Disclosure: While CozyBums.ca is sponsoring a giveaway in honor of this review, I received no compensation or free products for it and purchased my 4 TotsBots V4s myself.
My favourite style of diaper is the pocket diaper. I love that I can customize the absorbency and the size of the insert depending on my needs, and yet the diaper can still be “one piece” when I send it to day care or leave Cub with family. I love the design of TotsBots diapers, with the “tongue” insert fully attached to the diaper but stuffed into a pocket rather than just lying on top of the diaper. It’s like an AIO combined with a pocket!
I am often asked about my absolute favourite cloth diaper, and I find it pretty hard to respond. The diapers that make up the majority of my stash are BumGenius 4.0s, AppleCheeks size 2s and TotsBots V3s. I like each brand for different reasons, but would be hard-pressed to have to choose my hands-down favourite.
I was pretty excited to find out that TotsBots was releasing a V4 diaper with a “Binky” (bamboo-minky blend) inner… and I was also apprehensive for fear of needing to buy even more diapers that I don’t, realistically speaking, need. The arrival of V4s in North America has been a long-time coming. Initially, only a handful of retailers had them, and they only had the more expensive “Frugi” prints. I went back and forth on whether or not to buy some… and peer pressure on my Facebook page eventually sucked me in! (And since I wanted free shipping and the quantity discount, I of course had to buy all four prints.)
I love my old V3s for four reasons:
1- The adorable prints that are the most gender-neutral of any brand (granted Cub wears Jubilee and Nature Girl all the same);
2- The fact that they are a cross between what I love about pocket diapers (ability to add stuffing) and the convenience of AIOs (the insert is attached so no need to match up inserts out of the wash);
3- The ridiculously sturdy hook & loop closure (the absolute best on the market, in my opinion);
4- The easy fit (they are so aptly named) for even the most newbie of cloth users: they go on just like a disposable… no special tricks required.
But there are four things I’ve always loved less about my V3s:
1- They are not the most absorbent in our stash, and for a long outing or for day care, I always have to boost them;
2- They don’t come close to being suitable for overnight;
3 -They fit on the tiny side, with a particularly low rise compared to the other one-size brands we have tried;
4- Their elastics seem to be the ones that have worn out the fastest, and they’re trickier to replace than other brands.
So what if TotsBots eliminated the things I love less about my V4s to create… dare I say it… my perfect cloth diaper??!?
While it’s far too soon for me to comment on the durability of the elastics, I can confidently state that TotsBots V4s are now my most absorbent diaper (even without the included booster), that they last us for 12 hours overnight with no leaks (and yes, he still nurses at night… despite my previous post about night-weaning). Plus, they are cut slightly larger: the wings are wider and the rise slightly taller.
Overnight? For real?
I would have never dreamt to even try it, except that one of my ex-pat friends commented that a V4 with its booster (which snaps on, by the way) lasted her son on a 9-hour plane ride. I figured we’d at least give it a go overnight… plus, I had a waterproof sheet protector to test, anyway!
Cub was more or less night weaned when I first started testing the V4 overnight, but in the past three weeks we’ve been visiting my parents, I confess to nursing him overnight since we’ve been sharing a bed and I haven’t had the patience to get him back to sleep the harder way (singing, back rubbing, cuddling him while he cries a bit). Even with night nursing, his V4s have held up. One morning, my Mom saw me changing his overnight V4 and commented, “Wow, that diaper looks HEAVY!” She was right: it was super heavy with pee, and there wasn’t a drop of it on the bed or on his PJs.
So I don’t need any other diapers in my stash?
Now, am I saying that TotsBots V4s the be-all and end-all of overnight diapering? No. I still stand by the assertion that the most effective overnight diaper is one made of a combination of folded inserts. This is because it is easier to rinse them out in the morning, and rinsing out my overnight diapers was a critical step in beating the ammonia stinkies in my wash routine. (Not that you can’t rinse out your V4s, it’s just not as easily done as with trifolded inserts.) That said, not everyone wants to have separate diapers for overnight. TotsBots V4s, unlike other AIOs I have tried, last overnight with the included booster, but are also perfect daytime diapers that are extremely user friendly.
Okay, so there are a few things TotsBots V4s still can’t do:
- Can’t be used as a cover, All-in-Two style, like pocket diapers. When I pack for a holiday, I tend to choose covers and inserts, since this means less bulk;
- Can’t be used as a swim diaper (you can use any pocket diaper or cover you want, without inserts, if you don’t have an actual swim diaper);
- Can’t compare for trimness of fit with the V3s… but the fluffier butt is a fair trade off for epic absorbency;
- I can’t really turn this into a “can’t” statement, but they are not North American-made (though they are ethically produced in Scotland).
- [update] When air dried, the inners can feel a bit rough, so a quick turn in the dryer will soften them up.
Where to buy TotsBots V4s:
- CozyBums.ca generously offered up a TotsBots to giveaway winner Cassandra, and that’s where I scored by 4 Frugis;
- Help support my blog by shopping for your V4s at Lagoon Baby via my Affiliate Link;
- Use my Affiliate Link at Well.ca to score your TotsBots.