I love cloth diapering, part 3: Potty training and swimming

Just because your child is just getting out of the diaper phase, doesn’t mean you have to forsake cloth. There are several different options for training pants in cloth. Plus, I’m fairly certain that the concerns I brought up in part one of this series are probably still relevant with disposable training pants.

There are different training pants to consider for various situations in potty training. Some of them are meant for during the day to only catch little dribbles and encourage the child to make it to a potty, while others are meant for overnight when you would need much more absorbancy. There are a bunch of different brands to choose from as well.

From what I can tell, basically the training pants come in three varieties:
-There are pockets, which just like pocket diapers, have a pocket you can stuff inserts into. These are great because you can control how much absorbancy you want the training pant to have. So, if it is night and you know your child is going to wet a bunch, you’ll probably want to stick 1-2 super absorbant microfiber inserts into the diaper. If it is during the day and you want your child to feel the wetness or you just want to catch little dribbles, then you might stuff it with a thin cotton prefold. Some have snaps for easy accident accessibility, others just go on like underwear.

Happy Heinys Pocket Trainer

Happy Heiny's Pocket Trainer

-There are really thick cotton underwear. These obviously would not be good for overnight and don’t have a waterproof cover. They are just extra thick so that if there is an accident your child can run to the bathroom. I don’t know much about potty training since we’re no where near there yet, but I’d probably only use these if I knew we were going to be home all day and really working on potty training.

Under the Nile organic cotton training underwear

Under the Nile organic cotton training underwear

-There are all-in-ones. Just like the all-in-one diapers, these have everything in one piece — no inserts to stuff. They range from overnight to trickle catchers among the various brands. So, you might have to go with more than one brand to meet your various potty training situations. They have waterproof material on the outside. Some have snaps for easy accident accessability, others do not.

Imse Vimse Bumpy Training Pants

Imse Vimse Bumpy Training Pants

Now I know most of my friends who read this live in climates where swimming during the summer months is a must. So you may think that you have to give up on cloth for this as well, but you don’t! The My Swim Baby site, the sister site to the very popular cloth diapering site, Nicki’s Diapers, pretty much sums up the reusable swim diaper subject perfectly:

Swim diapers have a waterproof layer on the outside and a soft absorbent layer on the inside. Swim diapers should fit snugly. They are designed to be worn alone but may be worn over a disposable diaper or under a regular swimming suit.

Why use swim diapers?

Many states require swim diapers when diaper-aged children use a public pool. When a swim diaper fits properly, most bacteria including E.coli are prevented from entering the water. So prevent messy pool accidents by using a swim diaper!

Swim diapers won’t fall apart in the water and therefore won’t clog pool filters. Because they don’t absorb water, they don’t become waterlogged and heavy. Therefore, they do not absorb urine (so please beware so you don’t get a wet lap!). If swim diapers would absorb urine they would also absorb water, potentially pulling baby under water. This is also true for disposable swim diapers.

Some like to use pocket cloth diapers or diaper covers as swim diapers. Please be aware that water can get trapped in the cover not only causing a mess but could potentially be unsafe to your baby.

Reusable swim diapers can be washed and reused all season! There are many different styles, colors, and prints to choose from.

We actually found some great swim diaper options at our local Toys R Us. I got a tankini swimsuit for her there that had a swim diaper, matching top and hat that all have SPF protection built in. If she’s not actually in the water, we just use a regular diaper on the bottom and then when she gets in we put on the swim diaper. I want to get 1-2 more of these though to have as backup. I’ll probably just order some individual swim diapers online though since I don’t need three tankini tops for her.


With the swim diaper, in the water at the beach.


With a regular diaper, playing in the sand.

3 Comments

Filed under Natural Living, Parenting

3 responses to “I love cloth diapering, part 3: Potty training and swimming

  1. Kourtni

    How cuuute! I am definitely getting a swim diaper. Oh, and I was at Babies R Us this afternoon and they have G Diapers!!

  2. GrandmaTiger

    Just thought I’d throw in an observation from “ancient history” – I used cloth with two, back in the dark ages when all that was available were the prefolds and “plain” diapers which were just a big rectangle of really thin soft cloth that you folded yourself into a diaper shape, pinned, and covered either with really ugly grey plastic pants. Switched to the “new” disposies with the third, having one in training pants and two in diapers made it just overwhelming to try and keep up with washing, then had the last one – four in all- and stayed with the dispos. Cloth training pants really do make it easier for the little one to recognize wet, and help them learn. They’re also easier for the child to pull up and down themselves – a big help if you’re trying to teach independance. Had a book back then that emphasized teaching each step of the process “Now put your hands on the top of the pants – Good!, Now pull down – Good!” etc.

  3. Pingback: I love cloth diapering, part 8: Cloth with two babies « Daylight Rising

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