Flip Organic Inserts: Old and New

So what’s up with the new Flip organic inserts?  Let’s go over the packaging changes first, then we’ll compare the actual inserts.

 

Flip Day Packs used to come with 2 covers and 6 inserts.  Stay-dry (microfiber topped with suedecloth) was one option for $49.95, and Organic (organic cotton inserts) was another option, for $59.95.  Each day pack would get you through 6 diaper changes (assuming you reuse each cover 3 times).  Other Flip insert options were the newborn stay-dry inserts and the disposable inserts (sold separately).

 

The NEW Flip Organic Day packs come with 2 covers and 8 (not 6) organic cotton inserts, still for $59.95.  So you get 2 more inserts for the same price, but the inserts are thinner.  Which means they’re trimmer, but also less absorbent.  Theoretically, the Organic day pack now has enough inserts for 8 changes, while the stay-dry still represents 6 changes, but to get all 8 changes you would have to reuse each cover FOUR times, which may or may not be realistic, depending on your baby.

bg flip org night 2pk

The OLD Organic Cotton inserts have been renamed the Flip Organic Night-time Inserts and are available in 2-packs for $22.95.  As well as being available in day packs, the new (daytime) organic inserts are available in 3-packs for $19.95, the same price that a 3-pack of the old Organic Inserts, now the new Night-time Inserts, used to be sold for.  Confused yet?  🙂

 

So, what ARE these inserts?  If you want to see them in person, please come visit Babies Bottoms and More in Farmers Branch, TX on a Tuesday from 10-2 or Saturday from 11-3.  Or you can keep reading… the new organic inserts are made of the same soft and squishy organic cotton as the old organic inserts (this cotton is also used in the Elementals.  It’s divine.)  Instead of being folded and sewn down into a 4 layer thick prefold-sized insert, it is simply one single layer that has been serged around the edges.  More like a flat diaper than a prefold.  Not exactly like a flat, because as you can see in the below photo, the dimensions are not quite the same as the Hemp Babies Flat, but are about twice the size of the old style organic insert.

bg flip old new hempbabies comp

To use the old style organic inserts, you tri-folded (folded it in thirds) and laid it inside the cover.  You’d trifold it one direction for smaller babies, the other direction for larger babies who needed a longer insert.  With the new organic insert, you do the same thing – but you first fold it in half crosswise.  In half, then in thirds.  The photo below shows an unfolded old-style insert next to a new insert that has been folded in half one time.

bg flip old new organic side by side

Because the new insert can unfold completely to a single layer, it will be easier to clean and will dry faster.  However since it also just uses less cotton (when trifolded the new insert has 6 layers of cotton, the old insert had 12) it will be trimmer/less absorbent.  Of course, if you need more absorbency one of the beauties of the Flip system is that you can simply stack two inserts on top of each other and use them BOTH inside the cover.  (I kind of wonder if that’s what they were going for when they bumped the day pack up to 8 inserts… it can be 4 diaper changes for a heavy wetter/older baby and 8 changes for a lighter wetter.) So I guess although I personally am almost always in favor of more absorbency even at the cost of trimness, I can see how the new insert is more versatile especially for moms who really want trimness.  The photo below shows a side view of the old vs new inserts so you can see how much trimmer the new one is.

Old on the left, New on the right

Old on the left, New on the right

 

So, what do you all think?  Do you like the versatility and trimness of the new insert?  Or do you prefer the simpler folding method of the old one?  Any other thoughts?

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Photo Review: Flip Trainers

Several of you have been asking for a review and photos of the new Flip trainers.  Here you go!

For $34.95 you get 1 adjustable waterproof shell and 5 organic cotton inserts - enough for 5 accidents. If your toddler is still having poopy accidents, you might want to get 2 boxes (i.e., 2 shells) but if you're just working on the wet accidents, 1 box should do it.

The shell has waterproof PUL (blue) and stretchy side tabs (orange). It has a snap-down rise and adjustable waist snaps as well, to fit 18 mo - 2T

These side panels are on the largest setting right now. Plenty of snaps make sure they will not pop off when your child pulls them down.

The shell, unsnapped and opened up. See the flaps in front and back? The insert tucks under the flaps.

Inserts attach to the shell with hidden velcro under the flaps. This insert is attached with velcro on the under side. The velcro you see above it is a self-closing laundry tab, so the velcro doesn't pick up lint and get caught on stuff in the wash.

There is another velcro strip under the front flap. The insert has multiple velcro strips which you can fold different ways to fit S-M-L. Put the extra folded over part in the front for a boy, in the back for a girl.

