Category Archives: Cloth Diapering

Organic Cloth Diapering & Wool Covers for Toddlers

We had high hopes of liberating our oldest son from diapers at an early age, and while we never intended to push potty learning on him, we did try to encourage him to become aware of his elimination from the time he was tiny.  We were thrilled when he began enthusiastically using the potty before he turned two-  even more thrilled since we had baby #2 on the way!  The arrival of his baby brother wasn’t quite as easy as we had anticipated, however, and try as we might, our strong-willed toddler began resisting the potty and asking for diapers again. 

Now, at nearly 3 years of age, he is back in diapers full-time.  Not wanting to fight or push him to do something he clearly wasn’t ready for, we have begrudgingly given him back his diapers, which seems to be a safe place for him, and we’ve decided to let him show us when he is ready for the potty again.

toddler dipes2

And so we find ourselves diapering two children, one of whom has grown quite large.  Many of our “one-size” diapers no longer fit him, despite the manufacturers’ best efforts to create something that would fit all babies from birth through potty training.  Since potty training takes place at a different age for each child, one never knows how long diapers will be needed.   In our case, we needed to find diapers and covers that fit a child well over 35 lbs.

Wanting very much to continue our love affair with wool & diapers made from natural fibers, we naturally wanted to use organic cloth diapers with wool covers for our toddler as well as our baby.

So what are the best cloth options for a large toddler?   We tried a wide variety of cloth diapers on our toddler, and here we share a few of our favorites- we have chosen these because they fit him well and they perform well.   All of the diapers shown in these photos are pictured on our 3-year-old.

Organic Cloth Diapers for a Toddler

Disana Tie Nappy

This timeless nappy was brilliantly designed, and so far, it is the only diaper we have found that is an authentic “one-size” diaper- from birth through toddlerhood.  You can fold this diaper down and tie it snugly enough to fit a newborn, and unfolded and tied with still more room to stretch, this diaper will easily fit a much older child as well.

toddler tie nappy

When to use it:  Day or night.  For nights when you need lots of absorbency, fold an extra double or even a prefold inside, and your toddler should be set for the night.  This diaper works best with a wool soaker since the rise is higher, but it can be worn with a wrap cover as well, as long as the rise on the cover is high.

Engel Organic Cotton Fitted Diaper, Size 98/104 (2-3T)

It can be somewhat challenging to find a fitted diaper that actually fits a larger child, even in sized options.  Engel’s fitted diaper in the largest size is quite generously sized, and its softness and absorbency makes us love it even more.  With nearly a 10 inch rise and an aplix closure that allows for more freedom to adjust the waist on a larger child, this diaper fits most toddlers comfortably.

toddler engel

When to use it:  The Engel fitted diaper is by no means the most trim of fitted diapers, but its high quality and thick, absorbent organic cotton make it a favorite in our home.   In spite of its bulk, we use it day and night.  The rise is high, so like the tie nappy, it fits best with a wool soaker, but it can be worn with a high-rise wrap cover as well.

Tiny Tush Trim 4.0 One-Size Fitted Diaper 

The Tiny Tush One-Size fitted diaper is one of our favorite fitted diapers because it really fits babies from a very young age through toddlerhood.   A tiny newborn can wear the snap-in doubler as a contour diaper on its own, and most infants can begin to wear the fitted diaper on its smallest setting when they are one to two months old.  Likewise, this diaper still fits many toddlers at or over 35 lbs.  Our toddler can still comfortably wear his Tiny Tush one-size diaper, snapped on its largest setting, and the diaper leaves no red marks on his skin.

toddler tt

When to use it:   This fitted diaper is great for day or night.  It comes in organic cotton or an organic cotton/hemp blend, so you can choose hemp when you’re looking for even more absorbency.  This fitted diaper has a moderate to low rise, to it’s an excellent choice for both wraps and pull-on covers.

