The cloth diaper rundown (Monster post)
As promised, I am unfolding the secrets behind L’s diaper stash, with which we are generally quite happy! Cloth diapering – as it is for most people – has been a great journey so far and we love it, and we have converted family members to love cloth just as much as we do . . just as long as I do the laundry to ease things up for everyone else! As I mentioned, the current stash I am reviewing does take some expense and effort to assemble with a combination of new and used items. If you are serious about cloth diapering the first thing to start with is . . .
We chose Bummis Infant prefolds which we purchased initially from Inge at Green Family Living. Cotton prefolds are important to have in any stash. On first look it seems like they’d be difficult to use, but truth be told they are the easiest of any cloth diaper – just trifold and stuff into a cover and you’re good to go. Our favorite folds as a newborn were angel wing and newspaper and when he got a bit bigger we got more life out of the prefolds using the bikini twist.
What do I do now? Just trifold and stuff, it’s the easiest and when it comes to washing and reassembling, it takes the least effort of any of my diapers! The only issue we had was wetness – L is a very heavy wetter and he hates to feel wet: a bad combination when it comes to cloth! So when he was smaller and was peeing all the time, prefolds were nice and absorbant but at times a nuisance because we were changing him every 30 minutes to 1 hour at times. Even with a fleece liner he would whine and cry. Now my favorite use for prefolds is to trifold them and stuff into the Cottonbabies Insert Sock. These sleeves are pretty inexpensive and give you the absorbance of cotton and the stay-dry feel of suedecloth.
We have Indian muslin cotton flats – not sure of the brand, but it’s nice to have these as backup diapers and as burp cloths and for picking up spills, and they always wash nice and white.
Thirsties: We have four duo wraps, 1 with snaps and 3 with aplix. I prefer the aplix here by far – the one with the snaps has decreased space in front to stuff a prefold, so if you plan to trifold and stuff I’d say go with the aplix. The fit and trimness of this diaper is nice and it is also a good cover to use over disposables while traveling. It has gussets which are nice for containing poo and leaks. The laundry tabs work reasonably well. My only complaints are that the snaps to adjust the rise sometimes open easily especially when baby got taller, and some of the aplix is worn and unraveling, which seems early to me considering that L is only 5 months old.
Gen-Y: Looks-wise this is one of our favorite covers, but L outgrew his small Universal Gen-Y Cover (Edgy Veggie) about a month ago – he mainly outgrew it because of the rise, which is generally low on this diaper. I like the trim fit of the diaper and the sleeves at the front and the back, which make it *super* easy for even people who are uncomfortable with CD-ing to stuff the diaper. It does have a cotton outer so sometimes when pee leaks out there is some wicking into the cotton, but this is rare. It washes well and the design has stayed nice. The side snaps and gussets also ensure a nice fit around the leg.
Flip by Bumgenius– We have 1 with snaps and 2 with aplix. I use the Aplix covers more and find these most useful for travel. They are trim and store small and are a great combo with the Flip Stay-Dry insert, which is highly absorbent and, I might add, is excellent used in most any diaper cover! The aplix here is pretty strong but it does make for a rough diaper when you are holding baby when he is wearing diaper-only. The laundry tabs work beautifully. Unlike the Gen-Y and the Thirsties covers, the Flip is one-size with snap down rise (which does open more often than I’d like) and does not have gussets. Despite the lack of gussets I haven’t had leakage issues with these covers.
Kissaluvs(we have two size 0 and one size 1) – Because we used prefolds so much when L was a newborn I didn’t find these to be my absolute favorites, but when a baby is tiny these do come in handy because especially the 0’s give a nice fit. Kissaluvs are nice and soft fitteds with really strong, good snaps, but I always managed to take awhile to put them on because they look inside out – the taggie is on the outside of the diaper and they have such nicely
finished seams that it’s tough to tell. But because it was simply squishy stuff for me KLO’s don’t hold enough pee and don’t last long enough, so they are not my go-to-diaper. They do have a nice button you can snap down when baby’s umbilical cord is still an issue, and they hold fleece-topped inserts well, which we inevitably resort to since they absorb pee so fast.
Sustainablebabyish Bamboo fitteds (2, size small) – I think I wanted to love these more than I did, mainly because with L being such a super pee-er we didn’t make it through these fitteds for too long. I bought my size smalls used over at diaperswappers and they were in pretty good condition, but weren’t as squishy soft as I expected, and they felt small for being smalls and it took me awhile to get the snaps on till the fit was perfect. Because L is so long in the torso, he outgrew these diapers very quickly in the rise (by 2 or 2.5 months or so). If you buy one of these OBF’s (organic bamboo fitteds) buy it early, don’t wait till baby is 1 month old like I did! That being said, they do definitely work well overnight, especially under an SB-ish small wool cover, and I never had a leak. They do take a *very* long time to dry, though.
