Preparing Used Cloth Diapers

Yesterday I spent most of my day doing loads of laundry…mind you the baby has yet to arrive.

Of course, this was all in preparation for the big arrival.

The bigger of the task was researching how to prepare our cloth diaper stash. A lot of people are disgusted by the idea of using used cloth diapers. I had the same initial reaction. I actually debated it quite a bit before feeling comfortable with it. I figure if we had decided to use a diapering service we would not have even known where/who else the diapers were being used by. Not only that but we would have no idea how and with what the diapers were being washed, type of detergent, bleach, any other chemicals to make them spic ‘n span customer to customer. This was one of the reasons we steered away from disposable diapers. Instead, we decided to take hand me downs from a relative so we know where they were and how they were used/cleaned. Alternatively, we could have invested in a new set of materials but we weren’t ready to take that plunge without trying it out first especially because there are so many different kinds. We may consider buying new ones once we get a handle on it and we are sure cloth diapering is for us.

I did a lot of research on this topic the following summarizes what I did based on my findings.
How did I prepare our used cloth diapers?

Step 1: Stripped the Cloth Diapers & Covers
Stripping the cloth diapers simply means taking some steps to remove any possible build up of detergent, hard water minerals, odors etc. Generally, this can be done every month or so of using your cloth diapers…it’s basically a deep cleaning to ensure your diapers retain their absorbency. I did this by filling my bathtub with hot water, squirting in some dawn dish soap (the original blue bottle) and throwing in all the prefolds and covers. Swirl it all around to give it the agitation effect. If you have a top loader washer (which we do) you also do a soak cycle in the washer directly but I had read that the dawn in the washer can void your washer warranty so I did not want to risk that or any other malfunctions. After swirling it all around for about 10 minutes, I left it in there to soak overnight.

Step 2: Rinse

Next morning after draining the water out and wringing the water out I dumped all of these into the washer to run a cold rinse cycle. If the water seems to be very sudsy, run a few rinse cycles.

Step 3: Wash Cycle
After the rinse cycle, I did a hot water wash w/an extra rinse cycle. I used our Amazon ordered cloth diaper detergent Country Save which is free and clear of fragrances and other unwanted chemicals.

Step 4: Hang to Dry
Since it was a warm sunny day, I decided to hang them all outside to dry. Alternatively, you can stick them in the dryer on a low setting. After sun drying them, I still stuck them in the dryer for a quick 5 minutes to get the stiffness out and make them a bit fluffy.

I can’t wait to use these fresh and so clean clean dipes for the first time!

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