OsoCozy Organic Cotton Fitted Diaper, Toddler Size

The OsoCozy fitted diaper is a basic, no frills diaper made from organic, birdseye weave cotton.  The toddler size fits our 3-year-old perfectly and leaves no red marks; the fit is gentle around the legs and there is no hidden elastic at the waist, so he can move comfortably.  This diaper is packed with absorbency as well- the thick layer in the center makes this one a true workhorse.  A great choice for a toddler, it’s trim fit make is excellent for daytime.

toddler osocozy

When to use it:   Anytime!  This is a great daytime diaper because it’s fairly trim, and it could also be used at night with an extra doubler.   The rise is moderate to low, so like the Tiny Tush, you can use it with either a wrap or a pull-on cover.

Kissaluvs Organic Cotton/Hemp One-Sized Fitted Diaper

This is another excellent choice for a toddler.  It’s a bit thicker and therefore more bulky than some of our other fitted diapers, but the hemp/cotton blend make it super absorbent and gives it a fluffy, fleecy soft texture.  A snap-in liner is also included when extra absorbency is needed.  This diaper fits a toddler fairly well when snapped at its largest setting, but it is slightly more snug around the thighs than the Tiny Tush or OsoCozy, so it may not fit as well on a chunky-legged toddler.

toddler kissaluvs

When to use it:  Anytime- especially great for night time.  There’s a little bit of bulk, but it’s certainly trim enough for daytime, and the rise is not too high, so wraps or pull-on covers both work well.  The hemp fleece gives this diaper a “stay-dry” effect.

Disana Organic Cotton Fitted Diaper, Size 86/92 (12-24 mo)

This diaper pleasantly surprised us by fitting our toddler at 35+ lbs, even though its size indicates a 12-24 month age range.  This is a generously sized fitted diaper, and the fit is comfortable on our toddler and leaves no red marks.   The diaper is made from Disana’s super-soft organic brushed cotton flannel, which seems to get even softer with each wash, so it feels lovely next to baby or toddler skin.

toddler disana

When to use it:  The shape is rather unusual- there seems to be a bit of extra fabric in the back of the diaper, making it pooch out a little in the back (and also accommodating those extra large toddler poops!).  This is only noticeable when the diaper is worn without a cover- once you put a cover on, its soft material easily fits into any cover, the diaper is trim and works well with either wraps or pull-on covers.

Organic Cotton Muslin Flat

Last but not least, the organic cotton flat.  This is an excellent, affordable choice in diapering that fits newborns and toddlers with ease.  Our organic cotton muslin flats have a permanent spot in our cloth diaper stash, and the same flat is worn by our 8-month-old one day and our 3-year-old the next.  Organic cotton flats are available in lightweight muslin from Engel and Disana, or from a thicker birdseye weave from OsoCozy.   There are unlimited possibilities of methods for folding a flat, and we have tried many, but the fold we always fall back on for our babies is the “Jo” fold.   This fold seems to be the most versatile when it comes to fitting both small and large babies and is shown on our 3-year-old below:

toddler flat

Wool Covers for a Toddler

Disana Wool Soaker, Size 110/116 (4-5T)

The Disana cover in size 110/116 (4-5T) is very generously sized, so if you have a toddler who needs a diaper cover, this is one of the best options.  Since wool soakers have no closures, you can really stretch them and make them fit your child for even longer than the age range indicated.  These are excellent for older children who still wet the bed at night as well, fitting most children well into the ages of 4 or 5, and sometimes older.  Pull-on covers are comfortable for children of any age, and they slide easily on and off like a pair of shorts.

When to use it:  While most parents will choose a wool soaker as a night time solution for toddlers or older children who are still not night trained, a toddler can wear a soaker during daytime as well.

