A friend recently wrote me: I have done quite a bit of research and found a blog that laid out the differences, but I wanted to get your perspective on what’s the best option out there and ones that might be more convenient or easy to use when we’re just so tired.
Here is my reply:
I’ve tried just about every option out there! I’m happy to answer whatever questions you may have.
To start out, you might consider getting a couple of each kind and seeing what you like best and what works for your baby. Diapers have a great resale value and you can sell what you don’t prefer and get more of what you love. With our first, we ended up loving bumGenius 4.0s– a pocket style diaper with a microfiber insert that you stuff into it. Simple, easy to put on, customizable absorbency, good quality. We also used (and still use) prefolds in a trifold laid in a cover for when we were at home. We like econobum brand prefolds and Capri covers. The prefolds are easy to change out when it’s just a little pee and the Capri covers have flaps at the front and back to hold the prefold in place so no pinning or Snappi is required. Another fantastic, versatile, and very inexpensive cover option is the Bummis Simply Lite, seen here on my daughter.
If baby is sensitive at all or going to be in the diaper for a long time- say for an outing to the store or for dinner- we like to use something with a stay-dry inner like bumGenius.
This time around, I found a good deal on some all in one newborn diapers so we decided to try them for our son. They are THX and Happy Flute brands. You can get them in co-ops online as they’re only available in bulk buys. I have seen them on eBay too. My husband fell in love with the ease of AIOs and after our son outgrew the newborn AIOs we sold almost our whole stash of other styles and bought a whole new stash of bumGenius Freetimes. All in ones are extremely convenient. No stuffing (even though stuffing them takes only 10 minutes every other day.. it’s been such a load off our plates!) and they can be dried (we never dried our pocket diapers, only the inserts, so we had to be sure to save enough to use while waiting for the load to line dry). No trying to figure out which insert goes with which brand of diaper- something I didn’t mind but anyone helping me with laundry found overwhelming and confusing. AIOs are literally as simple as a disposable diaper, plus some, because they rarely leak so you will encounter far fewer blow-outs (only due to user error- like not being tight enough around the thighs). We also highly recommend snaps over velcro closure. We liked velcro best at first for ease of putting on but soon changed our minds as our velcro ones got pilly around the tabs and the velcro got less sticky over time.. Our snap ones are still like-new in that regard.
We have tried a few different brands of AIOs- GroVia and Nicki’s Bamboo included- but the Freetimes are still the best for us. GroVia is a different snap-on side closure style that my husband just couldn’t get used to so we were having a lot of leaks (plus they run $25 a diaper). Nicki’s have a lot of devout fans but we just weren’t sold on them. Our son got really red wearing them and you have to roll the leg elastic in each time you put one on so if someone forgets that step you’re bound to have leaks.
Freetimes are about $19 each but you can use a $5 off coupon at Buy Buy Baby to purchase them locally, or you can find a deal buying them in sets of 6 or 12 on Amazon. Click here or here for links to the packages. You can also watch the Cottonbabies.com site for Seconds Sales. Those are where we have purchased most of our diapers. They sell the bumGenius diapers at a discounted rate because of cosmetic defects that don’t affect the function of the diaper. I cannot even identify the defect on most of the diapers I have bought as seconds.