Keeping Your Cloth Diapers Clean Part I: Dealing with Urine, Poo and Bigger Poos, Oh My!

Keeping Your Cloth Diapers Clean Part I: Dealing with Urine, Poo and Bigger Poos, Oh My!

When moms and dads are weighing the pros and cons of diapering options, many things may play into the decision.  But quite possibly the biggest question on these new parents’ minds when considering cloth is “but how on earth do I get those cloth diapers clean?”

Our culture has become accustomed to wrapping up the icky stuff and throwing it away for good, so the thought of actually cleaning the diapers and using them again is a little foreign.  Well, not to worry, cleaning cloth diapers is much simpler and less gross than you would imagine.  If you’re still unsure, there is something you need to understand:  When you have a baby, you will get poo on your hands. Period.  It happens to every parent whether they use cloth or disposable diapers, so get ready to get your hands dirty.

Now, down to business.  To make this easier, we are going to break it down for you into a couple of different diaper situations and then finish up with the washing instructions.  These simple steps will give you clean, fresh diapers with every wash and not make you want to pull your hair out – we promise.

Note:  When you remove the dirty diaper from the baby, be sure to have a clean, dry one standing by (and put the dry diaper on first unless you’re prepared to deal with the consequences!). 

Urine-only Wet Diaper

  • Separate the pieces of the diaper.  For pocket-style diapers, remove the insert.
  • Insert all diaper parts into reusable diaper pail or wet bag to store until laundry day.
  • For overnight diapers or ones that are particularly soaked with urine, there is a benefit to rinsing out the diapers and inserts with fresh water (easy to do over a toilet with a diaper sprayer in tow).  It is not necessary, but it will just make your life easier on laundry day and will actually help keep the ammonia/urine smells away between wash days.
  • Sit back and eat bon bons, your work on this diaper is done – ha!!

Dirty Diaper #1 (one with a large solid poo inside)

Believe it or not, these are the easiest to deal with, just…

  • Plop the feces into the toilet (it will come off pretty easily as fleece repels the poo).
  • Separate the pieces of the diaper.  For pocket-style, remove the insert.
  • Insert all diaper parts into reusable diaper pail or wet bag until laundry day.

Dirty Diaper #2 (one with a sticky, flattened, mushy poo surprise inside)

These are the diapers that separate the women from the girls.  Just remind yourself that disposable diaper moms are also touching poo on a regular basis.  For these messes…

  • Separate the pieces of the diaper.  For pocket-style, remove the insert.
  • Shake and jiggle as much of the solids as you can into the toilet (letting the diaper sit for a couple of hours may make it easier to remove).  Flush.
  • If you have a Cloth Diaper Sprayerdiaper sprayer attachment now is the time to use it.  Carefully aim the sprayer at the icky poo while holding the diaper as low inside the rim of the diaper as you can (without fully submerging it in the toilet) and rinse off the icky poo. If you don’t have one there are a few other options: 1) the old fashioned ‘dunk and swirl’, or 2) diaper liners.  If you choose the ‘dunk and swirl’ you may want to invest in a good pair of gloves so you don’t have to get your hands icky too.  Be sure to hold on tight because more powerful toilets may actually suck the diaper down with the flush.  Diaper liners are available in flushable/disposable liners (my personal preference) and reusable/fleece or silk fabric liners.  With the liners you place it between your baby and the diaper, when they poo you simply flush the liner and your diaper is (mostly) clean and ready for the diaper pail.
  • Insert all parts of the diaper into your reusable diaper pail or wet bag for laundry day.
  • Wash hands thoroughly – haha!

 

In our next blog post (Part II), we’ll talk about what to do when laundry day arrives (every 2-3 days depending on the size of your diaper stash).

To continue the conversation about pee, poop and cloth diapering fears be sure to visit us on Facebook and Twitter.  To find the accessories mentioned in this article please visit the DiaperShops.com family of stores, including Kelly’s Closet.  

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5 Responses to Keeping Your Cloth Diapers Clean Part I: Dealing with Urine, Poo and Bigger Poos, Oh My!

  1. Trisha W. says:

    I know it sounds gross, but I would find it most helpful if I could see a video of a diaper sprayer in action on a hard to rinse poopy diaper. A video could sure help the less experienced see the tips and techniques more experienced parents have learned.

  2. Tiffany Law says:

    I wish there was a mention of disposable liners. Lift, drop into the toilet and flush. Also a mention of babies who are not on solids yet.

  3. Pingback: Keeping Your Cloth Diapers Clean Part II: Laundry Day Awaits You | Diapershops Blog

  4. Apply rubbing alcohol to a clean, light colored cloth, and continue to blot until the stain is completely removed.