In the last picture the insert was unfolded and on the Large setting. Here it is folded all the way down on the small setting.

Once attached, you can see how the insert makes a nice absorbent inner for the shell. It is not as thick as the Flip DIAPER insert, nor as absorbent as a full diaper.

When the sides are all snapped up, you can see how it makes a pull-up training pant with waterproof outer and soft, absorbent inner

Any questions you still have?  Let me know and I’ll do my best to answer.  You can get your Flip Training Pant from Babies Bottoms and More by following this link: http://babiesbottomsandmore.com/bufltrpa.html (It says they are currently out of stock as of 2.28.12 but I will change that tomorrow I hope. We do have a limited amount in stock – 3 boy, 4 neutral, 1 girl.)

 

How Much Does A Full Diaper Stash Cost?

Over the weekend I had three very patient customers who helped me put this post together.  The question to answer was basically “What is the cost difference between the different styles of cloth diapers and how many do I need to get a full stash?”  So, without further ado…

Prefold Diapers

Prefolds and Covers

This is the least expensive and least like disposable diapers option.  The absolute cheapest way to get a full stash of cloth diapers – for a baby under 6 months “full stash” = 24 diaper changes, or 2 full days.  As your baby grows he/she will go through fewer diapers each day so you can stretch out the time between washes a bit, or get by with fewer diapers.  With the prefold + cover system, 1 diaper change = 1 prefold diaper PLUS you’ll need 1 cover for every 3-4 diapers.  (You’ll reuse each cover, on average, 3-4 times).

The Econobum system by BumGenius is a one-size prefold + cover system.  The Econobum Full Kit contains 12 diapers, 3 covers, and a wet bag for $49.99.  Two of these come in at right under $100 and voila! you have your stash.  (Econobum diapers will not start fitting till 8-10 lbs so they will not always fit a newborn from day 1). Your $100 for the Econobum system will pay for itself after just 50 days of use… that’s not even 2 months!!

The Thirsties Duo Wraps with traditionalPrefolds are another good option.  Duo Wraps come in two sizes that roughly correspond with the infant size and regular/premium size prefolds.  Size 1 Duo Wraps will fit 6-18 lbs and Size 2 fit 18-40.  They WILL fit a full term newborn baby from day 1.  You’ll need 24 infant size prefolds, 6 Duo Wraps, and a pack of Snappi diaper fasteners, for a total of around $130.  Then when your baby gets to be around 12-18 lbs you’ll get the next size Duo Wraps and prefolds for the next size, which will last you till potty training.  If you get another 24 of the next size up and 6 more Duo Wraps that will be another $136 for a total diaper expense of $266.  A $266 cloth diaper stash would pay for itself in 133 days, or a little less than 4 1/2 months.

If you decide to use a one-size cover with your prefolds instead of the Duo Wraps you could try the Rumparooz one-size cover which will start fitting at 8 lbs – so either on day 1 or pretty close too it.  6 Rumparooz covers will cost $96, plus 24 infant prefolds, 24 regular/premium prefolds, and a pack of snappis comes to a total diaper cost of about $209.  Not bad compared with $2000-2500 for disposables!  The prefolds + Rumparooz cover system would pay for itself in 104.5 days, or just under 3 1/2 months.

Flip Day Pack contains 6 diaper changes

All-in-Two’s (AI2’s)

AI2’s range in price depending on factors like diaper features, country of origin, one-size v.s. sized inserts, etc.  Let’s look at the low-end and high-end systems.

The Flip diaper system with stay-dry inserts is the least expensive of the AI2 systems.  The one-size cover and one-size inserts will fit babies from 8 or 10 to 35 lbs.  They’re sold in “Day Packs” for $49.95.  Each Day Pack contains 6 inserts and 2 covers – enough for 6 changes.  So 4 Day Packs will be a full stash and will cost you just under $200.  The Flip system will pay for itself in 100 days, or just a little bit over 3 months.  If you choose to upgrade to the organic inserts for an additional $10 per day pack, the total cost of $240 will pay for itself in 120 days or 4 months.

The Best Bottom System is one of the higher-end AI2 systems.  Inner gussets, fun prints, a double layer of waterproof PUL, and made in the USA status are all things that bump the price up from the Flips, but the biggest difference in the price comes from the fact that there are 3 different size inserts to use with the one-size cover.  Different size inserts mean the diaper will be trimmer on a small baby, and more absorbent on a big baby.  In fact, if you use the Best Bottom system and upgrade to the hemp inserts, you’ll be using one of the TRIMMEST cloth diaper systems around.  The Best Bottoms full package deal costs around $407 for the stay-dry microfiber inserts (hemp is a little more).  It will fit babies from 6-35 lbs, and you can purchase extenders (sold separately) to increase that range up to 50 lbs!  This package would pay for itself in about 203 days or a little less than 7 months.

