Wool Soakers – Llamajama

Wool Soakers

Posted on November 10 2014

What is a wool soaker?

A wool soaker is a hand knitted cloth diaper cover.

What types of cloth diapers are used with wool soakers?

Like wool longies, a wool soaker should be worn over a prefold, fitted, or a pocket diaper. We find that having a variety of diapers works best. We like fitted diapers for naps, prefolds for around the house, and pockets for extended trips and over nights. We stuff our pocket diapers with prefolds and use our wool longies or wool soakers as diaper covers - and never have leaks!

How do wool soakers work?

Knit wool makes an excellent cloth diaper cover. Wool fibers both repel and absorb moisture. If you were to look at a single strand of wool under a microscope you would see that it looks almost like a pinecone. Wool is made up of overlapping scales which allows water to roll off the fiber. This helps protect the sheep from the elements like rain and snow.

The center of the wool fiber is hollow. Once water penetrates the outer core, the inner core will absorb up to 35% of its weight in water. Wool will not feel wet to the touch until it is saturated with 60% of its weight in water.  Because of this, even if wool is moderately dam, the insulating air pickets are still intact. 

What is lanolin and why is it important?

Lanolin is a natural oil found in sheep's wool. It is removed when they wash and process wool into yarn. The lanolin creates a protective barrier and helps the wool fiber repel moisture. In order for a wool soaker to function well, you should add lanolin back to the wool. 

How do you wash wool soakers?

Wool covers are easy to care for. They should be hand washed in the sink with warm water and a small amount of shampoo. Before you use your wool soaker as a cloth diaper cover you will need to lanolize your soaker. You should lanolize your soaker about every other wash. 

How do you dress a child in a wool soaker? 

Wool soakers are worn over an absorbent cloth diaper and under clothes.  They can be worn under dresses, with a t-shirt, under shorts, pants or pajamas.

Are wool soakers a new thing?

Wool soakers are actually quite old. Your grandmother probably used them! Long before disposable diapers, mothers knit wool soakers and longies for their children to wear over their cloth diapers.

If your child is waking up wet from a leaky diaper or is experiencing rashes try adding wool soakers to your diaper stash.



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