Best Baby Diaper Liners Reviews in 2018
Diaper liners are a great option for parents who want the benefits of cloth diapering, but who dislike the staining and mess associated with rinsing solids from cloth diapers. They are also needed when using diaper rash creams on a cloth diapered baby. This article will help you decide what you should look for when purchasing a cloth diaper liner.
The Downside of Cloth Diapers
Cloth diapers are unquestionably better for the environment than disposable diapers and are great for your baby's health. There are numerous benefits of cloth diapering, and yet there is one thing that keeps a lot of families from using them: dealing with poop. Even dedicated cloth diapering parent will concede that it is much easier to simply use a disposable diaper and throw away smelly messes than to rinse and launder soiled diapers.
Using cloth diapers can also be problematic when a baby has a rash and needs topical medication. Without a disposable liner, diaper rash creams can readily soak into fabric diapers and clog the fibers, making the diaper less absorbent.
The Benefit of Using Liners
Disposable liners provide a solution to this problem. A liner sits between the absorbent layers of a child's diaper and their skin. Their porous structure allows liquid to pass through into the absorbent layers of the cloth diaper, but keep solids and topical medications from soaking into the fabric. This not only means that the dirty diaper does not need to be sprayed or swished in a toilet to remove poop, but also prevents the diaper from being stained. This extends the life of cloth diapers since the liner can simply be thrown away or flushed along with its contents leaving the diaper unstained.
There are both disposable liners and reusable liners. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages which are discussed below. Watch this video for a quick introduction to the different kinds of liners and how to use them.
How To Choose The Best Baby Diaper Liner
Disposable Liner Options
Disposable liners can be made of many different non-absorbant substances, but the most popular brands commonly use bamboo fibers. These fibers are processed into thin porous sheets which either come on a roll like paper towels or are dispensed out of a box like facial tissues. Liners which are dispensed from a box make it easy to pack extras in your diaper bags, while liners on a roll can make it easier to grab a liner singlehandedly during a diaper change.
Bamboo fibers are strong but flexible and are soft enough that they won't irritate sensitive skin. Bamboo is also fast growing and renewable making it an ecologically sustainable choice. Other liners are made from synthetic fibers like rayon, and often have a cloth-like feel. Some liners for cloth diapers are even made from corn starch.
Reusable Liner Options
There are also reusable liners which are typically made with non-staining materials like minky or fleece. These liners are washable and can be reused which reduces waste, but still keeps solid waste from sticking to and staining cloth diapers. Many have additional layers of absorbent material in their core and help soak up wetness, making them a great choice for babies who need an extra layer of protection especially at night. Some are made from charcoal bamboo fabric which resists odors and is antibacterial.
Despite the benefits of reusable liners, they do require laundering which might be a big downside for many parents. They are still easier to clean that an entire diaper, and because minky and fleece fabric shed solid waste more readily than absorbent fabrics like cotton, bamboo, or hemp, it's much easier to rinse them out.
A big part of the reason that many families choose to use fabric diapers in the first place is that they wish to prevent environmental pollution. For that reason, it's important to consider the environmental impact of the diaper liner you choose to ensure it is, indeed, eco-friendly. However, many liners that are made from natural fibers are made from viscose, which is created in a highly polluting process.
One thing that you can do to lessen the waste caused by disposable liners is to choose a brand that can be composted, and start a compost pile for your baby's wet liners. Remember that you shouldn't compost liners which contain solid waste.
Another factor to consider is flushability. Most disposable liners advertise themselves as being "flushable", however, this does not mean that they break down when wet like toilet paper will. This is a good thing since it means that they will not break down in your child's diaper. But it also means that if you have a septic tank, you should not flush the liners.
In fact, so-called flushable wipes and liners are now a big problem for the sewer systems of many towns since they tend to combine with fatty residues and form blockages.
Size, Shape, and Diaper Compatibility
The size and shape of the liner you need will depend on the kind of cloth diaper you use and also on your child's age and diet. Breastfed infants rarely need liners since their waste will easily come out in the wash. On the other hand, babies who produce wetter poops will need a liner that completely covers the interior surface of the diaper. Some brands have separate sized liners for infants and toddlers to help ensure full coverage.
