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The DANGERS of Cloth Diapering

I’ve cloth diapered both of my girls – in fact, I still have one in cloth as we speak (she is 16 months) and as much I am a mega proponent for the use of cloth diapers versus disposables, I find myself secretly dropping hints to my husband that it is time to use disposables.

Unfortunately, I did too good of a job convincing him of the benefits that he is adamant of sticking to our AIO Grovias.  

To be honest, I’m not sure if I would be thinking so much about it, however our care provider stops allowing us to use cloth at the age of 18 months…and that means, very soon, my youngest will only be in cloth diapers when she is at home (not at all throughout the week during the day).

You know, I think I’ve done pretty good with both of my daughters by employing cloth diapers over the years…and I love the many benefits of using cloth (blah blah blah)…but the hazards are becoming ever more pronounced in the last few weeks leading up to my youngest turning 18 months…

this pic luckily doesn't contain poop, but it gives you an
idea of where to look for it in your HE washer
Poop in washer

We have a HE washer and let me tell you – if you aren’t a stickler at removing all poop from your diapers prior to washing then you’ll be swiping poop out of the little rubber crevice between the door and the washer.

There’s nothing like solid poop bits hanging out in the washer when you *think* your laundry is clean.

Demon Diaper sprayer

Piss on diaper sprayers.

Who the hell ever thought it would be a good or even plausible idea to use a hypersensitive, pressurized water gun to clean-up poop over a small 20 inch opening that has a pool of water in it?!

It might not be so bad if I had the time to be meticulous and cautious about using it but I don’t. If you find yourself using a diaper sprayer, I’d like to wager a bet that you most likely have a toddler running around getting into stuff they aren’t suppose to…

..because toddlers have the keen ability to understand you are COMPLETELY incapacitated at that moment.  

Oh, let me explain something in very clear terms: there is no sanitary, hygienic method to employ a diaper sprayer.


Urine smell

I don’t really recall ever smelling such strong ammonia bouquets coming from disposable diapers.

Yes, yes – you can strip your diapers to remove build up. You can try using another detergent (or you can make your own like we do) but if you use cloth then sooner or later you’re going to deal with reeking urine odor…and its sure to get to the point when this will happen as soon as one infinitesimal droplet of pee touches the cloth diaper.

This particular hazard is compounded when you cosleep.


Very true – cloth diapers hold the possibility of saving families hundreds of dollars over a course of a year or so but I am curious to see if this actually truly ever happens (in the majority of cases).

You see, once you start buying those cute prints you start to get curious to about other brands...then you’ll find yourself trying out other styles to see if they work any better too (AIO, inserts, AI2, covers, prefolds, organic etc).

You might as well buy another wet bag too and how about another planetwise diaper pail liner or, or maybe try out some fleece liners or see if there is a package deal special going on to get free shipping online over $100 bucks…

If you not careful, you could very well spend just as much if not more on cloth then on disposable diapers, just say’n.

Smelly diaper bin

We wash our diapers every other day and I still have to store my daughter’s diaper bin OUTSIDE of her room in the “office” (a room we coined the office - aka the room where baby items/toys go to die) because the smell becomes a biohazard after 24 hours.

Even after you take the dirty diapers down to the laundry room, the empty plastic bin STILL reeks.

To remedy this problem, we have two diaper pails so we can soak one in bleach water while the other one is in use.


I know that this post might (just a tad) come off like I am strongly against using cloth but after nearly 3 years of cloth diapering, I think I might just be grumpy.

I love that we choose to use cloth to avoid the needless chemicals found in disposables and I love that it helps keep thousands of diapers out of the earth that one day our children will be left with after we are all gone.

But… I’ll be happy when I can find a creative way (oh, hell – who am I kidding, any way) to get rid of those wicked diapers.


  1. Ah, really? I love our cloth diapers and I have definitely spent less than I would have with disposables. Don't have the washing machine problem as I have a top loader. :)

    1. I think I might just be in a snarky mood today...I do love our cloth ..but its definately not all rainbows and unicorns.

  2. We did elimination communication and definitely saved $$ that way. Used somed used cloth briefly until child decided he hated them or maybe liked them; basically he stopped going poop on the potty and would go in the cloth so back to disposables we went and then back to going potty he went. Very odd.

    1. kids are so odd sometimes (all the time lol)

  3. If your diapers smell, then the solution isn't just strip your diapers every time it comes up. Your wash routine is broken. I have been cloth diapering for three and a half years. I have had NONE of the problems that you've mentioned.

    My diaper sprayer? It's not hard to use. Just don't be an idiot and put it on full blast.

    My HE washer? I've never, ever found poop left over in it.

    The smell? My diapers don't stink because they are actually cleaned properly. I'd suggest that your detergent that you've been using is insufficient.

    1. Thank you for such a constructive comment. I'm sure no one on Earth has problems with cloth diapers, must just be me : )

  4. I actually respectfully agree with the comment about your wash routine not properly cleaning your diapers, but it could have been said in a much nicer tone lol!! With a good wash routine, and a strong detergent then your diapers should never smell. If you have ammonia problems all the time, then your diapers are not properly getting clean. I know you mentioned homemade detergent and that is likely the issue, unfortunately. Homemade soap doesn't actually contain any actual detergent and is just a bunch of water softeners and boosters. (Trust me I used to make my own too lol and they never came out clean!) Most recipes also contain soap which is very different than detergent and is not clean rinsing. Every other product in my home is all natural but after trying so many different "natural" detergents, none of them cleaned my diapers so I finally had to realize that clean diapers were more important to me than harmful ammonia crystals lingering in my diapers haha! So I bit the bullet, bleached them and switched to Tide. I haven't had a single ammonia problem in the past 9 months of switching to Tide. But the only way to actually get rid of the ammonia in the first place is to do a bleach soak in cold water for up to an hour to kill the lingering bacteria and then do a hot detergent wash. (bleach breaks down in hot water) Ammonia is never fun to deal with, and like you, many people think that ammonia is a common thing that cloth diapering mama's have to deal with, when really you shouldn't have to deal with it at all once you find the right detergent and wash routine. :) If you want or need some more info, check out The Cloth Diaper Compendium on facebook! The owner has a masters degree in organic chemistry and she explains it all in detail. I learned a ton! Hope this helps a little!


Please be respectful. If you are about to say something that you would not let your child hear, then please refrain from saying it.