So, potty training has happened in your home, your little one is completely dry and sadly, your cloth diaper journey has come to an end. It’s such a bittersweet moment as cloth parent, isn’t it? You become almost emotionally attached to those gorgeous little fluff bums and it is hard to see them left unused, however, if you are thinking about having another baby, you can most certainly store your cloth diapers away and bring them out when the time is right again. But how do you do this safely in order to protect their condition? Here we take a look at the very simple steps you’d need to take in order to safely store your cloth diapers away ready for your next child.
Check The Condition
Begin by slowly checking each diaper for any problems. Pull the elastics and make sure none are too slack, feel for any inconsistencies in the fabrics, turn the diaper inside out and check the condition of the laminate, check for stains or smells and take a close inspection of the state of the velcro. If any of these issues arise, there should, in most cases, be a simple solution…
Elastics can be quite simply repaired or replaced by a seamstress, or even yourself if you have the know-how! Fabrics that are bobbling can be gently rubbed to remove these and of course, you can wash, strip wash (see below) and sun out any stains prior to storage. Velcro can be cleaned out using a nit comb or replaced if it has seen better days. The only real problem in this list is if any PUL is failing/cracked/peeling off. These diapers can no longer be used as normal daytime diapers but they could be repurposed as a swim diaper so they can be worth hanging onto.
Now that you have all of your cloth diapers checked and sorted, you are ready to go ahead with a strip wash. This will remove any stinks, stains plus detergent build-up and will leave them perfectly clean ready for storage. A strip wash should look like this:
- Rinse cycle on cold, no detergent, no conditioner
- Best cotton cycle on a 60, full dose of detergent, no conditioner
- Same cycle again but this time with no detergent
- If you are still seeing too many suds, repeat this cycle and do one final rinse
- Air dry
The most important thing you need to do before storing your cloth diapers away is to ensure that everything is indeed completely dry. Any moisture or damp left in a diaper or insert can lead to mould growth and you most definitely don’t want that issue when it comes to opening up the box for your next child.
You may be thinking that a vacuum pack would be the best way to store your cloth diapers but in actual fact this process will end up pulling on your elastics and PUL leaving your diapers ruined. The best way to store them is:
- Inside your home where the temperature is consistent
- Inside breathable bags such as cotton sacks or in cardboard boxes
- In a cupboard, wardrobe, under the bed
Do not place them inside plastic boxes, do not choose a very cold or very hot spot (garages, attics and airing cupboards are no, nos). Also, do not overpack them, you want the airflow to be able to circulate around to prevent any mildew, stinks, mustiness etc.
Check On Them
If your cloth diapers are going to be stored away for a number of years it will be worth your while to just check on them every six months or so to ensure that there are no issues such as damp, mould or stinks. You could also rotate the diapers to ensure that the air gets around them all.
And that’s it, a very simple way of ensuring your diapers can go on and have another lease of life with your next child.