There was a time, I'll admit, when I did not know what I was doing. Yep, me. The cloth diapering mom who can get stains out, get funk out, freshen up my diaper Velcro, who knows just the right diaper & doubler combination for leak proof nights, can perfectly strip my diapers, uses only the best detergent and cloth wipe solution...did not always know "everything". As a matter of fact, when I first began cloth diapering, I didn't know anything.
Once upon a time, I had three brand new, beautiful and bright, soft & fluffy FuzziBunz for my 15 month old daughter. That's it, just three diapers to start out with. When it was time for wash day, I did what any "normal" person would do, and threw them in the wash with some lovely Purex detergent. Washed, dried, stuffed and used again. I loved it so much, I bought more! Until I had 16 Fuzzibunz in my stash. A few weeks into this, I began to notice an awful smell the minute the diaper was soiled. So awful my husband refused to change the diapers anymore. A few days later, they began to leak. Leak so bad I could put my daughter in a fresh diaper and load her in the car. Drive 2.6 miles down the road to church, and by the time I took her out of the car her pants were completely wet. By this point, I hated cloth diapering, but would not stop after all the money I had spent on diapers. I had no idea what I was doing wrong (HA, like I said...I didn't know anything...) so I finally asked a fellow cloth diapering friend what she thought about my issues. She advised I do some stripping and that if it didn't help, to do some research. Stripping? I had to figure out what that meant first!
I pulled out the washing instructions from KellysCloset that they send in every fluffymail package and read about stripping- and tried it. Tried it again, and again, and again. Nothing was working, I knew that the instructions said not to use regular or free & clear detergent, but my friend used it and never had a problem, so I ignored it and continued using it. I eventually became worn out and tired of cloth, tired of the leaks and the stink and all the stripping I was doing trying to get rid of it. So, I got rid of my beloved stash, and went back to disposables.
Six or so months later, I became pregnant. I don't know why, but I began think about cloth diapers again. My husband said "No way, not again", but after discovering TCDW Blog and all of the support and advice on the TCDW and Diapershops Facebook pages, I knew there was hope. After all, if cloth diapering was working for thousands of other moms, I had to be doing something wrong. After endless hours, and hours, and hours of reading my brains out about diaper care, I figured it out (like it was that hard...), my detergent ruined my diapers! You see, cloth diaper laundry is a little tricky. It's easy, but it's also a pain sometimes. You can't "just wash" your diapers like I thought. You have to: " Run a light wash, cold. Run a heavy wash with detergent, hot. Extra rinse, hot." Line or hang drying is best, but you can use a dryer, just don't use dryer sheets. Then the most important "rule", use a good detergent! I like to say, INVEST in a good detergent.
As a new cloth diapering mom, I never would have thought that washing my diapers in regular detergent would literally ruin them. But since I did know now, I decided I was going to use cloth with this next baby, and I was not going to ruin them or have a hard time with them! I was going to do everything right, starting with the purchase of our favorite, life-saving diaper detergent, Rockin Green. Yep, Rockin Green has spared me from having any funk or leaks with my new stash, it smells yummy, and I feel so secure knowing that I am not going to murder( R.I.P old stash) my new soft, fluffy, and beautiful Fuzzibunz. P.S- Don't take the laundry directions lightly! Every rinse counts- literally! If you have to, (I had to...) stick the directions somewhere in your laundry room!
Lesson Learned (the hard way...),