Some companies even manufacture liners specifically designed to work with their brand of diaper. If you plan to only use one kind of cloth diaper, it may be worthwhile to check and see if the manufacturer sells specially made liners. Otherwise, you should try several brands of diaper liner to find the one that works best for your baby and for your specific brand - or brands - of diaper.
Five Best Baby Diaper Liners
Bumkins Flushable Diaper Liners
Bumkins are among the most popular flushable disposable liners and are compatible with all cloth diapering systems. Each liner measures 8.5 inches by 11 inches. Bumkins are thin and cloth-like and are made out of viscose. Unlike some other cloth-like liners, you can rip these to better fit your baby's diaper. Overall, they are one of the cheaper brands of disposable liner, but they do have some downsides. Unlike other brands, you can not use these in a pee-only diaper, then wash them and use them again. They also shed some fibers which will stick to your baby's skin.
Heart Felt Bamboo Cloth Diaper Liners
Heart Felt Bamboo Cloth Liners are made with super soft bamboo fiber. Because they are made from 100% natural materials, they are not only biodegradable, but you can compost them if you so choose. They are more absorbent than hemp and are great for babies with moisture-sensitive skin. Since bamboo is able to wick away moisture from your baby's skin, these are ideal for heavy wetters. Each liner is 7.5 inches by 12 inches, which means that they are large enough to fit any sized diaper. They come as a roll, much like paper towels. While this makes it easy to dispense them, it means that they can be too bulky to take in a diaper bag.
Wegreeco Bamboo Flushable Diaper Liners
At 7 inches by 12 inches per sheet, Wegreeco Bamboo Flushable Liners are narrower than other brands, which makes them a good choice for younger babies or for brands of cloth diaper that aren't very wide. The extra length means that you can rest assured that there will be no leaks at the back of the diaper. They come on a roll, and are easy to dispense and are softer and more absorbent than cotton. They are broad enough that they can be torn in half for small babies. Because of the denser weave and thickness of the bamboo fibers in this brand, parents will notice less seepage into the diaper even after runny poops.
Dandelion Diapers Natural Diaper Liners
If you like bamboo fiber liners, but want a more economical option, Dandelion Diapers Natural Diaper Liners are a great choice. At 12 inches by 7.5 inches, they are a comparable size to other on-a-roll liners. They are biodegradable, compostable, and flushable. They are thinner and stretchier than other bamboo fiber liners, which may make them more comfortable for some babies, but may also bunch up more easily than thicker liners. Unfortunately, some parents report that the liners stick to the skin of their babies when wet and leave lint and fibers behind. Perhaps because of this, some babies may develop a mild rash when wearing these bamboo liners.
HappyEndings Charcoal Bamboo Inserts for Cloth Diapers
These reusable liners are technically an all-in-one insert and have five layers of protection including an absorbent core and a charcoal bamboo fleece outer layer which easily sheds solid messes. The charcoal bamboo is also naturally antibacterial and is breathable. The antimicrobial aspect helps prevent odor in the fabric. It is also naturally thermally regulating so that your baby's sensitive skin stays dry, fresh, and cool. These liners are 14 inches long and 5 inches wide. One of the biggest benefits of using this style of an all-in-one liner is that it will not bunch up like thin disposable liners can.
If you are currently using cloth diapers or if you are planning to use cloth diapers, then baby diaper liners can be an important tool to keep your baby dry and comfortable and to keep your cloth diapers cleaner and more hygienic. If you like the environmental and health benefits of cloth diapering but don't want to rinse dirty diapers in your toilet, liners will also spare you the headache of dealing with laundering soiled, smelly, stained diapers.
Out of the brands in this review, Heart Felt Bamboo Cloth Diaper Liners win hands down. They are larger than other brands and come on a roll which makes them handy to use during diaper changes. Like other bamboo fiber liners, they are biodegradable and are flushable making them more environmentally friendly than synthetic fiber liners. The bamboo liners also keep babies drier and tend to be softer than cotton liners. They are more expensive on average than other brands but the quality of these bamboo liners is hard to beat. In fact, some families wash these liners after being in a pee-only diaper and reuse them.
No matter what brand of liner you choose, by using cloth diapers and liners instead of disposable diapers, you will be benefitting your baby's health and the health of the environment which is something any parent can be proud of.