Thursday, May 28, 2009

Pocket Diaper Reviews

Augh! At long last I return to my product reviews! I've previously reviewed the prefolds, fitteds, and covers that I've tried and/or use. Now I'm excited to get down to the main staple and workhorse of most of the cloth families that I know: the pocket diaper. Remember, a pocket diaper is a feel-dry liner sewn to a waterproof outer layer with one end open, leaving a pocket that you stuff to customize your child's absorbency needs.

** You're going to see very clearly in this post, just in case I've never said this before, I'm just a real mom. I have no affiliations with any companies or products, and no loyalties except to the products that I've fallen in love with.

Tiny Tush Elite One-Size Pockets - 1.75 thumbs down

Let's just get this one out of the way, shall we? I'm not even linking to their site.

I started out loving these diapers: a one-size with snaps, which - for some reason completely unbeknownst to me - was hard to come by when I first switched to cloth diapers. They were well constructed, a perfect fit, and hard-working diapers. For about 8 months. Then I started having problems.

At first, I thought my son was overflowing these diapers, which I tried to correct by stuffing with more/different materials. But his clothes still ended up wet. I did some research and contacted the diaper company, and they advised me to strip the diapers. They started "working" again! For about 2 weeks. Repeat. Ad nauseum. And I was nauseated with hand-stripping diapers once a month just so we could keep using them. My kids' clothes (by this time my son was potty trained, and my daughter was in the diapers), would end up wet, but the stuffing of the pocket was basically bone dry, which indicated a problem with repelling.

So I contacted the diaper company again, who told me to strip them. I informed them that I already had, about 100 times in as many different ways. I told them that I was using a cloth-safe laundry detergent, no softeners, no rash creams or vaseline, and let us not forget the clincher: I WAS NOT HAVING PROBLEMS WITH ANY OF MY OTHER BRANDS OF DIAPERS. Their "answer" was that they had never had any complaints before, and they didn't have anything else to offer me.

Now. Apart from the fact that these diapers failed within a year of correct use, I cannot support a company with such deplorable customer service. Any company, particularly one with proclaimed integrity, should have offered to replace the diapers. At the very least, they should have offered to let me send my dipes in so they could take a look at them for themselves. After too many emails and unreturned phone calls, I decided to abandon ship. I will NEVER buy from them again, and I recommend that you do not buy from them either. There are too many other companies out there who actually care about their customers for you to waste your time on Tiny Tush products.

However, they do still get .25 thumbs not down (but still not up), because I'm using the diapers (and selling a few, in anyone is interested) for cloth swim diapers.

On to better things...

Mommy's Touch Easy Clean One Size Pocket - 1.5 thumbs up!

The only reason these don't get 2 thumbs up is because I just don't reach for them that often. They're really great: well constructed, great fit, work really well. I've never had any problems with this diaper. There are tons of beautiful colors and prints to choose from. (Why am I not obsessed with this diaper?? I really can't figure it out.)

These are called "Easy Clean" because the pocket is open at the front and the back, which means you don't have to "unstuff" your diapers before putting them in the washing machine; the insert/stuffing will agitate out during your prewash cycle. Pretty cool, huh? (I still unstuff mine, because I'm just in the habit of it with my other diapers.)

The only thing I don't love-love-love about this diaper is that the wing/tab part is kind of wide. Not that big a deal. If you're in favor of snaps, these are a great choice! They also come in velcro/touchtape...but why?

Haute Pockets Traditional One Size Pocket - 1 thumb up

These diapers come in really pretty colors, and the company changes their color selection often, so there's always something new to choose from. The diapers are well constructed, and the fleece lining is some of the softest I've ever felt. There isn't a huge deficit with these diapers, but we just didn't love ours. (But hopefully Jenney does!)

My only real complaint with these diapers is that I feel they're cut smaller and trimmer than other one-size diapers, and as a result, my son grew out of this diaper (which was supposed to fit up to 35 lbs) long before he hit 30 pounds. If you've ever checked out our family blog, you know that my kids are anything but small and trim!

Hautes are also available with either snap or velcro closure.

BumGenius! One Size Pocket - 2 thumbs up

What can I say? Even people who don't cloth diaper have heard of bumGenius. These are some of the most well known modern cloth diapers. Superior construction and fit, gorgeous colors in soft and bright shades, and a super-soft, no-pill suedecloth lining.

A few cons: these are not sized quite as large as other one-size pockets, and the pocket itself is not overly generous. So you can't stuff it tons and tons. But the big thing is, the velcro issue! BumGenius uses some of the highest quality Aplix/touchtape velcro, but even that will eventually wear down and wear out.

Happy Heiny's One Size Pocket - 2 thumbs up

Happy Heiny's are, to me, just as well known as bumGenius diapers. Lots of colors and cute prints, and a very generous fit. Even my 41-pound son can still fit in one of these when it's stuffed with a toddler prefold and a hemp doubler. Pretty impressive!

A few cons: the fleece pills in just 2 or 3 washes. And, the velcro, once again! Velcro is made for convenience, not longevity. Happy Heiny's now offers their one-size diaper with snaps, but I don't have one. It appears to be a bit different in construction, based on the photos I've seen.

Happy Heiny's also makes sized diapers, but I haven't tried them.

FuzziBunz Perfect Size Pocket - 1 thumb up

FuzziBunz are another well-known name in the world of fluff. Maybe they were some of the modern cloth pioneers, maybe there's a cachet with having a FuzziBunz, maybe just because the name is so cute. But honestly, I don't see what all the hoopla is about these diapers.

Yes, they're well-made. They have lovely colors. They work great, and clean well. Easy on, easy off. Easy to take care of. But I think it's sort of like how I didn't see Jerry Maguire until about a year after everyone else did, and I had just heard for a year how it was the greatest movie ever, so when I finally saw it, my reaction was a very underwhelmed, "...Ehhh."

