Caring for your cloth diapers is not a whole lot different that caring for any other item of clothing that you own. There are a few details that you should plan on adding to your normal wash routine, which will prolong the life of your cloth diapers, and keep them in top notch condition.
You will want to store your dirty cloth diapers in a waterproof bag, with a zip closure. These are referred to as a Wet Bag. I wash my diapers every evening so they don’t have to sit to long soaking up all of that ammonia. I just empty the bag upside down in the washer and get my wash on!
My routine is as follows:
*Pre rinse diapers with no detergent. I always add a capful of vinegar to the initial rinse cycle. Vinegar will help eliminate any ammonia odors, and is also a natural fabric softener.
*Start your normal wash cycle, and add your choice of detergent. I would definitely suggest using a detergent free of added softeners. Fabric softener will cause your insert layers to repel moisture and not absorb properly.
*Dry diapers on medium heat NOT your drier’s highest setting. I like to keep a bath towel handy to throw in during the drying cycle, which not only fluffs up your diapers a bit, but also absorbs liquid from your diapers and cuts down on your drying time.
Ok, I know you’re thinking about it, so I will address the question that everyone poses when they entertain the idea of cloth diapering. What the heck do you do about the poop?
Well, many cloth diaper users install a diaper sprayer, which makes disposing of the mess much easier. I don’t have a diaper sprayer, so what I do is take both ends of the diaper (make sure that you have ahold of the insert as well), and dunk upside down in the toilet. Be gentle now. Vigorous dunking will just fling unmentionables everywhere. Be sure to bring your Wet Bag along with you, so you don’t drip all over the house after you’re through dunking. Now that doesn’t sound all that traumatic, does it?