Sunday, April 11, 2010

Getting a good cloth diaper fit.

Getting a good cloth diaper fit is important in leak prevention.  A diaper that is a little loose at the legs can result in a river of wetness all over your lap.  A diaper that is too small can cause redness at the legs or waist because of a tight fit.  So how does one go about finding a diaper that will fit?

All babies are shaped differently.  A ten month old baby may be 22 lbs with chubby thighs and waist while a 2 year old toddler may be 22 lbs and skinny.  Many cloth diapers list sizes according to weight, but that isn’t always the best way to get a good fit.  In general, if your baby or toddler is “typical” and not chubbier or skinner or taller or shorter than average you can probably go with the weight range and be fine. 
But to get a great fit you have to look at three different measurements:  waist, thigh, and rise.  To measure your baby’s waist you need to measure the spot where your baby’s diaper hits the waist.  If you don’t have a cloth measuring tape you can measure with a string or piece of yarn and then use a measuring tape or yardstick to find how many inches the waist is. 

To find out your baby’s thigh measurement you should measure where your baby’s diaper hits his thigh.  The final measurement is the rise measurement.  This one is especially important if you have a long-waisted or short-waisted baby.  To measure this you can measure the length of a diaper that your baby currently fits in well.  You would measure the length from the top to the back of the diaper.  You can also measure the rise while the diaper is on your baby.  Just measure starting at the top of the diaper near the belly button, around the crotch, and up to the top of the diaper near your baby’s back. 

Consider all three measurements when trying to find the perfect fit.  Many different cloth diaper manufacturers do offer waist, thigh, and rise measurements to help you get a great fit.  Here is a sample of a size chart for Sposoeasy diapers.  Sposoeasy are all in one diapers with snap or aplix closures.  As you can see in the chart there is a range for the waist and thigh measurements.  This range give you an idea if your baby is just starting to fit into the size range or if he is about to outgrow it.

Extra Small
5 to 9 lbs. 
13" to19"
7" to 11.5"
8 to 20 lbs. 
14.5" to 23"
6.5" to 12.5"
19 to 30 lbs. 
16.5" to 26.5"
8" to 15.5"
22 to 35 lbs.
18" to 27"
10" to 15"
28 to 40 lbs. 
17.5" to 29"
10" to 16.5"

Here is another example of a size chart:

This is one is for Drybees All in One diapers.  While both size charts offer small, medium, and large sizes, you will notice that the waist, thigh and rise measurements are quite different. 

So if you have had trouble finding a good fit, try measuring your baby’s waist, thigh, and rise and check out the cloth diapers with size charts.  Not every size medium is equal so explore the size charts with your child’s measurements in hand.  It is always important to remember that you should always try on a diaper to make sure you have a good fit before you wash it and use it on your baby.  While size charts are not a guarantee of a good fit, they can provide you information to help you find the best fit for your baby.  Check out Thanks Mama for a wide variety of cloth diapers and accessories.

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