Basic Cloth Diapering Supplies

What supplies do you need for cloth diapering? Here are my recommendations.

Cloth Diapers - I recommend anywhere between 18-24 diapers in a rotation. I believe we have 24 diapers and that has worked for diapering two little ones at a time (with diaper changes every 3 hours unless we have a poopy – pockets hold it all in!).  This will enable you to wash every 2-3 days.  We already shared how we love the one size pocket diapers.

Detergent – There are many different recommendations for natural detergents, but make sure you choice one free of any additives, softeners, whiteners, brighteners, and the like. We use Charlies Soap for our diapers. Other popular brands include Allen’s Naturally & Country Save. Check out a recommended list here.

Cloth Wipes – 2-3 dozen wipes. I recommend flannel wipes, but don’t go for the cheap ones because they wear out quickly. Try making your own.

Screen shot 2009-09-10 at 2.40.20 AM

Wipe container at the changing table

Old Wipes containers – We use a large plastic wipes container at the changing station and a small one in the diaper bag.

Wipe container for the diaper bag

Wipe container for the diaper bag

Diaper pail & liner – A basic large plastic trash can will do. You don’t need anything fancy. Just makes sure it has a lid! Two washable liners are very useful for keeping the smell in the pail and you can dump all the contents into the washer at once with the bag. For small places, another excellent option is the Doorknob Diaper Pail.

Doublers - These are nice to have on hand for overnight use. Just stuff the diaper with an extra insert. We love the hemp/fleece doublers or BabyKicks Hemparoo because they help keep the moisture away from the bum, are super absorbent, and are rash resistant (when you put the hemp side directly against their bum). We also like to stuff the inside of our diapers with an extra infant prefold diapers or micro terry inserts for doubling at night.

1-2 Washable Wet bags – This are wonderful to keep in the diaper bag for diapering when you are out and about. We have a Planet Wise wet bags or you can make your own (Michele made me a wet bag as pictured and we love it!). It’s nice to have two to rotate when one is in the wash.

That’s all that is in my diapering collection. Simple and basic!

Additional tool (convenient but not necessary)…Diaper Sprayer. If you don’t like the thought of dunking your diapers, check out the diaper sprayer. I have not used it myself, but it looks useful. I personally leave the infant stools on the diaper and they are sufficiently cleaned out in the washer. When they begin solids, I do a bit of dunking or let the stools roll off into the toilet. Another alternative is Flusable Liners. We have used them on occasion ourselves and liked the convenience but not the extra cost. These tools make cloth diapering a breeze! No more excuses. ;)

For an excellent selection of diapering supplies, including all the recommended items above, I highly recommend Kelly’s Closet. Excellent customer service and they reward you with points from each purchase you make towards future gift cards!

What diapering supplies do you have or recommend?

About Lindsay

Lindsay Edmonds is first a lover of Jesus, wife, mother of four, homemaker, and writer. She loves inspiring women around the world toward simple, natural, and intentional living for the glory of God.

40 Responses to Basic Cloth Diapering Supplies

  1. Annett Stockner September 21, 2012 at 3:05 am #

    Thank you for offering such an ideal site. It has been a pleasure to read.

  2. ~M October 26, 2010 at 5:39 am #

    Hi Lindsay,

    I came back to your blog to check out your wet bag and laundry bag/diaper pail recommendations for cloth diapers. I have a few questions…

    1) Here you recommend Planet Wise Wetbags, but in another (older) post, the Wahmies ones. Which would you recommend more highly today?

    2) Do you have a diaper pail you recommend? With lid or without? Thanks!

  3. ~M September 27, 2010 at 6:03 am #

    When you say to get 2 diaper pail liners is that to use both at once (one over the other) or so you can wash one and alternate with the second in the pail?


    • Lindsay October 1, 2010 at 6:35 am #

      It is for the purpose of having one in use while the other is in the washer. Just makes things simpler.

  4. Maggie August 11, 2010 at 4:28 pm #

    I make my own laundry soap, I use borax, washing soda and grated ivory soap. I am due in December and am very interested in looking into cloth diapers. Would my homemade soap be okay to use with cloth diapers? I don’t want an added cost for another detergent

    • Jenell September 5, 2010 at 8:54 pm #

      I would not recommend the recipe you use with the soap on your diapers. Over time, the soap will cause build up and the diapers will repel and leak. I use equal parts borax, washing soda, and oxyclean free and it works great on my diapers so far and I’ve been using it a few months. I plan to use it on my clothes as soon as I run out of my regular stuff.

