Community Curated • Updated 03, 2019
Well, you can’t find a more essential baby item than this one, that’s sure! The first couple of years of your little one’s life (and your own as well) are going to be filled with lots and lots of dirty diapers, which also means you’ll eventually become an expert in everything that has to do with diapers!
Baby diapers are lifesavers when it comes to baby hygiene and overall orderliness in a child’s early life. They come in several sizes, many designs, and exist in two main types: disposable diapers and cloth diapers. Both of them have their own pros and cons and it’s hard to say which one is the better option - a lot of the times it comes down to a personal choice, and what suits the baby, as well as the parent more in terms of characteristics and comfort.
Chances are you’ve got plenty of questions when it comes to baby essentials just before or immediately after your little one arrives - that’s why we’ve prepared this elaborate article on the details of baby essentials, make sure to check it out! The beginning of parenting and everything that comes with it can be a very confusing time, which is why a site like ours is dedicated to making life a little bit easier for you, while also attempting to save you a little bit of time as well in the whole parenting process.
So, if you’ve ever wondered how long your little one will have to wear diapers, how many diapers does a baby use in a week, month or year, as well as questions concerning cloth or disposable diapers, well, you’ve come to the right place. No more confusing thoughts when the time for buying diapers comes - just take a little time to read this guide and by the end of it you’ll see how easier things get.
In our guide, you can find the best baby diapers currently on the market, with a couple of top picks - most popular brand, most eco-friendly. Below you can find some frequently asked questions that people often pose when buying diapers.
Well, Pampers has been on the disposable diaper market for ages now, and it definitely deserves a place on our list. Pampers Swaddlers, by far their most popular diaper product with parents, is also marketed as a number one choice for US hospitals - and there’s, of course, a reason. The team behind Pampers has worked on creating a highly absorbent material, as well as creating a uniquely designed multilayered liner which gives enough flexibility to the diaper to conform to the various baby-body types, while also helping to prevent poop explosions and all kinds of messiness that might ensue from loose diapers. This also means that they’re a great choice for more active babies! The material is carefully selected to leave the skin around the diaper area nice and dry, so your baby can feel comfortable and safe while waiting to be changed, and you won’t be worried of any potential diaper-rash outbursts. What’s more, the Pampers Swaddler diapers contain a wetness indicator, a feature that we’re sure every parent will find very useful - you definitely won’t need to wait for the smell to tell you when it’s time for change! The extra layers of the diaper don’t get in the way of it feeling light and thin enough to ensure the baby’s comfort. Swaddlers also contain a small notch on the diaper, meant for the umbilical cord, making sure to prevent any potential irritation on the bellies of newborns. Customers have been most vocal about the softness of the material used for the diapers, which makes it a perfect option even for babies with extra-sensitive skin.
When it comes to biodegradable bamboo disposable diapers, the Andy Pandy is definitely the most popular choice out there. А proud part of the Amazon’s choice list, and counting a whopping number of Amazon reviews (coming second only to the classic Pampers), the Andy Pandy diapers are definitely an eco-friendly parents’ favorite. 100% biodegradable, made from 100% perforated bamboo fiber, these diapers are the perfect middle ground between disposable and cloth diapers. With a 3-D form-fitting design, the Andy Pandy will fit just right on your baby’s changing body, as well as prevent and minimize as much leakage and blowouts as possible. The flexible side panels and the super-elastic waistband work as additional security measures that will keep your baby both comfy and mess free. And you definitely won’t have to worry about diaper rash with these diapers, because the bamboo fiber will keep your baby’s skin dry. An additional great feature is the wetness indicator, something that today’s diapers definitely mustn't do without. The Andy Pandy are proudly marketed as hypoallergenic, antibacterial, and odor-resistant diapers (we all know we definitely caught your attention with this one!), while also being free from all the scary, unwanted chemicals that you might find in some disposable diapers, substances such as phthalates, chlorine, latex, alcohol, some preservatives as well as PVC and TBT. Another great thing about the 100% bamboo content is that bamboo fiber is a material that naturally regulates temperature, which means your baby will always feel good in these diapers, regardless whether it’s hot or cold outside or inside your home.
