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March 20, 2013

Our Overnight Solution

Cloth diapering comes with some challenges-upfront cost, finding a good fit, poop (just poop in general!), and being out and about with cloth diapers.  But the most challenging thing for me (and many others) has been nighttime diapering.  My son, Myles is quite a heavy wetter.  When he was about a month old, I started using my pocket diapers (I had previously just been using prefolds/covers with no issues).  The pocket diapers didn't work-we had leaks all. the. time.  I gave up on them and moved back to just using prefolds and covers, which worked great, but weren't very convenient for other people to use.  A few months later, Myles was going to be with a babysitter one day a week, and I really wanted to find a cloth diapering solution while he was with her.  So, back to our pockets we went.  And again, leaks.  I thought it was the fit, I thought maybe it was the brand of diaper, but never really considered I wasn't adding enough absorbency inside.  I always used the bigger microfiber insert, which I just assumed should be enough.  Well, one day I decided to double up the microfiber inserts, and.... no leaks!  I kept doubling up the inserts in all our pocket diapers and, whaddya know, no leaks!  I finally realized that my son was just a super soaker.
Now, up until this point, we hadn't really had issues with nighttime diapering.  Although Myles was still nursing during the night, I would always change him when I got up to feed him, so we never really had a problem.  But around four months old, he was starting to sleep at much longer stretches, and all of a sudden, I could not keep him dry at night!  I tried adding a microfiber insert to the outside of his prefold, under a PUL cover.  I tried two or three inserts inside a pocket.  I even tried putting a Thirsties cover over a heavily stuffed pocket diaper.  He always woke up soaking!!
The first thing I found that worked (well, for a while, until he started sleeping 10 hours at a time) were hemp inserts.  They seriously changed my life.  I got some nice, thick, hemp inserts, and I paired them with a prefold.  It was the first time he'd woken up dry in a few weeks.  This worked for quite a while.  But when he really started sleeping through the night, we really needed something more.  I did a lot of research online (and even questioned Kristina, the lovely founder of this blog), and the thing that kept popping up was fitteds and wool.  I didn't own any fitteds and was terrified of wool, but I decided that I'd better give it a try.
I went to my local cloth diapering store and got a SBISH (sustainablebabyish) wool cover.
SBISH wool cover

 It was expensive, but, looking back now, well worth it!  I used it for almost a year.  I also ordered an SBISH nighttime fitted diaper (they call them their OBF diapers-overnight/organic bamboo fitteds).  This was also pretty expensive, but it was also well worth the money!!  After I learned about lanolizing and washing wool, I started using the pair at night.  And guess what-no leaks.  Ever!!  First of all, the SBISH diaper can hold a LOT of liquid.  But even on the rare occasions that it's completely soaked, the wool cover keeps our PJs dry!  So, even though the diaper was a little costly, it does it's job really well. I haven't bought another SBISH fitted yet, not because I don't love it, but because my son actually still fits in the one I got him probably a year ago.  The rise is getting a little short, but it still does its job!

Since then, I've found a few other diapers that work for my super soaker.
One is PoopsieDoodles fitted diapers.
PoopsieDoodle fitted diaper

These are a little less absorbent than the SBISH diapers, but paired with a wool cover (really, any wool cover, not only SBISH), we rarely have a leak.  Plus, she has the cutest prints for the diapers!!

The other thing that always gets us through the night are our Smart Bottoms Smartfolds.
Smart Bottoms Smartfolds

The large size is advertised to hold up to 16 oz of liquid!  And from my experience, I'm pretty sure it's true!  Often, these are completely soaked, all the way through by the morning, but paired with a Flips cover, we don't have leaks!  Now, for some reason, our Flips covers are the only ones we don't get leaks with-I just fold up the Smartfold and lay it in the cover.  The Flips cover has extra flaps to hold the diaper in place, so I think that's why they work so well.  I've tried it in a Thirsties cover, which usually work great for us, but for some reason, we always get leaks.  I'm thinking maybe the diaper moves around inside the cover with nothing to hold it in place.

And that's it!  Honestly, since we've found that these work for us, I don't often try other things for nighttime, simply because I'm afraid they won't work!  So, we've pretty much stuck to these few things for the last year or so.  And 99% of our mornings, Myles wakes up dry.

How about you guys?  Have you found any fool-proof nighttime solutions for your little ones?