I have to start by saying that I am in no way at all being paid or compensated to advertise our diapers. I just love them a lot. Ask most people I know and they will roll their eyes at how much I talk about our cloth diapers. I love 'em.
When I was five months pregnant with Mini Me, I started researching cloth diapering on a whim. My husband gave me the indication that he would be on board with using cloth so I sat down to learn some more. It took me two full days to wade through all the information that is out there. I even took notes and made a spread sheet! What I did not do is write down and save the websites I visited way back then to learn more, but here are two fantastic sites that explain cloth diapers for beginners:
Cloth diapers explained
Cloth diaper 101
The diapers we have are pocket diapers. That means we have an outer shell that is stuffed with an absorbent stuffer. (Do you like my fancy terms?). We have always stuffed our night diapers a little thicker to make them more absorbent.
We use only one kind of diapers. Many cloth diaper lovers have a wide variety of styles and brands they use. We just use the one kind we love and it serves us well for daily use, when we travel, at night, and so forth.
The first set of diapers we had with Mini Me were BumGenius 3.0 with hook-and-loop closures made by Cotton Babies. I don't think they make these exact diapers any more, but here is a similar diaper and here is Mini Me modeling the diaper at 4 months:
When Little Lady was a few months old, I decided to spoil myself with a new set of cloth diapers - and yes it was to spoil me, the main diaper changer and washer (though my husband truly is wonderful at doing his share). We loved the BumGenius so much that we went with almost the same product. We use a set of BumGenius 4.0 with snap closures.
These are one-size diapers which means they fit babies from 8-35 pounds - no purchasing a new set of diapers as the baby grows. The "downside" to these diapers is that they only come in a variety of solid colors... there are no cute cow or robot or daisy prints to choose from. I'm not into the cloth diapering solely for the fashion of it, so the color choice doesn't bother me. What thrills us about the diapers is the one-size aspect as well as how easy they are to put on and take off - like disposables.
Another thing that I didn't think about before the fact is that these diapers are thicker than disposables. So thick, in fact, that they were often the reason we had to bump our babies up in clothing sizes so quickly (and we just had nice, chubby babies). One piece outfits would fit in the torso but would not be long enough to snap at the crotch. Side note: We found that Carter's brand baby clothes were made loooong and would fit our cloth diapered babes the best. We often called our cloth diapered babies "puff butts". While their large derrieres were the butt (pun intended) of a few jokes from people, I liked how they had a little extra butt padding when they started walking and had lots of falls to their bottom. It also provided a nice little "shelf" on their bottoms as we held them in arms... something we noticed only when Mini Me started wearing underwear instead of the puff butt diapers. "Where did his butt shelf go?" we wondered.
Bottom line: We love our BumGenius and highly recommend them.