Continuing our comparison of the differences and advantages of major styles and brands of cloth diapers, today we’re comparing pocket diapers to other cloth diaper styles.
- All-in-One Diapers (AIO)
- Pocket Diapers
- Fitted Diapers
- Prefolds & Flat Diapers
Pocket Cloth Diapers
With a pocket diaper, the diaper itself is made up of two layers. The outer layer is moisture resistant. This is the layer that shows on the outside when your baby is all diapered and ready to go. There is no extra cover to add as you must with fitted or prefold diapers. Another layer on the inside of a pocket diaper wicks moisture. Because there is an opening in the back seam, these two layers together are the pocket.
Moisture absorbency in a pocket diaper is provided by an insert that is stuffed into the back opening. Inserts can be made of any absorbent material, like cotton, hemp, bamboo, or even microfiber. In that way, you have a lot of material choices just like you do with fitted diapers.
Pocket diapers can be one-size, like the Happy Heiny One for All diaper, or sized, like the Fuzzi Bunz Perfect Size diaper. In many ways, pocket diapers are quite similar to all-in-two and some all-in-one diapers that have a piece allowing customized absorbency.
Best of all, with pocket diapers, there are a lot of brands, styles, and closures to choose from. You don’t need to settle for what doesn’t work for you.
Pocket Diaper Advantages
- Easy to wash. You can separate inserts from most pocket diapers just by shaking them upside down. Just be sure to rinse adequately, and follow manufacturer washing instructions.
- Easy to dry. Since the pieces separate, the water and air don’t need to be forced through many, many layers.
- A lot of flexibility in amount of absorbency used, so you can make minor adjustments throughout the day.
- You can pre-stuff the diapers and let other caregivers treat them almost like all-in-one diapers.
- A lot of colors, prints, and styles to choose from.
For parents looking for an easy system that allows them to make some customization, pocket diapers have become a popular choice.
Pocket Diaper Disadvantages
- You have to get the amount and placement of the inserts right or you will have leaks.
- If your detergent leaves residue or you don’t rinse the detergent adequately, there can be build-up on the inner layer, which leads to odors and trouble with absorbency.
- If you have many different kinds of pocket diapers, you might find that manufacturers recommend different washing routines for each. It can get confusing and difficult to get everything equally clean.
- Must wash every part after every diaper change, creating more wash than with simpler systems.
- The child doesn’t feel wetness of the diaper, which could delay the early potty training advantage found with cloth diapers.
The biggest issue to solve with pocket diapers is finding the washing routine that works with your diapers, your water quality, and your detergent. Sticking with all the same brand or very similar diapers for your whole collection can help solve that problem as well. Once you have that down, you can make pocket diapers work well for you and your baby.