The Best Newborn Cloth Diapers?

Occasionally I will write a post here answering a common customer questions I get at the shop. Today a very nice young couple came in looking for information about cloth diapers in preparation for their newborn, expected in about a month. They were a typical Seattle couple – very hip and cool looking, with their first baby due practically any moment yet exhibiting a relaxed certainty about wanting to use cloth. Oh, and they knew very little about the many styles of diapers they have to chose from. And did I mention how relaxed and not stressed they were?!
 
I took them through the range of modern cloth diapers. They asked some good questions. Then, when we had gotten to the end of the official tutorial, the dad-to-be asked me what, if I had another baby right now, would I pick for my newborn?

Tough question, but a good one. From my perspective, the two easiest, safest, most cost-effective cloth diaper systems for newborns right now are 1) Prefolds and covers (preferably Thirsties Duo Wraps) or 2) A set of Fuzzi Bunz One-Size Pocket Diapers.

Chinese prefolds are often the go-to diaper for newborns because they are cheap (less than $1.75 for a newborn diaper when you buy a package). This means you can afford a big stack, and that comes in handy when that precious little bundle needs 12-15 diapers a day (no, I am not lying). You can buy a 36-pack of newborn prefolds for $57.25 – around the cost of 1 pack of disposables! And prefolds are pretty simple – just fold in three and lay inside a good cover (you don’t usually need complicated folds or fasteners for newborns). And because your newborn pees and poops so often, you will change them frequently anyway so the absorbency level of a cotton prefold is fine.

The key to success with prefolds is to have good covers! You need to keep explosive messes in, where they belong. Soooo…you need double leg gussets! Thirsties Duo Wraps are a fabulous waterproof newborn cover: Size 1 adjusts from XS to Small so it fits from birth to about 9 months old, giving you a good bang for your buck. You can use each wrap for about 3 changes before you They are super light and pliable, so no loud crunching noises during changes to wake up your sleeping newborn in the middle of the night. They are breathable, soft, easy to Velcro closed and have a nice cut-out for the umbilical stump.
 
Thirsties Duo Wraps also work beautifully on top of a Thirsties Fab Fitted in XS if you want to get a superb diaper with a little more absorbency than a prefold, along with a Velcro closure and elasticized legs. Thirsties Fab Fitteds have an amazingly cozy fit for newborns and really hold everything in. Plus the fleece lining keeps that new butt nice and dry!
Then, on the other end of the diapering spectrum, is the Fuzzi Bunz One-Size. There are so many reasons why I think this is a fabulous newborn cloth diaper. First, it adjusts from birth to potty-size through an elastic in the leg gusset (plus one across the back of the diaper), thereby avoiding the extra bulk a lot of other one-size diapers have when they adjust with rise snaps. These are one of the few one-size diapers that actually fit a newborn! I love the snaps on this diaper because they last forever and look so clean and neat. The fleece lining keeps baby’s skin dry, cutting down on rashes for babies with sensitive skin (like mine). After you get into the habit of stuffing the pocket as soon as your diapers come out of the laundry, it is so simple to just pull a clean Fuzzi Bunz from the waiting stack and put it on. And in terms of cost, if you sit down and crunch the numbers, you will save a ton of money with these because you will buy one set and use it the whole time your child is in diapers! It costs $538 for a 30-pack of Fuzzi Bunz One Pocket Diapers (a 2.5 – 3-day supply). That’s the same cost as 5 months of disposables, for 3+ years of cloth!!

 

So there you have it, my top Newborn recommendations. As you build your stash, you will add things that can make diapering even easier and more versatile, but these are the good bones you can begin with.

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