Thursday, August 18, 2011

To Size Or To One Size.. That Is The Question!

Every month I hold a free cloth diapering class in Toledo to help people see, touch, and feel the diapers from my website and get a better understanding of how each diaper or diapering system works. My hope is that the class will help them to realize cloth can be just as easy as disposables with the right system in place.

One of the questions that often comes up in my class is the advantages and disadvantages of using a sized diaper vs. a one size diaper. I'd like to review a few different options for you in this post to hopefully help you on your way to becoming a cloth diaper expert!

There are several advantages to using a one size diaper. Most one size diapers are designed to fit baby from birth through potty training. If you utilized all one size diapers from birth through potty training, you may only need 20-30 total diapers and would not need to buy more. They may even last through one or more additional children. One disadvantage to a one size diaper is that they may be a tad bit bulky on a newborn. The typical range for a one size diaper is 7-35 pounds, but on the small end the amount of fabric in a one size diaper would still typically be a bit bulky on a newborn. I had to leave my daughter's snaps in her sleepers unsnapped for a few months.. but it didn't bother me since we were at home most of the time anyway. Another disadvantage of one size diapers is that if your child is a bit on the large side, they may end up growing out of their one size diapers before they potty train. My son was 3 before he potty trained and had long since grown out of his one size diapers. The sized diapers, however, continued to fit him into potty training years.

The diaper that I carry that is one size and has the largest weight range is the Wahmies One Size diaper shown here:

This diaper is very trim fitting and versatile. The sides hook onto themselves to prevent wing droop, and the fold to fit bamboo and cotton insert makes this as trim fitting as possible. At 17.95 this is also on the lower price range for most of the one size diapers. And when baby approaches the toddler years it can be great for another use.. keeping diaper ON baby! The hooks definitely make it a great child-proof diaper!

Now what if you'd like something a bit more trim for the first few months? I think it's a great option to use a sized diaper in the beginning and then transition to a one size diaper for the toddler years. There are several great options for a newborn.

First there is the FuzziBunz XS Perfect Size diaper. This is such an adorable little diaper with a weight range of 4-12 pounds. You could even try a small size with a weight range of 7-18 pounds and then you would need less sizes overall. In my experience most of the sized diapers are generous in their sizing.. my son could still wear his large FuzziBunz when he was 3.. and we bought them for him when he was 10 months old! If you solely use a sized diaper option the diapers would also see less use compared to a one size diaper and hopefully last through more subsequent children. FuzziBunz also has a great sale going on right now.. buy 6 in any combination of Perfect Size or One Size and get 2 free diapers directly from FuzziBunz!! A steal of a deal!

Another sized diaper option for newborns is investing in some duo wraps and prefolds. This is a very inexpensive option, since you can buy 20-30 infant prefolds to have on hand for those frequent newborn messies without breaking the bank. I usually recommend having 4-5 covers on hand and 20 prefolds to start.. and if you need more you can always add more! The disadvantages of using a prefold are that there are two steps to the process - the prefold goes on baby and then the cover, making the process a bit more time consuming, and the prefold might be a bit more bulky on baby than a diaper like the FuzziBunz Perfect Size.

The Thirsties duo wrap is an excellent option to use for a cover because it comes in velcro or snap closure, and is designed to only require the parents to invest in two sizes instead of three of four sizes of covers. As with any Thirsties product the covers are excellent for holding in leaks with their great leg gussets and are available in some adorable prints too!

Another great option for a newborn is the Happy Heinys Mini One Size. This is what it sounds like.. a mini version of a traditional one size diaper. The idea is that you would use the mini one size from 4-16 pounds (it snaps down in the rise) and then size up to the regular Happy Heinys One Size diaper, which are available in velcro or snap. The mini one size still costs 18.95 so it is a bit on the pricier end for newborn options.. but is super easy to use since it is a pocket diaper, especially in those bleary-eyed first few months. It is also available in adorable prints including owl (pictured below) and glow in the dark skull.

What if you find that your toddler is a tad big in his potty training year(s)? Some manufacturers such as Happy Heinys do make XL diapers that run from 30-40 pounds. These are pocket diapers that I'd be happy to special order for you. Otherwise give the size L a try in any sized diaper.. hopefully you'll find that they are a bit more generous in size and they can last through potty training!

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Have a wonderful weekend!

Tender Loving Cloth Diapers


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