I got my first 2 trial pairs of cloth diapers in the mail today! I was excited to actually show them to M so that he could see what I was talking about. I thought he was going to pass out when I first suggested it, but he seems to be getting on board slowly... he agreed to "try" them today. That's a step in the right direction :)
I ordered 2 Blueberries (supposedly the Cadillac of one-size pocket diapers, we'll see) made by Swaddlebees. I ordered from the clearance section, there is supposedly something wrong with them, but I don't see anything. I got them for a much cheaper price (18 bucks each), this is one of the more expensive brands of one-size pocket diapers.
Here they are at the smallest size
For a quick lesson in these diapers, they come with either snaps or velcro closures. Some people prefer one over the other, so I got one of each. Essentially, they get longer by undoing the snaps across the bottom and fastening them wider. You can see the difference in the picture below, the one on the left is at the smallest size, and the one on the right is the largest size.
There are three rows of blue snaps on the right, that allow you to make them longer and the legs wider, and the velcro/snaps across the top also get larger. There looks like a much bigger difference in size in person.
There is a pocket in the back. The inside layer against the baby's bum is fleece, which allows the liquid to go through onto the doubler while keeping the skin dry.
In the pocket you put a "doubler" which is basically two or three layers of organic bamboo/cotton to absorb the liquids (or pee, whiz, urine, etc). When you change the baby, you take out the doubler and wash all the parts together, then restuff them when they're clean.
I think we are going to use a type of disposable liner inside the diaper, too, to catch solids (or poop, fecal matter, stinkies). I'm really not interested in scraping poop off of a diaper with a spatula. This way, the poop and the liner go into the toilet. Flush. Voila, clean diaper.
Yes, I am aware that this does not account for massive baby blow-outs. We'll cross that bridge when we get there folks. (I might need the spatula to scrape the walls, I should keep one handy)
Even though these diapers run about 18 bucks a pop for the cheaper brands, they will still save money over buying diapers and wipes every week. If we go the cloth diaper route, we'll probably use a combination of disposable and cloth wipes, too. We're hoping to get about 20-24 cloth diapers, if we decide to use them, so we (by that I guess I mean "I") only have to do laundry about every other day.
Also, there is no need for a nasty "wet pail" that I've read horror stories about. You can use a traditional trash can type thing with a lid and a leak-proof bag, that goes in the laundry right with the dipes. Hopefully flushing the solids will also help.
From what I've researched "they" (that would be the earthy crunchy people I've been stalking) say that cloth diapers prevent rashes better than disposables, they are more absorbent and have less leaks, and really aren't so bad once you get in the swing of it. I do think it is an upgrade from folding diapers, using large safety pins (ouchie), and rubber pants. I might change my mind in about 7 months ;).
If you want to see more of the different kinds of cloth diapers, there really is a lot out there. Check out some of these websites