The goal of this post is to carefully look into four of the top rated pocket diapers today. Charlie Banana, used by my daughter for 33.5 months until now, and the other three, Imagine Baby (used for nine months and counting), the Bum Genius (which was already too tight since last month) and Rumparooz which my daughter have already stopped using since 7 months ago.

My daughter is currently 39.6 pounds and 36 months.

At the end of this article, I hope I would be able to help you decide, which of the four is best suited for your needs.

Let’s get started.

Last Updated: April 11, 2017
 

the top rated pocket diapers
From left to right: Imagine Baby, Bum Genius, Charlie Banana and Rumparooz pocket cloth diapers

 

Size Adjustment On The Thigh Area


 
Imagine Baby, Bum Genius, and Rumparooz uses the button system to adjust the opening of the waist and thigh areas. You need to look at using the third row of buttons to start adjusting the thigh area.

cheap pocket diapers

While the three offer the convenience of effortlessly changing from one size to another, Charlie Banana uses a strap system for you to adjust the thigh area. It is located inside its pockets and adjusts like how you would normally adjust a bra.

pocket cloth diapers reviews
Change the size of the thigh area by using the strap inside the pockets

After using Charlie Banana for more than two years now, the straps can be very hard to adjust. You need to exert some serious effort to get the correct size you need. I had to use my teeth initially to help it move!

I give one point each for Imagine Baby, Bum Genius and Rumparooz for size adjustment for the thigh area.
 

Unaligned Buttons In The Waist Area To Avoid Leaks


 
The first two rows of buttons are usually reserved for securely snapping the buttons for the waist. Look at the buttons on the first two rows of Imagine Baby, Rumparooz and Bum Genius. Notice that to close the waist area, you have to match the first two buttons on one side to the first two buttons on the other side – a disadvantage in my opinion. It’s because when you come to have a toddler with a chunky thigh, there will be times that you will not be able to use the second row of the buttons to give the leg a breathing room. As a result, there would be some opening on the thigh area and therefore cause leaking.

compare cloth diapers

While all the four of them are easy to adjust in the waist area, only Charlie Banana gets the point for having unaligned buttons in the waist area to avoid leaks.
 

Best Fit For Newborns


 
See the smallest settings. Look at how small the thigh area of the Rumparooz can get.

best pocket cloth diapers

Rumparooz has one newborn insert inside the pocket as well as the Bum Genius. Charlie Banana has one small insert, while Imagine Baby has the same insert you will be using regardless of your child’s age.

After stashing in the inserts on the pockets and adjusting the sizes to the smallest settings, the cloth diaper that can be adjusted to the smallest size possible is the Rumparooz.

One point for Rumparooz as the best fit for newborns.
 

LEAST BULKY


 

inexpensive cloth diapers
Smallest settings with one insert each

While Rumparooz can get to be the smallest, it also is the bulkiest mainly because the newborn insert is thicker than the rest. Bum Genius is the least bulky of the four.

Look at the largest setting and see that regardless of the size, Rumparooz, is still the bulkiest and Bum Genius is still the sleekest. While Imagine Baby can be at par with Bum Genius when it comes to not being bulky, you have to take note that Bum Genius has two inserts inside while Imagine Baby has only one. Adding another insert inside the Imagine Baby pockets will add bulk just like Charlie Banana and Rumparooz pocket diapers.

the best pocket cloth diapers
LARGEST setting: Each pocket diaper has two inserts inside. Only Imagine Baby (bottom) has one insert inside because it comes with only one.

One point for Bum Genius for being the least bulky of the four.
 

COVER – Can It Grow With Your Child?


 
We have stopped using the Rumparooz cover nearing its fourth month because it is already impossible to fit on to my daughter. From first using it when she was 31 pounds, she was 33 pounds when she outgrew the cover.

As I have expected, the next in line that gave in size-wise is the Bum Genius cover. Such a waste since it is very reliable in terms of absorbency.

Charlie Banana will become tighter next, I guess. But unless my daughter remains at her current weight to until 3-5 pounds more, she’ll miss her favorite diaper.

The winner for the biggest size is the Imagine Baby. There is still a lot of room for adjustment, and hopefully, I would be able to use it until the end of my cloth diapering journey.

cloth diapers review


 

Leak-Proof


 
Let me trace the source of the leak to begin with. It is not only because of lack of gussets. Bum Genius has no gussets and so far hasn’t leaked at all.

The leak I realized is because, one, I have placed too many inserts making it too bulky. The bulk would cause an opening on the inner thigh area and the tummy area, and therefore it would leak. Best practice is that, if you are tempted to add more insert to boost absorbency, make sure that the inner thigh is still enclosed as well as the tummy area doesn’t bulge open.

pocket cloth diapers
Only Rumparooz has gussets on the sides, but LEAK is not only because of the lack of gussets.