The Honest Company, founded and owned by actress Jessica Alba, has been around for quite some time now and has been gaining a devoted and steady following in the baby products market. And it hardly comes as a surprise, considering the company is devoted to making eco-friendly products with as many natural materials used as possible. These diapers are made from an ultra-soft plant-based (PLA) inner and outer layer, and also contain a super-absorbent core made from fluff pulp that has been carefully harvested from sustainably managed forests, and safe and gentle for the baby’s little bum. The Honest Company refrains from using chlorine processing or chemical bleaches on their diapers, or any fragrances or lotions for that matter, although they do use natural based citrus extracts and liquid chlorophyll to serve as odor-resistants. The moisture barrier cuffs will fit securely, preventing any unwanted leakage, without being too tight or too loose on your baby’s body. The stretch side panels are comfy and soft, and the refastenable tabs are great for necessary on-the-go readjustments for your baby as it starts to become more curious and more active in crawling and walking! And if we didn’t catch your attention so far, the super-cute prints on the diapers will definitely steal your heart! Whether you intend them as a baby shower gift or plan on using them for your own little nugget, these diapers will make sure baby looks stylish and mess-free at all times!
Because we care so much for diversity and different product preferences, we’ve also included cloth diapers in our list, for the parents that want to opt out of using disposable diapers. Coming in super-cute designs and patterns, the Weegreco reusable cloth diapers are a mixture of synthetic and natural fiber materials, and as cloth diapers, they definitely have their own advantages. First of all, they’re the most eco-friendly of diapers, meaning they can be used over and over without having to be thrown away after each use - this also means that, in the long term, they’ll save you a good amount of money, making them economically-friendly on top of everything. The exterior of Weegreco diapers is made from 100% waterproof, breathable polyester material which, along with the leg gusset, will keep your baby leak-free and comfortable at the same time. These diapers are called pocket diapers because they contain space where you insert 1-2 absorbent pads made from 2 layers of microfiber and 2 layers of bamboo, so you have both the natural materials for extra softness and care for the skin, as well as the absorbency and protection from the microfibre. The inner suede cloth that touches the baby’s bum is designed to keep moisture at bay, thus keeping your little one dry and diaper rash-free. The Weegreco diapers come in one size with adjustable snaps which will fit all types of baby bodies from ages 0-2. Cloth diapers are slowly positioning themselves as a more ecological alternative to regular diapers and, who knows, maybe including them in this list will also change the minds of parents who usually use disposable diapers - we all know it’s always nice to try something new!
The BabieB are another bamboo diaper brand on our list. Bamboo diapers are slowly taking over as a natural alternative to synthetic diapers and, although usually more expensive, they are definitely worth considering, especially if you’re more eco-friendly oriented and want to use only natural materials for your baby’s skin. The BabieB bamboo diapers are marketed as 93% compostable, which means that most of the diaper is biodegradable in nature. They’re made from high-quality, certified bamboo pulp, free from the usual chemicals you can find in synthetic diapers. They contain only bamboo pulp and beads that absorb liquid and break down to salt after use, in the process of composting. They also contain 3 wetness line indicators, saving you from the necessary peek into your baby’s diaper and will also save you from potential occurrences of diaper rash. Coming in a variety of sizes, the BabieB bamboo diapers suit both infants and toddlers and can be used for different ages. Reviewers on Amazon have been raving about their absorbency, as well as the minimization of leakage, and the natural, cloth-like feel of the material. Some reviewers have noted that they work better as daytime diapers, though, due to their tendency not to disperse liquid.
For parents who are fans of good old cloth diapers, maybe the bumGenius will already sound like a familiar name. This one-size cloth diaper is definitely one of the best currently on the market and has been pretty popular with Amazon reviewers as well. The great thing about the bumGenius is that it’s very flexible when it comes to size - it fits most babies that weigh from 8 to 35+ pounds. Just adjust it the way you want using the snaps at the front of the diaper and put it on your baby, worry free! The semi-attached inserts that are meant to keep the moisture away from your baby’s bum, also make this cloth diaper very easy to wash and dry, so you can have it up and ready for reuse in no-time. Parents love how resilient this diaper is and how effective in preventing leaks. And it’s no wonder, considering it has an extra layer of microfiber sewn into the shell of the diaper, as well as a waterproof outer cover. What's more, when it comes to the heavy wetters of the world, the bumGenius will allow you to affect its absorption capacity by doubling-up the front flap of the diaper. A bit of a downer may be that these kinds of diapers can be kind of bulky, because of their two sewn-on inner flaps that enhance absorption. Also, more frequent washing may make them slightly flimsier - no worries, though, they won’t lose any of their absorption power or softness! Generally speaking, this is a great parallel diaper option to the disposable ones, saving you significant amounts of money in the long term, as well as having a much better effect on the environment.
Technically, your baby can start wearing diapers from the moment they’re born (and they will need to, anyway!). There are some precautionary measures you’ll have to take, however, when the baby is still very young and in development. Thus, make sure to:
Pay close attention to baby’s skin when you’re changing their diapers and look for potential signs of rashes since this is a common irritation that happens in infants, caused by diapers.