Engel Organic Wool Soaker, Size 98/104 (2-3T)

Engel makes a lovely wool soaker from soft knitted organic merino wool, and its largest size, 98/104 (2-3T), is so generously sized that it’s nearly identical in size to Disana’s size 110/116 (4-5T).  This size fits our toddler just right and still allows  for plenty of room for growth.  Wool soaker are fabulous for toddlers who are still in diapers full-time or for kids who aren’t quite night time potty trained and need some protection for nights.

engel xl

Disana Boiled Wool Cover , Size 98/104 (2-3T)

Disana’s boiled wool wrap runs very large, so size 2-3T should fit most children up to at least 3 or 4 years of age.   With a rise measuring a whopping 11 inches and a waistline that stretches to around 23 inches, this cover was clearly designed with the un-potty-trained 3 or 4 year old in mind.  This is another nice option for a child who needs a little more night time protection in case of accidents.

toddler disana boiled wool

When to use it:   We prefer this for night time or naps.   The rise is high, and the cover is unusually shaped, so during daytime it can be obtrusive for a baby who is just learning to sit or walk.  For a toddler who is very competent at walking and running, obtrusion of mobility isn’t an issue with this cover.  However, this is not a trim cover, so some parents prefer this for nights.

Wool Longies

Wool longies are a great investment for an older baby or child, and you can get even more use out of them if you are cloth diapering.  Use the wool pants as a cloth diaper cover while your toddler is still in diapers, and once potty trained, you can of course continue using them just as pants during the winter months.  Disana wool pants are a favorite for this purpose, and they come in large sizes.

Flushable Liners

Flushable liners deserve to be mentioned when discussing cloth diapering a toddler.  These liners make messy diapers a little easier to clean.  OsoCozy and Disana both make nice disposable liner option.

Which cloth diapers have you found that still fit during toddlerhood?

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Cloth Diapering a Newborn with Wool

After months of scraping, spraying, rinsing and soaking toddler cloth diapers and overcoming the tremendous challenges of potty training, I had forgotten how much I enjoyed cloth diapering a newborn.  I welcomed the simplicity of a diaper that requires nothing… extra, other than the sheer joy of gazing into my sweet newborn’s face while putting a fresh diaper in place.

When our first son was born, we had not yet discovered the joys of using wool full-time, hence the great struggle with stinky polyester covers that never seemed to breathe enough to keep the diaper rash away.

This time, everything is different, and I am thrilled to report that it is entirely possible to use wool full-time, even on a tiny newborn.  Cloth diapering a newborn with wool covers does require some preparation and planning ahead to be sure that you have the right supplies on hand, so we have compiled a few tips to make it as easy as possible.

Fitted, sized diapers will make your life a lot easier when using wool on a newborn.  You will need approximately 2 or 3 dozen fitted, organic cotton diapers in a newborn size.  If you plan on using cloth full-time for your newborn, it’s not a bad idea to invest in newborn, sized fitted diapers, such as the Organic Caboose newborn fitteds or the OsoCozy fitteds, as opposed to a one-size diaper.  You can certainly use a one-size fitted diaper, but we have yet to find a one-size diaper that actually fits a newborn baby, so unless you want a diaper that is so gigantic that your tiny baby can hardly move, it will be well worth the money spent.  Plus, newborn sized fitted diapers typically fit babies between around 7 and 13 lbs, so your baby can wear them for at least a few months.  Compare this to the cost of buying a package of disposables every week, and your savings are big.

Photo courtesy of Organic Caboose

Tie nappies are great for newborns, but with wool covers, they work best only if you have become quite skilled at tying them so that there are no gaps at the legs (to avoid messes inside of your wool cover)

We suggest fitted diapers for newborns because of the notoriously explosive newborn poo!  We love prefolds, flats, and tie nappies, but if you want to use wool full-time on a newborn, you may quickly tire of rinsing out stained wool covers, which must be hand washed.  Fitted diapers are much more effective at containing the orange explosions—far better, in fact than disposable diapers, from which newborn poo inevitably finds an escape route and ends up all over the blankets, clothes, and anything else that was just cleaned.

