Considering cloth diapers for your baby? It's a trend that is hard
to argue against; cloth diapers are much cheaper than disposables, easier
on the environment, and healthier for babies. Properly cared for,
they can be used for multiple children. They don't clutter
landfills, and new organic options are gentle on the environment right
from the start. They are more breathable than disposables, and they
don't contain gels and plastics that can irritate the skin, so babies in
cloth have less diaper rash. They can also encourage potty training
at an earlier age.
Cloth is becoming more and more popular as parents have new and easier
products from which to choose. Options range from the old-fashioned
prefold to "all-in-one" diapers that are as easy to use as
disposables. In fact, the many options available today can be
Types of Cloth Diapers
Flats — These are the diapers your grandma probably used:
just one large sheet of fabric you fold in any number of origami
shapes. While a bit tricky to master, care for this type of diaper
is very easy, as the thin fabric washes clean quite easily. You
will need to use a waterproof cover over flats.
Prefolds — Similar to flats, only these are, as the name
suggests, prefolded. These can be fastened on a baby with pins or a
Snappi, a nifty three-armed fastener that hooks into the fabric of both
sides and the front without pins. Alternatively, a prefold can be
folded into thirds and laid into a wrap-style cover – nearly as
easy as a disposable diaper. Prefolds also require a cover.
Fitteds — This option has built-in elastic and Velcro or snaps
to fit a baby, similar to a disposable diaper. Fitted diapers
require a cover.
All-In-Ones (AIOs) — AIOs are very popular with dads and
daycare centers. As the name suggests, they incorporate a
waterproof layer and inner absorbent layers in one piece. Many AIOs
have a moisture-wicking inner layer to keep baby's bottom dry.
Pocket Diapers — Pocket diapers are the newest option on the
market. A waterproof outer layer and moisture-wicking inner layer
form a "pocket" for the absorbent soaker material. Pockets are
appealing because they can be adjusted for different uses — e.g.,
a more-absorbent soaker for nighttime or naps, or a trimmer soaker
for going out.
Covers — Prefolds, flats, and fitteds require a waterproof
cover. There are two basic styles of covers: pull-on and
wrap. The pull-on style goes on like underwear, while the wrap
style fastens on the front or sides with Velcro or snaps, similar to a
Visit these cloth diaper websites and this diaper vendor directory for more information about, and suppliers of, a wide range
of diaper products and accessories:
parent reviews of diaper products as well as online diaper stores.
A great source of diaper information when trying to decide what diapers
BumGenius.com is one of
the favorite brands for AIOs and pockets; these cloth diapers
are quite similar to disposables.
an online store offering a wide range of diapers and accessories.
is an online store focused on cotton prefolds and fitteds, as well as
PUL and wool covers and diaper accessories. Their website
has lots of pictures and information to aid in selecting appropriate