Have in mind that disposable diapers usually soak more liquid, so they’re very convenient for nighttime use; if, however, you’ve already opted for using cloth ones during the whole day, you can certainly stick with them as well, but it might mean more frequent night changes.
Diapers should be changed approximately every 2-3 hours during the course of a day. Letting your little one stay longer than this time in dirty diapers may cause infections, as well as diaper rash and other types of skin irritation.
Ah yes, the ultimate baby diaper debate. Well, turns out the pros and cons kinda even out. Let’s have a look at both of them.
Pros of disposable diapers:
Highly absorbent and more breathable
More hygienic than cloth diapers (a big reason for this is that with reusable nappies you can’t really be sure you’ve destroyed all bacteria on them)
Practical - you can just throw them away every time your baby goes to the toilet
A larger variety of sizing options
Cons of disposable diapers:
Overall, more expensive in a time slot of two years ($2000-$3000; compare with cloth diapers which range from $800-$1000)
Aren’t eco-friendly - this is one of the biggest downsides to using disposable diapers. However, there are increasingly better options showing up every year on the market, disposable diapers which are biodegradable or ones that are made from eco-friendly materials (like using wood pulp from sustainable forests instead of hydrogels - the Honest Company’s diapers that we have in our guide are an excellent example of this method)
Sometimes the dyes and gels used in some diapers can cause irritations and allergies
Pull tabs may rip when the diaper is changed
Pros of cloth diapers:
Generally cheaper than disposable diapers in the long run (compare expenses in the course of two years for cloth diapers - $800-$1000, and also for disposable ones - $2000-$3000)
Environmentally-friendly - cloth diapers are reusable and don’t need to be thrown away after each use; they’re also often made from more natural materials
They may be gentler on more sensitive skin
Cons of cloth diapers:
There’s still some concern over the eco-friendliness of cloth diapers, sense they require energy and clean water with each washing
Are not as absorbent as the disposable diapers, which means you’ll often have to change them more often than the disposable ones
Require deep cleaning - if they’re not well cleaned, may cause infections and rashes
How Many Diapers Does a Baby Use in One Day, a Week and a Year?
In the course of a day a newborn (under one month of age) will use 6-10 diapers. Have in mind that newborns mess up more diapers than babies which are older.
Newborn babies use around 70 diapers in the course of a week. They may spend 4-13 weeks in that weight-size, depending on their initial birth weight.
And for a whole year, you’ll need somewhere around 2,500-3,000 diapers.
Babies usually start wearing diapers from the moment they’re born up until the moment they’re successfully potty-trained. This means that they’re likely to stop wearing diapers as early as 2 years of age, and most often around the age of 3. Some children continue on to use overnight diapers up until the age of five.
What Are Usual Diaper Sizes?
Although sizes can vary from brand to brand, the usual diaper sizes are the following:
Newborn up - to 10 lbs
Size 1 - 8-14 lbs
Size 2 - 12-18 lbs
Size 3 - 16-28 lbs
Size 4 - 22-37 lbs
Size 5 - 27+ lbs
Size 6 - 35+ lbs
Boys 2T-3T- 18-34 lbs
Boys 3T-4T - 32-40 lbs
Boys 4T-5T - 38+ lbs
Girls 2T-3T - 18-34 lbs
Girls 3T-4T - 32-40 lbs
Girls 4T-5T - 38+ lbs
Another version of it would be:
Size 0 → 1-2.5kg, 2-5lbs
Size 1 → 2 -5kg, 5-11lbs
Size 2 → 3-6kg, 7-14lbs
Size 3 → 4-9kg, 8-20lbs
Size 4 → 7-18kg, 15-40lbs
Size 5 → 11-25kg, 24-55lbs
Size 6 → 16kg +, 35lbs+
Generally, disposable diapers don’t have an expiration date or a shelf-life. If the diapers are colorful in design, then maybe there’ll be some slight discoloration after a certain time, but their performance shouldn’t decrease with time.
An everyday product, but one that draws a lot of questions with itself, baby diapers can be as varied as can the babies themselves. This means that you should always first buy a couple of small quantities of several different baby diapers and then try them out on your little one to see which ones will fit them and suit them best. Some companies will even give you free samples for your newborn if you contact them and ask them. Shopping online also oftentimes helps in cutting the costs when it comes to buying diapers. After you’ve worked out your preferred choice of nappies, you can even subscribe to a regular supply of them which will also additionally help you to save money in the long run.
As with other early baby experiences and essentials, this one also requires a little bit of patience to get it right - but once you do, it’s usually a smooth sailing from then on (with, of course, the occasional stink bomb or a stubborn patch of diaper rash on your little one’s bum).