bumGenius elemental 3.0 Review

bumGenius Elemental 3.0 Review

December 2020 update:  I also included the bumGenius Elemental 3.0 in this post about my favourite diaper for twins!

Folks, as you know, I’m a stickler for correct spelling and grammar. I even employ my aunt as my editor, and she picks through my posts with a fine-toothed comb to weed out my superfluous commas and to correct my insistence on dropping “of” whenever I use the phrase “a couple of”. I’m here to tell you that one tiny detail has escaped me since I started blogging in 2012, and even my super keen aunt Kiki didn’t notice it. It has come to my attention that the correct way to write the brand name BumGenius is with a lower-case “b”: bumGenius. I realize that a lot of you are reading this and thinking you couldn’t give a genius’s bum about a misplaced capital letter. Well I do, and I have to come clean. I’m sorry, bumGenius. I’ve gotten your trademarked name wrong for almost five years now. (Fun fact: A couple of years ago the username @bumgenius and the hashtag #bumgenius were NOT what they are today on Instagram.)

bumGenius Elemental 3.0

In the five years that I have known about bumGenius, their diaper styles have undergone a few changes that their dedicated mob of fans have followed with zeal. One such alteration was the switch from the “Original bumGenius Elemental” (OBGE) to the “New bumGenius Elemental,” which I will henceforth refer to as the “2.0.” This was not a popular design change. The OBGE was lined with cotton and had two inserts sewn one on top of the other, attached to the front and back of the diaper. It was renowned for its significant absorbency. The Elemental 2.0 was not lined with cotton, so was essentially a PUL cover with two inserts sewn to the front and back. Until I started using the Elemental 2.0 in my Extreme Super Soaker Overnight Solution, I basically never used it.

The inserts bunched up and left a lot of exposed PUL in contact with baby, which really irritated my son’s skin and led to leaks when used on my daughter. To make matters a wee bit more confusing, the OBGE design made a semi-return to the market in 2016, but it was only available from the Cotton Babies website in the US and was exclusive to just one retailer in Canada. That’s why the OBGE in my picture below is in a newer print (Alicia).

BumGenius Elemental Versions

At the Las Vegas Baby Expo in October of 2016, bumGenius unveiled the Elemental 3.0. (Apparently, shorthand for this one is “3E” or “3BGE.” I can’t keep up anymore!) As you can see, the organic cotton lining is back, but the number of inserts has been reduced to one. The insert is three layers of organic cotton, sewn to the front and back of the diaper.

Just like bumGenius’s other diaper designs, the Elemental 3.0 features a double row of waist snaps and their signature stretchy closure tabs. Those stretchy tabs are one of my favourite things about bumGenius diapers. They make for a trim, comfortable and secure fit. To adjust the rise to fit babies between 8 and 35 lbs, the diaper has three rows of three rise snaps. A lot of brands only have two rise snaps per row (so no snap in the centre), and this can leave a bit of a bump in the centre of the diaper. Not so with bumGenius! Another benefit of the Elemental 3.0 that isn’t visible to the naked eye includes a “proprietary elastic designed specifically for cloth diapers” that is easy to access and replace. (This new elastic is also included in their latest pocket diaper, the 5.0.) I like to stagger how I secure the diaper: tighter at the hips and looser at the waist.

So what’s my verdict? As someone who has always preferred “pocket-style” all-in-one (AIO) diapers, I’m feeling a bit sheepish confessing that the bumGenius Elemental 3.0 might just be my new favourite AIO on the market … and it does not have a pocket. The sewn-in insert is longer than the diaper cover, meaning you can fold it to get extra layers of absorbency right where you need it.

Composition of a bumGenius Elemental 3.0 - folding

The return of the 2-ply cotton lining is a huge improvement over the Elemental 2.0:

bumGenius Elemental 2.0 vs 3.0

And while the two previous versions had two 3-ply inserts, the Elemental 3.0 has a single 3-ply insert. To be honest, I wonder why bumGenius didn’t simply bring back the OBGE design permanently. With a total of six layers plus two layers of cotton in the lining, the OBGE was unbeatable in terms of AIO diapers on the market. Why not bring back that winning formula?

