Moving along with our Cloth Diapering series, we are on to fitted diapers. When I originally thought about the posts in the series, I considered including fitted diapers with the Prefolds and Flats post. Fitted diapers are the same in that they are all absorbency and require a waterproof cover to keep from leaking. But since that post was really long and there’s a bit more detail I wanted to add, I decided to give them their own fluffy little post so you can see what they are all about!
Fitted diapers (sometimes just referred to as ‘fitteds’) are made of absorbent cloth like cotton, organic cotton, bamboo or hemp (or a blend of these). As I mentiond in last week’s post, different materials have different absorbency rates and the price point of the diaper will reflect this. Fitted diapers are sewn into a complete diaper with snaps or aplix and elastic. So there’s no folding or pinning as with prefolds and flats. One exception is the contour diaper or “snapless fitted,” which would need a pin or other fastener to stay put.
Fitted diapers are known for being extremely absorbent and great for naps and overnight diapering. Many people use other types of diapers in the day and buy fitted diapers specifically for night. Others use fitteds all the time. Some babies are heavy wetters and parents find that other styles of diapers just don’t have the absorbency their child needs so they switch to fitteds. Some parents just pick fitteds from the start!
In comparison to other diaper styles, fitted diapers tend to be on the fluffier side because they are made from many layers of absorbent fabric and often contain snap-in doublers or boosters. Of course, fitteds can be made to be less absorbent. Some materials, like hemp, are still extremely absorbent yet naturally trimmer.
There are also sizing options. A one size (sometimes written OS) diaper has snaps that can be adjusted to make the rise smaller or larger. Generally speaking, a OS might be very large on an infant. If you select of of the fluffier diapers, expect to size up in clothing when you baby is on the smaller size of the weight range.
Sized diapers tend to be trimmer because there is comparatively less material. Some brands have a 2-size system and others use XS-XL. Although a OS diaper will fit for a long duration, be prepared that some children do grow out of them. Depending on their size and when they potty train (night training often comes later), toddlers might eventually need a something like an X-Large.
One great option in fitted diapering is the Newborn Rental. You borrow the teeny newborn size for the first three months. At this time, a one size will be very bulky on your baby so opting to rent saves you from buying a set of diapers that will only fit for a short time. You can actually get store credit toward your stash when you return your rental. Read more about it here.
As with prefolds and flats, fitteds require a cover. Your first choice is selecting a cover is between PUL or wool. Many people choose wool to wear over a fitted diaper. When lanolized, wool is naturally leak-proof and breathable. You can read more about it here. Because they are stretchy and typically more roomy, wool covers fit nicely over even the fluffiest of fitteds. The option of wool longies (or shorties) is also a nice idea for use with a fitted. Longies are just pants made of wool. Pair that with a shirt and your baby is all dressed. Style!
PUL covers will also work with a fitted diaper, however you will need to take into consideration the size of the fitted when selecting the size of the cover. A fluffy one size fitted will probably work well in a one size or larger sized cover. In warmer times of the year, some parents keep their babies in a fitted without the cover while at home. You have lots of freedom when you choose a fitted diaper!
One note about laundering fitted diapers. As you might imagine, these guys take a while to dry. You’ll definitely want to have access to a dryer. Some people like to line dry for a bit and then use the dryer to finish and soften them up. You can try adding dryer balls or a towel to your load to help speed drying time.
I hope this post helped you understand fitted diapers a little better. Hit me up with questions or share what you love about fitteds in the comments below!