Prefold Cloth Diapers Absorbency Test – Bummis vs. GroVia

GroVia and Bummis prefold cloth diapers

GroVia and Bummis prefold cloth diapers

I like prefold cloth diapers.  They’re versatile.  They’re generally natural fibers.  They’re generally pretty cheap, even for premium cloth diapers.  Plus, prefold cloth diapers are really nowhere near as scary as they seem.  You can even fold them in a variety of ways without using pins or Snappis.

I’ve got two different types of prefold cloth diapers in my stash, and I wondered how they differed.  I have some Bummis prefolds, plus a GroVia bamboo prefold that I received for testing.

My testing method is sort of pseudo-scientific.  I did my best to manage it scientifically, but there are some flaws in my experimental process.  First, I weighed the diapers on my kitchen scale so that I could get a baseline.  After weighing, I soaked the diapers in one liter of water for two minutes.  I then gave each diaper one minute to drip out the excess and then weighed for absorbency. Weighing is effective, as one gram of weight is the same as one milliliter of water.  (No worries, my fellow Americans.  I’ll convert back to imperial measurements for you!)  Finally, I gently wrung each diaper to test for compression loss and weighed again.  My wringing out process is where the scientific aspect breaks down a bit: I tried to wring each diaper out evenly, but since I was doing it by hand, there’s no way to measure or calibrate the exact amount of effort in squeezing out the water.

Bummis prefold soaking in one liter of water

Bummis prefold soaking in one liter of water

Bummis:  Bummis prefold cloth diapers are 100% organic cotton.  I have the medium size, which are for babies up to twenty pounds.  At a dry weight, they were 89g.  During the two minute soak, they managed to absorb 336mL of water, which is 1.4 cups.  (Whoa.  That’s a ton!)  After compressing, the Bummis prefold still held 270mL, or 1.14 cups of water.  They hold nearly three times their weight in water!

 

GroVia prefold soaking in one liter of water

GroVia prefold soaking in one liter of water

GroVia: GroVia prefold cloth diapers are 55% bamboo and 45% organic cotton.  I have the size two, which is the infant size.  At a dry weight, they were 95g.  During the two minute soak, the GroVia absorbed 358mL of water, which is a little over a cup and a half of water.  After compressing, the diaper held 283mL of water, or 1.19 cups of water.  That’s just a little bit less than three times the weight.

The bottom line is both prefold cloth diapers are amazing at absorbing and surviving compression.  Give them a try and let me know what you think!

Where to buy?

Cloth Diaper Addicts Amazon Store

Nicki’s Diapers

Kelly’s Closet

Cozy Bums

*As of posting, none of these stores have GroVia prefold cloth diapers, but they will!

 

 

Premium Cloth Diapers versus “China Cheapies” – The Warranty

I’ve already done some looking at the benefits of choosing your premium cloth diapers versus the inexpensive cloth diapers made overseas (also known as “China Cheapies”).  There are pros and cons to going in either direction, but today, a cyber buddy posted about a brand new diaper (one of the China Cheapies) having a snap break.

A brand new diaper… with a snap broken in less than two weeks. Will your diaper manufacturer cover that? Or will they give you the runaround?

I’ve had snaps break.  I’ve had elastics fail.  With the snaps that broke, the diapers were heavily used in my cloth diaper stash rotation.  Really, it was disappointing, but it’s not like they hadn’t been work horse diapers.  (And now I have friends who have snap pliers, so I can get them fixed!)  With the elastics that failed, I’ve had three outcomes.  1.) It was a FuzziBunz one size diaper, so I didn’t have to worry about it because the diaper comes with extra elastics that can be fixed without sewing.  And it had been used for a couple of years, so it’s not like it wasn’t due to get a little TLC.  2.) It was a diaper that I’d had for at least a year, so elastics wearing out wasn’t unreasonable.  There are people in my area who can fix them (like Pearl at Cloth for a Cause).  3.) It happened with a brand new GroVia shell.  Actually, it was my very first GroVia shell, and I’d used it twice before an elastic actually broke in the washing machine.  Cozy Bums, my local cloth diaper retailer, replaced the diaper for me and took care of the warranty stuff.  (Best customer service ever.)

With the vast majority of my diapers, I have a one year manufacturer’s warranty.  That’s the warranty on GroVia diapers, Swaddlebees and Blueberry, and Cotton Babies products – Flip, Econobum, and BumGenius.  Happy Heinys has a different warranty depending on what it is, but elastics have a six month warranty and they’ll send you the materials to replace the elastics after that.  (Snaps are lifetime.  Hmm.  I really should have been better about keeping my receipts for my diapers!)  Rumparooz has a variable warranty similar to that of Happy Heinys.  Fuzzi Bunz now has lifetime warranties.

I don’t mind paying twenty dollars or more for a diaper when I know that the manufacturer stands behind what they make.

Some of the China Cheapies brands don’t have that same guarantee.  Sunbaby has a thirty day guarantee.  AlvaBaby (and its rebranded diapers) don’t have a date deadline.  I haven’t heard of people having great luck with getting anything repaired or replaced by other China Cheapies brands.  In fact, I tried a China Cheapies that I bought off of a daily deal site once as an experiment.  The diaper didn’t work.  I messaged the diaper company on Twitter and was ignored.  Fortunately, it was cheap, so I shrugged it off as “no big loss.”

