There is one question I always get asked when I tell people that I cloth diaper. That’s right, what do I do with the poop? Clearly this is a big concern for mamas who are considering cloth diapers, but are on the fence not to mention lots of haters that think cloth diapers is soooo gross (my husband used to be one, read all about it here). Actually it’s NOT a big deal. Read on to find out all about poop!
I’m sure the number one deterrent for using cloth is the washing, especially the dreaded poop! It’s definitely not the most fun part of diapering. But guess what? Diapers are a dirty job, no matter what you do. Did you know that you are supposed to get rid of the poop in disposable diapers before you throw them out as well? It actually says so on every box of diapers. Really, it’s not that bad dealing with a little poop, and the advantages FAR outweigh this one small (but admittedly gross) negative.
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Itty Bitty Babes
For starters, if you exclusively breastfeed, baby’s poo is water soluble and can go straight into the washer without any interference from you. That’s right, off of baby’s bum and into the washer. And for the amount of diapers you will be using in the first six months, that will practically pay for the diapers as is!
But what about once baby’s started solids? Well, it does get a bit messier after that. Ideally you’ve been able to exclusively breastfeed until baby is six months (and believe me, there is no better motivation than that easy wash routine). Luckily, there are several options for avoiding the mess.
Liners can be disposable or re-usable (you can even make them yourself by cutting up some fleece!). Simply lay one over top of the diaper when you change your baby and the poop will stay there, not on the diaper. Dump the, right in the toilet and flush. I used disposable ones that were pretty effective, but there was sometimes poop that got on the sides of the diaper, or at the back/front.
You can buy (or make) a diaper sprayer that attaches to your toilet. The concept is to use water to spray off the poo so you don’t have to touch it. You can even buy a plastic shield so water doesn’t get everywhere. I wasn’t crazy about this method. I found that water got everywhere, and the water pressure wasn’t enough to get off some of the stuck on poo (maybe I should have been cleaning them immediately after changing the baby, but who’s got time for that?)
Dunk and Swish
The tried and true method mamas have been using since before disposables existed. Stick the diaper in the toilet and switch or scrub until the poop’s gone (you can wear rubber gloves if you want). Kind of gross, but really, babies are kind of gross, and by the time the baby is six months old, you will be used to having their poop everywhere. Quite frankly, if you are using disposables, you will have cleaned up so many blow-outs, cleaning up poop will have become a major part of your job description as mommy! Just scrub your hands well afterward! I used this method for about a year and it was yucky, but not the yuckiest part of parenting. And if I can do it, anyone can.
This option is more gross to me than the dunk and swish. Some parents get a special spatula to keep in the bathroom and use it to scoop off the poop. Not my number one choice for sure!
The Glorious Set Tub
If you have a laundry sink or set-tub in your laundry room, you, my friend, are golden. Just dump the worst of the poop in the potty, then run the diaper under warm water and the rest will magically float down the drain. We moved to a house with a set tub when Hannah was 18 months old and it made cloth diapering SOOOOO much easier. Definitely a good investment!
So there you have it, so many options for dealing with the dreaded poop. Just remember, if you are pregnant and debating using cloth diapers for your first child, don’t be discouraged by the poop! You will be so intimately acquainted with the poo of your little one, you will barely bat an eyelash at it. Honest. For me, the many benefits of using cloth diapers far outweighed a little poop (read all about the MANY benefits of cloth diapering here and here). And I washed EVERY SINGLE diaper for two years straight. If I can do it, so can you! Read more about choosing the perfect cloth diaper for your family here. Happy Diapering!
Did you use cloth diapers? How did you handle the poop?