Cloth Diapering Terms, Acronyms, and Accessories

Cloth diapers do require a little bit of “extra” so to speak. It comes with it’s own lingo that you’ll need to know in order to navigate the cloth diapering world, and it also comes with it’s own “accessories.” This post is going to share with you the important things that you need to know as far as cloth diapering extras are concerned.

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Cloth Diapering Language and Acronyms

First, lets talk about the language for cloth diapers. There are a lot of  and terms that go along with cloth diapering. This is not an all inclusive list, but it’s ones that I’ve caught myself trying to use quite a bit while writing this series or that would be important for you to know, especially when you’re online talking, buying, or selling cloth diapers.

Fluff– Nickname for cloth diapers

Stash– Nickname for all yo diapers!

WAHM– Work at home Mom making their own merchandise to sell

PUL– Basically the laminate part of the cover that allows it to be water proof

Cover or Shell– This is the outside part of the diaper that makes it “water proof.”

Insert or Soaker- This is what goes inside of the cover and absorbs the urine or poop.

Wicking– You’ll see this being talked about when you’re trying to keep your baby’s butt dry because wet stuff goes from the top and wicks it’s way down into another fabric (like a liner into an insert)

Repelling– Basically, the insert isn’t absorbing liquids, it’s repelling it. Using the wrong creams on a baby’s butt without a liner to protect your insert can cause repelling. But, if your diaper is leaking a lot, it’s more than likely a fit issue rather than repelling, unless you’ve been using something that would cause it to repel.

OS– One size cloth diapers that can be adjusted to fit from birth to about 36ish lbs

All in One or AiO– This is the diaper with the “flaps” that are sewn in. You don’t need to do anything to this diaper other than stick it right on your baby’s butt.

All in Two or Ai2– This is the diaper that is a cross between an AiO and a Pocket Diaper.

Pocket(s)– These are the diapers that have a “pocket” you stuff inserts into.

Flats/Prefolds– These are the diapers that you need to fold and fasten together. Typically used with a snappi.

FST– Flour sack towels which are cheap options to use as a flat style diaper.

Snappi– The 3 pointed “tool” that was pictured with the flats/prefolds that clings to the material to hold the diaper together.

Fitted– These are shaped like a cover, but made out of liner or insert materials. Will still require a cover to go over it.

Push up the rise- This is kinda confusing to explain, so I’m going to include a picture. But basically when you snap your rise snaps, it shortens the diaper, which can be great, but you need to push the rise back up afterwards.

Getting a fit/Good Fit- Refers to the way the diaper is fitting on the baby. You don’t want it too tight or too lose.

Sprayer– The tool that attaches to the toilet in order to spray the poop from the diapers.

Spray pal or shield– Diapers are clipped onto spray pal or shield in order to spray the diapers without making a huge mess. You can make your own or purchase them premade.

Wetbag– This is a bag that is used to hold dirty cloth diapers. They come in different sizes, and will be discussed in better detail below. These have a zipper usually.

Pail liner– These are pretty similar to wet bags except they can be put in a garbage can or something else you’d like to use to put your dirty diapers in.

Liner– These are placed on top of your chosen insert to protect the diaper or make cleaning poopy diapers easier. These will be discussed in more detail below.

EBF/BF– Exclusively breastfeed or breastfed, because remember if they’re exclusively breastfed then their poopy diapers don’t have to be sprayed!

B/S/T– Buy Sell Trade, these are usually facebook groups where you can do exactly as the name says.

PPD- Postage paid. You’ll see this on the BST pages. So $40 ppd, means that you pay $40 and that includes shipping.

Standard Non-HE Washer/ Top Loader- These are the washing machines with the big thing in the middle of the washer called an agitator. There are 3 important terms you need to know when you’re doing laundry in a top loader, and you should check out Fluff Love University for examples of how to achieve each of these :

Soup– too much water and not enough items in the load
Stew– perfect ratio of water to items in the load
Chili– too little water and not enough items in the load

Bulking– This is used when trying to achieve “stew.” It means you’re adding things to the load to “bulk it up” so there’s not too much water.

Pre Wash– This is first wash you do to get the urine or poop off your diaper.

Main Wash– This is the wash that cleans your diapers.

Water hardness/PPM– You’ll need to know if you have hard or soft water, and you’ll need the specific (parts per million) number to determine exactly how hard your water is. You will use water test strips to test your water hardness.

Water Softener– This is added to your load like detergent to soften the water from getting mineral build up.

