Friday, March 15, 2013

Why you should love Prefolds and Flats

When we started using cloth diapers we made the decision to purchase traditional prefold cloth diapers for use at home, and modern cloth diapers for use at daycare.  We will never regret our decision to experiment with traditional cloth diapers

What are they?

Flat: Flat diapers consist of a single fabric layer that can be folded into countless shapes to achieve the perfect diaper fit.
Prefold: Prefold diapers are quilted, rectangular diapers where thicker layers of fabric “pre-folded” into the center of the diaper.

Why do we love them?

  • Inexpensive:  Flat diapers can be incredibly inexpensive, or even free (using old towels, or receiving blankets).  Prefold diapers are also wonderful for the cost-conscious parent, typically costing about $1.50 per diaper. Since flat and Prefold diapers must be folded and secured to baby, they are considered a traditional style of diaper compared to the no-fold modern varieties available on the market today. 
  • Customizable fit based on folding: Having to fold Flat and Prefold diapers, seems to be a major deterrent to parents looking to use cloth diapers.  While folding is easy to learn, it can take a bit of practice to achieve fast and effective diaper changes.  Folding allows for an incredible amount of versatility in size and shape of the diaper, allowing for a custom fit designed perfectly for your unique baby.  Folding no longer requires the use of pins- Snappi diaper fasteners allow you to safely secure the diaper to baby without risk of injuring the parent or child. Flat diapers have the benefit of allowing you to customize absorbency based on the needs of your child (a thin and small flat diaper will work perfectly for a newborn).
  • High absorbency and low maintenance: Prefold cloth diapers have unmatched absorbency compared to other varieties of cloth diapers. Additionally, Prefolds and Flats have the benefit of a larger absorptive area. Because Prefold and Flat diapers are almost always made with natural fibers, they avoid many of the repelling and build-up problems associated synthetic fabrics found in modern cloth diapers. 

Why everyone should own Prefold cloth Diapers

Prefold cloth diapers are a cloth diapering and parenting must-have.  Even if you have a good stock of modern cloth diapers, Prefold diapers can be the perfect solution for many parenting dilemmas.
  • Here are some additional ideas for using your Prefold diapers:   

    • Burp cloths/spit rags/changing table pads: Prefold diapers are thick, absorptive, and inexpensive.  They make wonderfully soft burp cloths.  If you are planning to nurse your baby while babywearing, tuck a Prefold diaper between your clothing and baby to help save your clothing from the inevitable spit-up. 

    • Diaper-free time: Smaller babies who are prone to diaper rash often benefit from diaper-free time.  Place your baby on a waterproof pad covered by a Prefold cloth diaper to catch any urine.
    • Double-up, or use as a diaper insert: You can easily create a highly absorptive pocket diaper by tucking a Prefold cloth diaper into the pocket.  Prefolds are a less expensive alternative to purchasing extra microfiber pads.  Prefolds can also be used to add extra absorbency to any type of diaper, and unlike microfiber, baby’s skin will not be irritated by direct contact with the Prefold.
    • Emergency back-up plan: It’s easy to put off diaper laundry: that is, until you realize you’re almost out of diapers.  Keeping a few Prefold diapers ready as back-ups, will help in the inevitable situation where you find yourself running low on clean diapers.
    • Potty training encouragement: While I love the stay-dry fleece lining on many modern cloth diapers, they can be a deterrent for some children to potty train.  Children should feel some level of discomfort upon soiling their diaper.  Disposable diapers completely abolish this sensation of wetness, and stay-dry modern cloth diapers greatly reduce this sensation.  Prefold diapers have no barrier between absorptive material and baby (unless a stay dry liner is used), so your toddler will know when they have soiled themselves.  If your older toddler is showing no progress or interest in potty training, switching to Prefold cloth diapers can be a major incentive for him to use the potty (when he is physically and emotionally ready).

    Cloth Diaper Blog Hop 2013


  1. "Burp cloths/spit rags/changing table pads" is absolutely true! My mom used cloth diapers for me and perhaps my brothers. Years later when she had my sister (14 years my junior), I used prefolds as burp cloths and spit rags. I never knew they were actually cloth diapers!

    1. Absolutely! I've seen many "burp cloths" that sell for $20 a 2 pack, and they are just bleached prefolds that should retail for around $2-3. I think prefolds are a necessity for any parent.