  5. Hailey White July 11, 2010 at 2:59 pm #

    Thank you so very much! I just joined the world of cloth diapering and I am so appreciative!

  6. erinhol April 19, 2010 at 10:01 pm #

    I know this is an older post but I'm about to have my first baby in a few weeks and have been referring back to it as a reference! Quick question… with the Charlie's Soap for bumGenius 3.0 pocket diapers do you typically use the full 1 Tsbp recommended on the package, or do you use a smaller amount? It seems like often the diapers only need 1/2 the recommended amount on the detergent packaging. Thanks!

    • Lindsay April 20, 2010 at 5:03 am #

      One tablespoon is what is also recommended for cloth diaper use. You can get away with using slightly less. Congrats and blessings upon you as you welcome this little one!

  7. Jennifer March 21, 2010 at 8:52 pm #

    Hi. I’ve got two boys. My oldest is 2 1/2 years and my youngest is 6 months. We’ve bought our cloth diapers from and have been very impressed. They are very well made, thick, durable and reasonably priced. They are very professional and timely in shipping your item to you and usually give you a free sample of something to try in your box. I would recommend them to anyone and will be sticking with them through the years to come (Lord willing)… :)

  8. Teddi February 25, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    I realize I’m commenting on an old post here, but I’m going to chime in anyway. I love love love my diaper sprayer. And I totally recommend NOT using a lid on your diaper pail. The lid keeps the smell in and stews the diapers in their own juices. I honestly have no diaper smell in my house. Having done both, no lid is far better than a lid. There’s no fear of lifting a lid to put a new one in the pail. As your little ones get older, it’s important to wash every other day at minimum.

  9. Erin November 13, 2009 at 11:02 am #

    My nearly 5yo still wets at night. Are there cloth diapers big enough for her to wear?

    • Lindsay November 13, 2009 at 2:26 pm #

      Knickernappies has a good large diaper that would probably work for him. Check out other ideas on Nicki’s Diapers.

  10. Holly November 10, 2009 at 12:50 pm #

    Diaper sprayer has been a FANTASTIC investment for us. We have used all prefolds for diapering our son. We bought the sprayer when we bought the diapers. The diaper sprayer now works great for rinsing out the insert from the potty-chair, rinsing out rags we used to clean up vomit after a bout with a tummy bug, and numerous other little similar tasks that can arise when you have a small person around. We also used inexpensive washcloths as wipes, and washed them with the diapers. Most are still going strong.

  11. Katherine October 8, 2009 at 1:48 pm #

    I started cloth diapering about 8 months ago, and have only used Allens Naturally to wash the diapers. Over time, they’ve accumulated an odor of urine which I can’t seem to entirely rid myself of, so I tried a vinegar and an Allens wash or two…The result has been diapers that smell of ammonia, and hurt my childrens’ sensitive parts (they’ll wake up complaining). What did I do wrong? Do you have any ideas to help? (please, please?)

    • Lindsay October 8, 2009 at 2:29 pm #

      Most cloth diapering companies (including BumGenius) recommend a monthly wash cycle with 1/4-1/2 cup bleach. It may not be preferred but it is the best solution to this problem. This will help eliminate the stench. You could try oxygen bleach as a more natural alternative.

  12. Katie September 13, 2009 at 8:11 pm #

    I posted below as well (we use FuzziBunz and love them) but I cut up a couple of old t’shirts to use as liners and just pop them in the WM with the nappies when I wash them. I use the flushables if I’m out and about too.

  13. Kristina September 13, 2009 at 8:24 am #

    I forgot to mention. A diaper sprayer is a must!!! They are a little spendy. I got mine as a shower gift. Christmas is just around the corner. I love my bummis flushable liners. I can stretch them wider to cover the BG. I found that the kushies liners I had I actually had to double to make them wide enough to cover the diaper.

