin on cold.
First wash – plenty of detergent and a cold wash with two rinses; no vinegar, but I do use baking soda to help with our hard water.
Second wash – less detergent, and a hot wash. I am still debating on whether or not this is necessary; to me, hot means clean. But is it hard on my diapers? I would love to hear feedback!
When the washes are complete, it’s time to dry. But STOP: not everything should go into the dryer!
All absorbent pieces -liners, AIOs, etc.- go into the dryer, and may need dried 2 or more times to make sure they are fully dry.
Covers should be hung, or draped, to air dry. Going through the dryer too often can ruin their ability to stay leak-proof.
If you use cloths instead of wipes, these should only go through the dryer once; they aren’t made to be absorbent, just to clean.
A few additional tips:
Never put dryer sheets in with your diapers. The chemicals and fabric softening qualities are a huge potential problem. Have you ever noticed that bath towels dried with dryer sheets seem to be less absorbent? This is not a quality you want in a diaper!
If you have a clothesline, it is the absolute best way to dry your diapers, covers, and cloths! When the weather permits, I hang the entire load out in the sun for the day. In the evening, covers and cloths get put away, and the inserts go through the dryer – once. This not only saves on the electric bill, but the sun is a natural “bleach”; killing germs and whitening those inserts back to like-new beauty.
Now, on to the pail liners!
I purchased two liners off of Amazon with some of my cloth diapering budget (oh hey, speaking of, I still have some of that left!) I needed two anyway, so that there would always be one in the pail while the other was being washed, so I decided to kill two birds with one stone and study for a review.
The first liner I chose was this adorable hedgehog print from Planet Wise – The 1,320 customer reviews were mostly overwhelmingly good (and the fact that I love hedgehogs helped). At a price higher than I would normally pay for a bag (because let’s face it; no matter how cute it is, it just catches dirty dipes), I expected near-perfect quality – and I was, unfortunately, disappointed. I noticed the smell of the dirties more than I did while using disposable trash bags, and when I lifted the bag out of the pail on Wash Day, the inside of the pail was steamy with condensation and the liner was damp. “Um, ew.”
After my disappointment with the $17.95 bag, I looked disapprovingly at the second bag that I had purchased. I knew that if the Planet Wise brand had failed me, the cheaper brand was likely to.
The second liner was this pink one from Some Few, and it was considerably cheaper at $8.75 – and I was more impressed! When it came time to wash diapers again, I lifted the pink liner from the pail expecting to see the cloudy condensation and smelly damp bottom – it was dry and smell-free!
I may possibly have received a “bad” Planet Wise bag, and I have no intention of disrespecting a company base on one item, but overall I was much more impressed with the plainer, cheaper diaper pail liner from Some Few.