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The Low Down on the Down Low

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Elaine and I were talking today about our diapers and decided to do a joint blog post about our diaper system and how it is going and show you what it looks like. Yes that is kind of random first sentence, but we were really excited to have our washing machine fixed and now can dump the disposables and jump back on the cloth diapers. We decided that I would do the info and Elaine would later do a review.. so here we go.

As promised in an early post we were using disposable diapers while our machine was broken for about two and a half weeks. During that time we collected some of the diapers just to see what a weeks worth of diapers looked like- well here it is…

It is pretty disturbing and we know that these diapers will outlive all of us {and potentially our children’s children} in our landfills. Most experts agree that it takes at least 200+ years for them to decompose but even after all that time part of the diaper will live on. I’ve read that most babies go through about 6000 diapers in their first two years of life. Since he was born, Mason has been pretty consistent for about 13-14 changes a day. The photo on the left has about  98 diapers in it collected over one week; looking at his entire life, Mason would have filled up 17 garbage bags with nearly 1700 diapers. Two weeks of disposables were enough for us.

Yes we may use one here and there but we are trying to keep our impact minimal.

Before Mason was born we started our quest to find a cloth diapering system that worked for our us. There are a lot of different brands (BumGenius, Fuzzi Bunz Charlie Banana, EcoBubs, etc) and each has their own pros and cons. Unfortunately we didn’t know any friends that were cloth diapering so a lot of our research came from the internet- blogs, videos, and testimonials. After some contemplation we chose gDiapers, which offers a hybrid cloth and flushable option. This dual feature has been really helpful when we’ve been in precarious positions of running out of cloth inserts or traveling and not having a washing machine handy. The gDiaper system has been a great for us. We’ve grown through two sizes (the newborn and smalls) and I’ve been impressed with how well they hold the mess (no blow-outs yet.. knock on wood), how easy they are to clean, and that there have been no problems with his sensitive skin


So here is how the gDiaper process works in our house…

These are the outer covers for the diapers. They come in different sizes, colors, and patterns. We are currently using Mediums which covers 13-28 lbs. We have solid color patterns but if you look online they have some fancy prints and now even have matching tops for the covers.


The diaper assembly is quick and easy. Once flipped from the previous photo, the cover has a plastic liner that snaps in place. This liner helps create the shape of the of the diaper and also seals in wetness or whatever else may comes out. To the right of the cover and liner is the cloth insert. Made of a micro-fleece upper and a cotton/hemp underside, the soft insert fits into the liner and you are ready for the next step.


Next comes the squirming baby.  The new diaper is secured with two velcro bands and is pretty easy to put on him. Over the 3 plus months we’ve used them we’ve not had it un-velcro or come undone. This was a small concern of mine but in reality the velco is pretty strong and Mason probably won’t figure out the velcro for a while longer.

To prevent toddler hand from undoing the velcro gDiapers, unlike disposable diapers, velcro in the back. This takes a little getting used to but now it is really easy.


Here you can see the finished product.. well the finished new diaper part. You know that you’ve succeeded if the ‘g’ is on his butt.

The clean diaper may only last for a few minutes but it is pretty easy to figure out if he is wet. One sign is a crying baby and the other is a quick swab of the finger on the inside of his diaper. It may feel a little damp and then the whole process repeats.

{In order to have a happy photo shoot Mason’s diaper wasn’t changed, but he is getting better at the process}


Here is a photo of the disposable and flushable inserts next to a cloth insert. They are 100% biodegradable and can be flushed down the toilet, put into your compost bin, or just thrown into your regular trash. Not only are they cool in theory, but they are great in practice. We use these inserts when traveling and as a double absorber on Mason’s overnight diaper.

The insert rips apart and you empty the contents into the toilet give it a stir with a diaper plastic wand and it magically disintegrates. Then throw the liner in and it all goes down the toilet. Again your hands shouldn’t get dirty in the process.

To be honest I was a little skeptical of the flushable feature but it honestly works and there are YouTube videos to prove it (not ours). We even have a low-flow toilet and haven’t had an issue with disposal or pluming yet.

The entire thing is compostable which in general I’m down with, but composting our baby’s waste doesn’t sound that appetizing.


Here is a photo of our dirty diaper hamper. Our wet/soiled diapers and the occasional wet cover live in here until they go into the wash. This diaper pail is specific for cloth diapers and even has a place for an air freshener in the lid. We’ve never had gotten one and thankfully we’ve not had a problem with a smelly mess!

When we are on the go we have a wet bag that we purchased to hold dirty diapers until we get home. The waterproof bag has worked great and we haven’t had any issues with our to-go system.


Before we started using cloth diapers my biggest fear was about the poopy diapers. I have a pretty solid stomach but I didn’t want to deal scrubbing the #2 diapers clean. Purchasing a diaper sprayer was probably the best investment we could have made. It attaches right to your toilet and prevents messy handling and eases the disposal.  One warning is to pre-explain it’s purpose to your visitors as they may think that you’ve installed a funny looking bidet.


So that is it and you’ve seen everthing but our washing machine and clothes line. Overall I’d give the process a thumbs up for ease convenience, cleanliness, and ability to switch from cloth to disposable. If ever you’d like to practice your changing skills, please let Elaine or I know and we can work you in the rotation.

Cloth diapering is not scary and doesn’t have to be gross, smelly, or intimidating.

Thanks for reading and have a great day! Mark

Enjoy the blooper shots…

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4 responses »

  1. Thanks for writing this post! I have been trying to decide whether to try cloth diapering or not and really want to for the environmental and cost benefits, but have had reservations about the process (poopy diapers, ease of traveling). No one I know cloth diapers either, so there’s no one to get advice from. Thank god for the internet, right?
    This makes it seem a lot less intimidating!

  2. What an interesting blog! YOu all are really doing a great job…and when I see that bag of disposables…it’s a real lesson. I used cloth diapers back in the stone age, but they were saggy baggy, didn’t hold the blow outs or the leaks and when I put them on too tight, the diaper pin went right thru Jake’s hip…

  3. What a great post! We are still exploring the world of cloth diapering and just recently bought a few gdiapers and a pack of the flushable inserts. So far we love them because they are earth-friendly but also offer the convenience of flushing or tossing just like a disposable. So glad you have had success with them too.
    Have fun in Hawaii!


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