  14. Kristina September 13, 2009 at 8:20 am #

    I love my BG’s. After a stint with disposables over the summer (so busy,never home, not washing frequently enough, hot house=stinky pail) I am so glad to be back in the BG’s. We started potty learning around 9 mo. Just got one of the small pottys from IKEA. and started to put her on it while I would get the next diapers placed. 50% of the time she would pee and once in a while even poop. From 14-15 mo old we were in disposables.
    She stopped wanting the potty. Now that we are back in cloth…she uses the potty before we put on the diaper and even asks for the potty. (brings it to me) I have been able to reuse so many cloth diapers this way. I offer her the potty every 2 hours. Usually she is dry and goes in the potty. My husband was on board from day one…and now we have a toilet seat reducer, she goes poopie almost everytime. The key is giving them time to “go”.
    I will ask her if she is done. she says no. Five min later we have a poopie.
    Point being. Cloth and regular potty times will save you money, wash, and hopefully an early potty learned child. If you are interested in learning more about elimination communication. is a great place for support and ideas at any stage in the game. Blessings

  15. Becky September 11, 2009 at 5:41 am #

    I always recommend a diaper sprayer. I tell my friends it’s optional but if they want to LOVE cloth diapering then it’s a must have. Whenever we travel to my parents or stay in a hotel I realize how convenient it is. A diaper sprayer is well worth the investment. Thanks for the link to the wet page directions. I need a new one and would rather make it than buy it.

  16. Melody September 10, 2009 at 7:00 pm #

    Two great posts in a row, Lindsay…thanks so much for sharing all of this info! I passed on yesterdays post to a friend considering cloth. We use BG and love them. I am having a few issues with velcro, but forgot about the stripping them…might try that soon. We have a diaper sprayer and I wouldn’t do it without it in the infant stage! :) Now that my daughter is on solids I don’t use it, but it was so helpful in the beginning. I also love our wool soakers…I have a friend who makes them for me and I am so thankful for her! They make night-time diapers a piece of cake with no leaking. I also am amazed that you use 21 diapers for two kiddos. I have 20 that I use with one. Way to go!! :)

  17. Allie September 10, 2009 at 3:34 pm #

    My BG diaper sprayer has been a LIFESAVER! But don’t waste the extra $$$ buying one, make one! Here’s the link:

    • Kim September 11, 2009 at 9:28 am #

      Great tip Allie!! I have a diaper sprayer and enjoy it so much but am thankful for this post. I’ve already forwarded it to several friends. Thanks for directing us in ways to save money Lindsay and Allie!

  18. Jessica Brammer | Losing the World September 10, 2009 at 2:59 pm #

    We don’t own a diaper sprayer, but I can definitely see how they would be useful. Since our boys are a bit older now and their poops are more sticky and full I use the shower’s sprayer to do a quick wash before putting them into the pail. It is definitely helpful to get most of the poop off. Thanks for the great cloth diaper info.

  19. Crazy Charm September 10, 2009 at 1:05 pm #

    That diaper sprayer would also be great for those using the divacup.

  20. Lisa September 10, 2009 at 11:32 am #

    I’ve used cloth for my past two babies and love it – so much so we even own a cloth diaper/natural parenting store ( One thing I usually tell new moms is that a new baby gets changed 8-12 times a day. So if you are washing every other day, then 2 dozen diapers is a good number to have. If you use prefolds and covers, then you can air dry and rotate the covers so you only need 4-6 covers. Another thing to consider if you haven’t tried it yet, is wool. I love, love, love my wool covers and use longies in the wintertime as pants and pj bottoms. They are super easy to care for, just wash when needed. Wool has antibacterial properties which makes it a perfect choice for cloth diapering. And nothing can beat drying in the sun to kill any leftover bacteria. Go cloth! Loved your post!

  21. Lisa September 10, 2009 at 11:30 am #

    I was very interested in switching to cloth diapers with baby’s 3 and 4 being quite close together. However my husband was not excited about the idea of poop in the washer. So we finally came to a great compromise . . gdiapers. They are a combination of cloth and disposable, cloth on the outside and a disposable insert inside. The insert can be tossed, flushed or composted. The are a bit more expensive, but you don’t need as many covers as cloth because you don’t have to wash it every diaper change and most of the time I can find savings by ordering the inserts online.

  22. Carla September 10, 2009 at 11:00 am #

    Only 21 diapers for 2 children? Wow. I used to use well over a dozen (maybe 18) every single day for one baby.

  23. Zsera September 10, 2009 at 10:34 am #

    I have really enjoyed all of these posts about cloth diapering. Thank you so much for all the great info!