Wool soakers and newborn babies are a match made in heaven. We love wool soakers for newborns for so many reasons- organic, soft, warm natural fibers keep your baby just the right temperature, warm and dry, and they can wear them all the time!  With so much time spent at home just cuddling and loving, your newborn can wear his or her soaker on its own or underneath loose clothing and stay comfy and warm.  There is really no need for separate day/night covers when using wool full-time on a newborn.  The soft wool envelops their tiny bodies, rising up to the chest to keep their mid-sections warm, and the long legs of the soaker fits a newborn like a little pair of pants, keeping those tiny legs just the right temperature too.  With a fitted diaper underneath, your wool should stay clean enough to require very little washing, which is always a relief for a new mother.  A wool soaker that has been lanolized properly will keep your little one’s clothing and bed dry at night time as well.  If your budget is small, purchase a wool soaker one or two sizes up, which will fit big right now but can be used for many months, if not years.

Another type of wool cover that we adore for our newborn are the lightweight, Engel nappy pants.  Lightweight, breathable, and comfy, these little wool shorts will keep your newborn dry just long enough for you to know it’s time for a diaper change.  Since frequent changing is ideal for sensitive newborn skin anyway and helps prevent diaper rashes, the nappy pants offer just the right amount of protection.

Prep your wool covers in advance!!!  This means before baby arrives, not after.  This must be part of your nesting duties.  If you wait until after your baby arrives, weeks will pass before you have any desire to stand over a sink lanolizing and washing wool covers, so unless you have a family member who loves you enough to do it for you, prep your wool while you’re still pregnant!

This means washing and lanolizing brand new soakers several times, and allowing for a few days of drying time.  This also means prepping your cloth diapers if they are brand new- remember that cloth diapers made from natural fibers must be washed in hot water 3-5 times before they are ready for use. Do not skip these steps and attempt to put a brand new cloth diaper with an unwashed wool soaker on your newborn because you’re anxious to try them out. Skipping this important step will result in lots of leakage.

Have a wool wash bar on hand for spot cleaning.  Despite your best efforts and a stash of fitted diapers that fit your baby well, there will be times when your wool gets messy.  As a new mom, protect yourself and respect those first few precious weeks of recovering from childbirth and bonding with your baby- the last thing you should be doing is washing your wool.  With a wool wash bar, you can easily rinse out stains and rub a little soap onto the stain in less than 2 minutes, set the wool aside to dry, and by the end of the day, your cover will be good as new!  This is a great job to delegate to husbands and other family members who can offer a helping hand.

Most importantly, make sure that cloth diapering is enjoyable for you and your new baby!  If it’s too much, give yourself a break and use disposables for the first few weeks.  We moms have enough mom guilt for the rest of our babies’ lives to stress over extra laundry when we should be resting, so if you don’t have someone doing laundry for you, don’t do cloth, and don’t beat yourself up over it!  Spend every minute you have resting and cuddling with your precious new baby.  Bringing a baby into the world is hard work, and you have earned every minute of this babymoon.

Organic Cloth Diapering: Getting Started

Exciting as it may be, getting started with cloth can be quite overwhelming.  The variety that exists is exhausting.   If you are familiar with our store, you probably already know how selective we are about our offering of cloth diapers.

We feel so strongly about the importance of natural & organic fibers touching your baby’s skin that we have chosen to offer only cloth diapers made from organic, natural fibers.  This eliminates any concern for artificial materials such as polyester will be in close contact with your baby’s skin.

The best part about all of this is that it makes your cloth diapering decisions much, much easier!  Once you cut out all of the choices that include polyester, the number of choices that remain is substantially smaller and not nearly as overwhelming.  Not only that, but the factors such as quality and health for your baby means that any choice is a good choice.   Now it’s just a matter of narrowing it down to what style you like best, how each diaper fits your baby, and your budget.

The beauty of cloth diapers made from natural fibers is that they are extremely absorbent- each diaper, be it a flat, tie nappy, or fitted, is 100% organic cotton and/or hemp, all of which are incredibly absorbent materials.