There are times when the leak would come from using only one button each on the sides. The four covers are designed to be tightened using two buttons each. If you use only one on each side, the inner thigh area would again be too lose and therefore leak.

Just avoid these common mistakes, and you will have a leak-free experience with the four covers.

I am giving the point to Imagine Baby for this area. Please take note that although all of them are reliable in terms of the leak, I have to choose one which has more room for adjustment on the waist area. During the months that my daughter almost outgrew the Charlie Banana covers, we were only using one button on each side, therefore has the inner thigh part almost unsecured. The Rumparooz and Bum Genius, during the days they felt a little tight, we would only use one button on each side as well – giving the inner thigh area a room to breathe and therefore, a chance to leak.

Because the Imagine Baby cover is LARGE enough, we have no problems so far utilizing the buttons to keep all the sides and thigh area securely intact.
 

Cover – Fastest To Dry


 
All four of them usually take less than a day to air dry after spinning. The fastest is the Bum Genius because it is the lightest and thinnest of all. Followed by the Charlie Banana, Imagine Baby and lastly, Rumparooz covers.
 

Most Absorbent Inserts


 
Gone are the days when we equate thickness to being more absorbent. BUM GENIUS is surprisingly the most absorbent of all. Take note that it is the thinnest of all, too.

While I have to commend the three other inserts for having good absorbency as well, the next in line to being the most reliable is the Rumparooz inserts, which happens to be the thickest of the four.

Charlie Banana is at par with Imagine Baby, but take note that we are talking about two 33.5 months old Charlie Banana inserts versus one piece of 9-month-old Imagine baby insert.
 

INSERTS – Fastest To Dry


 
It is no surprise that Bum Genius inserts get to dry first. They are so thin they would only take a day to less than a day to air dry after spinning. Imagine Baby is the next thinnest and next to dry. Followed by Charlie Banana inserts and lastly, the Rumparooz inserts.
 

Price


 
The cheapest is the Imagine Baby pocket diapers. For USD 12.95, you get the cover and a piece of an adjustable insert. Pay for USD 16.95, and you’ll get a Bum Genius and have an extra newborn insert apart from the adjustable insert. Charlie Banana is priced at USD 21.99. It also comes with two sized inserts (small and medium/large). Rumparooz pocket diaper is the most expensive of the four. For USD 25.95, it is double the price of Imagine Baby. To justify the price, just look at the added insert that it comes with.
 

Warranty


 

Bum Genius pocket diaper has one year warranty for snaps, lining, closures, elastic and waterproofing. Charlie Banana’s cover snaps have a year, while its elastics get six months. Rumparooz offer elastics warranty for three months, stitching and seams for six months and a winning lifetime guarantee on its buttons! While the three provide a decent amount of time to cover your cloth diapers, Imagine Baby only gives two months for covers seams, stitching, elastics, or any other sewing defects.

 

Summary


 
Here’s how the four diapers scored on the different areas of concern above.

POINTS

While it is good to rate each from 1-4, one being the highest, the goal is to determine which one is the BEST in a particular area. For example, putting 0 on absorbency doesn’t mean that it is not absorbent. I am only giving the point to the specific diaper that BEST performs in a specific category.

Bum Genius

Charlie Banana

Imagine Baby

Rumparooz

Easy Size Adjustment On Thigh Area

1

0

1

1

Unaligned buttons in the waist area to avoid leaks.

0

1

0

0

Best Fit For Newborns

0

0

0

1

Least Bulky

1

0

0

0

COVER – Can Grow With Your Child

0

0

1

0

Leak Proof

0

0

1

0

COVER – Fastest To Dry

1

0

0

0

Most Absorbent Inserts

1

0

0

0

INSERTS – Fastest To Dry

1

0

0

0

Other Important Considerations

Price

USD 16.95

Get Bum Genius Here

USD 20.88

Now USD 16.83

Get Charlie Banana Here

USD 12.95

Get Imagine Baby Here

USD 25.95

Now USD 23.95

Get Rumparooz Here

Number Of Inserts Included

1 Adjustable (M-L) and 1 Newborn

1 Small, 1 Medium/Large

1 Adjustable (M-L)

1 Newborn, 1 Large

Warranty 1 year for snaps, lining, closures, elastic and waterproofing. Cover Snaps – 1 Year/Elastics – 6 months 2 months for covers seams, stitching, elastics, or any other sewing defects. Buttons – Lifetime, Elastics – 3 months Stitching and Seams – 6 months

the pocket cloth diapers reviews


 

Conclusion


 
From the looks of the table above, it seems that Bum Genius pocket diaper gets the most points. Being the next lowest-priced of the four, it is a good deal that it still comes with a decent warranty for a year on snaps, lining, closures, elastic and waterproofing. By the time it is out of warranty, you have already saved a lot instead of you went for disposables.

