Best Baby Cloth Diapers Reviews in 2018

When you decide how to diaper your baby, you're making a number of critical decisions all at once. You want an effective diapering system that will contain the mess from poop and pee while offering a soft, comfortable solution that will be easy on your baby's sensitive bottom. Not only that, cloth diapers are an excellent choice that is great for the environment, limits baby's chemical exposure, and helps save you a ton of money over the lifetime of your diaper use. Choosing the best baby cloth diapers in 2016 takes some work, because there are some amazing brands to choose from!

The Benefits of Cloth Diapering

At first, cloth diapering may seem intimidating. You're afraid that you'll have a lot more laundry to keep up with. Going out with a bag full of cloth diapers is confusing: what do you do if you have to change baby's diaper while you're out? Worse, how will you ever pick the right diaper for your baby? Just because it's the best baby cloth diaper in 2016 doesn't mean it will work for your baby, right? The benefits of cloth diapering, however, significantly outweigh those common concerns.

cloth diapers

Cloth diapers are better for the environment: they significantly reduce consumer waste. A stash of 30-50 diapers, depending on how often you want to wash, can take you from your early cloth diapering days to potty training. Just imagine how many disposable diapers your baby would go through in that time! The lower amount of chemicals in cloth diapers is better for both baby and the environment. It can even lead to baby having fewer rashes.

Cloth diapering is much cheaper. Whether you need a low-budget option or you just don't want to throw away $20 or more per week on disposable diapers, cloth diapering can help stretch your baby budget.

In some ways, cloth diapers are easier than disposables. For one thing, you'll never again have to make a late-night run to the store because you've run out of diapers! Of course, one fo the key benefits to cloth diapers is that they are adorable! There's nothing quite like a fluffy cloth-diapered bottom in one of your favorite diapers to bring a smile to your face.

How Do You Choose the Right Cloth Diapering System for Your Baby?

There are several different types of cloth diapers. Cloth Diapering 101 on YouTube gives a great overview of the different types of cloth diapers, how they work, and what they look like. The Bump also offers a clear breakdown of cloth diapering systems. Some important things to consider when you're choosing the right diapering system for your baby:

What's your budget? A stash of prefolds and covers is often much less expensive than a stash of all-in-ones.

Who will be watching baby? Pocket diapers and all-in-one systems are easier for alternate caregivers--daycare, babysitters, church workers--than prefolds and covers, which may be confusing for them.

How sensitive is your baby's skin? Some babies may develop sensitivity to microfiber, which is a common insert in pocket covers. If your baby has very sensitive skin or is very sensitive to wetness, they may do better with a stay-dry inner than a natural fiber that allows them to feel wetness.

How old is your baby? Wrapping a prefold around a tiny newborn is easier than trying to pin down a struggling toddler long enough to fold that prefold into just the right shape.

How much time do you have? All-in-one diapers require no stuffing in order to come out of the wash and go straight on baby's bum. Prefolds and covers are easier to throw together than pocket diapers. Pocket diapers, however, are the most like disposable diapers at diaper change time.

How Do You Cloth Diaper on the Go?

Cloth diapering on the go is one of the biggest worries for new parents. When you open that first baby cloth diaper package, the first thing you'll realize is that cloth diapers are a lot bigger than disposables. The second thing you'll realize is that if you're out and about with cloth, you'll have to do something with the dirty ones when baby needs a change!

Start with the basics: have the right equipment

When you're out with your baby, you'll want to take the simplest diapering system possible. This is the time to pull out those pocket diapers and all-in-ones for ease of use, especially if you're still getting the hang of cloth diapering. Traveling with baby's cloth diapers also means having a wet bag: a waterproof bag made of the same material as your diaper covers. When you change baby's wet or messy diapers, they go in the wet bag, then go in the diaper pail when you get home.

Decide when you want to deal with the mess

 If you're changing baby in a bathroom, it just takes a minute to walk over to the toilet and flip the poop in. On the other hand, if you're in a hurry, you can wrap the whole thing up, stick it in your wet bag, and deal with it later. Make sure that you don't actually "dunk and swish" your diaper while you're out. If you over-saturate the diaper, even the best wet bag might not be able to hold it.

Once you've mastered the idea of cloth diapering, it's time to choose the diaper brand that will work best for your baby. Keep in mind that while all one-size diapers are designed to work for most babies, not every diaper brand will have a great fit for every baby. Trying a variety of brands can be the best way to choose the brand that works best for your family.

Best Baby Cloth Diapers

Blueberry Cloth Diapers

Cloth Diapers

Blueberry cloth diapers are an American-based brand that have options that work from birth to potty training. Blueberry offers covers, pocket diapers, and all-in-one options, so you can choose from the variety of bright prints and colors in the style that works best for you. Their pocket diapers have openings at both ends, so inserts will agitate out in the wash. They have a wider base that fits great on chunky babies and a one-size snap-down options that is very popular with many cloth diapering parents, allowing these diapers to fit from approximately 8-10 lbs until potty training. The biggest issue most parents have with Blueberry cloth diapers is the way the leg gussets roll out if they aren't paying attention, which can lead to wetness wicking onto baby's clothes.

  • Double-sided openings on pockets
  • One-size snap-down options
  • Soft
  • Highly absorbent
  • Bulky, especially with added absorbency
  • Higher incidence of wicking
  • Higher price

BumGenius Cloth Diapers

Cloth Diapers

BumGenius cloth diapers are one of the most popular brands on teh market. For moms who are hoping for a true one-size diaper, these are a great choice! BumGenius has options that include newborn diapers, diaper covers, all-in-ones made out of both synthetic and natural materials, and pocket diapers. These diapers have a great selection of colors and prints--many moms can't wait to collect an entire "rainbow!"

