Monday, February 27, 2012

Snappi vs. Diaper Pins: Review and Giveaway

In order to compare the Snappi Diaper Fastener with good old fashioned diaper pins, I had to use some diaper pins. I was actually quite terrified about the prospect. My overactive imagination kept bringing up unsightly images of what would happen if my baby moved the wrong way at the wrong moment and the pin slipped and I had to call 911. Fortunately, nothing dire happened and I was able to get the pins on. However, I didn't get it tight enough. I didn't try again though, because I didn't want any accidents happening, and my wiggly daughter was already tired of my messing around down there. 

This is what it looked like:

Next I tried the Snappi. Ah... Just what (I think) a prefold should look like on a baby! The little plastic teeth caught onto the diaper easily, gripping just the outer layers of the cloth without any imaginary 911 calls going on in my head. Just as their website says, "Snappis have become the cloth diapering necessity that 'pulls it all together'!"

I only had one slight problem with the Snappi I reviewed. It didn't fit my toddler! Snappi DOES sell two different types of Snappis, one for a baby and one for a toddler. If you try to use the baby Snappi on a toddler, it will look something like this: 


It will NOT stretch to fit your child, and diaper pins will have to do (unless you thought ahead and purchased a toddler Snappi!).

If you would like to try the Babu Snappi out for yourself, use the Rafflecopter below to enter my giveaway. Have fun!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, February 24, 2012

Cloth Diaper Confessions

This morning I thought I'd let you in on some of my cloth diaper secrets. My husband shook his head when I told him I was going to be sharing this, because he says I'll lose all my readers and will no longer be accepted in the cloth diapering world. But a girl's got to get things off her chest every once in a while.

1. I care more about my wallet than about being eco-friendly

If I were a perfect human being, I would care more about our world. The problem is, I'm not perfect. When my first child was born, I didn't even want to think about cloth diapering. Disposables were so much more convenient, and besides, we could afford them. When baby #2 came along and baby #1 was not even close to being potty trained, cost became an issue and I decided to switch to cloth (I was immediately hooked!). Only after the savings did I begin to realize how much better cloth diapers are for our world.

2. I care more about how a diaper looks than about how well it works

Whenever I shop for diapers, the companies that have the cutest prints are the ones who find a customer! I know I need to be more practical, because you "can't tell a book by it's cover." Just because a diaper is cute doesn't mean it is going to work the best, and it's very possible that some of those ugly ones work better than the cute ones. There's just something about a cute diaper though! It's one of the things that sets cloth diapers apart from disposable diapers. 

2. I hate prefolds

(Image courtesy of

I don't want to deal with pins. I don't want to deal with Snappis. I don't want to TOUCH a nasty wet diaper, which is what happens when I remove the Snappi or the pins. I was never good at origami, and I just can't get the right fold for my babies. It's too complicated and I don't like it. This is why my mother switched to disposables.
(Note: I love using prefolds in a gDiaper or a Perfect Bum, as spit-up rags, and as cleaning rags!)

3. I still love disposables

This is the one my husband told me not to share. 
"If you love disposables so much, why are you using cloth?" he asked. 

I love the convenience of disposables. I love that everyone in the church nursery knows how to deal with them. I love that I just throw them away and don't have to deal with them again. I love the way they fit and I love how absorbent they are. 

I also love a steak dinner at a fancy restaurant. I love the convenience of not having to cook and that I can order whatever I want to eat. But to indulge in a steak dinner every day would be stupidity because of the exorbitant cost.

Which loops me back to my first point. End of story. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

Perfect Bum Diaper Review and Giveaway: Perfect Bum vs. gDiaper


 I had the privilege of testing a Perfect Bum diaper by Cocalo. According to Cocalo, "The Perfect Bum™ is an advanced reusable diaper system that offers style, functionality and comfort. It is the perfect eco-friendly alternative to traditional disposable diapers. The Perfect Bum reusable diaper system is a combination of fashion and functionality supported by years of research, testing and improvement. The Perfect Bum™ has four (4) unique patented features: Anchored-pocket, Hinged Closure on Tabs, Soft Edge Fastening Tabs, and the Tri-Fold Insert. The Perfect bum is the perfect choice for environmentally conscious, yet stylish parents."

 I received the Necklace/Leapord set, and it's incredibly cute, which was the first thing I noticed!

 The back of the diaper looks almost like blue jeans, with two little faux pockets....

