I’ve been asked by several people to give an update on our adventures in cloth diapering. I’ll be honest – not much has changed. As with most things in our triplety world, we slowly evolve to adapt, tweaking one thing here, another thing there, moving pieces around until we have something that works. For now.

As I said in the past, we choose to use cloth diapers as a money saver. Because of this, we try to use as little variety in our arsenal of butt covers as humanly possible. It saves time on laundry, and it makes the diapering process (x3) a breeze. Everything works together, and we never have to match certain brands with certain accessories and/or pieces.

Behold, the characters:

We currently use two sizes of diapers (Green Mountain Diapers Cloth-Eez prefolds in unbleached cotton) – red-edge diapers are for daytime use, and yellow-edge diapers are for nighttime (they’re smaller and are a better fit for our bulky overnight system).

During the day, we use an angel-wing fold and fasten with a Snappi.

At night, we tri-fold (like a brochure) the diaper and sandwich it between a microfiber insert on bottom (for extra absorbency), and a fleece insert (cut from an unused blanket) against the skin. Because fluids run through fleece without absorbing, it keeps their skin dry all night.

Nighttime diapering has been the biggest challenge in this adventure. We tried a double fold, but found it was too bulky. We tried using the cotton inserts rather than a second prefold instead, but we found it was too wet. Finally, we realized we only needed to soak up overnight pee (daytime poopers ftw!), so we modified the overnight double fold and found a method that was super absorbent AND dry against the skin.

We’re currently scratching our heads over whether Toby needs something different, but for now, we change him once overnight with no hassle (he wakes once most nights to nurse and be cuddled).

Aside from that (and up until recently for Toby), the girls have no issue going 12-13 hours with our current overnight system.

Now, the big, stinky details. Poop.


Now that we got that out of our 12-year-old-sense-of-humor systems, let’s move on.

My 13-month-olds eat pretty much anything we eat, so … you can imagine the situation in their diapers.

After some traumatizing but necessary dunk-and-swish incidents, I told Rob we NEEDED a diaper sprayer. Him being a DIY marvel (Tim The Toolman Taylor would be proud), and me being a stubborn penny pincher, I sent Rob a YouTube link, and he set off for our local home-improvement store. We now have a diaper sprayer that cost less than half of what Bum Genius sells theirs for.

Not a bidet.

Some diaper treasures dump right out and into the toilet with nothing more than a little shake. Some need more help, and the sprayer is absolutely perfect. There is rarely overspray (the disgusting reason I didn’t want one), and the water supply to the sprayer can be shut off when we have curious small folk wandering about in the bathroom.

Edit to add: The only change to our laundry routine comes with the diaper sprayer. Before, we sprayed each deuced diaper with a 50-50 water/Biokleen Bac Out mix. Since we started using the sprayer, we ditched the Bac Out spray and started adding it, undiluted to the second wash cycle. I pour a bit into my fabric softener tray, and it works its funky-smell-removing miracles during that second cycle. (Refer back to the original entry for my laundry routine.)

See? Not much has changed. Let me know if you have any questions I may be able to answer!

Unmentioned but necessary, could-not-live-without supplies:

Covers: I found 15 WonderWraps on clearance after they’d been discontinued. We’ve used these exclusively for several months with minimal wear and tear. As one-size-fits all, we hope to use these for the duration of our diapering days. GroVia’s hybrid shells are the most similar option currently manufactured.

Diaper cream: We swear by Northern Essence‘s All Natural Diaper Rash Salve and Better Butt(er) Cream.

Detergent: Again with the thrifty, we use a homemade recipe from The Eco-Friendly Family.


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16 Responses to So you wanna know … about cloth diapering triplets – the sequel

  1. Delora says:

    Question about the Wonder Wraps. I have one – I hate it. The snap-down rise never stays snapped for me when I try to pull it up over baby. Do you ever have issues with yours becoming unsnapped?

    • Jenny says:

      A snap or two occasionally comes undone as we’re recovering, but it’s neither a frequent nor unfixable problem.

  2. Lina MGM says:

    a night time option you might consider – Bum Genius 4.0 pocket, triple stuffed – the two inserts + hemp doubler in between the microfiber inserts. we use that on our super soakers and have much success.

    you would only need 2 (maybe 3, depending on how often you do laundry) per child and since they girls’ system aint broken, i would just do it for Toby at first. and you can get BG used as well.

    its pretty bulletproof and wouldn’t require shelling out a lot to experiment with other stuff. i just know that boy super soaking is hard slash nearly impossible to contain at night in long stretches with only prefolds. :/

  3. Lina MGM says:

    also, i have a “raspberry” wonder wrap that has never been used for $10ppd if you’d like it. lol not to spam you, but noone has even heard of them! (we only use wool now as covers, so i unloaded all my PUL and this color was too girly for my guys)

  4. emily says:

    I’m impressed your prefolds work overnight. Maybe I’ll try stuffing one into a BG pocket. We don’t have any fleece liners yet and I think we’d see rashes with wet bums overnight.

