I love cloth swim diapers!!! I found one while I was still pregnant with Punkin at Goodwill (where I shopped for a lot of brand new baby stuff for almost no money!). I got him a cute little red pair and he wore it the entire first summer (3 months-6 months).
We lived in an apartment that year so we didn’t get out and play in the water every day and because he was so little we didn’t really go to a “real” pool much either so one was plenty. It was snug around his thighs and held in everything when he pooped. The disposable swim diapers we’d used leaked out the sides once they were sufficiently wet and so I couldn’t figure out the purpose behind them. Maybe if he’d only ever had super hard poops while swimming they would have worked (they probably would have kept that in unless they were pebble turds… you get the idea) but I hated the fact that I would put him in and then he’d get out, get cold, need to be dressed but then want to go back in again 15 minutes later! I didn’t want to put the gross soggy disposable back on him so I’d use a new one. Add to that the fact that we moved to our own home when he was 15 months old and I was home for summer vacation (I was a teacher) and on good weeks he’d be in the pool once a day every day–that’s seven diapers a week–that adds up fast! The cloth diaper didn’t soak in any water, it has a kind of bathing-suit material outer shell with a kind of terry cloth inside that didn’t stay soaking wet for very long if placed in the sun or on a line. In fact we could swim in the morning, hang the swim diaper up and it would be dry after nap!
I gathered more over the next few years in different sizes and colors. I borrowed a bunch from a friend for the girls (because there were two of them) and I always have two or three ready to be used! My friend told me that they were the only kind of swim diapers allowed on a cruise ship (maybe because the disposable ones cause so much waste with kids swimming multiple times a day?).
So why doesn’t everyone use them? Is it the initial cost? Target sells them for 12 bucks each… not a huge deal in my book when you consider how much you’ll be SAVING on disposables. Is it dealing with potential poops? Maybe, but how often do your kids actually poop in the pool? If we’re in the pool every day it MIGHT happen once a week (meaning one of the twins, not both) but I don’t think it’s actually ever been that often. Are they a pain to clean when pooped in? No, I’ve never had to do more than dump a poop in the toilet and usually not even that. Wash on hot with regular soap then sun (or just air) dry and you’re good! If there was no poop you can just wash as normal. Is it because they’re called “Cloth swim diapers“? Does the term “cloth diaper” scare people off? Is it the idea of having a pooped in diaper in your bag/car for the rest of the day until you can get home? Bring a ziplock bag. I always liked one or two in my diaper bag for wet and dirty clothes anyway but when I started cloth diapering I always made sure to have a couple handy in the bag and in the car for diapering emergencies. You can also buy a “wet bag” that is washable, I have one but never remember to bring it with me so wasteful ziplocks it is… and it’s not a big deal at all!
So, everyone, go out and get some cloth swim diapers for your little ones this summer. I promise you’ll love them!!!
(but if you don’t I’d love to hear your reasons why because I just can’t get enough of them!)