Thursday, September 8, 2011

Cloth Diaper Types and Styles

Cloth diapering is a fun journey with so many choices. You are never "stuck" in one type. I will go over the different types of cloth diapers from the pro's to the con's.  Some babies do better with one type, some parents prefer one over the other, and defiantly who is using them, such as grand parents or babysitters should be taken into consideration when choosing a cloth diaper that is right for your family.

AIO- All In One-
If you are looking for the easiest to use cloth diapers, all in ones or AIO as they are often referred to, are the easiest of all. These diapers have multiple layers of absorbent fabric on the inside and a waterproof material on the outside. Some brands use snaps others use appix, like velcro, to fasten. Many all in one diapers also come with a build in pad for additional absorbency or have a pocket to add extra inserts for night time. These diapers will come in sized diapers so you can  have one diaper per size your child is in, such as xxs (newborn) all the way up to xl. They will also come in one size diaper that you can use from about 3 months all the way till potty trained.

cute fabrics to choose from

can be tricky to make sure they get clean
hold in smells
cant always adjust absorbency

The most popular diapers are probably the pocket diapers. Pockets have a waterproof outer, made of PUL which feels like a swimsuit, but waterproof to protect the baby's clothing.  These diapers require an insert to be place inside the pocket for absorbency. The inserts are made of several different types of absorbent material. These diapers must be washed every change. Like AIO diapers they can be fastened with either snaps or appix.  These diapers also are either offered in sized diapers or one sized diapers that will grow with your child. Typically they are the trimmest diapers for under clothing. the absorbency can be customized for your baby by adding or removing inserts.

Customized absorbency
cute fabric choices

Have to remove the insert for washing
Must prep the diaper by stuffing an insert in after washing
Can be more expensive


Fitted cloth diapers are not waterproof. They are made of absorbent materials, and can be thicker then the aio, or the pocket diapers. Fitted diapers will need a waterproof cover in order to keep the baby's clothing dry. Fitted diapers are fastened with pins, snappi, appix, or snaps. they are also either one sized or sized. Fitted diapers are a good start with newborns so they can have as much air as possible to their skin.  Most fitted diapers can go a few hours without feeling soaked.  These are bulkier diapers due to the amount of absorbent materials used.

Can  customize absorbency with snap in soakers
Can tell when baby is wet
good for babies who are sensitive to other diapers

Thicker fabric means can be more difficult to get clean
Will leak if not covered with a waterproof barrier


Prefold diapers are the "old fashioned" type of diapers. Old fashioned doesn't mean
out dated! Prefold diapers are a very simple diaper to start out with, they are the most inexpensive diaper, so they are great for a growing newborn baby. There are so many different types of folds you can learn about for customizing the absorbency for your baby. Prefold diapers are a few layers of cotton sandwiched together by sewing it into a rectangle shape, that is then folded and secured with pins or a snappi. Prefolds come in several sizes. A cover is also needed with a prefold as like a fitted diaper it will leak on to clothing or a parents lap if not covered. these are not as absorbent as a fitted diaper, as there are fewer layers of fabric.

Can use the prefolds as inserts in other diapers
Works for most baby's who are more sensitive
Come clean easily since there is less fabric for the soap to go through

Folding can be tricky
They will leak if not covered

By Melissa Oien

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