Saturday, March 31, 2012

From the Archives: Overnight Cloth Diapering

Based on the answers in our survey many of you have not found a good overnight cloth diaper.  Several of you still use disposables at night, and I think it may be partly due to the difficulty of finding just the right diaper for your baby at night.

I tried several different diapers before I finally arrived at our current nighttime solution.  There is some trial and error to this process, because every baby is shaped differently and wets differently and sleeps in different positions for different amounts of time.  Don’t give up!  Here are some things that I have found helpful when finding a good overnight routine.

Based on the answers in our survey (it’s still open through 2/28, and you could win a FuzziBunz diaper for answering), many of you have not found a good overnight cloth diaper.  Several of you still use disposables at night, and I think it may be partly due to the difficulty of finding just the right diaper for your baby at night.

I tried several different diapers before I finally arrived at our current nighttime solution.  There is some trial and error to this process, because every baby is shaped differently and wets differently and sleeps in different positions for different amounts of time.  Don’t give up!  Here are some things that I have found helpful when finding a good overnight routine.

Try a Pocket Diaper
I prefer to use a pocket diaper for overnights because they are completely customizable.  The inner fleece/suede lining ensures my baby will stay dry all night.  The waterproof outer layer ensures wetness will not escape.  The pocket opening allows me to customize the diaper to meet my baby’s overnight needs.  I can choose how many inserts/layers, what fiber the fabric will be composed of, and the order of the layers.

If you don’t like pocket diapers, a good fitted diaper (perhaps with a booster layer) would be a good choice as well.

Try a Super Absorbent Fiber
There are several different fabric fibers in cloth diapers, and some are more absorbent than others.  Try using a super “thirsty” fiber for your overnight diaper! Some fabrics are just more “thirsty” than others, and they can absorb quicker, or hold more liquid.  These are the fibers that you want to stuff in your overnight diapers.

Some excellent choices are Hemp, Bamboo, and Cotton.  Hemp is a great choice because it is also very trim, so your baby won’t look like a turtle in his overnight diaper.  Hemp can hold a lot of liquid, and it is also naturally antimicrobial.  This property can help to stave off some of the odor that may greet you in the morning if your baby sleeps 10+ hours like mine does!

Bamboo is also highly absorbent, and it is very plush and soft against your baby’s skin.  If you want to get the benefit of the softness of bamboo, then you would use a fitted diaper with a bamboo lining.  However, this means that there is no stay-dry fabric keeping your baby dry at night when he will not be changed as often. I don’t feel comfortable leaving my baby’s skin next to the wetness for extended periods of time, so I would choose a bamboo insert inside of a pocket diaper.

Cotton is very absorbent also, but it can also be very bulky.  You might experiment with tri-folding a cotton prefold diaper and stuffing it in a pocket for overnights.  This will likely give you enough absorbency, but it will be rather awkward on your baby. 

Microfiber absorbs liquid very quickly, but like cotton it can be rather bulky in order to get enough layers.  Try using a thin microfiber insert laid on top of a hemp or bamboo insert.  I would stuff it in a pocket.  Place the microfiber layer closest to the baby’s skin to absorb the pee quickly.  The trim hemp or bamboo layer beneath it will add the boost of absorbency that you need to make it through the night.

Bulky is Okay
Diaper blog headerIt’s okay for your baby’s overnight diaper to be more bulky.  He or she won’t be crawling, climbing, or walking in his/her sleep (hopefully!).  They may look funny, but be sure to add enough layers to your diaper to make it through the night without leaks.  You don’t want to wash sheets and blankets everyday!  Considering the extra bulk of the overnight diaper, it might be a good idea to buy pajamas up a size from normal.  I forgot to do this recently and my daughter wore her new PJs for all of about a week before they had to be retired!

Try Adding an Insert
If you find that a diaper is not absorbent enough for overnights, just add an insert.  You may choose to double the insert, or use a smaller doubler that won’t add quite as much bulk. Sometimes these doublers are contoured to cut down on the extra bulk between your baby’s legs.

If you are using a one-size diaper, add the second insert.  Many one size diapers (FuzziBunz, bumGenius, and Rumparooz, for example) come with a small insert to use with newborns and little babies, and a larger insert for toddlers.  If you use both inserts together you may have enough layers to get through the night.  I really like theRumparooz 6R soaker for this purpose.  The inserts snap together to keep them in place, and the small insert is contoured between the legs.  It is available in microfiber or hemp

My Solution…for now!
When Elaine was tiny we used a bamboo fitted diaper with a cover.  Once she started sleeping for 10-12 hours, we needed more absorbency.  We prefer Rumparooz one size diapers for overnights.  The double gussets help keep everything inside.  We use a hemp 6R soaker at night, and we use both parts of the insert.  If my hemp inserts are all soiled, I use a microfiber 6R insert and add a cotton doubler strip.