And three belt loops!! (My husband does not understand why I'm so excited about the belt loops!)

The tri-fold insert surprised me by how absorbent it was, and how well the fabric against the skin wicks away the moisture. I thought my daughter was dry, but when I removed the insert, it was sopping wet! 

I had to know what was in the insert that was making it work so well:

 Unfastened, the front of the diaper has a wide white strip so you can attach the diaper as tight or loose as you need to.

The diapers come in three sizes: small (6-13 lbs), medium (12-20 lbs), and large (20-30 lbs). The Perfect Bum diaper we received is a medium, and my daughter weighs about 13 lbs. 

Here are some pictures of how well it fits her:

Comparison: Perfect Bum and gDiaper

 Here is the Perfect Bum diaper next to the gDiaper:

-The Perfect Bum fastens in the front (which I prefer) while the gDiaper fastens in the back (better for kids who have learned how to remove their diaper).

-The Perfect Bum's inner shell is sewn in, unlike the gDiaper's shell, which snaps in and out. The sewn in insert is not nice if you want to reuse the outer shell, but is nice because the gDiaper snaps occasionally rub against baby's sensitive skin.

-The Perfect Bum's inner liner is more snug and seems to hold in the insert better than the gDiaper's inner liner.

-BOTH come with disposable and washable inserts

-BOTH inner liners stained

 The Perfect Bum liner is sewn into the outer liner, which means it cannot be removed to be washed separately, but that it's more comfortable against baby's skin. 

The inner liner elastic on the Perfect Bum is soft, like felt, while the gDiaper's elastic is rubbery. 

The gDiaper is not always the best fit around my baby's skinny legs

Perfect Bum is more snug around the legs. 

 I almost forgot the best part:  Perfect Bum comes with a matching t-shirt!

Now, the only problem I had with the diaper was that the directions say to wash the diaper in COLD water. I wash my diapers in hot water, and I'm NOT going to wash one diaper all by itself! So I washed it in hot with the rest of my stash, and haven't had any problems with it (unless, of course, that's what caused the stain.)

Here's my summary:

PERFECT BUM                                               gDIAPER

      $16.99 (19.99 for t-shirt set)           
PRICE PER 1 DIAPER                $17.99                    

FASTENS IN THE FRONT                           N

INNER SHELL SNAPS OUT                          Y

LINER HOLDS INSERT SNUGLY                       N


LINERS STAINED                                   Y

          Y                                                      AWESOME BELT LOOPS                      N


You can buy a Perfect Bum diaper by going here, or you can win the Saving the Planet set below:

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Breastfeeding and Lack of Weight Gain

I haven't been thinking very much about Cloth diapering lately. I've been too concerned about my daughter's weight gain.

She's always been a five minute nurser, but she remained in the 25th percentile for 4 months. By 6 months she had LOST some weight, without changing any of her eating habits. She's now underweight according to the growth charts.

After a week of supplementing every nursing session with either formula or solids and PRAYING that she'd gain at least 7 oz, she only gained TWO ounces. TWO.

The doctor looked at the computer screen and mournfully turned to me with the announcement that he was extremely worried about her, because if she doesn't begin to gain weight soon, she'll be small her entire life (and that would be bad because....?)

But aside from lack of weight gains (and threats by the doctor to give her the label "failure to thrive"), she seems to be excelling. Does this look like a sick baby to you? The one just below that is emptying my cloth diaper rack? 

The girl turned 8 months old today and is sitting up, crawling, "talking," standing, and starting to learn how to cruise around. She drinks from a sippy cup, eats finger foods, and takes her brother's precious monkey away from him and laughs and laughs when he gets irritated with her.

I shouldn't be worried about my baby girl, but I'm a mom. Moms worry.

Have you ever had a tiny breastfeeding baby? If so, what did you do? Supplement? Switch to formula? Ignore it?

Oh and on a happier note, I just received a Cocalo diaper in the mail to review... After I write the review, there will be a giveaway! Aren't you excited!??

Monday, February 13, 2012

Rockin' Green Review and Giveaway

I received Rockin' Green detergent in two scents: Earth, Wind & Orchids and Bare Naked Babies (unscented). Rockin' Green is quite different than  Eco Nuts, the product I usually use for my cloth diapers.

