Should you cloth diaper a newborn? Long answer short, my answer is yes. A lot of people wait until their baby is sitting up or eating solids to start cloth. However, in my limited experience, I believe that the newborn stage is the best time to start with cloth diapers.
- They don’t move at all really. It is such a struggle to convince a mobile baby to lay down for a diaper change. There are best practices for making sure the diaper fits correctly so there aren’t leaks and it’s harder to learn it when your baby keeps rolling.
- The poop is water soluble. Formula, breastmilk, combo*. As long as they aren’t eating anything else, the poop can go straight into the washer. I really miss chucking diapers straight into the laundry basket and held off on introducing solid food for as long as I could to avoid spraying poop into the toilet.
- Cloth diapers hold poop better. This is a fact, according to me (lol). Even when we did cloth part time (I had a c-section and it was just too exhausting to think about laundry), I still used cloth at night to keep that runny poop in or I would end up washing everything in the crib.
- Babies also poop more during this age. More poop = more diapers = more money spent on sposies. BUT if you use cloth then it’s just the upfront cost of diapers. This is a total money win to me.
Even if you don’t use cloth right out of the hospital, I very much recommend doing cloth during the first few months. We started cloth diapering part time at one week until we transitioned to full time after little over a month.
Follow up question: Should I buy newborn size diapers?
The short answer is: maybe. For me, they were worth the cost. I think that it depends on your baby’s size and what kind of diapers you’re getting.
I had a baby who was under 6 lbs at birth and after over a year has just barely tripled the birth weight. One size diapers didn’t fit until at least 4 months old and we used our newborn stuff for more than 6 months. That is totally worth it to me and you can always sell them online after.
Newborn sizes are particularly worth it if you buy them secondhand. I found that a lot of moms in the US use newborn sizes in a shorter amount of time and they are often in excellent condition, at a fraction of retail price. A lot of the time you can even buy them in new condition, just unpackaged. To prep, put used diapers in a 30 min. bleach soak and wash them on hot when you get them and they are good to go.
So now the question is…what diapers should I use? Find my answer to that in PART TWO.
* Exception to the rule: if it looks really thick or of a peanut butter consistency, then you’ll likely need to spray it. This goes for both formula fed and breastfed babies. Many people perpetuate that you have to spray formula poo. This is incorrect.