  24. kimberly September 10, 2009 at 9:26 am #

    LOVE using cloth. I agree it’s so easy! I just wanted to add that an extra thing that’s nice to have is a wipe warmer…

  25. Christy September 10, 2009 at 8:33 am #

    Here is a list I made of our favorites – and also a post about using wool for cloth diaper covers –

    • Tamara September 11, 2009 at 1:11 pm #

      After checking out your post on wool covers, I whipped up a pair of longies for my son who (I’m hoping) will be potty training soon, and a pair of soakers for a friend of ours who is cloth diapering. I used an old wool sweater that I shrunk years ago and I couldn’t bear to throw out. I knew there was a reason I hung onto it. I can’t wait to try the longies out tomorrow. I had to hold myself back from waking my son up tonight to try them on! Thanks so much for the tip!
      PS to Lindsay and everyone else: You guys are all seriously inspiring me to use cloth next time around!

  26. randmboo September 10, 2009 at 8:07 am #

    One thing to add for those of us using flats or prefolds is a brilliant device called a Snappi–it’s rubbery and has little plastic teeth that grip the diaper closed, so no more pins!!!
    And homemade diaper wipe solution. Mine is usally just water with a tiny squirt of baby wash in an old squirt ketchup bottle.
    I certainly do enjoy cloth diapering.

  27. Kama September 10, 2009 at 7:37 am #

    I cloth diaper my 11 month old son. Just realize that if you have a front-loading washer, what is recommended for detergent is totally wrong! I had to come up with a different process than most people to wash my BG 3.0. 1 cold rinse, hot wash with just a little bit of country save, another hot wash with an extra rinse with baking soda and vinegar. This is the only way I could get most of the stains out. Then I dry them outside.
    I haven’t tried cloth wipes yet. Maybe someday after our super cheap CVS clearance wipes run out!

  28. slawebb September 10, 2009 at 7:17 am #

    Love this post. I use cloth too, and I love it! The cloth diaper thing I cannot live without is the sprayer! My husband made on out of a kitchen sink sprayer and a couple of splitters, cost a little less than then ones you can buy. It is great!! I love that I don’t have to dunk the diapers and the sprayer gets the diapers cleaned off really well. As an added bonus, I use it to spray out the potty chair, puke buckets, soiled clothes…the list goes on!

  29. Christy McCollough September 10, 2009 at 6:53 am #

    I am new to cloth diapering, but must say I wouldn’t be able to stomach dunking/scraping off the poo without the flushable liners. :) FYI-I read a review on Amazon about both Kushies and Imse Vimse liners that suggested they were machine washable…so I tried it…and they were! So if my daughter is only wet, I just toss the liner in with the diapers, and they make it through 1 or 2 washes before they start to break down. This helps decrease the cost, and makes me feel a little less wasteful. :)

    • Shannon Hazleton September 10, 2009 at 10:45 am #

      Yes! I totally forgot to mention that I wash my flushable liners (only if wet, not poop) a few times before they’re worn out and I throw them away.

  30. Rachel September 10, 2009 at 6:42 am #

    I love my fleece diaper liners. When I get a diaper needing dunking, I can dunk JUST the liner instead of the whole diaper. And it’s washable so I only have to buy them once! I’m pretty sure they’re easy to make too, but I already bought some so….

  31. Shannon Hazleton September 10, 2009 at 5:00 am #

    We love flushable liners. My 2nd daughter had really messy poops. They never became the really solid, easy-to-roll-off poops and I got tired of washing it out of my fleece liners. The extra cost was worth it to me, and most of the time, she only had one major bowel movement a day (this was after one year of age) and after she’d had that, I’d save my flushable liners and just use the fleece ones the rest of the day.

    After we potty-trianed, I started making my own detergent using Fels-Neptha soap, washing soda, and borax. I’m wondering if this solution is safe for diapers. Anyone know?

  32. Hallee September 10, 2009 at 4:37 am #

    If you use plain cloth diapers with vinyl liners like I do, you’ll also need a changing pad for the times you change away from your changing table. When I remove the vinyl covers, the diapers are wet and will soak into anything the baby is lying on.

    As far as wipes, we bought thin baby washcloths at the Dollar Tree – 4 or 6 to a pack for a dollar – and use those. My son is 3 and I’m on the second baby using the same ones.