Saturday, February 15, 2014

Cloth Diapers: Evolution

Well, this diaper (the "Ion") doesn't seem to exist anymore, although the company does.  Going by the Evolution website, they have a new diaper design coming in 2013 . . . oh wait, it's 2014.  (Hey, I completely understand delays!!)  The woman behind these diapers seems to be having more luck with her Boingo diaper fasteners -- because I've seen those for sale around the web and *gasp* even knew what they were (though I've never used them, being a trifolded-in-a-cover prefold user myself)!

Image from ClothDiaperContests.com
Anyway, this pic is from a blog review I found when searching Evolution Ion.  (It's tough to find info on these dipes!)  The pretty green dotty print is the same one I had.  It's a side-snapping one-size, but the neat thing is that you can adjust the leg and back elastic (a lot!  More than Fuzzibunz), so it doesn't have rise snaps -- the size of the leg determines the size of the diaper.  I liked how the elastic magically tucks away into the wings so you never have to deal with it unless you're purposely adjusting -- doesn't get in the way.

It has a Coolmax lining instead of microfleece OR microsuede OR cotton!  So that is/was different from all the rest.  I've owned Coolmax shirts and generally have experienced how comfy they are, so I was eager to try it!  I forget where I even got it or how I initially heard about it, but somehow I bought one.

When it first arrived, it looked SO goofy!  The diaper itself was this huge thing (it arrives completely un-adjusted) while the insert was TINY.  In the review I linked to, apparently the reviewer's diaper came with multiple inserts.  Not mine!  Just this one, tiny, laughable insert.  Now knowing that other people got additional inserts, I'm miffed!  Oh well.

My main complaint was not with the diaper, but the INSERT.  ****SEE UPDATE AT BOTTOM OF POST**** I have since thrown it away (yes, it got me so frustrated for being so useless that one day I just put it in the trash!) so I don't know its exact stats, but I can tell you this:

a) it was yet another hemp item that failed to impress me;
b) it was so thin, it was like a piece of cardstock or something, like literally an eighth an inch thick somehow made up of two even thinner layers;
c) it held nothing; no absorbency whatsoever (and yes I prepped it a bunch of times!)
d) once that thing got wet/washed, it was stiff, like hard and scratchy like those old brown paper towels from the sink dispenser in art class

Basically it was this nasty little shriveled thing in amongst my soft fluff, and just looking at it made me either want to laugh or cry.  So most of my negativity is about the insert.  MOVING ON to the diaper . . .

Even though it was adjustable, this diaper was enormous!  I adjusted it all the way down and it still was too big for my girl.  I kept it in reserve for a long long time.  It never really fit her right, but got better the bigger she got (finally got some good use without leaks), until it was in our "side-snapping diaper as pre-training-pants" rotation.

The Coolmax was okay, but it wasn't stay-dry and that bothered her at times.  It also stained easily.  All in all it had a very "light" feel to it.  Very trim for sure, but also vaguely insubstantial.  My husband called it "the summer diaper", like she wouldn't be warm enough in it in winter!

Not my favorite diaper, but once it fit, it was OK.  We used it enough that the little dot design definitely wore off/faded quite a bit!  (Actually, that is a lot of fading, because this definitely got less use than others, and NONE of my other diapers faded.)  Stuffed with a normal microfiber insert (or two), it was completely fine, so in conclusion: another middle-of-the-road diaper.  I wouldn't want to adjust all that elastic if my whole stash was these, nor would I want to deal with the side snaps. And the insert?  See above, 'nuff said. :)

***UPDATE!!***

I did NOT throw the insert away!  I must have rescued it from the trash, because I found it in my laundry area awhile back, and I have been throwing it in with my regular laundry to see if it would soften up.  It definitely has!!  So maybe there is hope for that insert after all.  It still is tiny, though -- definitely newborn or small size.  Our diapering days are behind us for now, so I will let you know if I ever have a kid #2.

Also: seriously I must have washed that thing around 20 times to make it soft and fluffy.  Not good.  My Babykicks Joeybunz hemp insert got suuuuuuper soft way more quickly, and that has more layers!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Cloth Diapers: BabyKicks

When I first wrote this, I was fairly harsh on the Babykicks diaper, but after further reflection (and taking it back out of the bag o' diapers in the basement to look at again), I've cut it some slack.  It was alright, just not my favorite.

This was an odd little diaper.  I got one (what they are now calling the Premium) as a free bonus from an online store -- in orange/yellow.  They must have redesigned this diaper since I got mine, because their site lists a bamboo velour inner (mine is microfleece with a cotton/bamboo fleece center) and an extra microfleece layer on the insert (my insert is just hemp/cotton).

Image from Babykicks website and I only had the orange one!

This diaper is a side-snapper, which is trim but also confused my poor brain by snapping backwards from the rest of my stash!  It also has the pocket opening in front, something only Oh Katy also does (as far as I've seen) and I don't see a real benefit.  There is something even weirder about this feature in a side-snapping diaper -- hard to explain, but there is extra floppiness and adjustment at changing time.

Now, the insert.  I don't know why people rave about hemp, because in all my experiences with it, it's either no better than cotton/microfiber, or completely useless!  Perhaps you need to prep hemp by washing it 122 times before use.  I don't know!  After repeated washings, the Joeybunz insert that came with this diaper remained this flat, stiff, cardboardy thing that I never wanted to use. OK, upon inspecting the insert, it's way softer than it was in the beginning (actually it's rather nice and squooshy now), but you're still going to have to double-stuff this diaper to get any real absorbency out of it.  I could see this being a good doubler in an AI2 or fitted or something (or, hmm, my kid's night training pants . . . I'm keeping this out!).
Image from Babykicks website

This diaper also has an odd feature: fleece around the legs.  They say it is to air out baby's bum, but in my experience it is there to create leaks!  Ha ha, no one wants leaks of course, but we got our fair share with this diaper so it was not one that I reached for very often.

One pro of the Babykicks: it made a decent first-training-pants transition diaper.  The side snaps help it pull up and down easily, and the cotton inner feels wet so baby learns.  So, you see?  Not so bad after all.  I'm sure it works great for other kiddos!

Right then

See?  I'm back on here to do a cloth diaper review or two.  Why?  Because I feel like it, and because I've got to get these done -- my kid is 95% potty trained and I won't remember all the details much longer!

EDIT: I started writing a review in order to zone out at the computer and take my mind off other things.  However, now I'm super tired all of a sudden (chamomile tea plus cough syrup plus chill music triple whammy?) and I'm not sure my writing even makes sense.  So I'll save it as a draft till I can get back to it!