Cloth Diaper Podcast – Show 91

When to cloth diaper

Start when you are ready to start, but also you’ll never be ready so just do it. You can start cloth diapering at birth, or you can start at 18 months. It’s never too late to start cloth diapering, there’s always a way to navigate through any barrier.

* newborn cloth diapers

* toddlerhood cloth diapers

* swim diapers and pull on training pants

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Show Transcription

Bailey Bouwman  00:00

This is show 92 of the cloth diaper podcast and we are going to talk about when to start cloth diapering as part of our cloth one on one series


Bailey Bouwman  00:16

you know the drill the cloth diaper podcast is a somewhat regular show dedicated to sharing stories of cloth diapering from parents, brands and retailers around the world. My name is Bailey I am a cloth diaper agit educator, advocate and consultant. And over the past couple of years, I have been interviewing parents and brands around the world to really get to know their story and share them with you. I started this podcast because I wanted to improve transparency in this community and start really talking about what’s going on what are the lived experiences. And that’s why I don’t have a Facebook group. That is why I podcast and I want us as a community to increase our transparency about what is going on out there.


Bailey Bouwman  01:00

Today, we are going to do this cloth 101 series. This is the introduction. And if you are looking for more information, more beginners FAQ and more pictures, images and diagrams, I really recommend that you check out my book cloth diapers, The Ultimate Guide to textiles, washing and more. It is available for 10 bucks in black and white on Amazon. And you can also find it in color through Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other book distributor nations cycles. Oh my gosh, I’m not very good at that. k We’ll have all the details on my one on one book, I really set up my book as a FAQ. It’s not a guidebook. It’s not like a rulebook on how to get started. It’s a these are all the parts. These are all the possible solutions. And you know what, since reading that book, a lot of information has changed. And I really hope that this year in 2022, I can update some of those thoughts. It is still a great foundational book, some of the big things that have changed their value will. And I want you to know most importantly is that there’s not one right way to cloth diapering. I mean I write a book about cloth diapers and I update it regularly because the knowledge is changing as we become more unified as a community.


Bailey Bouwman  02:18

For years we have been talking about one way of cloth diapering and and really there are so many ways to cloth diaper. And the more that we learn from each other through these conversations on the podcast, the network and different platforms, the more we understand what’s going on and create simple solutions to empower you to cloth diaper.


Bailey Bouwman  02:39

Anyways, that was a bit of a tangent let’s get to today’s question which is when to start cloth diapering. There is no right or wrong answer here guys. You can start cloth diapering at any time that you want to. You can cloth diaper from birth at hospital you can cloth diaper 18 months you can cloth diaper your third baby your fourth baby.


Bailey Bouwman  02:59

There is no best time to cloth diapering The best time to cloth diaper is probably right now stop overthinking it stop waiting for all of your ducks to be in a row and just do it. I meet a lot of parents who are like I’m waiting for life to calm down. I’m waiting. Okay, no, just start today. You don’t have to cloth diaper full time. You don’t need to make it a big deal. Do one cloth diaper a day two cloth diapers a day? Do it kind of casually go full in parenting is a wild ride.


Bailey Bouwman  03:32

That never really gets easier. I kind of feel a little bit like betrayed because I feel like the older my kids are getting, the more challenging it is it’s just in unique different ways that I am having a strong anyways, I get it like the newborn phase is hard. The infancy phase is hard, but it’s never. there’s never gonna be this perfect calm day where it’s ready to learn something new. You are learning something new every day in parenting. So just start today. That’s it.


Bailey Bouwman  04:00

I thought we could talk a little bit about newborn diapering a little bit about toddler diapering and kind of shape these, this information to help you. So if you’re thinking about cloth diapering a newborn baby and you have one size diapers, I’m gonna spell them with just like one size tights, or one size leggings or one size sweaters that you buy as an adult. One size diapering is also kind of it’s one size fits most it’s not one size fits all it’s one size fits most. And it’s kind of based on an average and we’ve seen a general one size diaper the North American market actually kind of changed it used to really be this like six to 30 pounds. And I would say most one size diapers on the market now are this 10 to 40 pounds. So the one size diaper varies between the brand that puts it out and then your baby and your baby is going to grow at your baby’s ownrate. In an own development, and all of that is healthy and some of us have petite babies and some of us have giant babies and some of us have average babies. So for some of us, one size diapers will work great for newborns.


Bailey Bouwman  05:12

For some of us, they won’t. And this is a game we can’t predict. Because our babies aren’t unique and they are their own people and they are doing their own things. One size diapers will be a little bit awkward and bulky and big on the baby right off the bat. So you can either be okay with this, or you can wait until they kind of chunk up a lot. In general 10 to 12 pounds seems to be a good weight range for starting on that smallest rise setting.


Bailey Bouwman  05:42

The most important thing for diapering is that the newborn the one size diaper really can adjust. It’s beautiful on that right you snap it down to size and you can fold your inserts down to size and you can fold your flats down to size. You can also buy size diapers there’s the size one diapers and size two diapers, there’s newborn sized diapers. They’re super sized diapers, size diapers bill this beautiful space of providing options for those of us who have babies who are tiny and babies who are big.