The biggest benefit of bumGenius diapers is their unique design and stretchy tabs, which make for a better fit on almost any baby. These one-size diapers are highly versatile: they start fitting around 7-8 lbs and usually last until potty training. BumGenius diapers are designed with longevity in mind: the diapers are designed to make it easy to replace the elastic. These elastics do, unfortunately, tend to wear out faster than many other brands. This is a design flaw that bumGenius has attempted to address with the latest updates to their diapers, but the elastics still aren't as hardy as some other brands.

  • Stretchy tabs
  • One-size
  • Butterfly closure system
  • Trim fit
  • Lower absorbency in newborns
  • Chunky babies outgrow them earlier
  • Elastics wear out faster
  • Single pocket opening

Thirsties Cloth Diapers

Cloth Diapers

Thirsties diapers are still proudly made in the USA! This cloth diapering brand offers covers, all-in-ones, and pocket diapers for mom's convenience. They have a great range of prints and colors to offer plenty of styles that will be sure to appeal to many different moms. Thirsties diapers are one of the least expensive options currently on the market. They also tend to run a little bit bigger: the higher end of the weight range on Thirsties diapers is 40 lbs, which is higher than many other one-size diapering options. Their Duo system also offers a fantastic size range for larger babies.

Thirsties uses a gentle elastic that's designed to reduce red marks, but their elastic does tend to be firmer, which can make it harder to get a good fit. The double gussets might make for a tight fit, but they also offer superior leak protection that's great for containing the biggest messes babies can make. Thirsties pocket diapers are very thin in the middle, which can make it difficult to use anything but their provided inserts to stuff the diaper.

  • Less expensive
  • Bigger weight range
  • Inserts that agitate out
  • Gentle elastic
  • Double gussets for leak protection
  • Bulky
  • More red marks on legs
  • Only use Thirsties inserts
  • Poor fit on chunky thighs

Smart Bottoms Diapers

Cloth Diapers

Smart Bottoms cloth diapers has chosen to focus on two simple systems: all-in-one diapers and diaper covers. These diapers are made in the USA and come in plenty of great colors and prints that many moms go nuts over. The all-in-one diapers in the Smart Bottoms line have a 100% organic cotton inner, so they keep natural fibers against baby's bottom. The organic cotton inner does require at least 6-8 washes to be fully prepped. The wide leg elastics used by Smart Bottoms make for a more comfortable fit for baby.

Smart Bottoms diapers are designed to provide fit options that work great for every baby. They have two rows of waist snaps and three rows of rise snaps to allow for a wider range of sizing choices for your baby as they grow. Gathered back elastics on Smart Bottoms diapers help prevent blowouts. The tongue-style all-in-one design means that Smart Bottoms diapers dry faster, so you can get them washed, dried, and back on your baby's bottom faster. Unfortunately, the tongue style can make Smart Bottoms more difficult for alternate caregivers to manage as it requires an extra step in order to get a great fit on baby.

  • 100% organic cotton inner
  • Wide leg elastics
  • Wide range of fit options
  • Gathered back elastic
  • Tongue style
  • Extra steps
  • Expensive
  • Don't fit until 10 lbs
  • Long prep cycle
  • Less absorbent

Grovia Cloth Diapers

Cloth Diapers

Grovia cloth diapers offer several choices: the ONE option, an extremely absorbent cloth diaper that's recommended for nighttime use; traditional all-in-ones; and a hybrid system that can be used with both reusable and disposable inserts. Grovia prints tend to be more classic in nature than other brands, but they still offer a great rainbow of colors and designs to choose from. Grovia diapers are also on the cheaper end of the spectrum, making them an excellent choice for parents who need an inexpensive option.

Grovia cloth diapers are some of the thinnest on the market. They offer a very thin appearance that looks great under baby's clothes: a particular benefit when babies are small and it is more difficult to make their clothes fit around cloth diapers. Once they're assembled, Grovia diapers are easy to put on baby, making them a great, fast option. They do, however, come with a learning curve, since Grovia all-in-ones snap on the sides, not at the front like most diapers.

Grovia's ONE diaper is a popular nighttime choice for many cloth diapering parents. With many layers of absorbency, the ONE will keep baby dry all night long.

  • Trim
  • Great night time option
  • Inexpensive
  • Easy to use
  • Poor fit on chunky babies
  • Bulky ONE diaper
  • More assembly required
  • Sometimes confusing

The Winner

While all of these cloth diapering brands are excellent choices that offer plenty of diapering options for a variety of sizes, styles, and budgets, bumGenius ultimately wins out as one of the best cloth diaper brands on the market. BumGenius offers more variety in their cloth diapering options, with everything from prefolds and covers to organic all-in-ones available to cloth diaper your baby. They're convenient for on the go and using at home, whether you're looking for the trim option of a Flip or Elemental or the increased convenience of a Freetime or 5.0 (the latest pocket diaper in the bumGenius line).

These diapers are easy to figure out and offer the best, most flexible fit for babies with a variety of body types, making them the obvious choice for parents with more than one child in diapers. A quick change of snaps is all it takes to have these diapers ready to move from one baby to another--the perfect choice for diaper bags. Not only that, it's possible to use these diapers to get a trim fit that will look great under baby's clothes. BumGenius cloth diapers are also among the most affordable on the market, making them the clear best cloth diapers in their category.

Sandra Henderson
 

Editor-in-chief at Babiology and a proud mother of four passionate about sharing pregnancy and baby growth knowledges

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