View Single Post
Old 03-12-2010, 10:24 PM   #7
Carey-Anne's Avatar
Registered Users
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 1,971
My Mood:
Re: Which cloth diaper to choose????

Every baby and mama will have different likes and dislikes and what works for one won't work for another. I don't like prefolds (and they are not very easy for a lot of daddies, daycares etc to use) but like pockets, fitteds plus covers or my new favorite, one size wool in ones (you can get sized too) which basically fit from birth to potty training. The soaker snaps into cover so only one easy step, less bulk and very easy. But if you are just starting out AIO or pockets would probably be easiest. As well you need to decide if you want one size or sized. Many one size will be bulkier on a newborn but require only one set of dipes to be bought. Sized will fit better through each stage but you will have to keep buying more once the size is outgrown. So sampler packs would be the best way to go to find what works for you and your baby.

Here is good link for diapers and their ratings:

Here is a good basic breakdown for you:

Types of cloth diapers

Prefolds and Covers- A flat diaper made of super absorbent cotton (Chinese prefolds are the most common). You need to use w/ a waterproof cover. These are the cloth diapers our parents used on us.

Pros- extremely absorbent, effective system. Cheapest.
Cons- you have to learn to fold diaper on baby; bulky, not stay-dry (meaning the fabric up against baby's skin will pull wetness away from it).

Fitted diapers- made of super absorbent cotton or hemp. Goes on baby like a disposable. You need to use w/ a waterproof cover.
Pros- absorbent. Easy to put on
Cons- more expensive than prefolds, some not stay-dry.

Pocket diapers- diaper made of fleece or suedecloth inner (both are stay-dry) and a waterproof outer sewn together. The inner fleece lining has a "pocket" opening that you stuff w/ a super absorbent insert (that you buy separately or some come with them).
Pros- very absorbent, can choose your absorbancy based on how you stuff, easy to put on, trim, cute colors, no extra step of putting on cover, easy for dh's, grandmas and daycare to use, stay-dry.
Cons- more expensive, have to stuff diapers

AIOs (All in Ones)- a ready to go cloth diaper. Has fitted absorbent cloth and waterproof layer sewn together. Most similar to the ease of a disposable.

Pros- super easy to put on, trim, very absorbent, super cute patterns.
Cons- most expensive of all

There are sites where you can get sampler packages where you can try out different types of diapers. Then you return what you don't like and they give you credit to buy more of what you do like. A couple sites I know of that do this are and .


Doublers, Inserts, & Liners
These terms get thrown around a lot, but it can be confusing as to what the difference is.

Inserts – These are for the inside pocket diapers. Since they are the only absorbent layer in pocket diapers, they are thick, usually 3-6 layers of fabric. Thick does not always mean bulky though. Inserts are usually made out of microfiber or hemp. Microfiber absorbs wetness quickly, where hemp absorbs a lot.

Doublers – Also called boosters. Essentially the same as inserts, but thinner, usually 2-4 layers. These are used to boost existing absorbancy in fitteds, AIOs, and in any diaper anytime you need extra absorbancy. Not usually needed for pocket diapers.

Liners – These are just one layer and are to protect your diaper from poop stains, diaper creams, etc. They can be hemp, flannel, fleece, or raw silk. They can also be made from rice paper and thus, flushable. These lay on top of the diaper next to baby's skin. These are not neccesary but we like them because it makes dealing with poopy diapers much easier. There are cloth diaper safe diaper creams out there.


Diaper Fabrics

There are so many diaper fabrics that are used to make diapers. What are they and why does it matter?

Hemp – this comes in jersey (like a tshirt), fleece (like a sweatshirt), or French terry (sort of like a towel). The fleece and French terry are the most absorbent but they are thick. Jersey is very thin but not as absorbent so it takes more layers. Hemp in general is a very soft fiber so it's blended with cotton for strength. Jersey is especially soft and wears out quickly. Very trim and absorbant.

Velour – often organic, very soft. This is often used as the inner for diapers. It's not stay-dry, but it feels very nice!

Microfleece – very soft, has a stay-dry effect, pills as it's washed. Usually from Malden Mills. MM is the company that invented microfleece and they make very high quality fabric.

Windpro – another Malden Mills fabric. This is a very tightly woven fleece that is mostly waterproof. It's used for covers, the outside of pocket diapers, and as a liner for mama cloth.

Suedecloth – soft but not as much as microfleece, does not pill so it stays looking new, has a stay-dry effect.

Bamboo – similar to hemp in description. Very absorbent. This is usually more expensive. Bamboo is very soft and has anti-bacterial properties. Less prone to stink.

Minkee – an extraordinarily soft polyester that is not stay-dry. It's similar to velour except it's not a natural fiber.

PUL - the waterproof outer usually used for diapers.



Velcro (also called Aplix or hook and loop) - Daddy friendly and very much like a disposable.

Snappi - Snappi's are used in place of pins if you decide to use prefolds/snappiable fitteds


Accessories - none of these are necessary, but would be helpful

Wet bags – cloth bags to put diapers in when you're out and about. The outer is generally a cute fabric and the inner is made from PUL I prefer them to plastic bags because I can just wash and reuse they contain any smells better than plastic bags.

Pail liners - these are made from the outer fabric used in pocket and AIO diapers. They're like a garbage bag to line your diaper pail. Wash it with your diapers

Cloth wipes

Covers/Wool - these are used for prefolds or fitted diapers. Covers are a seperate cover made out of waterproof material. They can be reused until they get poop on them.
Wool pants/shorts/soakers, when treated with lanolin, are waterproof. What I really like about wool is it allows the bottom to get some air if a rash is developing. Washing and lanolizing wool takes some extra care, but it's not difficult.

Good luck!!!
SAHM to Ashley (May 2001), Alexander (Nov 2004) Danielle (Dec 2007) and Johnathan (June 2010)

I am also a WAHM who sells Avon and Regal gifts. Please e-mail me for a catalogue or website catalogue link

Last edited by Carey-Anne; 03-12-2010 at 10:36 PM.
Carey-Anne is offline   Reply With Quote