Fuzzibunz Elite one-size pocket diaper

Pocket Diapers

Pocket Diapers are easier to figure out how many you need because for 24 diaper changes you just buy 24 diapers, period.  Between the BumGenius 4.0 and the Fuzzibunz Elite pocket diaper, a full stash of 24 will range from about $406-455.  Both these diapers will fit from 8 or 10 up to 35 lbs.  If you need a one-size pocket diaper that will definitely start fitting at 8 lbs, try the Rumparooz (though it is a bit pricier).  A full stash of pocket diapers will pay for itself in about 7 months, closer to 6 1/2 months for the less expensive and closer to 7 1/2 for the more expensive diapers.

BumGenius Freetime one-size all-in-one

All-in-one’s (AIO’s)

Our two most popular aio’s at time of writing are both BumGenius diapers: the organic cotton Elemental and the stay-dry polyester Freetime.  Both are one-size diapers that will fit from 8 or 10 to 35 lbs.  The Elemental is the other diaper besides the Best Bottom ai2 with hemp inserts that I would consider the absolute trimmest cloth diaper.  Individual prices are 24.95 for the Elemental, 19.95 for the Freetime.  With quantity discounts, 24 Elementals will cost around $530 while 24 Freetimes will cost around $410.  This means they will pay for themselves in a little less than 9 months (Elemental) or a little less than 7 months (Freetime.)

We’ll talk about optional accessories next time like wet bags, wipes, etc.

*Estimated disposable diaper costs were figured by estimating 10 diapers/day at .20 per diaper, with the understanding that as babies grow and go through fewer diapers per day the cost per diaoper goes up.  If you choose brand-name or specialty disposable diapers the costs will be significantly higher and the cloth diapers will pay for themselves even more quickly. I did not factor in the cost of washing the diapers mainly because I didn’t want to do the math but also because unless you are using a coin operated washer, the costs are negligible.

All-in-Two Diapers: New Kids on the Block

*If you’re looking for the Scratch Me Not giveaway entry page, it’s the entry after this one. 🙂

This will wrap up our series of posts introducing the main types of cloth diapers.  We’ve gone through the diapers that are used with waterproof covers (flat fold, prefold, contour, and fitted diapers) and two of the kind that go on in one piece with no cover required (all-in-one and pocket diapers).  The last one, and the last to hit the market, is the All-in-two diaper, or AI2. 

WHAT IS AN ALL-IN-TWO DIAPER?

An AI2 builds on the concept of a 2-part diaper that is assembled before putting on the baby, like a pocket diaper.  Unlike a pocket diaper, the absorbent part fastens directly to the waterproof shell and goes right up against the baby’s skin.  The benefit to this is that instead of having to wash both the diaper and the insert like with a pocket diaper, you can switch out a dirty absorbent part (sometimes called a soaker pad) for a clean one and reuse the outer waterproof shell.  Since the outer shell has all the fancy parts like velcro/snaps, elastic, and waterproofing, it is the more expensive part. 

WHAT ARE THE BENFITS?

The cost benefit is that you don’t need as many shells as you do inserts, and the inserts are relatively inexpensive.  On average, you will need 1 waterproof shell for every 2-3 absorbent soaker pads.  The AI2 system is very similar to a contour/cover system, except that you assemble the diaper before putting it on the baby instead of having to put on the absorbent contour diaper and then put on the waterproof cover in a second, separate step. 

Another benefit is that the AI2 system is more versatile.  In some systems, like the SoftBums diapers, you can choose your soaker fabric: either stay-dry microfiber OR organic bamboo velour.  Also, some AI2 brands have a disposable soaker option.  Gro-Via makes biodegradable, chlorine-free, fragrance-free disposable soakers that can be used inside their cloth shells (or any other AI2 shell, unstuffed pocket diaper, or PUL diaper cover).  This option is very popular with people who want to use cloth diapers but are nervous about making the plunge to full-time cloth.  They have the option to use cloth at home and disposables when they’re out of the house (or at daycare, or with a sitter, or on a weekend trip) while still reducing their carbon footprint and the amount of chemicals against their baby’s skin. 

WHAT ARE THE DOWNSIDES TO AN ALL-IN-TWO SYSTEM?

