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Cloth Diapering a Newborn - where to start and how to cloth diaper

February 16, 2011

Tips for Cloth Diapering a Newborn

There are about 7 different types of cloth diapers out there. All of them except for prefold diapers are available in something called "one size". Cloth diaper manufacturers will say that their one-size diaper can fit your baby from 8 lbs to 35 or 40 lbs. In reality though, most one-size diapers don't really fit newborns well until about 10 to 12 lbs. For this awkward, but short stage, you have a few options:

1. Use a Newborn Rental Program
Newborn Rental Programs allow you to rent newborn sized cloth diapers for 8 to 12 weeks. This is usually long enough for baby to reach 10 to 12 lbs. You then return the diapers for a store credit to go towards purchasing other diapers and accessories.

2. Don't Buy One-Size Diapers
At least not yet. Most one-size diapers won't fit your baby until she's about 10 lbs, so for the few short weeks leading up to that, we recommend purchasing newborn, or X-Small diapers designed to fit babies from 6 to 12 lbs. Some will even come with a "snap down" feature which allows you to snap the front of the diaper down so it doesn't rub against the umbilical cord - allowing it to heal properly. See Also Newborn Diaper Recommendations

3. Buy Infant Pre-fold Diapers
Since the newborn stage is so short, and most often the baby will be with you and not another care giver during this time, its best to purchase infant or newborn sized pre-fold diapers to save money. We recommend purchasing DSQ (diaper service quality) Chinese or Indian prefolds (NOT Gerber prefolds, they won't be nearly absorbent enough). We also recommend purchasing 6 to 9 X-Small PUL diaper covers that snap on the sides. Mother Ease Airflow covers and Gen-Y diaper covers are both made well, breathe well, and don't leak. The side snaps allow for baby to bend easily at the waist. Finally, we suggest using the "twist" fold for your pre-fold diaper. This creates a narrow crotch allowing the baby to move and crawl easier.

WATCH Types of Cloth Diapers

WATCH Cloth Diapering Essentials

WATCH How to Fold a Prefold Diaper Using the "Twist" Method

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