Organic Cotton Flats, Prefolds, and Tie Nappies

This category is important because not only is it the most simple and traditional method of cloth diapering, but it is also the most affordable.  As long as you don’t mind spending a little time learning the various folds and styles for using these diapers, you will find that they are easy to use and do the job well.

Flats, prefolds, and tie nappies all have one thing in common: they are comprised of one, flat piece of cotton (or other natural fiber).  This piece of fabric can vary in thickness and layers.  It becomes a diaper when folded directly inside of a diaper cover, folded and fastened with a pin or snappy, or tied onto your baby.  These diapers all require a diaper cover to become waterproof.

Flats are gaining popularity these days, and for good reason.  Flats have been around for years but have been overshadowed by new trendy styles of diapers.  As many parents are realizing the benefits of a completely organic cloth diapering solution, flats are making a comeback and have taken their rightful place in the spotlight once again.

There is a multitude of ways to fold a flat, and we will be featuring an article on folding flats on our blog soon!  The benefit of a flat is that it can last from the newborn stage through the toddler stage.  That’s right- one diaper, one size, cost between $3-$7 per diaper, that will have your baby covered for 2 years.   It’s hard to beat.

A flat will need a cover, of course, and our favorite cover to use with a flat is a wool soaker, wool shorts, or a wool wraparound cover.  At night time you can ‘stuff’ a flat with extra doublers, and you can even layer two flats together, fold and stuff them to increase absorbency at night.

Prefolds are similar to flats, but they can have up to eight layers or cotton sewn together with stitching throughout the diaper and around the edge  that creates absorbent pillows within the diaper.  Prefolds, like flats, require a bit of a learning curve to get down all of the folds, but once you’ve got it, it’s a wonderful diapering solution.  Prefolds are typically sized, so you will need to size up as your baby grows.

Tie nappies are a popular concept in Europe and are gaining popularity in the US these days as well.  Tie nappies are a bit more tricky to get on your baby than a flat or prefold, but once you have the hang of it, you can do it with your eyes closed.  Or in the dark, at 4 am, on a squirming toddler.  It can be done!

Tie nappies are wonderful because they require no snappior pin at all (this makes life a lot easier if your snappis have a tendency to run off and hide at that exact moment when you need them).  You simply fold, wrap around your baby, and tie with the cotton strings.  These diapers are as absorbent as you want them to be- to make them more absorbent, you simply stuff them with extra layers, which can be a prefold, a brushed cotton liner, any type of doubler, or combination of any of these.

The cuteness factor of the tie nappy tempts many a mama, and most mamas fall in love all too quickly with the tie nappy.  A favorite in our household, we use tie nappies on our son day and night.

Organic Fitted Diapers

The fitted diaper resembles a disposable diaper more, as it has been sewn into the shape of a diaper, typically featuring gussets around the legs and waist, hidden elastic at the waist, and some type of closure, usually either snaps, Velcro, or nothing at all (requiring the use of pins or snappis).

Many fitted diapers consist of multiple absorbent layers of fabric as well as extra inserts or doublers either sewn or snapped in, giving you the option of adding or removing absorbency as needed.   Fitted diapers are available in various sizes or one-size.    All fitted diapers require a cover to become waterproof.

Both convenience and absorbency are the main benefits of fitted diaper.  Fitted diapers can be quite thick, and since the entire diaper is made from an absorbent, natural fiber, every inch of the diaper will absorb moisture.  Fitted diapers paired with a wool soaker are an excellent night time diapering solution.  

How many cloth diapers to buy?

Generally speaking, you will need around 12-24 cloth diapers (depending on the age of your baby and frequency of changing) and 3-4 wool covers (if you’re planning to use only wool).   A good rule of thumb when you’re just getting started is to purchase a small sampling of various types of diapers so that you can get a good feel for what works best on your baby before investing in an entire stash of just one style of diaper.

Using Wool Full Time & Choosing the Right Wool Cover for Your Baby

Many cloth diapering parents are aware that it is possible to cover their baby’s cloth diaper with a wool cover, but few realize that it is possible to use wool both full-time and exclusively.

