An overview of cloth diaper styles…

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 Diaper with a SnappiPre Fold Cloth Diapers

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 Kissaluv Cloth DiaperFitted Cloth Diapers

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 Kissaluvs Cloth DiaperContour Cloth Diapers

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.

Bummis Whisper Wraps for Cloth DiapersCloth Diaper Covers

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.

Bum Genius Pocket Style Cloth DiaperPocket Style Cloth Diapers

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 Style Cloth DiaperAll In One Cloth Diapers

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!

9 Responsesto “An overview of cloth diaper styles…”

  1. New Mama says:

    For the All in One diapers, do you wash the whole diaper or just the insert? Can you move the insert to different locations in the diaper, just in case your son urinates in a higher spot on the diaper?

    Is it a one size fits all for the all in one diapers?

  2. Jess Ray says:

    Hi Karen,

    There are a lot of variables…I know. It would probably be easiest if you we just hop on the phone…that way you can ask all your questions and get answers right away.

    Cloth diapering twins is going to be a challenge during those newborn months were “it” comes out as fast as it goes in! But, once they systems regulate it won’t be too bad at all.

    It really depends on your budget. If you have the funds to invest in a system like Fuzzi Bunz, that is the way to go since you can use the same diapers from newborn to potty training. But, if you need to start small and gradual, then good ol prefolds and covers are the way to go.

    I will send you an email with my home number. So feel free to give me a shout.



  3. karen says:

    This is just what I need someone with experience to help me through this decision, I have a 6 year old daughter and used disposable diapers with her.
    I am currently pregnant with twins at 28 weeks and my D.R. just took me out of work last week due to some minor complications at this point.
    I have been reading different forums along with this one and there are so many different types of cloth diapers I don’t even know where to get started since no one I know would even think of using cloth diapers so I have no support system, and don’t want to waste my money as we have just went down to one income.
    With twins on the way I am looking for any way to help save at this point so I am asking what is the BEST all around cloth diaper, for everything home, visiting, church, and traveling.
    How many should I buy to start off with knowing I will have two babies and me a stay at home mother.
    Which ones dry the fastest.
    How do you go about buying them so they don’t grow out of them so fast.

    There is so many questions I could ask but help is what I am looking for.

  4. Elizabeth says:

    Great Article! One of the best summary’s that I have seen. I would just add an option for wool covers–sometimes they can be the only option that works for heavy wetters.

  5. Elena says:

    You see, my sister will give birth in a month and I need to buy her a lot of stuff and your review helped me a lot. thanks.

  6. UnderTheNile says:

    Thank you for posting this discussion on Cloth Diapers. We are a retailer and wholesaler of baby clothing as toys in organic cotton and also feature cloth diapers as a part of our collection. Feel free to take a look at our collection at Thank you!

  7. Yes, this is exactly what my readers need. Thank You.

  8. It’s nice to see bloggers discussing child care and toddler concerns a lot more often these days. Many thanks for the article, I found this on aol.

  9. […] If you’re interest to know more of the different CD Styles, GreenMomHappyMom did a helpful overview on them here. […]

  10. Pregnancy says:

    Wonderful! Thanks for posting this. I never heard of cloth diapers before this is really my first time and i don’t know how to find it in my country!! I live in Thailand

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