We are cloth diapering Amelie. Now that she has officially grown out of her newborn cloth diapers *sniff*, I thought it might be helpful to do a final review for folks out there considering these for their baby’s bums.
I bought 12 of the bumGenius Newborn All-In-One Stay Dry Cloth Diapers from cottonbabies.com for a total of $156 + tax. All-In-Ones mean there is no stuffing or outer shells to deal with. The whole diaper can be thrown in the wash, as is.
I figured 12 would be just enough to get me by each day because newborns dirty around 10 diapers/day in those early weeks! In the end, I only kept 8 but I’ll explain that later. I followed the directions and pre-washed them ahead of time because that primes the hemp (inner layer) for optimal absorbency. I used Charlie’s Soap to launder them. Regular detergent is harsh on the diapers and babies skin plus it’s not overly awesome for the environment. But neither is having a baby, if you want to get technical.
Back to the review. How did these diapers perform? I give them a B+. Here’s why.
- THEY ARE SO STINKIN’ CUTE. You guys. I’m telling you, these diapers are deliciously cute. And that matters. You are going to think your baby is the most beautiful baby in the whole wide world (so will Grandma) and you do not want anything detracting from THE CUTE. These don’t. They come in such fun colors!
- These don’t go into the landfill. Conversely, you have to do more laundry and I’m not here to preach to any Mamas out there on the ethics of cloth diapering. No matter what kind of diaper you use, if you are making sure your baby’s butt is soft and clean and squishy then you are a good Mom.
- They are economical, especially if you cloth diaper multiple kids. Amelie wore these diapers starting at 2 weeks old (when her umbilical stump fell off) until she was just over 11 weeks old. Not bad for ~$100 investment (remember, I only kept 8 of them) whereas disposables would have cost me about $150. If your baby is chunkier or you opt not to have additional kids, then these probably won’t end up saving you money.
- You don’t have to run to the store when you come up for air from your mommy haze and realize that you ran out of diapers! With these, you can always throw a load of laundry in when you are down to your last diaper.
- Did I mention how cute these are? I did?
- They leak. That’s the main beef with these diapers after I read a few more reviews. When Amelie was really little her pee would leak out of the leg holes, especially if she peed more than once in the same diaper. Of course, I was devastated. I had bought these way in advance (just in case Amelie came early) so it was well past the 30 day return policy. Plus, I had already washed all of them! Pulsing with crazy postpartum hormones and surviving on no sleep, I called Cotton Babies customer service and left a weepy message asking for my money back. And you know what? They allowed me to return them. I just had to ship them back myself (which was no easy feat with a finicky newborn). I decided to keep the 8 we had already used and ship back the remaining 4 washed-but-not-pooped-in ones. Sorry this is a long bullet but one more thing. I soon realized with the 8 I kept, if I changed Amelie often they held up pretty well and didn’t leak. And once her legs chunked up, they were fine!
- Obviously you have to do extra (daily) laundry. Amelie would dirty all 8 diapers each day. Doing extra laundry costs money and energy – especially with our crappy washing machine. But, I did save energy by drying them in the hot Colorado sun. I’d plop them out on our deck and the sun not only dried them but also bleached them back to pristine again (swearsies!). I didn’t mind the chore of doing laundry each day – in fact, it made me feel productive in my otherwise blurry days. I would wash these separately from my other laundry because the velcro had a knack for snagging my other clothes. That isn’t a problem if you turn them outside in and attach the velcro to the strip. But, it became habit for me to throw in a load of diapers each morning and do the rest of the laundry at random other times. Honestly, throwing these in the wash and setting them out to dry is like 10 minutes of actual work each day.
- Depending on the birth size of your baby, you might not get much use out of them. Amelie was 6 lbs and was still pretty scrawny at 2 weeks old when she started wearing these (she weighed under 8 lbs). If you have a chubbier baby, then they may only be in these a few weeks (post-stump-falling-off) before needing to move on to a bigger size.
- They are not as convenient to travel with. If I was out running errands, I’d put the dirty dirty diaper in a wetbag and wash it when I got home. If you plan any overnight travels or plan to be away from home for a long time, these are probably more difficult to use. I rarely left the house (sad) so this was not a problem for me whatsoever.
- The velcro will not last for forever. Eventually it’ll lose it’s grippy so if you are planning to use these on a gaggle of kids, they might not hold up that long.
- Once Amelie started kicking more and pulling her legs up to her chest, the velcro tabs would rub and irritate her thighs. I don’t know why the tabs are not smooth on the outside- this could easily be avoided! We resolved that issue by keeping her dressed in at least a onesie for any long periods of time (even though she was so darn cute in just the diaper, I could hardly stand it).
I was very impressed by Cotton Babies customer service. They were great and I ended up being super satisfied with their timely response.
A few asides: We went all in and purchased this diaper sprayer.
It helps keep your diapers clean for the long haul and only takes few seconds to rinse the diaper out after each change. Plus, they don’t stink that way. We kept the rinsed-but-dirty dipes in an old trash pail by the toilet. Although an expensive little toy, I recommend having a sprayer if you plan to cloth diaper.
I adore them. bumGenius comes in sweet girly colors too but I chose colors that would be suitable to use again if we had a baby boy later on down the road. The only I regret I have is shipping back the Butternut (light yellow) and keeping both Clementines (orange) instead. It just so happened that the Clementine were the ones we used first before I noticed the leaking. The Butternut was so sweet (and so is the name!), I wish I could have wrapped Amelie’s bum in it.
She pooed and peed in these every day for two months. Sorry for the dark picture but don’t they look amazing still?
Her face! Oh she cracks me up.
We just recently upgraded to the bumGenius Freetime All-In-One Cloth Diapers. I went with these after a lengthy recommendation from my favorite bloggers, Young House Love. These are supposed to last us until Amelie starts potty training! They are pretty bulky on her now but she doesn’t seem to mind.
I’ll let you know what I think of them, if you care?