When we first discovered wool in our home, we had no intention of using it full-time.  Up until that time, we had been unable to find a diaper that would keep our baby dry at night, so we invested in a wool soaker, thinking we would use it for nights only.  The soaker worked so well that we purchased several other wool covers shortly afterward, and we quickly found ourselves so enamored with wool that we replaced all of our baby’s polyester covers with wool.  I cannot remember the last time I used a polyester cover, and the truth is, wool works so incredibly well that I don’t miss those old polyester covers- not even one bit.  And my guess is that our son doesn’t miss them either.

How many wool covers will I need to use wool full-time?

The exact amount of covers you will need will again depend on your budget, but the beauty of wool is that you can easily get by with very few covers.  Continue reading

Wool Care Part 3: Lanolizing a Wool Cloth Diaper Cover

You should lanolize your wool cover if:

  1. You purchase a brand new wool cover (Lanolizing is an important part of the “prepping” process and should be done up to two or three times with brand new wool covers); OR
  2. You notice that your wool cover is no longer keeping your baby dry and has begun to quickly soak through each time your baby is wet (you do NOT need to lanolize every single time you wash your wool cover, especially if you use a wool wash that contains lanolin)

To lanolize, you will need the following items:

  1. Lanolin (we recommend any type of solid, pure lanolin- many women use the same pure lanolin they used on their breasts during the early days of breastfeeding)
  2. Very hot water, either in the sink, heated up in a bowl in the microwave, or poured into a glass jar
  3. Wool wash (this helps break up the lanolin when you melt it)
  4. A sink or basin filled with lukewarm water
  5. One or two clean towels
  6. Some sort of flat drying rack or surface that allows for air circulation

To lanolize, follow these steps:

  1. Heat up the water until it is very hot but not boiling. You can do this in the microwave, over the stove, or directly out of your tap if your water comes out hot enough. The water must be hot enough to melt the lanolin.
  2. Put a small amount (1 tsp- 1 tbsp) of pure lanolin + a small amount of wool wash or mild baby wash (about 1 tsp) into the hot water and stir or shake it until the lanolin is completely melted.   Make sure the lanolin is melted and that there are not bits still floating around.  (we like to do this inside of a water-tight container such as a glass jar, which we fill halfway with hot water, 1 tsp of lanolin, and a small amount of wool wash and shake vigorously)
  3. Add your hot water/lanolin/wool wash mixture to a sink or basin of lukewarm water (or, if you are using the tap water method, simply turn on your tap again and add some lukewarm water to the mixture).
  4. Turn your wool soaker inside out and gently press it under the water. Very gently, swish it around a bit under the water so that the lanolin will be evenly distributed over the wool.
  5. Let the wool soak for around fifteen minutes. Drain the water while supporting the wool.
  6. Lift the wool from the sink, supporting it with both hands, and gently press the excess water out . Do not wring the wool out.  Supporting the wool, gently lay it down on a clean towel. Reshape, and then slowly roll it between two layers of a clean dry towel. Repeat several times until excess water is removed.
  7. Lay wool flat to dry on a supportive, flat drying rack. The wool can take between 24 and 36 hours to dry, depending on how thick the wool is and how humid the climate is. Turn the wool inside out at least once during the drying process to speed it up a bit.

Wool Care Part 2: Washing a Wool Diaper Cover in 5 Easy Steps

You should wash your wool diaper cover when: 

  1. You purchase a brand new wool cover (all wool covers should be washed prior to use, and then lanolized two or three times before reaching optimal performance); OR
  2. Your used wool cover needs to be washed (you do not need to wash your wool after each use- simply air dry between uses.  You will know it needs to be washed when it is stained or when it smells or urine; this may be every 2 or 3 weeks).

When your wool needs to be lanolized, follow these steps and then follow our instructions on lanolizing.   You do NOT need to re-lanolize each time you wash, especially if you use a wool wash that contains lanolin (e.g. Eucalan).   There is no need to dry between washing and lanolizing.