Eco Nuts (aka soap nuts) are explained in this post, and here is a picture of the two products side by side:

Whereas soap nuts are little berries in a baggie, Rockin' Green is a powdered detergent. I liked using the detergent, perhaps after using powdered detergent for most of my lifetime makes me feel like my clothes are cleaner when the cleaning agent is in a powdered form. 

The first few days I washed my cloth diapers in the Bare Naked Babies (unscented) detergent, and the diapers came out smelling like... nothing. Which was to be expected, of course. :) The detergent worked well and removed all the bad smells from the diapers. 

The next few days I used Earth, Wind & Orchids, which smelled awesome in the packet. Once the diapers came out, they smelled the same as with the other detergent: like nothing. However, it is possible that I didn't use enough detergent to give my diapers any scent (I only used 2 TBSP, when they advise using 2-4). The important thing is that my diapers were (1) clean and (2) did not smell bad.[*Update*: The scent is supposed to wash out. I stand corrected. :) ]

Rockin' Green carries several different scents, from fruity sounding scents like "Smashing Watermelons" to the smooth "Lavender Mint Revival." 

One awesome thing about Rockin' Green is that their detergents are formulated for different water types. It doesn't matter if your water is hard, soft, or in between, they have a detergent for you!

Another product Rockin' Green carries is called Funk Rock- an ammonia bouncer- that takes care of nasty smells caused by ammonia in your diapers (I want to try this!). 

They also have Femme Rock for menstrual cloths and Dog House Rock for washing chew toys and pet bedding. And did I mention that Rockin' Green is eco-friendly? 

Sign up for a giveaway below!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

How to Start Cloth Diapering Without Breaking the Bank

One of the biggest reasons people are not interested in cloth diapering is because of the startup costs. In fact, this was the reason it took me so long to get into cloth diapering. I knew that cloth diapering would save me money in the long run, but I was already spending $50 a month on disposable diapers and couldn't afford to spend the $500 or so it would cost to purchase 24 cloth diapers.  

I have come up with a plan that will give you a stash of 12 t-shirt diapers with covers, 12 pocket diapers, and 3 all-in-one diapers, and will cost you an average of $48.98 a month (including the cost of disposables until you get switched over!). Sound good?

Okay, here’s the plan:

Month 1:

Ask around and collect 12 soft t-shirts for t-shirt diapers. You can use a toddler t-shirt for a newborn and an extra large adult t-shirt for a toddler. Use whatever size seems best. Also this month, purchase diaper pins, covers, and diaper detergent.

When you run out of cloth diapers, put a disposable on your baby (I started out using disposables at night and cloth during the day). Remember that this month will be the most difficult. You will have to wash every day, keep dirty diapers in plastic bags, and dunk the nasty diapers in the toilet (unless your baby is exclusively breastfed, then you can just toss it in the wash!). But remember, it’ll get easier!

12 T-Shirts: Free
Disposable diapers: $50
Diaper Covers: $27.80 (4 for $6.95 each)
Diaper Pins: $1.95

Total for first month: About $91

Month 2:

This month will be where things get a bit easier in your wash routine. Purchase a diaper pail liner or a wet bag and a diaper sprayer.

Total for second month: About $47.94

Month 3:

This is the month you get to try pocket diapers! You’ll need to be patient a while longer, however, as the shipping may take around 30 days.

Total for third month: About $60

Month 4:

If you have stuck it out this far, you’ll probably need to invest in a larger container of detergent. Shop around, investigate, and pick out what suits your family the best.

Total for fourth month: About $34.95

Month 5:

These next two months are the fun months! This month pick out one fun diaper, any kind you’ve been wanting to try!

One Fun diaper: $20

Total for fifth month: About $20

Month 6:

Celebrate your cloth diapering journey by purchasing two fun diapers!

Two Fun Diapers: $40

Total for sixth month: About $40

Total Cost to transition to Cloth in 6 months: About $293.89 ($48.98 per month)
Total Cost to use disposable diapers for 6 months: About $300 ($50 per month)

(If you want to break it down even further, it costs about $1200 to use disposable diapers for 2 years, or $1800 to use disposables for 3 years. Your cloth diapers will last you much longer than that!)

What other concerns have prevented you or people you know from cloth diapering?  

