Thursday, August 5, 2010

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Cloth Diaper Insert Lingo

Basic cloth diapering setups can vary a great deal, including things like the diaper body, cloth diaper inserts, liners, covers, wipes and more. It can be a lot for a new parent to take in, that’s for sure. However, with a bit of education and experience, you can begin to decode the lingo that seems to exude from enthusiastic cloth diapering parents. After all, when you find something better for your baby and your pocketbook, it’s hard not to be excited about it. Cloth diaper inserts tend to be one of the most confusing products, with different types being ideal for different diapering setups. In some cases, products that look extremely similar can actually have different uses entirely.

Of course, the category of cloth diaper inserts is quite broad. An insert is, after all, nothing more than a diapering component that goes on the inside of the diaper. All cloth diaper inserts don’t have the same job in the diapering setup. Here are a few of the most common types of inserts and what they are used for.

Pocket Stuffers
In most instances when you see cloth diaper inserts referred to, you will be dealing with some type of pocket stuffer. Pocket diapers are made with a waterproof outer core and coupled with an inner layer that usually is designed to wick moisture to the inside. When that happens, however, there must be something stuffed inside the pocket diaper shell to soak up all the liquid. This is where cloth diaper inserts come in. The insert is placed inside the pocket shell and provides the absorbent core necessary to make your diaper work properly. In many cases, the cloth diaper inserts that you are dealing with will be designed specifically to work with the shape and size of a particular brand of pocket diaper shell. Fuzzi Bunz has a different insert, for example, than bumGenius. While each maker designs the cloth diaper inserts that they feel are ideal for their diaper, you can certainly mix things up and switch out different inserts to see which you prefer. This, of course, works best if you have several brands on-hand. If you do find that you prefer one brand of cloth diaper inserts over another, you can usually purchase a set of inserts separately without having to buy the shell.

Other Cloth Diaper Inserts
Depending on where you are looking at cloth diapering products, other diapering components may be listed as cloth diaper inserts. For example, a doubler may be designated in this category. Not only that, these are often identical in both visual appearance and use. The main difference is that doublers are not usually designed exclusively for any particular pocket diaper, but are a more universal way to add extra absorbency. Doublers can be used in both pocket, fitted and all-in-one, or AIO, diapers.

You may also see diaper liners lumped together with other types of cloth diaper inserts. Liners are not for absorbency, however. Rather, they are a barrier against wetness and serve as a means to hold in solid waste, making it easier to deal with. Liners can be either washable or disposable.

18 comments:

wendy @ ABCs and Garden Peas said...

Great post....this stuff had me so confused when I first started!

I like to use my FB inserts in my Kawaii diapers. I find the Kawaii insert a little too bulky right now. I am considering getting some more natural inserts for all of my diapers, because I love the FB and others, but I'm not really a fan of the microfiber (stinky!)

Rachel C said...

Good post for new CD moms! When I first started looking into cloth, I was so confused by all the differen terminology.

Mama Stacy said...

I love hemp inserts and doublers in my pocket diapers- trimmer than microfiber and hold a lot more! :)

Tiffany said...

Thanks! As I am getting ready to start cloth diapering for the first time when my third child makes her appearance in the next 7 weeks... I find this post EXTREMELY helpful. When you first start researching this stuff, it can really get confusing! :)

Shiree said...

Thanks for clearing that up. I just got my first order of diapers yesterday and I am trying to sort through it all...

Jane said...

This was a helpful post. I am considering Flips, G-Diapers or Grow Vias. Knowing about liners helps!

Shelly said...

cloth diapering lingo in general, is pretty awesome!

Alycia said...

Don't forget about the inserts that come with AI2's and Hybrids! These inserts can sometimes be interchanged, though some are pretty unique to their original diaper. These inserts are laid on top of the diaper inner instead of being stuffed in a pocket.

Andrea said...

great post! i usually use prefolds and love them. never did the liners yet. I may have to! :)

Denise said...

I have heard that the microfiber inserts don't wash up as well in the HE front loader machines. I have noticed that my inserts are all starting to harbor smells. I do the rinse, heavy wash on hot and an additional rinse. I use Charlie's soap. Not sure what else I can do. If I was to look into other inserts, which ones are best as far as washing in a front loader machine.

Amy said...

We often use a microfiber and 1 hemp during the day-2 at night! The right insert combo can really make or break a pocket diaper!

Sarahjenne said...

It's great to have this info in one place. I remember it being confusing when I was starting out. I used to be concerned with remembering which inserts went where as I have many different brands of pocket diapers. Eventually I realized that if it fits, it fits. When my sister babysat she wondered what went where, and I told her to find something absorbent in the drawer and stuff it in a pocket.

megpie said...

Great post for newbies! It is so overwhelming at first!

Melanie Rogers said...

My husband put on what he called a "doubler" for added protection one day.... it was actually just a stay dry liner... and the diaper lining already had a fleece stay dry lining! All I could do was laugh.

Kelly said...

Love the "terminology" type post. Even though I am a seasoned cloth user, it is nice to see these to help newbies keep things understandable.

Kara - Wife, Momma, Doula said...

I just started using liners and I LOVE them!

It's also a great reminder for new CD mom's to never put microfiber on a baby's butt. I didn't know this when I first started CD'ing and made an oopsie!

Lyndsey said...

This is a great post! All the terminology can get so confusing when you first start cd'ing.

naomir5034 said...

I'm glad you posted this, I had to ask lots of questions about inserts/doublers/liners when I was researching. I hope this helps lots of people!