Currently covers are my favorite type of diaper to work with. In diaper lingo terms you may hear them called: hybrids, ai2’s (all in twos) or trainers. There are tons of covers on the cloth diaper market (I have a few on my wish list) the cool thing about them is that typically you just change what’s inserted into the diaper instead of the whole diaper. Covers vary in size as well – there are fitteds (so the size of the diaper correlates with the size your baby) or a “one size fits most” (where you adjust the snaps to fit your baby and they typically fit most children from 8-35 lbs so basically the diaper grows with them and can be used from birth to potty training). I personally prefer the one size because I currently cloth diaper a 3 year old and an 8 month old so I get the most bang for my buck out of them. Also covers come in two styles for fastening: snaps or velcro (hook & loop). I have both in my stash but tend to prefer velcro. Velcro covers have laundry tabs (pictured below) on them so that way the velcro doesn’t snag anything during laundry; so don’t forget to use those tabs!
Pictured above are just a few examples of options for inserts. These are all cloth so they’ll need to be washed of course, but that’s a whole other blog post. Ok so 1: flat – a flat is a diaper that is just one layer. I’ve known people to use old receiving blankets for flats. You can either pad fold a flat and insert it into the cover (that’s typically what I do) or there are various folds you can use and then fasten with a snappi or boingo (check this video for more on how to use these fastners) or even pins if you wanted (ugh I don’t like pins sorry I have a hard enough time pinning my race bib on my shirt). 2: prefold – I talked about these in my post Crunchy Mama – prefolds & covers. Again with prefolds you can either pad fold it or fold around baby and use a cloth diaper fastner. 3: stay dry – the one pictured here is a flip stay dry insert. Caution: make sure it’s the right side up so that moisture properly wicks away from your kiddos bottom. The stay dry insert is a great option for a child getting ready to transition to potty training and they have less bulk. To learn more about this flip insert check out their website. 4: trainer – this is specifically for potty training kids. It is very slim and helps them feel that they are wet. Although my son isn’t potty trained when we do use these he will quickly pull his diaper down because he knows he’s wet. To show it’s never too late to get cloth diapering I think these are an excellent option and much better than traditional disposable pull-ups in my opinion. They feel more like regular underwear because they’re cloth and the cool thing about the flip covers (grovia too and some others) is that if your child has an “accident” you can easily unsnap the sides. Check out a sites like cottonbabies.com or kellyscloset.com to explore their potty training options (keep visiting my blog too I’ll post more about potty training with cloth diapers in the future). 5: homemade – next time I make one of these I’ll be sure to take pics and post a how to. This one was made from an old T-shirt and is what I use for my “emergency” stash of diapers that’s kept in the van. Funny though how I find myself continually refilling my emergency stash; maybe I should be honest with myself and call it the van stash because mommy simply forgot…again! As with all cloth diapers the prices of covers and the various inserts varies so that’s all up to you. I personally stay on the cheaper side which is why I’ve been making my own inserts recently.
Ok now let’s cover hybrids (pictured below).
Hybrid diapers mean that the insert is disposable. There are various brands out there and they are more earth friendly in comparison to sposies because they’re biodegradable (some brands are even flushable) and contain less absorbency chemicals. When I first got into cloth diapering I used to use these more often, especially during weekend trips. Yet I quickly found that they don’t work so great for our family, mostly because my son tends to be a “heavy wetter” and because it wasn’t as cost effective as I wanted to be. Cost wise a pack of 20 inserts typically runs around $8 which is about 40 cents/diaper so if you were doing cloth just for money saving purposes this isn’t a great option because I know I was spending about 25 cents/diaper when using sposies. I will say my reasons for cloth went way beyond money though and they do for most people. Some people really like hybrids though, as I’ve said before it’s all about personal preference and you’ve got to do what works best for you and your family.
Well that about “covers” it and I hope you’ve learned something new about the modern word of cloth diapering.