Cloth Diaper Terms

Updated: Apr 8

Awesome that you are thinking about using cloth diapers! When you first come in contact with cloth diapers you will find a lot of different terms and abbreviations. To help you on your way, I made an overview with terms and abbreviations that are used often.

AI2: All-in-Two. A diaper that has a set of snaps to attach the absorbent layer (like an insert) to the inside of the diaper cover. When the insert is wet it can be changed in the same cover.

AIO: All-in-One. A diaper that consists of only one piece. The absorbent material (insert) is attached to the diaper.

CD: An abbreviation for cloth diapers.

Contoured diaper: See fitted diaper.

Diaper Cover: When using a pre-fold, flat, or fitted diaper you need to use a diaper cover to keep wetness contained. Usually made of PUL, fleece or wool.

Diaper Sprayer: A diaper sprayer is used to rinse stool from dirty diaper over a toilet. It is attached to a toilet in just a few easy steps.

Doubler: See insert.

Fitted: A diaper contoured to fit the baby usually with an elastic leg casing. These diapers require a cover.

Flat: This is a large flat piece of fabric (usually cotton, hemp, or other natural fiber) that can be folded  as an insert of as a diaper.

Hook & Loop: Hook and loop is a type of closure also referred to as Velcro™ (brand name).

Insert: The absorbent part of a cloth diaper. They are usually rectangular-shaped and fit inside a pocket diaper or a diaper cover. Inserts can be made from natural fabric like hemp, bamboo or (organic) cotton or synthetic like microfiber.

Lanolin/Lanolized: Wool covers (longies and shorties) need to be treated to make them waterproof. Lanolin is used to do this. It is a natural wax-line material that comes from sheep wool.

One-Size: Used to refer to a diaper that fits most babies from birth through potty training.

Pail Liner or Diaper Pail: A large waterproof bag that is used to store dirty diapers between washings.

Pocket: A cloth diaper that has a pocket opening between the outer shell layer and the inner layer that touches baby’s skin. An insert can be placed inside this pocket opening.

Pre-fold: Rectangular pieces of cloth that have a thicker  layer in the middle.

PUL: An abbreviation for polyurethane laminate. PUL is the waterproof material used to make diaper covers.

Snappi: Diaper fastener that can easily fasten a pre-fold or flat diaper without the use of pins.

Soaker: See insert.

Stash: Referring to ones collection of cloth diapers.

Stripping: In cloth diapering, it is a way to remove built-up residue from cloth diapers.

Wet Bag: A small washable bag that is used for storing soiled diapers.

I hope all these terms and abbreviations did not discourage you to start cloth diapering. Once you have found your routine in cloth diapering it is easy and fun to do and you won’t go back to disposables. 

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