Bailey Bouwman  06:11

Unfortunately, we can’t really prepare you to know whether or not you need this size system or this one size system. Size systems are often designed to be a cover and fitted or cover and insert system which does lower the costs significantly. And I think it’s also okay to recognize that you can use disposable diapers in the flex. I have a hard time talking about newborn diapering. And I’ve talked about this on my Instagram page a lot. Because for me, I value more than anything respecting women’s rest. You have just had a baby. And I want and the North American culture really pushes women to go I have come remember being in those mom groups and women being like I went to Target today two days after birth or I went to Walmart. No, let’s we don’t need to celebrate getting up and going. Trust in the people in your community in your village and your partner to do those things for you in delivery services and heal your body. You just had a baby. It is okay to respect your body and slow down. And so I am cautious when giving the advice of cloth diapering a newborn. If you have the support services, awesome. I mean, some families don’t even have the option they have to cloth diaper because you don’t have disposable diapers, so do it. But please, more than anything if you are cloth diapering your newborn baby and you are doing the diaper laundry that you recognize and you take time to slow down. heal your body, Heal your mind and understand that post birth is an important time for that. I do not want to advocate for the busyness of motherhood, and I want you to find ways to do it all. To do it all. I don’t want you to find ways to do it all I want you to find ways to take a break. Anyways, I cloth diapered babies from newborn, nonetheless. But I also had a really great husband who helped me who did the laundry. Let your husband do it, trust in him. Sure, he might not do awesome and maybe he’ll miss a step. It’s just a few steps and we can fix it. Or consider hiring out a diaper service. Newborn days is a great time to think about diaper services. We often think about diversity is all or nothing because it can be quite expensive. But diaper services can fill a great need. They could be you know what, you could ask for them as a gift and you could diaper use a diaper service from zero to three months. Labor services will have newborn diapers or smaller fitting prefold or smaller fitting fitteds. This might be a comparable cost and you don’t have to do laundry


Bailey Bouwman  09:04

 Diaper services can fill a need in your life when you’re curious about cloth diapering or when you need a break or when you need a different size diaper. Diaper services. Don’t underestimate them. I really think they have a great value in our community. Now, you can really start cloth diapering any time and if you’re thinking about well maybe I don’t know if cloth is right for me. You could try diaper service for a couple of weeks a month. Or you can buy a couple of diapers and do it part time. Many families start cloth diapering at birth many families start cloth diapering at six months. Some families start cloth diapering 18 months, some families cloth diaper their third fourth fifth child. There’s no wrong time to start cloth diapering and the best time is really right now.


Bailey Bouwman  09:56

Motherhood and adapting to parenting is chaotic. Waiting for the storm to come is not going to happen. Start cloth diapering today and next week we’re going to talk about where you can buy your cloth diapers so that you can start cloth diapering today. I mean really you could cloth diaper today you could grab an old receiving blanket, wrap it around baby put on some fleece pants and call today. When the fleece pants get wet, wash them. fleece pants are a great buffer you can DIY it, you can borrow a cover, you can reach out to a cloth diaper bank. You don’t have to wait for the perfect time the perfect diapers are the perfect stash. cloth diapering is incredibly adaptive incredibly versatile, and you don’t have to do it all or nothing


Bailey Bouwman  10:40

. So many parents today are given cloth ago by doing two diapers a day. They they do to cloth diapers, they rent out those cloth diapers and they toss them in their next load of laundry. We don’t need to be overthinking it and it’s okay to find a routine and rhythm that is functional for your family and doesn’t necessarily look like what is portrayed online. I don’t think I have much more to add to this conversation and eight minutes feels like enough time to be yammering on. As always you can find the show notes of the transcription for this episode on the cloth diaper show notes and I have written out these cloth 101 series as blog posts. That’s what I’m kind of reading from but it’s a little bit different when I wrote it out.


Bailey Bouwman  11:27 that is my personal blog where I share personal stories about motherhood but also reviews and my experience in cloth diapering is kept there. I keep the two separate because to me the cloth diaper podcast is about this community space of experiences. And my experience is just one my experience of cloth diapering was that of a white sis women in an upper middle class household. And that is not the only story out there.


Bailey Bouwman  11:57

And so the cloth diaper podcast is home to different stories from different women, different men, different parents different types of families around the world and how they found it to work for them. I feel like I just ended up in a tangent about the whiteness of cloth diapering and I did and it’s important to recognize that it is a very whiteness industry and this influence about when to start cloth diapering is kind of influenced by that. I mean that’s why I stay away from newborn cloth diapering conversations. But that’s my personal bias and the other day I had a woman in my Instagram put me in my place and newborn cloth diapering can be a fantastic beautiful way to cloth diaper, and to feel empowered in your journey of motherhood or parenting.


Bailey Bouwman  12:46

Because you guys are not all mothers there is a diversity of listeners today. Thank you for joining me. Until next time, there is no cloth one or two on this. I don’t know what to talk about. If you have an idea for a 102 on this when to start cloth diapering let me know but we will go into more depth about toddler diapering and newborn diapering in a later episode of this how to cloth diaper series. Until next time, bye

Professional Cloth Diaper Educator

Bailey brings 5+ years of cloth diapering experience and conversation to the cloth diaper space. She's not just your every day mom blogger sharing her experience - Bailey is immersed in the cloth diaper community learning from other parents and growing as an individual. She wants to find the cloth diaper solution that truly works for you.

Bailey believes we need to stop and listen to cloth diapering parents. We need to recognize our own bias and preferences and focus on solutions that work for you, not us. The Cloth Diaper community needs to recognize the privilege of being able to cloth diaper, and provide spaces for more conversations and stories.

Cloth diapering is not about rules but about our own strength as parents to do the best we can for our children with the resources available.

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    About the Cloth Diaper Podcast

    The Cloth Diaper Podcast is a regular podcast sharing stories from cloth diaper parents, brands and retailers from around the world. 

    The Cloth Diaper Podcast is not affiliated with any school of thought of diaper laundry but instead focus on the power of peer-to-peer story telling to empower you to make your own cloth diaper journey. 

    Cloth Diapering is not this or that, but rather many different experiences. 

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