BumGenius Elementals (2) – This is a lovely diaper. All elemental AIOs come with snaps and have nice cotton to absorb. I rarely get leaks with this diaper and manage to get a trim fit on the small setting, so I assume this will work well for awhile. However, it is an expensive diaper so I am not getting more than the two I have. Because it feels wet against baby’s skin it’s
Dream-Eze AIO (1 small, now rebranded Grovia I think): This worked really well when L was tiny but because it isn’t as soft it again wasn’t my go-to-diaper, it was just one I used during the heavy rotation. There are no gussets so I did get leaks out of these at times in the legs but you can’t beat this diaper for trimness, it is really narrow between the legs. However, I’d say that out of the whole family I was the only one who managed to use this diaper without frustration because it has side-snaps and for someone who is unfamiliar with CD-ing it is a little strange looking. Because of the materials it doesn’t have a stay-dry feel, which also made it a lower tier diaper for us because of L’s preferences.
Itti Bitti Tutto AIO diaper: I bought into the hype and decided to try this beautiful AIO fuzzy minky diaper. Plus I had a discount coupon so that indeed contributed to the decision to take the plunge. The Itti Bitti is a beautiful silky-soft diaper and as the photograph I’ve taken shows, it has a nice low rise compared to other diapers and trim fit especially between the legs.
It is also highly customizable with tons of snaps everywhere, which unfortunately makes the diaper a bit confusing. Indeed, while we all love how cute the diaper is, I’m the only one in the household who will even venture to try to put it on the baby. Check out all the layers of fabric – they make it absorbent even while it is trim because the snap-in-soakers are skinny-mini. But this diaper is not for the inexperienced, the snapping and getting the right fit is much trickier than with aplix covers or with a fuzzibunz. We did get a leak around the leg because of this once. The fabric as such is well stitched, but I am slightly disappointed in the snaps which seem to come apart easily at the rise adjustment. It definitely requires time and effort to put together. At least the snaps for the soakers have color coding, which definitely helps with assembly.
Bummis Tots Bots Easy Fit AIO (3): These diapers are L’s grandma’s favorites. As many people will describe, these are AIOs and pockets combined – very versatile with nice snap-down rise. I rarely get a leak in these diapers, they are pretty close to perfection. I wish they had a stay-dry feel but the bamboo liner is very absorbent. They also take awhile to dry in the dryer and while the insert is supposed to agitate out in the wash, it doesn’t always do that so I find myself taking out the insert anyway prior to washing. All this being said it’s a great diaper; the fit is nice, maybe a little big but definitely very usable and great for an AIO. The velcro is high quality and nice and sticky, and the laundry tabs hold very nicely.
See above for some pockets pictures. Pockets are by far our favorite type of diaper, though I am quickly tiring of unstuffing and re-stuffing these diapers. But once assembled these are definitely easiest for DH to put on the baby, which is a big selling point for them. The “800-pound gorillas” are the Fuzzibunz and the Bumgenius 4.0’s, both of which are in our stash.
Fuzzibunz Perfect Size (small, 6): These are far and away both T and I’s favorite diapers. Aside from prefolds these are most prominent in our stash, but by now baby L is getting a case of the plumber’s butt with them and thus has started to leak. But they are a great diaper, especially for overnight. We place the microfiber insert along with a Kissaluvs super soaker organic insert and the diaper lasts well all night, mostly without leaks. It is also pretty easy to put on and even though it only has two snaps on each side we don’t really have issues with wing droopage and find it much easier to put on than the one-size FB with 3 snaps. Because the perfect size has a fleece lining it has a very dry feel to it.
Fuzzibunz One-Size (3): These are similar to the Fuzzibunz perfect size but much more reliant on the elastic for sizing. This is a bit of a hassle because the inserts are pretty narrow and I can’t usually get more than one insert to sit in the diaper sleeve without it getting crumpled up, and the way the elastic bunches around the waist in the back is a bit disconcerting. It is nice that as baby grows you can adjust the elastic, and I like that it comes with replacement elastic, but it is not my favorite diaper.
Bumgenius 4.0 (3, hook and loop): When Baby L outgrew his tiny newborn diapers I purchased some of these to bulk up our stash and based on reviews I thought this would be my favorite diaper. However, the fit just isn’t as good compared to the Fuzzibunz and I feel like this diaper is quite bulky. We purchased all our 4.0s in Aplix for ease of use and we generally get a nice fit around the leg with these diapers without leaks, but for some reason I don’t find myself reaching for them. I don’t like the way the snap-down rise works; it is very bulky and sometimes requires adjustment with the fold in front and the insert in the pocket. But you can see that the fit is quite nice even without gussets.
Rumparooz G2 (1, aplix): This is one of my favorite diapers simply for the cute factor. RaRz have awesome designs and beautiful colors, and the aplix is great, the stitching is fantastic. But the diapers are pricey and a bit bulky, so I haven’t bought more. I do like the internal gussets that overlie the fleece, and the fit around the legs is fantastic. We have never had leaks with the Rumparooz. It would be nice to get another one of these in the future but because of the high cost and bulkiness I’m trying some other diapers in the interim. But you can’t really go wrong with these diapers and the laundry stay tabs work well. The soaker is high quality and multilayered, pretty thick and customizable but because it is our overnight workhorse we usually just keep the soaker in its biggest, thickest setting.
I may have missed some diapers but I will update this post when I can. Because it is such a big post I figured I’d put up what I have. When I get commentary from the husband about what diapers he prefers as a dad, I will put it in. If I remember other diapers/covers in our collection I will mention that as well. For instance we have a very nice SB-ish wool cover that is awesome that I did not yet review here. Hope this is useful for people!