Update: We continued the same solution for Elaine all the way through potty training.  We also do the same thing for Nolan, but we stuff the doubled portion of the insert into the pocket first so he has more absorbency in the front.  And now we add a wool cover…just in case!

What is your overnight solution?  Leave a comment!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Troubleshooting Overnight Cloth Diapering Problems

Every day this week I have sat down to write a post, and been distracted.  Today I hope to get one finished!  I have shared several suggestions for overnight cloth diapering boys, and heavy wetters.  Today I want to share some general tips for using cloth diapers overnight.

Use a Pocket Diaper  FB-onesize-spearmint500
Hands down, a pocket diaper is the most customizable cloth diaper on the market.  You can customize the absorbency by adding or removing various inserts and doublers.  You can use a natural fiber insert to gain more absorbency.  You can adjust the size to allow for extra bulk by just unsnapping the rise or the waist (on a one size pocket diaper).  This is where I would start – with a pocket diaper!

Add a Doubler  Hemp Babies Doubler
Your baby may not be a heavy wetter, but probably still needs some extra absorbency to make it through the night with no leaks.  Try a simple doubler – a gauze doubler offers several layers of thirsty cotton (like a prefold), or a hemp doubler increases the absorbency even further.

Switch the Insert Fibers
Microfiber is very thirsty, and it absorbs very quickly.  But sometimes it just isn’t enough.  Bamboo and hemp, as well as organic cotton, or any combination of the three, will greatly increase the absorbency of your diaper.  The beauty of these natural fibers is that many of them are trimmer than microfiber also, so you are increasing the absorbency and decreasing the bulk. 

If you don’t have a super-soaker, I like the Doopsy Bamboo Hemp inserts.  They are the perfect blend of two ultra-absorbing fibers.  I add a trim microfiber insert on top to absorb things quickly!

Try a Fitted Diaper
Fitted diapers are generally more absorbent than pocket diapers, simply because the whole diaper is made of absorbent material, and not just the strip or pocket between the legs.  However, these diapers can be bulky, and they require a waterproof cover over the top.  For heavy wetters, try combining a fitted diaper with a wool cover for a sure-solution to leaks. 

Personally, I don’t like fitted diapers.  Mostly because of the bulk, and also because of the long drying time in the wash cycle.  I also don’t like using them overnight because the whole diaper gets wet, and will be against my baby’s skin for an extended period of time (10-12+ hours).  I have been blessed to have normal wetting children, so I haven’t had to resort to this option for overnights.  But many parents prefer them and  use them successful overnight!

Add a Wool Cover  1_ecoposh_wool_rolled
We have already talked about this, but adding a wool cover over the top of your diaper (whether pocket, prefold & cover, or fitted) will add a lot of leak protection.  Wool is very absorbent and can contain much of the moisture that might wick or leak out of your diaper over the extended night time period.  The cover may be damp in the morning, but chances are your sheets will be dry! 

If you use this option, you will likely need to have at least 2 wool covers in rotation.  If your baby is consistently wetting through his/her diaper into the wool, it will need washed more often. Wool does to be hand washed and laid flat to dry, so the time it takes to launder is longer than normal diaper laundry.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Overnights: Use a Wool Cover

img_3376I have recently learned that wool covers are fabulous!  I always shied away from wool because it seemed to require more work, it is a bit more bulky, and I thought it was too itchy to use on my baby. 

We first delved into wool as a protective cover over our Eco-Posh Trainers when Elaine was potty training.  She now wakes up dry 95% of the time and no longer wears a cover to bed.img_3375

I asked a friend {who is a fan of wool for overnights} what she used under her wool covers.  Her answer surprised me!  She said that she just slips the wool cover right over the pocket diaper.  If anything does leak out of the pocket overnight, the wool is sure to absorb it.  Since then, Nolan has worn a wool cover over his pocket diaper at naps and bedtime. 

So if you just can’t seem to find the right combination for overnights, or if you’re tired of changing the sheets every morning, or if you just have a really heavy wetter and you want to be sure to have enough protection…try a wool cover!