The biggest downside is that once you decide on a particular AI2 system, you are mostly committed to that brand.  Unlike with a pocket diaper, the soakers/inserts are not interchangeable.  A soaker from one brand will not fit in another brand.  You really don’t want to be fishing around trying to match a cover to a soaker of the same brand in the middle of a diaper change, so for practicality’s sake it’s best to stick with one brand.  Not surprisingly, the AI2 systems are most popular with new parents who are building their cloth diaper stash for the first time.  Personally I don’t use the AI2 system (though I do have a few AI2 diapers, I use them like all-in-one’s and wash the whole thing, soaker and shell together, every time).  My reason is just that I already have quite a few all-in-one and pocket diapers and I don’t really want to get rid of all of them and replace them with all one kind of diaper.  For someone who is building their stash all at once, though, the price savings are significant. 

For example, 24 BumGenius Elemental diapers, a one-size all-in-one with organic cotton inner, costs $529.90.  In comparison, the Gro-Via Live package, a one-size all-in-two with organic cotton inner, costs just $375 and includes 12 shells, 24 absorbent soakers, and 4 boosters (to add absorbency for nighttime diapering).  Both packages will cloth-diaper a baby full-time from 8-10* to 35 lbs – basically infant to potty training age.  (*Most one-size diapers are rated for babies 8-35 lbs.  However in my experience although SOME babies’ legs may be fat enough to get a snug fit at 8 lbs, most babies don’t fit an 8-35 lb diaper until they are about 10 lbs.)

WHAT AI2 BRANDS DO YOU CARRY?  WHICH ONE SHOULD I CHOOSE?

Babies Bottoms and More carries the Flip, Gro-Via, and SoftBums all-in-two systems. 

Inside view of the Flip shell

Flip is made in Egypt by BumGenius and has the same BG fit we all love.  The shells come in 8 pastel colors including white (bold versions of four of the colors may still be available but are no longer being manufactured.)  You can choose between a stay-dry insert (microfiber topped with wicking suedecloth) or organic cotton (the same soft, stretchy cotton knit as in BumGenius’ Elemental organic AIO).  To use, simply fold the insert to fit and tuck the ends under the flaps inside the Flip cover and put on your baby.  Snap closures wear well and prevent toddler streaking.  The Flip system will fit babies 8-10 to 35 lbs.  To get a stash of stay-dry Flips (12 covers and 24 inserts) it would cost you about $255.60, for the same package in the organic it will cost about $295.60.

The Flip system is completely interchangable with the more inexpensive Econobum system. 

Interior of a Gro-Via Shell plus Soaker

Gro-Via is made in China and comes in 6 solid colors (including vanilla) and 4 prints.  The standard closure is velcro, although some shell colors are offered in snaps and you can have any shell converted to snap closures for $3.50 per shell.  The organic cotton soakers are backed in PUL (waterproof fabric) to help keep the outer shell cleaner.  They snap in to the shell with two snaps – one on each end of the soaker.  Boosters (lay inside the diaper on top of the soaker pad to “boost” absorbency) are available in both organic cotton and stay-dry fabric.  Disposable, biodegradable soakers are also available.  Gro-Via diapers fit babies from 8-10 to 35 lbs.  The Gro-Via Experience package includes 12 shells, 24 soakers, and 4 boosters for $375.  Biodegradable, disposable soakers are available for $7.99 for a 20-pack. 

Inside of a SoftBums Shell and Pod

SoftBums are made in the USA and come in 9 solid colors and 3 prints.  The most common closure is velcro although snap SoftBums shells are sometimes available.  Soakers are available in either Dry-touch (microfiber topped with wicking fleece) or Organic (bamboo velour – SUPER soft and more absorbent than cotton).  They snap in to the back of the shell with a single snap, and then are folded to the length of the diaper in front.  SoftBums uses a unique drawstring and toggle system on the elastic to adjust the size instead of the snap-down front system that Gro-Via and Flip diapers use.  The benefit of the SoftBums “slide2size” system is that the diaper will actually fit a baby as small as 6 lbs, making it a great choice for parents who want a one-size diaper that will fit their baby from Day 1.  (One downside to the SoftBums adjustment system is that it takes a few seconds longer to adjust the size than with the snap-down system.  Usually this is not an issue since you only adjust the size as your baby grows, but if you plan on having two different-age children sharing the same diapers it’s worth considering how quickly you can adjust the diapers.)

The SoftBums Good To Go Pack includes 8 shells, 24 “pods” (soakers), and 8 “mini pods” (doublers, or can be used alone as soakers for newborns) for $282.95, or $385.95 for Organic bamboo.  You could add 4 extra shells for an additional $87.80, or add the Newborn Booster Pack which contains 4 shells and 24 “mini pods” (newborn soakers) for an additional $155.95 ($179.95 for Organic Bamboo mini pods).