Flats, handwashing and Cloth for a Cause – #Flatschallenge

Starting Monday May 20 we started Dirty Diaper Laundry‘s Third Annual Flats and Handwashing Challenge switched to only using flat cloth diapers and handwashing those diapers for 7 days.


What did I learn?

The goal of this challenge is to raise awareness that there are babies out there without clean diapers, who are in potentially unsanitary conditions because their parents can’t buy clean diapers.  When things are that bad then they have to know they can do cloth diapers no matter what.   Flats and handwashing is the cheapest way to diaper a baby.  Flats are the most affordable of cloth diapers and the easiest to get clean with handwashing.

Is it doable?




Is there another way to make diapering affordable?  Yes.


Our founder Samantha Pearl Kealing found herself in this position, buying tea towels and improvising covers to be able to diaper her son.  She decided that there had to be a better way and started the diaper lending program.   It allows families to get into cloth diapers without having to put out the upfront costs to buy a cloth diaper stash.  It also helps reduce waste by keeping disposable diapers out of landfills, as well as providing a recycling service for used cloth diapers.

Diapers in the sun

Will we be adding flats to our diaper lending service?  In certain circumstances, for sure.  If we had a family without access to a washer and dryer we could set them up with a full stash of flats.  I found the average wash time for me was a half hour and it was doable after my children went to bed.  My stash was also built on what we would loan as having sufficient flats so that one doesn’t have to stress about flats drying over night.   If we were to do a loan, I ‘d recommend 5 -6 covers as that is where I found we were running low at the end of the day if all covers became wet or dirty.


Would I recommend flats in other circumstances?  I know a lot of people fall in love with them during the challenge, but honestly, I can’t wait to go back to my regular diapers.  I have a lot of trim, but super absorbent bamboo and hemp inserts that do an excellent job of containing my super soaker without hourly changes.   On Saturday, the high number of leaks even with double stuffed flats was enough to make me cheer for the end of the day.


I’m very grateful to Dirty Diaper Laundry for issuing this challenge.   I’ve learned a lot and will be better able to serve Cloth for a Cause from the experience.


Cloth for a Cause, making a difference where it all begins.




2 thoughts on “Flats, handwashing and Cloth for a Cause – #Flatschallenge

  1. Hello, I don’t have a washer and dryer and considering flats, can you recommend (links, brands) some that wash well and dry fast?


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