To wash wool, you will need the following items:

  1. A basin, sink or tub
  2. Lukewarm water
  3. Wool wash (ideally one that contains lanolin)
  4. One or two clean towels
  5. Flat surface or drying rack

Washing Wool:  

  1. Fill your basin or sink with lukewarm water.  Make sure the water is just slightly warmer than room temperature and is neither too hot nor too cold because extreme temperatures can shock the wool and cause it to felt and shrink.
  2. Add about a teaspoon of wool wash to the water.  Swish the water around to create suds.
  3. Gently press your wool cover under the water.  Swish the soapy water around the garment a bit to hand wash, but be careful not to wring or twist the wool while washing.  You can lightly press the wool while washing, and you can turn the cover inside out if you wish.  Let soak for 15 minutes.
  4. Drain the water out of the sink while gently supporting the wool.  Gently lift the wool out of the sink, pressing it between your hands a few times to remove excess water.  Do not wring the wool.
  5. Gently lay the wool onto the clean towel.  Reshape the garment.  Fold another layer of clean towel over the wool and gently roll the wool while pressing softly.  Repeat two or three times.  Lay the wool flat to dry on a flat drying surface, ideally one that allows air to circulate.  Wool typically takes 24 hours or more to completely dry; you can turn the garment inside out halfway through the drying process to speed things along.

Getting the Facts Straight About Wool Covers: 12 Myths About Wool


Myth #1“Wool is scary.”

Wool is not scary in the least!  In fact, wool just might become your best friend. You just have to get to know wool really well, and you’ll soon fall in love as you realize how un-scary it really is.  Before you know it, you may not be able to live without it.  ♥

Myth #2:  “A wool cover will leak.”

Wool, once properly prepped, will not leak.  Ever.  In fact, wool will keep your baby warmer and happier than ever before.   While it is true that wool itself is not waterproof, it is actually highly absorbent at a microscopic level, and the lanolin naturally found in wool is water repellent.  Our baby was such a heavy night time wetter that he never managed to stay dry the whole night through until he wore his first wool soaker through the night.  We never once had a leak after that.  This phenomenon never ceases to amaze me.  Wool by itself tends to naturally repel water, and that property combined with lanolin (the oil naturally found in wool that is secreted by the sheep’s skin, which you add from time to time during the washing process), you have an excellent water-repelling fiber that’s totally natural!

Myth #3:  “Wool is difficult and time-consuming to clean.”

Wool is not at all difficult to clean.  Start to finish, you can wash your wool in 18 minutes flat (excluding drying time, of course).  15 of those minutes, you can be in a different room playing with your baby or checking your email.    To make things even easier, you don’t have to clean your wool more frequently than once per month.  Just air out your covers between each use, rotating between two or three covers during the day, and you don’t need to wash them until they smell of ammonia or have a visible stain.  When you need to lanolize your wool, this process will add a few extra minutes to your routine, but this does not need to be done every time the wool is washed (even less if you use a wool wash that contains lanolin).

Myth #4:  “Wool is too itchy!  My baby will be uncomfortable.”

Have you touched 100% organic virgin merino wool yet?   Once you do, all fears of itching will be eliminated.  It’s one of the softest materials you will ever touch.  If your concern is a wool allergy, your baby is probably allergic to the chemical residue that conventional wool contains.  Try organic wool, which contains no chemical or pesticide residues.  You’ll be pleasantly surprised.   It is also interesting to note that many babies are sensitive to polyester rather than wool.

Myth #5:  “Wool is more expensive than PUL.”

While each individual wool cover may have a higher price tag up front, in the long run you’ll spend less on diaper covers if you use wool exclusively than you would if you used PUL exclusively.  The reason is that with wool you can get away with fewer covers.  Wool covers don’t stink until they are very well used, so as long as you let the cover air out between uses, you can keep using, and using, and using it.  Conversely, with PUL covers, use them twice and they reek of urine so strongly you can smell it across the room.

