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Cloth Diapers For Your Newborn – A Guide To The Best

Updated on June 15, 2011
Itti Bitti All-In-One Diaper - Great For Newborns
Itti Bitti All-In-One Diaper - Great For Newborns

Choose The Best Cloth Or Reusable Diaper

When you choose reusable diapers, which are also known as cloth diapers, or fluff, you will be faced with many different styles and types and it may seem like the choices are endless. Not only this, but you will find there are different diapers for different ages of your baby, from newborn to toddler stage, as well as some that are 'birth to potty', or 'one size fits most'. This guide will cover the most common types of newborn diaper.

A newborn baby pees or urinates very regularly, even as often as every 5 minutes, but this is a small amount of liquid. So a newborn diaper needs does not need to be extremely thick or absorbant, as they will be changed frequently and the baby will rarely out-pee it. However, breastfed babies have explosive poo, and they can poo up to six or even eight times a day, and this will need to be contained in the diaper in order for it to be effective.

Because of this, two part diaper styles are considered the most effective, as they have double the barrier against these explosive poos. Of the two part styles there are fitted diapers, prefolds or ld-fashioned terry diapers, and all of these will need a cover, of which the options are PUL, cotton, wool or fleece. Each have their advantages which will be listed below, but you will need to make sure that what you choose is not too bulky or too tight that they mark their delicate skin.

Fitted Diapers

Fitted diapers are available to buy in sizes, so, for a newborn, you will need to get the small size. These will usually fit the newborn size range, so from around 5lb to 12lb, before you need to move on to the next size. Fitted diapers are usually white or cream, although some coloured variations are available and they are made from cotton, microfleece or bamboo. Depending on the type you buy, you will need to buy between 8 and 12 fitted diapers, and 4 wraps to cover them. They are usually fastened using applix (velcro) or using a nappi nippa, which is the modern version of the safety pin idea. Some popular fitted diapers are:

Tots Bots Bamboozle – these are made from bamboo.

Little Lamb – these are available in cotton or bamboo.

Diddy Diapers – these are similar to the others and available in applix or to be used with a nappi nippa.

Prefolds Or Terries


Prefolds are simply a square of cotton in which you fold in certain ways to suit a boy or a girl, or if you have a breastfed newborn, or depending on the cover you choose. If you decide to use prefolds you will probably need a minimum of 12 prefolds, with 4 wraps, if you will be washing every day or thereabouts. There are a number of folding patterns, and directions for these will usually accompany the diapers – but the main ones are newspaper fold and angel wing fold.

The newspaper fold is simply: for a girl, take the length of your prefold and fold one side to the two-thirds point, and then fold the other side over it, so your length is thirded, and lay that into your wrap or cover; and for a boy, fold a third over, then with the other two thirds, fold them in the same way as for the girl, but loop both sides over the front. The angel wing fold is similar except the length is twisted, which makes it more suitable for containing breastfed poo explosions due to the odd structure.

Some popular prefold choices:

Bambino Mio – these are available in small or large, and you can buy wraps as well, which are sized from newborn, to large.

Bummis prefolds – these are very similar to the Bambino Mio

Junior Joy prefolds – all prefolds are very similar in design with hardly any variations.

Terry towelling squares

These are an option but not really recommended these days due to the increased workload with washing them and boiling them, etc. However, some mothers still use them and they are still available to buy. You will probably need around 20.

How To Fold a Prefold Diaper

Covers & Wraps For Cloth Diapers

Covers and wraps

If you decide to use two-part diapers such as prefolds or fitted diapers, you will need to cover these with wraps. Some of the more popular wraps are:

Bumgenius Flip – these can cover prefolds and fitted diapers but are most commonly used with their own Stay-Dry or Organic inserts. You can also buy disposable inserts for use with Flips. They are very reputable though, and available in a birth-to-potty one size, so may not be suitable for smaller newborns but will be suitable for babies from around 7lb.

Thirsties Duo Wrap – these are very popular due to being so reputable.

Gen-y Wrap – these wraps are available in different sizes and in a variety of designs.

Mother-Ease – these are available in Rikki or Airflow and in a variety of pastel colours and designs. They are the most popular of all wraps.

Wool wraps – wool wraps are very popular due to their ability to allow air through which prevents nappy rash.

Fleece wraps – fleece, like wool, allows the air to circulate so these types are ideal for nighttimes when your baby may be in the same diaper for longer periods of time.

Choose Cloth Diapers - Guide To The Best For Newborns
Choose Cloth Diapers - Guide To The Best For Newborns

All In One Diapers

If you do not wish to use two part diapers, for whatever reason, you could use sized all in one or pocket diapers instead. These are one or two piece – the all in one type includes the insert sewn on to the diaper, and the all in two or pocket diaper requires you to insert the booster after washing.

Some popular types of all-in-one diapers

Itti Bitti D'Lish – these are a very popular style and the small size will fit almost all newborn babies. They have a minky outer layer which is furry to the touch and fasten with poppers. They are available in lots of different colours and in six limited edition prints.

Bambooty – Bambooty are another sized diaper that is popular. The small diaper is suitable from around 6lb and they are available in a few pastel colours as well as some cute designs such as strawberries or owls.

Tots Bots TeenyFit – these are another popular brand of all in one diaper that fit newborn babies up to 12lb in weight. They are available in 6 designs.

Ecobubs Wool Diaper – this diaper is a wool wrap with a pocket in which to place the insert that comes with it. They are well recommended, especially for night time use.

When your baby is around 4 months old and starting to sleep for long periods at night, and especially when they begin weaning, you will find that you need different styles of diapers, and certainly bigger ones, and this is when you may find the birth-to-potty styles are the most economical, with separate diapers reserved for night time use.


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