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So I'm still in the process of taking the leap into using cloth. I have about 11 diapers and more on the way. They're mostly pocket diapers... a few Alva's, a few BumGenius a few from WAHMs that resemble the Alva's. I've read many ways to prep diapers... washing 3-4 times. But I'm curious how YOU prep your diapers. What would be your advice on this? I have a HE front loader so I am already nervous about using cloth, but we're giving it a go!
Oh and I have a few bamboo inserts that just came today... all others are microfiber. (now that I got the bamboo I can tell the difference ) Can these all be prepped together or are there special ways to prep bamboo?
Prepping is only required for bamboo, cotton, and hemp. It removes the natural oils that remain in the fibers after manufacturing, and makes them closer to fully absorbent. Depending on the material it can take 10-20 washes to reach 100% full absorbency!! Prepping is a shortcut to get you close enough that they still function okay in the meantime.
Microfiber, synthetic pocket shells, and covers need no "prepping" per se. You just wash once to get off factory chemicals like you would for new clothing.
I prep a big batch of new flats, prefolds, and inserts (nothing with snaps or elastic!!!) by boiling in a stockpot for 10 minutes with a squirt of dish liquid. You will see how much oil comes out!!! Then I wash on sanitary once in my HE washer. They are pretty good after that. If I have only a few new things, I throw them in with my regular laundry for a few washes, then with my diaper laundry for a couple washes, then use them.
Hth! I think I prep more than most people. I like my stuff to be pretty reliable when I use it but some people don't mind using it around the house for the first several wearings and just knowing it isn't going to absorb that much.