Part-Time Cloth Diapering

Today’s post was written by guest author and fellow #LalabyeMama Jen! Thanks, Jen!


It’s coming, guys.


My daughter Kit is two, and I can’t ignore the fact she will eventually not need diapers. We’re right in the thick of potty training (“We can go potty here, see?”, lots of naked time, watching Sofia on a portable pot).  Tiny (adorable) underwear, a pile of folded diapers sitting untouched.  Peeing on carpets.  And also peeing on the potty, with lots of cheering and excitement.  It’s pretty bittersweet, but also exciting.


So, let’s talk about part-time cloth diapering.  I know there are many of us who cloth part of the time.  Kit has always been a part-timer, really; we never quite nailed the night time solution. She would be fine the first night in cloth, but by the third night, she’d have lots of irritation- too much prolonged wetness gave her a rash.  We tried every diaper we could, and eventually we decided cloth during the day and disposables at night would be the way to go for us.

Now that she’s using less diapers during the day, as well as continuing to use sposies at night, our diaper laundry is getting a lot less frequent.  We’re down to less than 20 diapers (I pretty much just cut the stash in half)!


Here are a few tips to help get you through part-time cloth!

  • RINSE!  All the rinsing.  Even seemingly normal wet diapers, it’s best to rinse before tossing in the pail or wetbag.  For one: toddler pee STINKS.  For two: there is a chance that you haven’t had enough coffee, or a shower in three days, and your toddler is currently pooping on your office floor, you may forget the last day you washed the diapers.
  • A LIGHT SPRINKLE.  I sprinkle a bit of baking soda on my dirty diapers.  I sprinkle it on my husband’s DISGUSTING running clothes, too.  I swear it helps cut the stink down a bit.  A whole box of baking soda might soften your water, but a sprinkle shouldn’t affect anything much. (And my water is already annoyingly soft.  Like, stop putting so much salt in that thing.)  There are also some pail deodorizers out there that do similar stench-cutting things.
  • WET BAGS.  All those great wet bags you have?  You can use those for a ton of things.  I like to use the front pouch for puppy pee pads (saves the car seats and strollers), a foldable toilet, and underwear.  Then, I can put soiled/wet underwear and diapers in the large pouch when Kit fails to make it to a potty in time. (If you’re potty training, be sure to check out this post on potty training using Lalabye.)
  • BULK IT UP.  We are at the point now where we only have about 6-10 wet or poopy diapers a week.  (We use cloth at nap and on long journeys, like our trip to Mackinac last weekend.)  So, how to wash these tiny loads?  Twice a week, I’ll do a warm prewash on the few Lalabye diapers and pairs of underwear.  Then I’ll do a warm wash with that lot, adding either the husband’s running stuff, or towels, or something else I don’t mind washing with just a few diapers.
  • FROM THE HUSBAND.  If you are part-timing because you have a squeamish husband or caregiver (or maybe it’s you, we won’t judge)… invest in a box of rubber gloves.  He insists he wouldn’t have made it through cloth without them.
  • DON’T SWEAT IT.  Yes, there are moms who cloth full time.  No, you do not.  It’s a-okay.  Like anything else in the mom world: you do you, girlfriend.


To the Lalabye Baby Community,

This post is to be my last duty as a Lalabye Mama; with Kit in underwear most of the day, it is time for us to retire! I have had such a blast this last year (and beyond), sharing releases and tips and many hilarious moments with the Lalabye community.  Thank you all for your friendship and for loving on my Kit.


4 thoughts on “Part-Time Cloth Diapering

  1. I love this! Using disposable diapers at night really does work for some families!! I love cloth because of the environmental impact it has!


  2. We never really found a good nighttime solution either and I didn’t want to try a million different things to find one when I knew what worked.
    I’ve always bulked up small loads with kitchen towels, reusable dish sponges, or towels to at least fill the washer- glad I’m not the only one!


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