You will need:
- A sturdy bucket, lid optional
- A water source
- Essential oil of lavender or tea tree, optional
- Laundry detergent for sensitive skin
1) Dump or scrape the contents of the soiled cloth into the toilet, but there's no need to be militant about it!
2) Deposit diaper into bucket. I keep mine in or near the tub.
3) Run enough water into the bucket to cover the diaper.
4) Put in a few drops of essential oil and put the lid on the bucket, if you choose.
5) Follow the same 4 steps for every subsequent diaper -- just keep filling up that bucket until it is full. (It may take an entire week of dirty diapers to fill the bucket. You may choose to just wash one load a week -- that's what I always did! Or, you may decide you only want a bucket of soaking poo sitting around for a couple days.)
6) Setting up the washing machine:
a) put the load capacity at medium or large, even though your diapers only make up a small load
b) always wash the diapers in COLD or WARM water, NOT in hot water (hot water could set the stains)
c) if you have the option to set the rinse water, set it to warm or hot
d) set the washing machine for an extra rinse and spin
e) start the wash and add enough laundry detergent for the load size you set
7) Dump the entire contents of your dirty diaper bucket, including the soaking water, into the washing machine.
8) Wash the diapers! You may then dry them in the dryer or dry them hanging on a line.
NEVER use bleach on cloth diapers -- it is toxic to baby's skin and it will break down the fibers of the diaper, making it less absorpbant and weaker
Every once in a while, or everytime if you wish, you can add a cup of vinegar and a 1/4 cup of baking soda to the washing machine
Happy Cloth Diapering!
Sincerely, A busy mama