Monday, February 6, 2012

Four Cloth Diapering Products that Surprised Me

Most of cloth diapering came very easily to me. You put the clean diaper on, take the dirty diaper off, wash it, and dry it. Easy peasy. But I have had a few surprises along the way. Here are four products that each surprised me in their own special way. :)

1. Wet Bags

The Planet Wise wet bag that I purchased has a zipper on it. So I thought that the zipper would contain the bad smells. However, our bathroom began to stink more and more. Someone on Facebook suggested that I leave the bag unzipped. Presto! No more bad smells!

When there happens to be a particularly nasty diaper in the bag, you can always add a sprinkle of baking soda to keep the odor away.

2. Soap Nuts

When looking for an economical, eco-friendly diaper detergent, I found Econuts soap nuts. I thought I would get granules of soap, but it turns out I received something far different:

My first thought was, "What IS this stuff??" It looked like actual nuts, not like detergent! According to this website, soap nuts are the fruit of a Himalayan tree. I was a bit skeptical about them at first, but I followed the directions and put 4-5 of the nuts into the included baggie and tossed it in the wash.

This baggie of nuts can be reused until the nuts disintegrate, sometimes up to 10 times. And can you believe that my diapers smelled wonderful!? There actually wasn't any scent at all... no smell of detergent, mustiness, or anything nasty either! Just... NOTHING! I highly recommend using soap nuts.

3. Coconut Oil

My daughter, who never had problems with diaper rash while she was in disposables, began to get rashes. I wanted a cream to put on her that would work with cloth diapers. After doing some research, I found that one of the best products out there was available at my local grocery store!

Coconut oil is a solid, but becomes a liquid once it warms to your skin. Aside from helping with diaper rash, it can be used to moisturize hands and to... um... lubricate other things. I've heard that it helps with eczema as well. And, of course, it can always be used in your cooking, although it's high in saturated fat. Here is a list of other uses.

4. Microfiber Inserts

Soon after I began to treat the problem of my daughter's diaper rash, I discovered the cause of it. Microfiber inserts are incredibly absorbent. So absorbent that when placed against baby's skin, it sucks up all moisture from baby's rear and causes a diaper rash. You need to have a layer between the insert and baby's skin. Who knew?

I was putting the microfiber inserts in her gDiaper, and directly next to her poor little bottom. When I discovered the problem, I began using prefolds in the gDiaper instead of the inserts. Now I know: inserts go with pocket diapers, and never against baby's skin.

Has anything surprised you about cloth diapering?

Friday, February 3, 2012

Kawaii pocket diaper vs. BabyLand pocket diaper

I have decided to begin doing comparative reviews. This diaper vs. that diaper. Please let me know if you would like to see any two diapers side by side, and I'll see what I can do. :)

Today I'm reviewing the Kawaii pocket diaper and the BabyLand pocket diaper. As you can see from the picture, the Kawaii diaper is longer, but narrower. This enables it to fit a bigger baby (1 pt.). The elastic on the Kawaii is also stretchier, which means a better fit around the legs for both smaller and bigger babies (1 pt.). The PUL fabric also comes over a bit in the front, which prevents the diaper from leaking through the front as frequently (1 pt.). Another good feature of the Kawaii diaper is the hip snaps (1 pt.). This diaper costs around $10 at Sweetbottoms.

However, the Babyland diaper does snap down smaller (Though you might not be able to see it from the picture), and the PUL fabric is more durable (2 pt.). Also, these diapers can cost as little as $5 apiece when purchased in bulk on Ebay (1 pt.)

Total score:

Babyland: 3 pts.
Kawaii: 4 pts.

Overall I prefer the Kawaii diapers. For me the most important things about it are the hip snaps and the fact that it'll fit my 35 lb. toddler.

Have you tried both of these? Which is your favorite?

Disclaimer: This review is based on my own opinion. I received no monetary compensation.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cloth diaper giveaway!

I'm giving away a Kawaii diaper!

It's a blue Kawaii one size snap pocket diaper with one insert. I got this diaper from Sweetbottoms Baby

I love how the diaper is versatile enough to comfortably fit both my 12 lb. baby and my 35 lb. toddler. The diaper is soft inside, and stretchy outside. I also appreciate the price: under $10.

The only difficulty I encountered was when two of the three diapers I previously ordered from sweetbottoms delaminated within a month. However, I e-mailed the company and they sent me a replacement immediately! I absolutely love the customer service from Sweetbottoms!

In order to enter this giveaway, go to Life with my Littles. This Giveaway will be open from February 2-11. Hope you win!!