Myth #6:  “Wool is too warm!  My baby will be too hot during summertime (or in general) while wearing wool.”

Wool, especially good quality wool, such as the organic, virgin merino wool we carry, is so lightweight and breathable that your baby can wear it on the hottest of summer days and not even break a sweat.  Wool by itself it so breathable that your baby’s temperature will not rise while wearing wool.  PUL covers, on the other hand, are not breathable in the least and thus result in higher temperatures inside of the diaper and more incidences of diaper rash.   This is an added benefit for preventing diaper rash too, a condition that is often the result of heat and not enough air circulation.   Plus, there are wool covers for every season…if you’re still concerned about too much warmth, try these ultra thin, single layer wool shorts, which are great for daytime and summertime.

Myth #7:  “My baby can wear wool at night, but not during the day. Wool is too thick to wear underneath clothes.”

There are many types of wool covers designed specifically for daytime use.  They are just as leak-proof as any PUL cover, they are just as trim, and they still have all of the same wonderful benefits of any wool cover.  There are stretchy one-size wool wraps, thicker, more heavy duty wraps with Velcro fasteners, and even lightweight pull-on shorts.  You can even get fancy wool pants that double as pants and a diaper cover, all in one!  Talk about cost-effective.

Myth #8:  “Wool will not last as long as PUL.  Won’t it stretch, felt, or shrink after many uses?”

If you properly take care of your wool, it will last for years, and chances are, it will outlive any PUL cover out there.  Besides, a little felting on a wool diaper cover will actually help prevent leaks, so it’s certainly not something to be feared.

Myth #9:  “I use prefolds, and those are impossible to use under wool.”

Prefolds can, in fact, absolutely be used with wool, just as they can with any PUL cover.  You just need the right type of wool cover.  A good wool wrap, such as the Little BeetleOrganic Caboose, or Disana, will fit perfectly over a prefold diaper held in place with a snappi or pin.  If snappis are not your thing, you can even trifold your prefold directly into the wool wrap and place it quickly on your baby.  If any messes leak out onto your wool cover, you can do a quick stain clean-up with a wool wash bar and some lukewarm water.

Myth #10:  “My baby will leak if we go out of the house.”

Your baby will not leak at all wearing the appropriate type of wool cover that is properly prepped.  We are full-time wool users– at night, during the day, and outside of the house–  and our baby has never once had a leak, even after several hours with the same wool cover.  There are some great options available for nighttime wear, daytime wear, and even lighter options that are great for summertime or families that practice EC.

Myth #11:  “Wool is okay for some days, but it’s impossible to use full-time.”

Anyone can use wool full time with the right combination of diapers and covers.  There are some great options available that are ideal for different times of day: thick wool soakers that are tough enough to last all night, trim stretchy wool wraps that are perfect for outings and naps, and even lighter options that are great for summertime or families that practice EC.

Myth #12:  “It’s impossible to use wool with a newborn because newborn poo is too runny and will quickly soil the wool covers.”

While it is true that newborn poo can run onto the inside of a wool cover more easily than solid food poo, using wool with a newborn is not impossible.  You simply need the right type of cloth diaper.  We recommend using a cotton fitted diaper that really fits your baby snugly and comfortably.  A fitted diaper that fits right will really help to contain poo leakage so you can continue using your wool cover without washing it until really necessary.  Another useful tip- invest in a wool wash bar and spot clean your cover in the case of a small poo stain.

Wool is an outstanding choice for cloth diaper cover.  We became addicts after our baby’s first leak-free night wearing his Engel wool soaker on a chilly winter night.  We never looked back.  Organic wool paired with a 100% organic cotton fitted or prefold diaper is the only true organic and all-natural cloth diapering solution.  No PUL, no plastic, no Velcro, and even no snaps or pins are all options!  An organic wool diaper cover is the only all-natural, polyester-free choice for cloth diaper covers.  And since it works just as well, if not better, why not go for the all natural, sustainable choice?