I would love to say that, yes, get Bum Genius if a pocket diaper is your cup of tea. BUT having used it for my toddler who seems to be still needing cloth diapers for the next one year, Bum Genius pocket diaper is no longer usable by then size-wise. My daughter is already 39.6 pounds, and it is already too tight for her.

Should I tell you to get Imagine Baby instead since it is the most possible to grow with your toddler and it got the next highest score, not to mention that it is the cheapest of the four, too?

Well, look at the two months warranty. If you are adding this to your baby registry, it will already be out of warranty in the early days or until the second month of your little one. Is it fine to deal with broken snaps and elastics by yourself long before your child can accomplish a few milestones?

While Rumparooz gets the next highest score, I am sure that I will not be getting another piece of their pocket diaper. Aside from being the most expensive, it was the first to say bye-bye size-wise. And had I not given it a good stretch using a baby hanger, it would not have fitted my then 31-pound daughter from Day 1.

Charlie Banana surprisingly got the lowest score of all. Having been a reliable cloth diaper for more than two years, it amazes me how it didn’t stand out compared to the three other cloth diapers.

Clearly, a high score isn’t everything. Every time you see a high-rated cloth diaper, ask yourself, what area does it excel? Where does it lack? Is the high-rated feature what I am looking for?

What do you think?

Which Of The Top Rated Pocket Diapers Get Your Vote?

 

Check Out My Review Of The Charlie Banana Pocket Diapers.

Check Out My Review Of The Imagine Baby Pocket Diapers.

Check Out My Review Of The Rumparooz Pocket Diapers.

Check Out My Review Of The Bum Genius Pocket Diapers.

 

Let me know in the comments section if you have any questions.

Cheers!

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Published on: October 23, 2016

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    1. Hi Sid,

      That is actually a good idea. 🙂 However, just keep in mind that whatever the final product is, the leg area must be completely “sealed” to avoid leaks. If there is a gap between the skin and the diaper, leaking will always be an issue.

      Kind Regards,
      Pitin

  1. I love your detailed reviews and I like the summary table which is easy for me to see the comparison. Typically, how many cloth diapers do you need to have to get you through the week say if you do your laundry daily.

    1. Hi Wendy,

      It depends on what kind of cloth diaper you are using. In our case, when we use pocket diapers, we would normally end up with 8 soiled pocket covers and 16 dirty inserts in a 24 hour timeframe. Assuming you wash them everyday, you need to acquire 8 more pocket diapers (with 2 inserts each) so that you have something to consume while waiting for the rest to dry.

      We started our stash with 18 pocket covers and 36 inserts. As my daughter became a heavy-wetter, I acquired more from different types (All-In-Ones, All-In-Twos, Prefolds, Charcoal Bamboo Inserts) to help us get through a washing schedule which is 2x a week.

      Regards,

      Pitin

  2. Great article! I, too, am a fellow cloth diaperer and I use BumGenius and Best Bottoms. I like how you broke down each component and consideration of each brand and rated it. This would have been very helpful for me to read before I bought my first stash of diapers! BumGenius didn’t work so well for us, but we did use newborn Rumparooz which were, great! Any comparisons on other top brands?

    1. Hi Mariam,

      I honestly didn’t start using Charlie Banana from Day 1 of my child. That’s because I didn’t know about cloth diapers until my daughter was nearing her 3rd month. I have a very detailed review of the Charlie Banana cloth diaper you can read here.

      I think it will nicely fit a newborn, but probably not a preemie as you can read in my detailed review of Charlie Banana.

      Regards,

      Pitin

  3. I like these as opposed to the disposable kind. Seems like a much nicer and softer fit, as well as you do not have to constantly buy diapers.

    1. Hi there,

      Actually, if I am to choose between disposables and any of these cloth diapers, I would choose any of these four. The way they treat my daughter’s skin is incomparable to how my daughter’s skin looks like when using disposables.

      And of course, I can’t help but think of how much money I am wasting every time I throw away a disposable diaper.

      Regards,

      Pitin

  4. Hey Pitin

    I have been looking for proper cloth diapers for some time. My baby is 4 months and I still haven’t decided which ones to use 🙂 Your review is very helpful and answering all my questions. Bum Genius seems to be the right ones for us – but the problem is that when I go to Amazon – it says it is not shipping to my location (Europe).

  5. Hi, Pitin!
    Thanks a lot for the detailed reviews. It was very, very helpful. Based on your reviews I will add Charlie Banana to my baby registry since it’s easily available in Hong Kong and buy BumGenius on Amazon, but it will be the 5.0 instead of the 4.0. Let me know your Amazon.com referral link for the 5.0 (this one: https://goo.gl/8F2Tnn) and I’ll order from that to support your blog.

