bumgenius-cloth-diapers
Diaper Reviews, Types of Diapers

BumGenius Cloth Diapers – Options & Brand Review

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BumGenius cloth diapers are one of the most widely available cloth diaper brands on the market and for that reason, they are quite popular. They can be purchased easily at stores like Buy Buy Baby, Amazon, Walmart (online) and Target (also usually online only).

Very few other brands of cloth diapers (outside of Gerber prefolds) are so widely accessible. This makes it easier for families to feel comfortable purchasing this brand over others because they look at it as somewhat of an endorsement.

BumGenius (BG) is a quality brand of diaper and an ethical company to boot. They are an American company that pays their workers living wages and offers benefits, unlike many other popular (and cheaper) diaper brands. Any of their diaper styles containing cotton are made with organic cotton because they are committed to lessening their environmental impact.

So does being an ethical company with widely available products make them the perfect diaper brand? Let’s take a look at all the products offered from BG, and then I’ll detail my experience with the quality based on almost 5 years of continuous use of their products.

One-Size (OS) 5.0 Pocket

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Back when I first started using bumGenius, they were the 4.0 pockets, not the 5.0. But I do have a couple 5.0s now, too. They are very similar to the 4.0s but have improved elastic, are softer, and snap easier. Subtle improvements, but nice!

The 5.0 pockets are made with an outer layer of PUL and an inner layer of microsuede that helps wick moisture away and helps keep baby’s skin dry.

There are three rise settings to help you get the perfect fit on your baby. The back pocket opening has a flap for easy stuffing and to help keep inserts from poking out.

These diapers come standard with two microfiber inserts–one newborn size insert, and one one-size insert. The one-size insert has snaps to help you fold them to the perfect length to match whatever rise setting you are on.

In general, microfiber doesn’t have the greatest absorbency power, at least not if you don’t double your inserts. Starting around the 5 to 6-month mark, I typically switch over to a charcoal bamboo insert paired with a newborn insert from the BG pockets. The two of them together remain pretty trim but do give a little more absorbency than just using one one-size microfiber insert on its own.

Out of all the bumGenius diapers offered, the 5.0 pocket is my favorite. The only thing I don’t like about the 5.0 is that it is supposed to fit babies as small as 8 lbs, but 10-12 lbs is much more likely.

OS Freetime All-in-One

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The Freetime is an all-in-one option offered by BG made from an outer layer of PUL and two microfiber flap inserts (topped with microsuede to keep them skin-safe) that fold over each other in the middle. This is a very trim diaper–trimmer than my 5.0 (but this does all depend on what inserts you use in the 5.0, too).

This design was chosen to help the diaper dry as fast as possible. All-in-ones that have completely attached inserts are notorious for a slow dry time. The Freetimes dry very quickly–just as quickly as the 5.0 and it’s separate inserts. If you want an all-in-one that dries fast (important for those that don’t want to use the dryer, or at least not more than one dryer cycle), the Freetime is an excellent choice.

Much like the 5.0, this diaper has 3 rise settings to make getting a good fit easier. It also has an improved elastic.

While my son would out-wet the single microfiber insert in a 5.0, he did not out-wet the Freetime. However, it would not surprise me if some babies needed more absorbency. In those cases, it would be very easy to add a doubler if needed. There is definitely room to do that.

It is technically an all-in-one because it is all attached. But you do still need to align the flap inserts before you put the diaper on your baby.

The only thing I don’t like about the Freetime is that the flaps can be annoying if your child poops. Rinsing or scraping the poops off the flaps while they move all over is very irritating. It is much easier to clean poop off the 5.0s or Elementals.

You can see a more detailed review of the Freetime diaper here: bumGenius Freetime Review

OS Elemental All-in-One

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The Elemental is BG’s organic cotton all-in-one. It still has an outer layer of PUL, but the inside is 100% organic cotton. While the inner layer is not 100% attached, it is not two separate flaps like the Freetime. It is secured at either end, but the side edges are open, allowing you to shift the inner part of the diaper and fold it at the front or back where you need absorbency the most (usually back for girls, front for boys).

The Elemental is a great choice for families that want to focus on natural fibers. However, when you want only natural fibers to touch your baby’s skin, be aware that there is no moisture-wicking layer. Most of the time this isn’t a big deal, but some babies are really sensitive to wetness and may want you to change them all the time.

Similar to the 5.0 and Freetimes, this is a one-size diaper with 3 rise setting options that starts to fit better between 10-12 lbs (so not the best newborn option). It now has the improved elastics like the other two styles, as well.

Absorbency wise, I find the Elemental and Freetime to be similar. The Freetime can absorb a good amount, but microfiber is prone to compression leaks (if the diaper is full and gets squished or compressed, it could leak). The cotton in the Elemental does not have compression leaks.

Littles 2.0 (Newborn)

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The bumGenius Littles 2.0 is the newborn diaper offered by BG. It is made to fit babies from 6 to 12 lbs. They have an umbilical notch in the diaper so they can be worn right from birth!