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Win-It Wednesday: Rumparooz Insert

To help you with your overnight or naptime cloth diapering, one blessed reader is going to win their choice of Rumparooz 6R insert – in microfiber, hemp, or bamboo!
To enter, please use the Rafflecopter Widget below.  If you cannot view the widget, click the “Read More” link, or click the title of this post.  Then the widget should be visible.  If you are reading this post in a reader, you need to click through to view the widget on the blog.  Prize may not be shipped outside of the United States.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Burrito Fold: for Boys

As I mentioned yesterday, I have a few tricks and tips to share for night time diapering, especially for boys.  Today I want to introduce “The Burrito Fold.”

When I was struggling to find a leak-proof solution for Nolan, I asked for help from other Rumparooz/Kanga Care retailers.  One mom recommended wrapping the newborn insert around the end of the main insert, similar to a burrito.  This provides either 3 or 4 layers (depending on the setting you choose) of absorption at the front where little boys need it most.  Use a hemp insert for a trimmer fit.

The Burrito Fold jpg

Step by step instructions:

1.  Use both portions of the Rumparooz 6R soaker.  For 4 layers of protection, snap the larger insert down to the small/medium setting.  If you only want/need 3 layers, then do not snap the insert down.  Use the chart below for a reference (click image to enlarge):

6R Soaker

I used the snapped down setting.

The Burrito Fold for nights

2.  Lay the larger insert on top of the newborn/contoured insert so that it covers the bottom portion of the insert.

The Burrito Fold for nights

3.  Fold the top of the newborn/contoured insert down, so that it wraps around the end of the insert like a burrito.

The Burrito Fold for nights

4.  Stuff this portion into the pocket of your diaper first, so that it is at the front of the diaper where the boy needs extra absorbency.

The Burrito Fold for nights

You could really do this fold with any two inserts, or a combination of an insert and a doubler.  I used microfiber inserts for illustration, but it will be quite bulky at the front of your diaper.  You will likely have to adjust the waist setting to compensate. 

Try a microfiber insert with a Hemp Babies doubler wrapped around it, or a hemp 6R soaker, or any combination of microfiber, hemp, and bamboo, or organic cotton.  I think that hemp and organic cotton are the trimmest.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Mailbox Mondays: Overnight Diapers

Mailbox Mondays button

Since the theme for March is overnights and naps, I thought I would answer this Mailbox Monday question from Hannah G.:

What is a good nighttime diaper? I've tried several different ones and each time my baby boy wakes up with his crib sheets and pj's all wet. He's a very heavy wetter!

Along the same lines is a question from Sabrina:

What do you recommend for overnight heavy wetter boys?

Great questions!  I had a lot of leaks when I first brought my son home.  Cloth diapering a boy is a little different than cloth diapering a girl…or so I have discovered!

My favorite night time diaper remains the same for both my daughter and my son.  I have just changed the way I stuff the pocket to use it for my son.  I always recommend the Rumparooz One Size diaper for overnights.  If you have a heavy wetter, us a Hemp or Bamboo 6R insert.  Nolan was fine with just microfiber inserts until about 6 months old.  Now he uses a combination of either hemp or bamboo.

Part of the benefit of the Rumparooz G2 diaper is the versatility of the insert.  You can use it six different ways, so there is surely a setting for everyone.  For nighttime diapering (and even for naps if you have a heavy wetter), use both portions of the insert.

6R Soaker(click image to enlarge)

Nolan doesn’t need the insert unsnapped completely, so we use the medium doubler setting.  But…I stuff the snapped down portion into the pocket opening first, so that there are actually three layers (or “portions”) of insert in the front of the diaper where a boy “aims” his wetness.

This has been sufficient to stop our night time and naptime leaks.  I prefer not to double stuff a bunch of diapers for naptime and then have to keep them set aside until use.  So I have started stuffing all of my diapers with the snap-down portion of the insert (the small/medium setting) in the front of the diaper.  I always grab a Rumparooz for nap time, and I know that he has a double layer of absorbency.

I have 4 inserts for night times – 3 hemp, and 1 bamboo.  We wash every 3-4 days, so this is enough to always have an absorbent insert ready for bed time.  You don’t have to break the bank and purchase a lot of inserts in order to use cloth diapers at night.  It is economical to just purchase a few, and rotate them until wash day.

I have several more tips to share regarding diapering boys, so be sure to check back this week!

What is your “go-to” diaper for naps or nights?  Do you have a heavy wetter?  How do you keep the jammies and sheets dry?  Leave a comment!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...