When I was getting ready to go back to my full-time job as a high school teacher, I needed to decide what type of cloth diapers to send to daycare with my son. (Yes, I know how lucky I am to have a daycare provider that is willing to use cloth - more on that next month!)
Wesley was 10 months old, and had already outgrown several different sizes of cloth diapers to date. I knew that I wanted to make it easy for the daycare and send only pockets (pre-stuffed, of course) or all-in-ones (AIOs). However, since we mainly use prefolds and fitteds and home, I was going to have to purchase twelve diapers for the daycare, and I wasn't' sure whether to buy 'sized' or 'one-size' (OS) diapers.
The Pros and Cons:
One-Size (OS) Diapers: The biggest benefit of OS diapers is that they will fit your baby from about right after birth through potty learning. Once you purchase all of your diapers, you will not need to 'size up' and buy more as your baby grows. This is great for saving money!
Another benefit of OS diapers is that they work great for families with more than one child in diapers. The same diaper can be adjusted down to fit a smaller baby and then adjusted again to fit a larger sibling. This eliminates the need to have two (or more) sets of diapers to fit each child.
The biggest drawback of the OS style of diapers is that they don't often actually fit from birth to potty learning. Often, they don't fit right at the very beginning or at the very end. The majority of our OS diapers didn't fit Wesley correctly until he was about 12 pounds and, as he is pretty tall, he starting outgrowing them at about 14 months old.
Sized Diapers: With sized diapers, the biggest benefit is fit. You can get a diaper that is exactly the correct size to fit your baby, without having to worry about those 'in-between' times when the settings on the OS diapers would be either too big or too small. Also, you don't have to worry about adjusting the diaper before putting it on your baby. (I'm personally a big fan of things that are really easy!)
The major drawback of sized diapers is that they won't fit forever, and therefor you are going to have to spend more money due to having to buy several sizes of diaper as your baby gets bigger.
My Choice: In the end, I decided to go with sized diapers over the OS diapers. We currently only have one child in diapers, so there is no need to have diapers that adjust to fit more than one baby. Also, Wesley had already been fitting into the few OS diapers that we had on the last settings, meaning that he would be outgrowing them very soon.
A few weeks before I went back to work I found a diaper that I liked and that fit Wesley well, and I invested in twelve pocket diapers, size medium, that are used almost exclusively for daycare. The brand that I chose runs a bit long in the rise, and I know that he will fit in them for a long time.
Merrimack Valley Diapers Recommends:
One-Size (OS) Diapers:
If you are looking for a good OS diaper that is made in the USA and will honestly fit until potty learning, then Tiny Tush Elite OS Pocket Diaper is for you! These diapers have the longest rise of any diaper that we have tried, and they come in your choice of snap or hook-and-loop closures.
For a more economical choice, the Tweedle Bugs One Size Snap Diaper is a great alternative at only $12.95 per diaper.
For sized diapers, our absolute favorite is a Bottombumpers Side Snapping All-In-One Diaper. Designed and made by a work at home mom (WAHM) and made in the USA, these are the trimmest AIO that we have found. These are our diaper-bag diapers!
June Sale at Merrimack Valley Diapers:
Get FREE shipping on orders that include $25 or more of Bottombumpers, Tweedle Bugs, or Tiny Tush products. Use code 'CDRCJune' at checkout. Ends June 30, 2010
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