Monday, August 20, 2012

Flushable Liners for Cloth Diapers [AKA: A Solution For The Poo Factor When Not At Home]

My wonderfully awesome friend, Andrea, posted the very first ever comment on my blog! [High five Andrea, and thanks!]  I was super appreciative of her comment, but also she posted an interesting question.  This question I think is one that all moms and soon-to-be moms and really anyone who has been around children think about: 

What do you do with the poo? 

Her question specifically related to dealing with your baby's deposits while you aren't safe at home to deal with them discretely.  For my readers who don't use cloth diapers yet, the common way of getting said deposits off the diapers in a  safe environmentally-friendly way is to use a diaper sprayer [also known as hand bidets].  They are attached to you toilet's plumbing, and you simply spray the poo off the diaper into the toilet and flush.

So what do you do when your sprayer isn't an option?  Like vacation, or road trips, or a trip to the zoo?  

I thought about a couple of options specifically for a vacation scenario; say, you're staying with family for a week and got permission to use their washing machine. 

The first one I thought of was, "well, I suppose you do it the old-fashioned way and dunk the diaper in the toilet until the poo comes off."  Then I thought of the one time I actually did that.  It wasn't a pleasant experience - I'll spare you the nasty details. 

Then I thought, "Well what about a spray bottle?  It would be kind of like a diaper sprayer, but travel size!"  Not going to lie, I was pretty proud of myself for coming up with this.  So, I told Josh, and he said, "You should probably actually try that out before you tell anyone that idea."  Fine.  Lucky for me, only an hour later I had a poopy diaper.  So I snagged my spray bottle full of water and went to work on it over the toilet.

Conclusion:  It's better than dunking.  It's also a lot of work for not a lot of results.  I only got half the poo off and gave up.

So we went internet hunting for ideas.  Turns out, there is actually a product designed for this very problem.  They are called Flushable Liners.

Even better, we have a roll of them sitting in a drawer, just waiting for this very moment.

I decided to just throw them out as a possible answer to Andrea's question, because people all over the web think they're pretty nifty.  I also decided that I should probably give them a whirl for a day or so to see for myself just how they work.

So, how exactly do these things work?

 First, you pull a liner out and place it on top of your diaper [I tried every variation of diaper, and they all work with the liners].

Then you put it on your child. When you go to change your child, you simply dispose of the dirty liner, either in the trash or toilet. They are biodegradable and shouldn't clog your toilet.  [Disclaimer:  know your house's plumbing.  If you don't think it can handle a bunch of these liners going through your pipes, then don't send a bunch of them through your pipes.  Please.]

Some moms I know have children who poo on schedule.  If your kiddo is like that, these things will be fantastic.  All you need to do is put a liner in before your child's regular depositing and clean up is easy!  For those of us with children who like surprises, you will probably have to put a liner in every diaper.  Here's the good news: using a liner for every diaper isn't going to break you.  A roll of 100 liners cast around $8.  I found a 100-count roll of the brand I use for $6.   

So if you used a whole roll of liners while visiting grandparents, you would spend $8.  Or you could buy 100 disposables and spend $25.  Not bad.

Another neat tip I found out is that you can use the liners to protect diapers from rash creams or medications. Once again, they are a less expensive alternative to disposables.


The flushable liners work better than I expected so far.  Adelle hasn't made any deposits yet, so I'm still waiting for it.  [She did have prunes for dinner last night though, so I  think I should get lucky soon.  I'll let you know what happens.]  I was worried the liners would stick to the diaper when they got wet.  Envision trying to pull wet toilet paper off off the floor.  However, after a few wet changes, I found the liners rolled off the diaper without you having to touch them.

[Update: Dellie finally got the prunes through her system.  Good news!  The liners worked.  They protected the diaper from the poo and I was able to simply dump the liner with the poo into the toilet and flush.]

I hope to hear some awesome stories in the comments section about your experiences using liners, or even other ways you found to deal with the poo factor while out and about!

Hope you all have a great week!

*this is a link to Amazon's affilliate program, so if you choose to buy these liners through the above link, a percent of your purchase will come back to support this blog.  Thanks!*


  1. I think I'm gonna start using cloth diapers to save some money. Those Flushable Liners seems like they work very well. Can't wait to start using them.

  2. So i totally have 2 rolls of these right now, i bought them to use with some cream i needed to give my boy for a while. It never really occured to me to use them for poo while on vacation! the only problem i found with them, and it was more of a thing i have with my CD if you use pre-folds they are going to move around a bit so if you are counting on the liners to catch ALL the poo you will probably still get a little on the cover, but the majority will be on the liner and so no sprayer needed! And can I say I LOVE that you tried the spray bottle idea, mostly because at some point i would have thought that was a great idea too!! Way to be creative!!

  3. Ivette, I am going to be writing a series soon about the basics of how cloth diapers work. Hopefully it will help you out also!

  4. Andrea, that's so funny that you have some! I noticed that the liners moved around some too and could bunch up every so often. But I think you are right - the liners should catch the majority of the poo.

  5. Connie Vader-LindholmAugust 22, 2012 at 1:08 AM

    Great idea Shelby, I could have used that a couple of times this summer. I tried the dunking with miserable results and wasn't very good with the spray bottle. The whole experience brought back bad memories of my childhood and helping change diapers for my younger brothers and sisters. :)

  6. From the guys point of view they make a lot of sense. I wasn't a huge fan of the spray bottle idea because it seemed inefficient. I did like the flushable liners though. The disposable ones work pretty well too.