I like knowing that my diapers are made to last.  I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect the same quality or support from a diaper that I buy for five dollars as I would expect from a diaper that I buy for twenty-five dollars.  It’s where that old adage of one getting what one pays for comes in.

Have you ever had any warranty issues with a diaper company?  How was it resolved?

The All-in-Two Diaper Comparison

I love my all-in-two diapers.  They’re wonderfully versatile and can make packing a cinch.  The problem that comes into play is… well, where do you start?  Is there a better or worse one?  Are there different features?  How are the various all-in-two diaper brands the same and how do they differ? [Read more…]

New Cloth Diaper Designs at the ABC Expo!

For the last two years, I’ve watched the news of cloth diaper designs come out from the ABC Expo with baited breath.  I’d really, really love to go to the next one and see the fun and excitement (and blog about it on the spot from my iPhone) in person.  Now that we’re a few days into the release of the new cloth diaper patterns, I’ve seen new release announcements from GroVia, Best Bottom, Rumparooz, Charlie Banana, Apple Cheeks, Bottombumpers, and Blueberry/Swaddlebees.

GroVia: GroVia isn’t just releasing patterns this year.  They’re releasing a host of new products, including the Bamboo prefold.  (I was lucky enough to be one of the testers, so you can see the prefold and my review.)

Left: GroVia’s new hanging wet pail.
Right: GroVia Trainers in new colors!

Left: GroVia fitted diapers
Right: GroVia wool covers

 

Best Bottoms: Best Bottoms has released three new prints.

Three new Best Bottom Diaper covers to add to your stash!
From left to right: Hedgehog, Huckleberry Cobbler, Plum Pie

Rumparooz: Rumparooz has released three new prints.  Permission to use those images was not obtained at the time of post.

Charlie Banana: Charlie Banana has released a new camo collection.  It will be available in the six pack with a brown, black, and white diaper to round out the package.

AppleCheeks: AppleCheeks has released one new print and also announced the discontinuation of another.

The new AppleCheeks print, “Tweet”

Bottombumpers: Look for three new polka dot diapers on your retailer’s shelves!

Polka dots to round out your cloth diaper stash

Blueberry/Swaddlebees: Swaddlebees has released three new prints that will be available across all Blueberry and Swaddlebees product lines.  Permission to use those images was not obtained at the time of post.

What new arrival are you most excited about?

GroVia Bamboo Prefold

A couple of weeks ago, I got a new toy to play with in the mail.  I was fortunate enough to be one of the fifty Canadian testers of the GroVia bamboo prefold.  I’ve used prefold diapers before.  I’ve used bamboo diapers before.  But I’ve never used a prefold made from bamboo.  And I have to tell you, I am in love.  I’ve said before that prefolds are fantastically useful diapers because you can use them in a variety of ways.  You can use them for different folds.  You can use them as a doubler in a pocket diaper.  They’re great for burp cloths or changing pads when you’re on the go and have forgotten/soiled what you usually use.  You can use them for cleaning when you’re out of babies in diapers.

In short, you can do anything with a prefold.

I’ve used the GroVia prefold in a variety of ways since I got it.  I’ve put it through every cloth diaper laundry cycle, whether I’ve used it or not, just to see how it holds up for softness.  It has passed every test that I’ve thrown at it.  I’ve used it as a doubler for my toddler’s overnight diapers by wrapping the prefold diaper around a microfiber insert.  And I’ve used it as just a prefold in a simple trifold pattern on Eudora in a GroVia shell.  It stayed absorbant and it stayed amazingly soft… almost cuddly soft.

If prefolds seem complicated for you, check out the demo video where I show you different ways you can fold your prefold diaper.  I don’t do snappis, so all you need is a cover to hold them in place!

GroVia Bamboo Prefold

 

Who Needs Diaper Covers? (Wordless Wednesday)

A lot of the time, I see cute little girl dresses with matching diaper covers.  I hardly use them.  We use cloth diapers.  They’re already cute.  Why on earth would I want to cover them up?!

Eudora rocking Fuzzi Bunz in ChocoTruffle

Peekaboo! She’s playing peekaboo with her doll, but she’s showing off her GroVia hybrid diaper in Surf!

Butts up? Norton’s Cookie Monster Best Bottom diaper is very appropriate… especially in his Sesame Street themed bedroom.

Cloth Diaper Combination – GroVia Hybrid Shell + Best Bottom insert

Eudora modeling the GroVia shell with a Best Bottom stay dry insert. Pretty darned trim!

Usually, when I decide I want to experiment with cloth diapers, I end up buying a new brand or style.  But today, my friend Heather over at the Parenting Patch asked me a question: what inserts could I use in a GroVia hybrid shell?

I’m a purist.  (No, not a cloth diaper snob.  I reject that label because snobbery implies that I look down on others who do it differently than me.)  I seldom mix and match inserts and shells.  When I fold cloth diaper laundry, I calmly sit down and sort shells and inserts before stuffing so that I can put the same brand inserts and shells together. [Read more…]

GroVia Hybrid Demo Video

Get GroVia Diapers for a Steal!

Norton modeling GroVia in kiwi

I’ve been a fan of GroVia hybrids for quite some time.  The all-in-two ability to reuse the shell makes using cloth diapers less expensive, and the design is super easy to use.  (Here’s a demo video!)

Today, you can get GroVia diapers at an amazing price at BabySteals.  Stop by and build up your cloth diaper stash today!