    Greetings from Hong Kong,
    Lory

  6. Hello, Pitin!
    What an excellent review about baby diapers! I like Imagine Baby! I think they are a little bit better than the other three! I hope that you will continue to give new parents good advice about baby stuff! I like your site! Keep up the good work!
    Cheers,
    Rebecca!

    1. Hi Rebecca,

      I do hope Imagine Baby can stand the test of everyday use for at least a year, or better yet, two. It would be the best deal if they actually will stay absorbent throughout everyday use. Rest assured, I’ll do an update.

      Cheers!
      Pitin

  7. Hi Pitin, your article is so detailed and thorough, I think young parents can learn much from it. I like your site and I will come back to read your other articles later.

    1. Hi Eric,

      Thanks for visiting my site. 🙂 I’m glad you appreciate the effort I poured into my site/articles, and hope that I really can help young parents who are a step below me. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Pitin

  8. Hi Pitin,

    This is a great review of these different baby diapers. This whole site is the best place I’ve seen for first-time parents to get great information.

    Keep it up!

  9. Hi Pitin,

    What an excellent review, I’ve found it very helpful!

    Just a question, please. Is it resistant to water because we go a lot to the beach and to the pool?

    You know what it is like to look after babies, it is not always easy and I am pretty sure it happen to most of us (Moms) to forget to put a swimsuit on.

    Thank you very much!

    1. Hi Daniella,

      If you are asking about the cover not getting wet when sitting on a wet surface, they are all surely going to get wet. But it’s only wet on the outside. It will not seep in to soak the inserts inside.

      However, if they are going to swim using any of the covers, I suggest you remove the inserts so that you can get a better fit and tightly secure the waist and thigh areas. Not to say that the water will not go inside, but it will surely minimize the water going in.

      I doubt if it’s ideal to use them for swimming. I know Grovia (All-In-Two diapers) claim that their cover can be used as a swim diaper (you can read my review here​). But since all these four don’t have such claim, I think it is best not to use them for swimming.

      I hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Pitin

  10. Hi Pitin,

    From what you’ve had to say it seems the Imagine Baby takes the lead for me. The fact that its the most leak proof is a deciding factor.

    Are there any advantages to cloth diapers? Or is it only price?

    Thanks for another great review.

    Hope your little one is doing well.

    1. Hi Keith,

      I have written some of the advantages and disadvantages of using cloth diapers versus using disposables here. The long-term savings is what’s leading in the advantages. Avoiding UTI and diaper rashes is another benefit in going cloth. And of course, let’s not forget the the impact to the environment if you opt not to add to the mountain of disposable diapers that is accumulating everyday.

      Cheers,

      Pitin

  11. My daughter is planning to use cloth diapers when her baby is born, and we have been looking at all the different options out there. It is hard to figure out where to make an investment when you have no experience with any of them. So I appreciate wisdom from someone who has actually used them. She was looking at the all-in-ones, and thought Bum Genius looked good. Have you used the all-in-ones? Is there an advantage to the pocket diapers?

    1. Hi Adele,

      I have an individual review of the Bum Genius All In One you can find here. Alternatively, I have compared it against another all-in-one cloth diaper called Ecoable. You can read the comparison here. Both I used for my daughter for 6 months (Bum Genius) and 4 months (Ecoable) and counting.

      The advantage of an AIO against pocket diapers in my opinion is that you don’t need to keep on stuffing and removing the inserts. It is because the inserts of AIOs are sewn together with the diaper cover. So all you have to do is to grab the AIO and change your child’s nappies just like how you would normally deal with disposables.

      Cheers,

      Pitin

      1. That’s great. I read the other two reviews, and think Bum Genius will be the way to go for us. If I had the time, I might try making some, using Bum Genius as a model. Keep up the great work.

        1. Hi Adele,

          I think getting Bum Genius AIO is a good choice if AIO is your cup of tea. May I suggest that you add a Charlie Banana insert below the default inserts to boost the absorbency.

          It’s cool to know you are keen to make one, that way you can customize it and make an improved version by avoiding the mistakes that manufacturers have committed. Who knows, you can sell them, too! 🙂

          Cool!

          Thanks for your time by the way!

          Cheers!
          Pitin

  12. I have been considering cloth diapers for my next child who I am currently trying to conceive. Of all the cloth pocket diapers that you have on your page, the one that caught my attention was the most affordable that did not leak and was adjustable for a growing child. That was Imagine Baby. Can you tell me where to get this brand of cloth pocket diaper? Is there a link on your page I missed?

    1. Hi Jana,

      That would be a great decision. 🙂 You will come to appreciate cloth diapering especially if you have found a cloth diaper that always pleases you. Imagine Baby is cheapest in Amazon. Sorry, the link might be too small to see, I would change it to be more visible. 🙂

      Cheers,

      Pitin

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