Steering my customers in the right direction when they ask for advice is always a top priority, and sometimes this means steering them away from a huge sale and into a more realistic, economical and practical option.
New moms, specifically first time moms, are usually really good about doing their research. Which diapers are the best? How do they work? How many do I need? and so on. In my experience they usually end up deciding on a well known pocket diaper, make up their mind that's what they want to use and they plan to build their stash accordingly. New baby = 12-24 pocket diapers plus inserts. Then they're off to shop.
If I knew then what I know now about babies and their bowel movements...lol I would have started with prefolds and covers when I first began cloth diapering my sons, especially since I rarely left the house. Why would I say such a thing? Because new babies poop and pee all day long. A squirt here, a drop there, as soon as you've placed a fresh diaper on their tiny bum they've gone and soiled it again. You check it and think, "man I can't just let them wear that diaper, even if it is only a pea sized amount of poo." Before you know it you've changed that babes diaper 3-4 times in one hour!
This is where prefolds come in. A soft and fluffy prefold, which are easily laundered and very forgiving, can be tri-folded into a cover, think Thirsites, and you're ready to go. Baby soils it two seconds later, you grab a fresh prefold and replace the soiled one with a clean one. Chances are your cover didn't even get dirty. Repeat this scenario throughout the day and you might go through a dozen prefolds and 2-3 covers. Depending on how often you plan on doing laundry, you could get started cloth diapering an infant with 4-6 covers and 2 dozen prefolds.
When you're ready to take baby out and about or have a need for diapers that you can or need to leave on for an extended period of time (like overnight), then you should experiment with pocket diapers and microfiber inserts or hemp inserts. Microfiber and Hemp are miraculous in the amount of pee they can hold, and paired with pocket diapers such as BumGenius or Duo Diapers they've been known to rival disposables in terms of how much they can hold before leaking. This makes them a perfect option for night time diapering or for use when heading to the doctor, the mall, or the grocery store.
Final thoughts, extend the life of your expensive pocket diapers by utilizing prefolds and covers when you can, especially when babies are less than 6 months old.
Thanks for reading!
Julia Clark, Earth Angels Diaper Co.