Also, though, now that they make a one-size FuzziBunz, why would you ever want to buy an entire set of pocket diapers in 3 (or 4) separate size groups, spending 3 or 4 times as much money in the long run?

DryBees Fleece Nighttime Pocket - 1.5 thumbs up

When we switched my son to cloth at 18 months, he was a nighttime super soaker, so I definitely had to give this diaper a try! Fleece breathes naturally and really is a wonderful overnight solution. These are sized diapers, and my son (who, as I said earlier, is 41 lbs), has been in the large size from month 19 to now one month before his 3rd birthday. They have a very generous pocket with ample room for super-stuffing. They fit great, and are our mainstay night diaper.


DryBees uses perhaps the lowest quality of velcro available, except what you can buy in the scrapbooking section at WalMart. Actually, the incredibly poor quality of the velcro on these diapers has been a major contributing factor to the early destruction of the velcro and Aplix on our other diapers. Big. Fat. Boo. When I remember, I safety pin the tabs down before I wash them so they won't tear up the other diapers.

So there ya go! My pocket reviews! I also use and love some all-in-one pockets, but I'm going to include those with the all-in-one reviews.

AS ALWAYS WITH REVIEWS!!! If you use/love/hate any products that I haven't included here, if you use/love/hate products that I have reviewed but you disagree, please leave a comment with your experience so that we all can benefit from a balanced perspective! :o)


Melissa said...

So sad you gave Fuzzi Bunz only one thumb up! :( I use the perfect size diaper, and most people only need to buy two sizes--small and medium. Most kids are potty-trained before they would need a large, unless it is a special needs child. My 2 1/2 year old still fits in her size mediums, and we are snapping them almost as small as they go! :) Just my two cents . . .

The Cloth Diaperin' Mama said...

Thank you for your input! It's another great opportunity to point out that every family has their own individual preferences, and based on experiences and the build of a child, may come away with very different perceptions of products than another family has. I'm glad you found something that has worked well for your family! :o)

the monkey's mama said...

oh no! i have a TTE and it is about 5 months old. I wonder what will happen to it when it reaches the 8-month old stage that yours did? yikes!

By the way, I really do love the Apple Cheeks Diaper--i think they are much better than a FB.

i also want to try the Smartipants diaper--what do you think about that?

Jenney said...

I do! I like the Haute diapers! Sorry, I never even got back to you...I've only used them a couple of times, but they have been a success. I had some Swaddlebees pocket diapers that he grew out of, and they were ok...but these I do like better. I use flats with Thristies covers 90% of the time because we don't have lots of money for pocket diapers or AIOs that I can't re-use over and over in the day(If I have to use 2 thirsties covers in a day, it is a rare thing). However, when I am on the go and don't have the time to properly put on a flat (you know, in public in less than happy diaper changing areas) I use the Hautes I bought from you and really like them! Thanks so much for being willing to sell them on here!
I need to post about them on my (pathetic) cloth blog

Jenney said...

Not saying that people who use AIOs or pocket diapers are rich...that came out wrong. Just saying 12 flats for $10 (I think) and 5 covers @ $11 each...that lasts me 2.5 days. Not bad :o) If I had it to do again, and had started with my first son, I would definately have gone with Bum Genius (I've never even tried them but I have heard nothing but nice stuff)...but I didn't :o(

The Cloth Diaperin' Mama said...

Monkey's Mama:

I hope your TTE doesn't fail. I really wanted to love those diapers so much, and I sang their praises for many months. The diapers failing was not what left a terrible taste in my mouth, it was the unconscionable customer service.

I have no experience with the SmartiPants, but I welcome your input on that as well as the AppleCheeks!


I'm so glad you guys are enjoying the Hautes! And I didn't think you made it sound like only rich people buy BGs. They are a more expensive way to cloth diaper, and if one of our main reasons for switching is to save money, then it's just not practical to buy 2 dozen BGs or HHs as opposed to 2 dozen flats or prefolds. :o)

Natalie said...

I have three kids and five years of prefold experience, (not to mention all the years I diapered my siblings). I am so cheap I would only buy Chinese pre-folds. I have switched covers though. I started out with lite wraps and in the beginning I stripped every week. Needless to say they lasted six months, maybe (my fault).
Next I tried Bumkins (thanks to a friends' recommendation) they were great through my second child. I would totally recommend them. Only towards the end did I get the hang of not stripping so frequently (they would still be around, lol). Thanks Lauren, for getting me turned on to Charlies!!
My new love is wool. Ahhh yes wool is wonderful, WONDERFUL!!! can I please tell you how much I love it! If I wash with Charlies I only lanolize every two months (if that and lanolizing is no big deal)!!!! And I didn't spend any money on them. I re-purposed old sweaters, suits, and wool shirts I had from working days. They have worked great. SO I totally recommend wool. Wool suits, wool sweaters, cashmere, etc. It all works!
Don't be afraid to try wool!

idnar82 said...

I haven't tried any of these except the BG and DryBees nighttime fleece (so very bulky on my kiddo, but works like a charm!). I like the simplicity of the BG of course but I STRONGLY dislike the aplix. It is already so yucky looking and I've only had it a little while. It holds fine, but just looks very "stringy." I have thought about trying a Happy Heiny so I am glad you seemed to like them! Honestly, I've been thinking of trying the Happy Hempy fitted for night times. Thanks for your reviews :-) Do you prefer pockets to other types. I don't know if I am just lazy or what, but I don't relaly care for them as much as other styles. I don't like the stuffing part :-). Thanks for your opinions!

Leather Diaries said...


THanks for sharing.

noahandlylasmommi said...

Thank you for sharing. I am new to CDing so those were very helpful to me.