Spoonful Test Blog

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

I like big butts: Insert edition.

Alright, folks!  It's time to talk about cloth diaper inserts!

I'm glad you're so excited!  I am, too!  Inserts are the most fun.

As we discussed in this post, pocket diapers and AI2 (all-in-two) diapers need inserts in order to be absorbent.  And we talked about the difference between synthetic and natural fibers for inserts.  So now we're going to delve a little deeper into the ocean of cloth diaper inserts.

Nice imagery, eh?

Most pocket diapers come with a microfiber insert, which is a synthetic fiber.  It does not hold as much liquid as a natural fiber insert, but absorbs quickly.  For my pockets, I generally add a natural fiber insert under the microfiber to help with absorption.  These are the inserts I use most often in a pocket diaper:

 From left to right, we have a microfiber insert (synthetic), an Alva bamboo/microfiber insert (natural/synthetic), and a Thirsties hemp insert (natural).

Here is a close-up of the microfiber and bamboo/microfiber inserts so you can see the texture!

Beautiful, right?


Remember, a microfiber insert cannot touch the baby's skin; it will suck the moisture right out!  In a pocket diaper, the lining comes between the insert and baby's skin.  In an AI2 diaper, however, you will need to make sure and put either another insert or a liner over a microfiber insert if that is what you will use.

For our AI2 diapers, we use mostly the Flip system.  There are three kinds of Flip inserts, which are pictured here:

From left to right: a stay dry insert (microfiber--synthetic), a nighttime organic cotton insert (natural), and a daytime organic cotton insert (natural).  The stay dry insert has a suede-like top which can touch the baby's skin; the reverse side is the fuzzy microfiber that cannot go directly against the baby.

When Gibson was younger, we could put one stay dry insert in his cover and it worked really well!  Now that he is bigger, pees more, and moves around more, however, the stay dry inserts don't work as well.  The nighttime organic insert holds crazy amounts of liquid, so that's what we generally use for sleeping.  And the daytime organic insert is far more absorbent than the stay dry, but we still need to add absorbency.

Besides the inserts that are made for certain diapers, you can use a variety of things to absorb in diapers!

Fitted diapers look like this:

They are diaper-shaped, and the entire thing is absorbent.  This really helps keep all the liquid in!  Gibson is wearing a Kissaluvs cotton fleece one-size fitted here, which is a mix of natural and synthetic fibers.  Some fitted diapers have snaps or hook and loop closures, but I used a Snappi to close this diaper.  You do need to put a cover over a fitted diaper in order to make it water-resistant.  My Flip covers work well over this fitted diaper, and I am planning to try wool covers at some point.

Flats are basically a large piece of fabric that you can fold to add absorbency to a diaper.  I use flour sack towels as flats, which you can buy for around $1 at Walmart.  Some people use receiving blankets inside diapers, and there are flats that you can buy that are made specifically for diapering.  Here is a picture of Gibson in a flour sack towel:

This is folded using the origami fold (directions here) and Snappied shut.  Getting this diaper on Gibson is ridiculously hard...he's far too wiggly for me to do this way every time I change his diaper.  So you can also padfold the flat and lay it inside a cover or stuff it in a pocket like a regular insert.  These are very absorbent!

*Sidenote: in order to get the diaper on him and take that picture I had to turn on Bubble Guppies.  That's why he looks entranced.

Prefolds are another great option...this is what most people think of when they hear the words "cloth diaper."

Photo from www.bumritediapers.com

Prefolds can be tri-folded and put in a cover or stuffed in a pocket like a normal insert, or they can be folded around the baby like a flat or fitted diaper.  You can use pins or a Snappi to close a prefold, and then put a cover on.  When Gibson was a newborn we used prefolds in covers, and it worked so well to contain his runny baby poop!  We do have one prefold that we love to use for nighttime, but it has gone missing.  If anyone sees it, please give it back.  I love it and miss it dearly.

...I should probably buy more prefolds and then I wouldn't miss that one so much.  But still.

Ta daaaaa!  A post about inserts!  I only promised it a week and a half ago.  I'm such a jerk.

Next time we'll discuss washing diapers! The most fun part ever!

If you missed all the fun of my first two cloth diaper posts, here's a handy link to them!

Part one
Part two

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