    • Jenny says:

      Trifolded, my prefolds make a thick 16 layers of cotton. Our microfiber inserts are BGs, so that’s an extra 3 layers for absorbing. We’ve never had leaks through the covers, and the babies are rarely bothered by any moisture. It’s AWESOME.

  5. Therese says:

    We were good with pockets overnight until Leah was about 2-ish. Then she started leaking almost everynight. I ended up getting some hemp prefolds & some covers (& some hemp doublers to add to the pockets)& now she doesn’t leak overnight. The covers that I got have the extra leg gussets which help prevent gaps & leaks.

    Now that I’ve tried PFs, I like them (trifold style)! But my pocket stash is pretty extensive so I won’t get more unless absolutely necessary.

    However, I remember you mentioning on twitter that Borax isn’t safe for hemp.

    It’s a constant learning process as the babes get bigger! :)

  6. as you know, we use gdiapers and love them. I recently discovered these: http://www.diapers.com/p/gdiapers-gcloth-liners-105-count-106865?site=CI&utm_source=cse&utm_medium=cpc_D&utm_campaign=Google&utm_content=pla&ci_sku=GD-119&ci_gpa=pla&ci_kw=%7Bkeyword%7D
    I only use them when I know there’s gonna be poo (good thing she’s regular :) and then I flush it. Saves me from scraping poo into the toilet. They’re a bit rough out of the box but I just crinkle them in my hand a few times and they get really soft like a paper towel would. I bet they’d work with any kind of cloth diaper

  7. Andrea says:

    Hey Jenny!
    I love reading your blog. I’ve been here since before the babies were born … So awhile … And wanted to give you a great big high-five for, among other things, trying cloth and sticking with it. I have used cloth on both of my kids and even opened a online diaper store here in northeast Ohio to spread the love! For little Tobias, I’d recommend you try hemp inserts. My little boy just turned 1 this week and is a VERY heavy wetter. We use hemp+prefold, Or hemp+microfiber, or even just a Thirsties hemp prefold in EVERY one of his diapers. Double it up and lay it up front. So, so much better, and he makes it through the night like that. Give hemp a try! :-) Let me know if I can give you any other recommendations.

  8. Courtney says:

    Hey–so the sad thing is, I thought of this as I was falling asleep. “Ooh! I should comment on her post!” Yeah. Anyway, I also have a heavy-wetting boy, and it took us FOREVER to figure out the right combo. We started with a BG 3.0 with the original inserts. Then added an extra microfiber insert. Switched to 4.0s, then added a premium hemp insert. Still leaks! (Not often, but enough to be totally annoying in terms of laundry/early wet wakeups.)

    Our final, “duh” solution? We started putting an extra Flip cover over top of the whole shebang. So now at night J is in a BG 4.0 with two full-size microfiber inserts, one premium hemp insert, all wrapped in an extra cover. And we have not had a single leak since–some dampness on the inside of the extra cover, but that’s it. Totally amazing. And no diaper rash, either. Just thought I’d recommend in case you hadn’t thought of this yet.

  9. Georgie says:

    I’m just gonna mention hemp doublers, in case Toby ever sleeps through the night and you’d like to stop changing him.
    Hemp doublers are the only thing I’ve found that absorbs enough for us.

  10. Suz says:

    Love you for doing this post so I can go back & read it like 18 months from now when I’m there. Poe brought me the tiny prefolds this weekend! So excited to grow my triplet stash; thanks again to you! Muah!

  11. #1- You rock for being sensible about the cost of cloth vs disposable to triplets. Way to be in tune.

    #2- Thanks for the diaper rash cream suggestion. I would trust a mother of triplets! My little 20 month old gal has this diaper rash we just can’t kick. I will be trying this new stuff. Thanks!

  12. Cameron says:

    My friend Sara (@SaraJOY) sent me here when I asked her about how she launders her cloth. My Nora’s 3 months old and we were gifted a diaper service for 3 months so I’m now trying to figure out how to wash them myself. I made the diaper detergent you recommended and am following your “recipe” for washing (as best I can in my front-load washer with different settings than yours has), but I still have lots of poop stains. I don’t expect them to be sparkly white, but these are gross. Do yours come out clean or are they pretty stained? I know I can hang them in the sun to help bleach, but that doesn’t help me a lot in January. Help, please? Any suggestions?

  13. Jenny says:

    Part of your trouble may be your front-loading washer. A cold soak is great to prevent stains, but if you can’t get enough water in there for a good soak, well … kinda a problem!

    Mine do have light stains on them, but I have never cared much. They’re just going to be pooped in again, and I’m not putting them on display (though I do hunt down stain-free diapers for blog pics).

    Soak in cold water, use whatever sun you can, and are you using BioKleen Bac Out?

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