Concerned about the smell of using cloth diapers? In this blog we specifically address the concern that your diaper pail is going to be super smelly between the weekly laundry exchanges. If you’re washing cloth diapers at home and looking for help with lingering smells in your cloth diapers, we recommend this blog about stripping and deep cleaning your diapers. Lingering smells in clean cloth diapers are not something you have to worry about in a diaper service because we have industrial sized washer that are specially formulated to clean the diapers thoroughly every wash.

The facts…

Babies who only consume breast milk or formula will not have terrible smelling diapers. Their bowel movements will be 100% liquid, and while that may lead to some blowouts, they won’t hold a strong odor. When you introduce solid food around 6 months, let’s just say their poop gets more…interesting. Peas and beans come out the other side quite differently than milk. Additionally, when they become toddlers their pee can have an ammonia smell after a few days. Never fear, we have 5 tips to abolish smells from your pail!

  1. “Plop” the Poop
  2. Flushable Liners
  3. Use Pail Deodorant
  4. Request a Second Liner
  5. Keep the Pail Lid Closed

#1 “Plop” the Poop

This is a beloved phrase at Green Diaper Babies. Plopping poop means depositing a firm bowel movement from a soiled diaper directly into the toilet. Although it can be inconvenient, there are a lot of positives to doing this:

  • Plopping means less poop in your pail which equals less smell!
  • Poop is supposed to go in the toilet! Waste management¬† is equipped to properly process poop that goes down the toilet. When poop goes in the trash it actually becomes a bio-hazard for spreading disease and contaminating water. This is actually true of cloth diapers and disposables! If you look at the packaging of disposable diapers, you will find this recommendation as well.
  • It’s easier to wash. Whether washing at home or sending to a service, less poop going into the washer means there are less stains.

Plop that poop when you can to avoid a smelly pail!

#2 Flushable Liners

These are a good side-kick to plopping poop! Flushable liners are a thin bamboo based liner that can be added as the top layer of the diaper (see picture). They can be incorporated into your diaper routine when baby starts eating solids. These make it easy to peel the poopy layer off and dispose of it in the toilet or trash.Thin flushable liners layered on top of a cloth diaper pad.

#3 Pail Deodorant

We have a great powder pail deodorant that can be shaken directly into the pail on soiled diapers. With the power of tea tree oil and baking soda base, it neutralizes barnyard poop and ammonia urine smells right away. We also sell refill packets that come in compostable paper sacks so you only have to buy the plastic shaker once. With baby-safe ingredients, it also functions as an excellent cleaning scrub for your bathroom or kitchen!A picture of Green Diaper Babies pail deodorant and deodorant refill in brown paper sack.

#4 Second Liner

If you’re using a diaper service, simply request a second liner to be delivered with your diapers each week. Halfway through the week you can switch them out. The soiled diapers can be tied up tight so no odor seeps out and then stashed in an inconspicuous spot inside our outside.

#5 Keep the Lid Closed

Every pail rented through Green Diaper Babies has a lid to keep odors to a minimum. Sometimes it’s as simple as closing the lid to keep smells contained. Once a month you can set the empty pail outside for an hour or two to air out.A white diaper pail with green liner inside closed.


Don’t let fear of smells stop your from starting your cloth diapering journey! At Green Diaper Babies we provide everything you need to successfully diaper your baby the way you want to.

Learn More:

5 Tips to Using Pail Deodorant

Busting 3 Myths about Cloth Diapers