We are on to our second baby in cloth, and have been using cloth nappies for nearly 2 years now. I started with newborn cloth for Everly (she will be 2 in September) and went straight onto newborn cloth with Aaron (who is 5 months old now) and I’ve loved every single moment! We have used more disposables on Aaron than we did on Everly (mostly because #2under2 is no joke and traveling with two babies in nappies is just crazy), but Aaron is in cloth about 85% of the time, and Everly is in cloth 99% of the time when we are at home.
Here are my other posts on cloth nappies that you might enjoy reading, with a post on newborn cloth, how to wash cloth nappies, how I store dirty nappies and a detailed post on the nappies we used and loved for Everly over her nearly 2 years of being a cloth bum:
While I was sent some of the AIO’s pictured here in this post, all thoughts and views on them are my own. I have spent thousands of rands of my own money on Biddykins throughout the past 2 year s(I also LOVE their pail liners to store dirty nappies in, and am a firm lover of their breast pads!) and so you can rest assured that although I was given the pretty nappies in this post, my review is 100% honest.
I mainly used flats, pre-folds, fitteds and covers for both my babies until they fitted into their OSFM nappies (this was at about the 5 month mark with Everly and when we get back home next week I will start Aaron with them), and then I moved onto pockets, snap in ones (SIO) and my all time favourite nappies, all-in-ones (AIO’s).
While it’s really hard to recommend one type of nappy to anyone (this is mostly because each baby’s shape is different, their output is different and changes as they get older, if they are tummy sleepers, how sensitive their skin is, what climate you live in also affects how often you wash & dry nappies…the list goes on!) all in one nappies are a firm favourite for lots of moms because of how easy they are to use. While they don’t offer the most absorption (newborns wee A LOT and need to be changed more often than say a 5 month old because of how much and how often they wee) I loved using them on Everly from about month 6 - 9, and then again from about a year to now. All-in-one nappies are just what their name suggests, they have all their parts built into the nappy so there is no stuffing inserts like you do with pockets, no folding like flats, no added covers to put on…you literally just snap them on. They are the closest to disposable nappies and so Dad’s & Granny’s love them.
If all-in-ones are so amazing, why doesn’t everyone use them?
There are only really two downsides to AIO’s…they are the most expensive of cloth nappies, and they take a long time to dry.
You can’t stick them in the tumble dryer (although you can do this with some brands, always read the label!) but I often stick them in for about 20 minutes if I’m running out of nappies.
If you don’t have a budget, then drying time won’t be an issue for you as you can buy have enough to cover 2 - 3 days of wear and over wash day. I always recommend that people buy a variety of nappies when they get started, and to always have a few (3 - 5 is a nice amount) of AIO’s in your stash so you can get a feel for them. Also, as your baby becomes a toddler, they tend to use less and less nappies in they day, and then AIO’s are wonderful! They are also great for traveling and being out and about because they are so quick and easy to put on. Once you’ve given them a good try, then you can add more to your stash.
I wouldn’t personally recommend AIO’s for the newborn stage, simply because you go through nappies at such a rate, and getting a good fit around those skinny legs to prevent leaks is much easier to do with flat and covers. Also, as you can end up going through 10 - 15 nappies a day, it would cost you a small fortune to buy AIO’s that really would only last you a few months at most. That’s why I recommend buying OSFM (one-size-fits-most) all-in-one’s to use once your baby is about 5ish months old.
In terms of worrying about leaks…you can also add more inserts/flats to an all-in-one nappy to increase the absorption. Everly is now 22 months old and I mainly use AIO’s. I just pad fold a newborn sized hemp flat underneath the inserts for her nap time, as that’s when she really needs more of a boost to prevent leaks.
We have gone through our fair share of leaks with AIO’s, but this has mainly been due to not fitting the nappy properly, and then troubleshooting when she has increased her output during the day and over nap time. Both my babies have been medium to heavy wetters, and so we have definitely not been able to use AIO’s for nighttime. Everly is in all-in-ones 70-80% of the time during they day, with the other 20-30% of the time being in pockets as the covers dry super fast and I can tumble dry the inserts.
My favourite brand of All-in-one Nappies
My favourite brand of All-in-Ones are local South African label, Biddykins. I always rave about Biddykins to my friends because they are well priced, great quality, and the prints are AMAZING! I own about 10 girlie print pockets, and then about 10 girlie print AIO’s, and that’s not even counting Aaron’s collection!
Here are a few photos of Everly rocking her pretty Biddykins AIO nappies:
The Biddykins AIO’s have the following features:
a tummy strip that help prevent moisture creep along the tummy.
various insert layers, size and positioning are carefully researched to offer the best possible blend of absorbency AND trimness, ensuring that the inserts fit INSIDE the nappy, regardless of the size adjusted setting! Being custom designed, they are able to periodically tweak the size of the inserts slightly as they continue to work towards achieving the optimum combination of trimness & absorbency.
a 5-layer bamboo blend top insert, which includes a suede-cloth "StayDry" layer, ensures baby feels dry and comfortable.
a 4-layer bamboo pure lower insert ensures maximum absorption whilst remaining as trim as possible.
the suede-cloth "StayDry" lining that continues right up to the back elastic not only keeps baby feeling dry, but also ensures that 'everything' is contained within the nappy.
We love our all-in-one nappies, and I can’t wait to get out my boy stash for Aaron when we get back home to the farm next week. We’ve been using disposable nappies while traveling (one has to be practical sometimes), and I’ve missed my cloth SO much! If this sounds like a strange concept, I urge you to give cloth nappies a try. I am 100% sure you will become a #clothconvert in no time at all!