Stripping– This is a process to get rid of mineral build up on your diapers. This isn’t a required thing. It’s only if you’ve got build up from washing in hard water all the time without using a water softener.

Sunning- If your diapers are stained, you can put them out in the sun for a bit to help get rid of the stains.

Bleaching or Sanitizing– This is the process(es) that you would use when you need to sanitize your diapers. This is typically seen when you buy used or baby had something like a yeast infection. Like stripping, you shouldn’t do this all the time, it’s really not good for the diapers.

If you need a refresher and want to see examples of lots of these terms check back to Why We Chose Cloth DiapersCleaning Cloth Diapers and  What are the different types of cloth diapers? posts  to see pictures and more in depth explanations for most of these. But as promised, I’m going to go into more depth on the cloth diaper “accessories” wet bags, pail liners, and diaper liners.

The flower box on the left holds our diapers and the grey box beneath it holds the liners. We hang our pail liner on the knob of the changing table to save room, but you can put those in a laundry basket or trash can if you’d rather.

This is our set up at our house. We store our diapers, liners, wipes and creams all together on our changing table. We like to hang our pail liner from the knob of our changing table. When it gets to be too heavy, that’s usually a good indicator that it’s time to wash that load. Our dirty diapers, wet bags, and clothes that got leaked on go straight into this liner. We dump the liner contents into the washer and then throw it right on top to wash with everything else! Super simple and easy. Planet Wise Reusable Diaper Pail Liner, To The Point is the pail liner brand we use. They’ve been great for us! You can see it below in the hedgehog print.

large wetbag of dirty clothes
Our pail liner once it’s full and fallen off the knob!

This is an example of a wet bag. When you’re going out and about you will keep one of these in your diaper bag so that you can keep your dirty diapers stored without all the smell or potential to get your diaper bag wet or dirty. They come in a lot of different sizes, all the way up to Planet Wise Wet Diaper Bag, Jewel Woods, Large that holds almost as much as our pail liner, and it has a zipper! We just empty our dirty diapers out of the wet bag and put them, along with the wet bag, into our pail liner to be ready for laundry day.Wet Dry Bag Baby Cloth Diaper Nappy Bag Reusable with Two Zippered Pockets (Baby Fox) is the same brand and style as the featured wet bag. We have the fox print and several others. Lil Helper also has wetbags available for purchase!!

From left to right: Disposable, Lil Helper, and DIY Fleece Liner

These are liners that you put on top of your inserts. I am showing you 3 different kinds in the picture. There are disposable ones that you can pull off like a paper towel (or you could even use Viva brand paper towels as a disposable liner) and then throw away after they get dirty. You could buy one from a company and of course, we have the Lil Helper inserts! Or your last option is to make your own out of some fleece that you bought at the store and cut up. There’s some tutorials on how to cut up your own, but *FACEPALM* I messed that up big time (as you can see from the picture.) After I messed up the first set, I just used our Lil Helper one as a template and cut the fleece to that size. GroVia BioLiners Unscented Diaper Liners, 400 Count are available here.

You can use a liner as a way to help deal with cleaning poop, but it’s not really all that worth it for me. What does make it worth it is when there is some sort of diaper rash that requires a cream. There is an index on Fluff Love that outlines cloth diaper safe creams that you can use. If you don’t use a liner when using a cream that’s not safe for cloth diapers, it will ruin them and cause them to repel. We tried some of those cloth diaper safe creams when she had a terrible rash. But honestly, that “rash” looked like acid poop burns. I don’t know how else to describe it. But it looked so painful, and the only way that it healed was using a thick, white zinc oxide cream (Destin basically). Now, that’s all we’ll use because we know it works. She’s never had a rash like that again, but we had to use liners for that time period. We kept all of our liners because I don’t even want to try and figure out which cloth diaper safe creams work, because I will always say go for the thick white paste!! ** I would also like to note that she got the rash when were using disposables (we didn’t start using cloth until she was 5 weeks old). The rash could have been from something in my diet because I breastfeed, or it could have been the diapers. But she has not had rashes like that ever again since we’ve started cloth.**

Hopefully this has been helpful in helping you grasp some of the lingo. Share in the comments if there’s some terms you think I’ve forgotten that others might need to know!!

Check out the last post of the series, on why I love Lil Helper and exclusively use them for cloth diapering! (…minus those 6 WAHM AiO diapers we have!… And you know what I just said with those acronyms after reading this!!) You can use THIS link to get there!!!


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