This diaper has an organic cotton lining and a bonus doubler that is cotton on one side and moisture-wicking microsuede on the other side if you want a stay-dry option. This doubler offers a little more absorbency, and this is a big improvement from when I used the original BG newborn set (I suppose the 1.0).

With the 1.0, the fit was awesome, but my son started out-wetting them before he was quite yet big enough for the one-size 4.0s we had for him. However, at that point we started using the Flips system with him–the OS covers with the newborn inserts, and those worked well for him before he was ready for the 4.0s. But now with the bonus doubler in the 2.0, this is no longer an issue!

The BG Littles was by far one of the most successful newborn options we tried, and I’m pleased that the few cons I experienced have been worked out. Currently, the only con I really see is that I don’t see the price being that feasible for families using cloth diapers to save money. It is hard to justify what it would cost to build a whole stash of these for a newborn since you can start using the one-size diapers between 10-12 lbs and these aren’t much good beyond that size.

However, everyone uses cloth for different reasons. If you are not primarily using cloth for financial reasons, these would be a great all-in-one option. If you’re looking for other ideas, check out this post.

Big Pocket Diaper

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The Big Pocket Diaper is for kids that weigh between 35 and 70 lbs. It’s very similar in shape and style to the 5.0 pocket diaper, but this is meant for older kids that need it for a variety of reasons.

While most kids (though not all) potty train between ages 2-4, it’s pretty common not to be night trained until much later. Having the big pocket diaper could be great for late potty trainers or for those that just need it at night.

Flips by bumGenius

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Flip diapers are technically their own brand, but they are made by the bumGenius (Cotton Babies) company. They come in the same colors and prints as the other BG diapers.

Flips are a hybrid diaper, meaning they are an all-in-two with a choice between a reusable cloth insert or a disposable insert.

Flip inserts consist of a stay dry option (microfiber with suede lining), an organic cotton option, a newborn option (similar to stay-dry, but smaller), and biodegradable disposable inserts.

The outer Flip shell is simply a diaper cover, which means you can use it for a lot of different purposes (like prefolds/flats). It has a flap at both ends of the diaper so that the insert can be tucked in. This helps hold it in place.

I really love the Flip diapers. They were one of the first one-size covers to work on my skinny, chicken-legged baby at about 7 lbs. The disposable inserts are surprisingly challenging to get. They are often sold out everywhere. However, you can totally use other disposable inserts with the Flip covers, such as the Grovia Biosoakers.

If you want a disposable insert option to have on hand but like to use the Flip covers (they are more easily wiped down between changes than the Grovia hybrid covers) I would get the Grovia Biosoakers to use with them.

You can see a more detailed review on the BG Flip diapers here: bumGenius Flip Diapers Review

My Experience: Pros & Cons of the bumGenius Brand

My oldest son used primarily bumGenius his whole 3 years in diapers. My younger son still wears a lot of my oldest’s BG diapers, too. I have lots of experience with them! I have owned at least 20 and used them on a regular basis.

The PUL has held up really well over the years, as have the snaps. I have had no issues with the seams or microsuede lining, either.

The only area I have had problems is the elastics. My oldest son had mostly 4.0 pockets and Freetimes without the improved elastic, and the elastics were definitely worn out after two years. By that point, he was big enough it didn’t matter, but with my younger son it meant that it would be a long time until he would grow into them, so I purchased some other diapers.

However, my 5.0 and new Freetimes’ elastics have held up really well since I bought them almost 3 years ago, meaning BG really has improved their elastics as they said!

Here is a little video where I show two older BG Freetimes that were made at different times to highlight some of the improvements:

Overall Recommendation & Where to Get bumGenius

Even before BG made their elastics improvements, I recommended them because of how impressed I was with how the PUL and seams held up after being washed and dried almost every other day for YEARS! They were much more durable than some of the other (cheaper) brands of diapers I bought.

But I always gave the caveat, “You might need to replace the elastics eventually.”

Now that they did the elastics improvements, there isn’t much to hold me back from recommending them! They are a great diaper to try out as part of your stash. I recommend the 5.0 pocket most of all, followed by the Flip system, then the Elemental, and the Freetime pulling up the rear.

You can get bumGenius diapers at several retailers: Nicki’s Diapers is my favorite online retailer, but you can also get them at Buy Buy Baby, Target, Walmart, or even Amazon.

What do you think of bumGenius? Do you have any in your stash? Let me know in the comments!

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Holly Lee

I'm Holly and I'm the mom of two awesome young boys. We have been cloth diapering for 5 years. My family and I live in Minnesota with our dog, Ruby, and cat, Gherkin. Outside of Rocking the Cloth, I am also a middle school teacher. Thank you for visiting Rocking the Cloth--feel free to email me at holly@rockingthecloth.com if you have any questions or concerns. I'd love to help!

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