I remember all too well beginning my research on cloth diapers. I was about 7 months pregnant and had no idea what I was looking for. All I knew was that I didn’t want to use disposable diapers.
It took all of about 30 seconds of searching Google before I was completely overwhelmed.
Who would of thought there were SO many options?
Ultimately, we decided to use Bum Genius & Fuzzi Bunz pocket style diapers. But, that was after doing a lot of comparison shopping and reading a ton of reviews. Plus, they were the style that my husband seemed to like the best. You can read the whole story…
In the world of cloth diapers you have a few different “countries”…
Prefold cloth diapers are basically what our mother and/or grandmother used. If you are on a budget, prefolds are the most economical cloth diapering system available. They are comfortably soft and absorbent and they are also great for stuffing pocket diapers or as a stand alone cloth diaper with any wrap style diaper cover.
Prefolds are available bleached and unbleached and are made from 100% heavyweight cotton twill, as well as super absorbent hemp fleece prefolds. Both styles stand up to vigorous washing and drying – these diapers will last you through more than one child.
Fitted cloth diapers do not require folding and generally fasten in the front or on the side with velcro or snap closures. They’re gathered or elasticized at the legs and waists and require an additional cloth diaper cover as they do not have a waterproof outer material to keep moisture from leaking through.
Fitted cloth diapers have a more trim fit on your baby, are great for everyday use and fit under baby clothing easily. They are available in organic cotton, fleece knits and 100% custom milled cotton.
Contour style cloth diapers are hourglass in shape and do not require any folding. They’re not fitted at the legs or waist and need to be secured with diaper pins, snappi fasteners, or with a wrap styled diaper cover. They have a trimmer fit in the crotch compared to prefolds but still provide adequate absorbancy where you need it most.
Contour diapers are simple in design allowing for adjustability in the rise and dry quickly. These are an economical alternative to fitted diapers and are fairly easy to use.
As mentioned above, all prefold, contour and fitted cloth diapers require a waterproof cover. The industry favorite is the Bummis Super Whisper Wrap due to its affordability and ability to hold up over time. Other options include Bummis and Imse Vimse.
If you prefer a natural alternative, wool covers are fabulous. Wool diaper covers are not as trim as waterproof covers, but what they lose in trimness they make up for in absorbency and protection as untreated wool can absorb more than one third its weight in moisture before it even begins to feel wet.
Yet another option in diaper covers is fleece. Fleece diaper covers are soft, durable and functional but like their wool counterparts, are not as trim in fit.
Pocket style cloth diapers have been coined to be the “modern cloth diaper”. They are extremely versatile and easy to use. They are a two part diaper system consisting of a diaper cover and an absorbent insert. There is an inner stay dry material that rests against baby’s skin that is sewn to a waterproof outer material.
The two sides come together to make a pocket that runs the width and length of the diaper cover. The insert is tucked into the pocket to absorb moisture that passes through the pocket diaper’s inner material, keeping baby’s skin dry.
A great choice for heavy wetters and night time as pocket diapers allow you to tailor the absorption needs of your baby by adding additional inserts. These are also great for when you are out and about as they function like a disposable.
All in one cloth diapers have the absorbent layer integrated into the waterproof outer layer. It goes on in one step. These cloth diapers are the easiest and most leak proof diapers to use. They fasten with snaps or Velcro and work like the ease of a disposable. NO diaper cover required.
If you are still unsure of what style you would like to use, a lot of cloth diaper retailers will allow you to try one of each style they carry to have a “test run” before you make a large purchase. Some require you to purchase them where as other will allow you to return the cloth diapers you didn’t like and add them to their secondhand collection.
If you are leaning towards one style or another then you can read more either by scrolling down a bit to the related posts or scroll back up to the top and click on the links in the list of cloth diaper styles.
If you have any questions about using cloth diapers type your question in the comments below and I will respond within 24 hours. Happy shopping!