It is hard to save those pennies. Sometimes we just have the bare minimum to start cloth diapering, so what we choose to use has to stretch our dollar to the extreme. I remember when my son was a newborn, and I invested in a stash of organic one-size hemp/cotton fitted diapers. I was so excited that I would have a stash of organic, absorbent, and premium diapers. After I washed them up and tried them on my baby, I realized that they were way too big and bulky. They were also not very soft, which was a big issue with me. I wanted nothing but softness and comfort for my baby. (I am sure that resonates with all of you!) Being that I could not return them, I had to use them, knowing that they were making my baby uncomfortable. They were very absorbent, which is important, but they also made him very hot. They also only fit him for a short period. The moral of the story is; you don’t need the fancy diapers to cloth diaper. It is an investment, and the basic and affordable diapers may work just as well or better as the premium options. Enter the Prefold diaper. Prefolds are a very versatile and affordable cloth diapering option. They are very durable, and have uses beyond cloth diapering. They are made from natural fibers which are easier to clean. This has become one of my most recommended cloth diapering options! Now for some of you, this may bring visions of the old fashioned flat diapers, pins, and vinyl pants. But cloth diapers have a new twist, even when using prefolds and covers. There is no longer a need for diaper pins with many of the new cover designs – simply trifold the prefold and lay into the cover. Please see the illustration below. Duo Wrap to keep the prefold in place and up against baby’s skin. The price of the Duo Wrap/Duo Hemp Prefold combo is about $384 per child from birth to potty training. This pricing is based on a stash of 20 diapers and 7 covers in size 1, and 12 diapers and 3 covers in size 2. You will need at least this amount if you wash every other day. Prefolds should last you through more than one child, compounding the savings. + PrefoldsWraps: $384 Total water/energy/detergent and washer/dryer upkeep per child for 2.5 years: $502
Great post. Prefolds scare me, but we may go that route with our newborn in March. I started CDing with my now 2 year old when she was 4 months old and well big enough to go with pockets or AI2s. You may have changed my mind!
prefolds just seem so much easier to clean than anything else. They make sense.
When I started looking into cloth diapering I thought that the old kind of diapers (i.e. prefolds and flats) weren’t even around anymore because my cloth-diapering friends all used BumGenius. I was shocked at the price of those diapers, and I calculated that they probably would not save me money since I was using el-cheapo Kroger Value diapers. I’m glad I found out that not only are prefolds still around, but they are much easier than they were when my mom used them on me! After reading around I realized that prefolds are easy and have a lot of advantages over AIOs. I expect our prefolds to last through several children. Our second baby is wearing them now, and they are still as usable as when we got them (although they are rather stained).
Thanks for such a great post. I have just started cloth diapering on baby #7 and wish I had done it with all of my babies. We have a few prefolds but need to get some good covers to use them in. I really like the idea of prefolds. So much easier to wash – you can use really hot water and not worry about hurting the PUL you have in pocket or AIO diapers. I have wanted to try the Thirstie covers for a while and hope to be able to purchase some soon. I really like that you can just trifold and lay the prefolds into the covers – great feature!
Prefolds are very easy. They’re the main style of diaper I started off with 9 years ago before pockets were around much. Even good quality Indian prefolds are easy to wash, soft, and cheap. I do wish I’d had Duo Wraps back then. They’re my new favorite cover for my 9 week old baby girl. And I love the smooth feel of the Duo prefolds.
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