Bumgenius 4.0 pocket diaper review

Jack at 22 pounds wearing a bumgenius 4.0 diaper

Jack at 22 pounds wearing a bumgenius 4.0 diaper

Before a month or so ago, I didn’t understand why people liked pocket diapers. You have to wash the whole thing (the cover and insert) each time, instead of with covers and prefolds which we mostly use where you only sometimes have to wash the cover if it gets dirty. With wool, you really only have to wash it rarely when it gets poop on it.

However, Jack is really sensitive to being wet (hopefully means he’ll be out of diapers sooner than later!) so using cotton prefolds meant changing his diaper A LOT, and him getting upset in the car for example if his diaper got wet. When he was a few months old we started using eco-friendly disposables (the Bambo Nature brand which is even compostable) when we were driving more than a few minutes or other people were watching him who didn’t want to check if a diaper was wet every 5 minutes.

Once I thought about it, I realized it makes more sense for the environment and Jack’s chemical exposure to use pocket diapers instead of disposables. Pocket diapers (or stay-dry all-in-ones like bumgenius Freetimes) are really similar to disposables in that they have a stay-dry layer (it’s polyester based in the 4.0s) so Jack doesn’t really feel wet. I’ve tested it, and it works really well! You can leave them on for longer like a disposable and they almost never feel wet. Obviously it’s not as nice as organic cotton and wool, but better than disposables. I also tried the Bummies stay-dry liners, and they were way smaller than a trifolded prefold, so they didn’t keep everything feeling dry. 

What I like about the Bumgenius 4.0 pocket diapers:

  • They are one-size, so I could use them on a newborn in the future
  • They fit pretty trim-ly and stay on well
  • They have cute colors and some adorable patterns 
  • They are made in the USA
  • You can adjust the absorbency (we use organic prefolds, and put 2 in if we use them overnight)
  • They have good resale value if you change your mind about them
  • They really stay dry!
  • I haven’t had a big issue with leaks 
  • You can wash them in a machine unlike wool which is usually by hand
  • The tab area is stretchy so that it gets a really good fit around the waist

Negatives about them:

  • They are polyester inside and the outside part has PUL which is not as nice as natural fibers
  • Because of the PUL they are less breathable than wool, so we use wool part-time too in order to make sure we avoid diaper rashes
  • They can be expensive, and even if you buy used (try diaperswappers.com) they are not that discounted
  • The velcro ones get pilly, and they dug into Jack’s thigh and made him all red. The snaps are great though

Overall, they have been a great middle-ground between the most natural option (organic wool with organic cotton prefolds) and disposables, and I am kind of addicted to the adorable patterns!


Addicted to cloth diapers!


Jack in an Imse Vimse diaper cover


Now that Jack is crawling, I’ve been getting some non-wool diaper covers for him because the covers are getting dirty from our floors, and the wool is more of a hassle to clean. I still love our wool for nighttime and sometimes in the day, but I’ve also been trying some new things.

Since we do EC and change his diaper whenever we see it’s wet (VERY OFTEN) I thought of getting an organic cotton fitted diaper to use as a cover, even thought it wasn’t waterproof. I ended up buying this fitted diaper which I am liking so far. I like that no snaps are exposed so if the prefold we put in there migrates no snaps dig into his skin. I wish we had the money to just buy a ton of fitted diapers, but they are expensive! Our prefolds were about $1 each (used) but the fitteds are $10-20!

I also ordered a large Imse Vimse diaper cover which is organic cotton outside and PUL inside to be waterproof. I was sad that it wasn’t a lot bigger than the medium size though, and the velcro already started digging into Jack’s leg and leaving a red spot. If I ever have the chance I’ll try to switch it out to snaps, because otherwise I like the cover.

I also ordered a Bumgenius 4.0 pocket diaper, which is sadly not organic at all. I wanted to try a pocket diaper to use when my family watches Jack sometimes because they don’t check his diaper as much as I do and I don’t like him to feel uncomfortable and wet. I watched a youtube video comparing how wet a bunch of diapers fet, and Bumgenius won, so I figured it was better than a disposable at least and decided to try it. I do have organic bamboo fleece I bought which I use to line the prefolds at night and sometimes during the day, but I’m thinking the not-organic fleece material of the Bumgenius will wick moisture away better.

I’ll let you know how they do!