I have resolved to at least try and blog once a week. How long this will last is anybody’s guess, but Project #1 is currently napping, so here goes…
We’ve been using cloth nappies now for almost 16 months, and it is love. P#1 loves them, I love them, even the husband loves them. They are soft, look comfy, are easy to put on (easier than disposables – which we use on occasions), wash well, don’t smell (disposables have a weird smell. I am constantly convinced P#1 has pooed and he never has…), work out cheaper in the long run, are better for the environment, and LOOK PRETTY. Ok, I realise that is not really the point, but they do. Especially all clean and hanging out on the line on a sunny day.
Lovely fluffy nappies!
We use a mixture of two-parters, pockets, and all-in-ones. My favourite ones for everyday use are TotsBots Easyfits, which have evolved to have 4 different versions now. I own a mix of V2, V3 and V4 and someone recently asked me what the difference was between the all, so I put together some photos and info to try and describe the differences, as I’ve found them.
Version 2. This print is starburst.
As well as the standard block colours (red, green, blue, orange, brown, purple and white) the most other common V2 prints are starburst (above), cosmic, flower power, tutti-fruiti and cherrylicious. Harder to find prints are mushroom, robin, rudolph and gingerbread. In the US, slightly different block colours were released (blueberry, lemon, lime and pomegranate) which are generally hard to find.
There are 3 rows of poppers so can be 3 different lengths, and all of mine are velcro which I find makes them really adjustable to fit. This is the same for all versions of Easyfit. I have heard that velcro can be a pain with toddlers who can undo it and remove their own nappies, but my 16 month old hasn’t discovered this (yet!) I find popper tricky to do on a wriggly monster which is part of the reason I’ve stuck to velcro. That an the OCD component of having them all the same!
The inside has one long ‘tongue’ which is bamboo in V2s. It feels quite thin but is very absorbent, although takes the longest to dry of all versions.
The under side of the tongue is microfiber to supposedly speed drying. There’s then an opening to a pocket, against the PUL (plastic waterproof bit). Most people, including me, tuck the tongue back in here, but you can lay it on top which is quicker to do and would have the microfiber against the skin which feels drier.
So this is the tongue just laid back on itself…
…and this it is tucked away.
Since P#1 was about 6 months old, I have also added a booster to all easyfits. I just tuck them inside the pocket. The two I’ve bought are bamboo ones from the nappy lady (on the bottom in the photo below) and bambino mio at the top. The mio ones are a bit wider and don’t fit the V2 well. The bamboo just about fit. Totsbots own bamboo boosters are slimmer and fit the best, but are very heavy and take forever to dry so I rarely use them.
The PUL (waterproof outer – the bit with the print on) on the V2s is thickest and the least stretchy of all versions.This makes for a marginally less smooth fit, but reviews suggest the fewest leaks. I think it’s more forgiving if you don’t care for it well, eg a V2 could probably stand more tumble drying without compromising the waterproofing. I treat all mine the same and have only ever got leaks from any version if P#1 has fallen asleep just before a nappy change and ended up in it for way too long.
Not much flex in the PUL in the V2.
The fabric around the top and bottom in the V2s seems cheaper to me. Almost a bit nylony?
I really love the V3s. They were my first experience of Easyfits so maybe that has something to do with it (who likes change?!) but I think the prints are gorgeous too. My first set were the Storytime set, featuring Jack and the Beanstalk (green), Chicken Licken (blue), Hansel and Gretel (purple), The Enormous Turnip (orange) and Three Little Pigs (yellow.) ‘Jack’ remains one of my favourite prints so I’ve featured him here!
Jack and the Beanstalk (V3)
V3 is where TotsBots really went crazy, as Frugi (the clothing company that specialises in cutting clothes for chunky cloth bums) also got in on the action, having nappies printed with the same or complementary designs as their clothing. V3 prints include the 5 Storytime prints already mentioned, the usual 6 block colours, the elements range (Blue Moo, Fox n Spots, Night Owl), the capital cities (London, New York, Paris), Royal Flush (extremely hard to find as it was limited edition, released for the birth of Prince George), Nature Girl, Pooper Hero, Jubilee, and Gingerbread Family (these last 4 being quite sought after). The Frugi nappies (all tend to be hard to find) include Dino, Owl, Ladybird and Rainbow in V3 Set 1, and Flower Fox, Orchard Days, Happy Bees and Farmyard in V3 Set 2. I don’t own any of Set 2, but absolutely adore Orchard Days, Happy Bees and Farmyard. I’m just too tight to pay more than RRP for something that is going to be pooed in, to be honest!
Frugi V3 Set 2 – aren’t they lovely?! Image with thanks to TotsBots and Frugi.
The system inside the V3 is the same as the V2, but the tongue is all ‘minky’ (like microfiber fleece stuff.) It’s super soft, dries incredibly quickly, but is the least absorbent of the easyfits. However, it’s my favourite as they wash so well, never stain, and dry quickly. I boost these with the V4 boosters (see further down post), but the normal bamboo boosters work fine too.
This is the material inside the top and bottom of the V3s (that tucks the tongue away). This is my oldest easyfit and yet no bobbling. It’s more like lycra.
The PUL is thinner (you can probably see how much more flexible it is in the photo below) and some people have complained it wicks liquid, but I suspect they just don’t boost adequately having been used to the absorbency of V2s.
Flexible and slightly stretchy PUL
Although the V3s are my favourite for their convenience, I love the V4s for their absorbency. My first set of V4s were the Rhyme Time set (which had the added bonus of nearly – oh so nearly – being able to sneak them in past the husband, who thought at first glance they were the old Storytime nappies.) The Rhyme Time set comprises of Sing A Song Of Sixpence (red, below), Hickory Dickory Dock (purple), Incy Wincy Spider (white background), Humpty Dumpty (yellow) and Hey Diddle Diddle (blue.)
V4 – this is Sing A Song Of Sixpence. It’s probably my favourite V4, although Incy Wincy Spider and the Birthday design are close.
In addition to Rhyme Time, there is a birthday nappy (released on Prince George’s birthday) which I bought at the time and then saved to use for P#1’s first birthday – it was adorable! We even did a quick nappy, rainbow T-shirt and rainbow-cake-pop photo.
Project#1 in his birthday nappy
Other V4s include the usual block colours, elements, and the Frugi sets of Easter, Birdies, Transport and Sealife (V4 Set 1) and Christmas, Dinos 2, Rainbow Owls, and Garden Owl (V4 Set 2) and recently released is Ocean Strawberry, Dizzy Ducks, Ellies in Wellies and Field Jungle Friends (V4 Set 3.) I have to say I’m eyeing Ellies in Wellies and Jungle Friends up for bargains in Real Nappy Week!
Inside of a V4
The inside material is called binky, because one side is minky and the other is bamboo, to increase absorbency. The V4s are definitely more absorbent than V3s but I think the bamboo makes them look more worn and tired.
V4 pop-in booster
These boosters come with every V4. They are bamboo on one side and minky on the other, and have poppers at one end. I love them and wish they could be bought directly from TotsBots, but as far as I know, they only come with V4 nappies. These are the ones I use inside my V3s rather than in the V4s, because they seem too bulky in the V4s (and we don’t need quite that much boosting just yet.)
The idea is you popper them together and then fold back or tuck in as usual.
The PUL and inner material is the same as V3s.
The PUL in the V4s feels the same as the V3s to me – nice and soft and stretchy. Some people have suggested that it’s even thinner because they can see the darker TB label through it, but I think that’s just because the V4s have two white-based prints (Incy Wincy and Birthday) whereas the V3s were colour-based so blocked out the labels.
And that is that!