The bumGenius website says that the Elemental 3.0 features “six layers of absorbent organic cotton.” I can only feel five layers: three in the insert and two in the body of the diaper. I’ve messaged bumGenius to ask but have not yet received a response. The new Elemental packaging just says “multiple layers.” What I can say for sure is that it has fewer layers of absorbency than the OBGE.

While it’s not as absorbent as the OBGE, I love the Elemental 3.0 because it’s everything you look for in an AIO diaper. It’s one easy-to-use piece that requires no stuffing or snapping. During the day, I don’t need to add additional absorbency to use it for three to four hours (but if you do want to boost it, you can easily tuck a booster under the sewn-in insert). I’m so happy to find an AIO that does not require additional boosting to last longer than two hours! To use the Elemental 3.0 overnight, I slide a Flip Overnight Insert underneath and hemp booster on top.

bumGenius Elemental 3.0 Trim Fit

What I love about the Elemental 3.0:

  • Made in the USA
  • Extremely easy to use, one-piece design
  • Double row of closure snaps and stretchy closure tabs for a perfect fit
  • Centre rise snaps for a flat, smooth look at the front (especially under leggings!)
  • Supremely absorbent, organic cotton inner

bumGenius Elemental 3.0

What I love less about the Elemental 3.0:

  • Longer dry time (but no longer than other AIOs we use)
  • When soaked, it’s possible for the inner cotton to wick onto a onesie or t-shirt if the garment gets accidentally folded inside the diaper
  • Uncased leg elastics mean the inner cotton can roll out and cause wicking at the legs if you don’t make sure it’s tucked in
  • bumGenius’s tendency to do limited release prints that send customers and retailers into a mad frenzy is somewhat irritating

Bottom line:

The CAD$31.95 price point may seem steep, but it’s important to note that most of the other AIOs in our stash need to be boosted to be leak-free for four hours. I really, really like the Elemental 3.0. Since I’m a sucker for bumGenius prints (I pre-ordered “Strong” back in November!) but am tired of buying the 5.0 pocket since I don’t like the microfibre inserts, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be more 3BGEs coming to our house in the near future.

Shop & Connect

[wpdevart_like_box profile_id=”www.CozyBums.ca” connections=”show” width=”300″ height=”175″ header=”small” cover_photo=”show” locale=”en_US”]

Get your bumGenius Elemental 3.0s at Cozy Bums using my affiliate link!

40 responses to “bumGenius elemental 3.0 Review”

  1. janie vezina

    your review is awesome. really want to get a strong diaper. glad to hear they have the organic inner.

  2. Shailja

    Nice review. I love Bumgenius…3.0 looks great…I would love to try it..

  3. kathy downey

    Thanks for such a detailed review,i am always so amazed at diapers today such a difference since i used them in the early 80’s

  4. Oh my gosh, when did Little Miss get so grown up??? The pigtails are just adorable! (And the diaper review is great too, as always!) 😉

  5. Logan

    Love being able to read so many of your cloth diaper review all in one place! I also love seeing the difference between different styles and versions of the same brands. I don’t have any bumGenuis yet! Would
    Love to win one ??. I can’t decide if I love the colour mirror or jolly more!

  6. Vanessa Aubie

    Thank you for this review. I’ve been curious about the bumGenius elemental for some time now I am partial to pockets because I need the extra booster but I wish AIO’s were good enough for my super soaker (who’s getting worse as he gets older) without any extra boosters. Like you I do not like the microfiber inserts that come with the 4.0’s/5.0’s so I have to purchase natural fiber inserts separately which usually ends up costing me an extra $10 or so… But still I really want to try the elemental.

  7. Anne-Marie Buki

    Soooo agree with you about that last point with the limited prints…

    Great review

  8. Jaclyn

    We love our 1.0s so much, favourite diaper for sure, I’m looking forward to trying the 3.0.

  9. stephanie

    I’m a new mama-to-be, due in June, and have been researching all the cloth diaper options out there. bumGenius is so far the winner but I’m still learning the ins and outs! This is really helpful so I know what to avoid and what to lean towards. I am now headed to your bumGenius newborn review!! I’ve been looking all over for those (especially the Flips) with no luck so far.

  10. Monica

    I actually love our bumGenius 2.0 (we only have one, because I was a bit all over the place with my stash buildup when I was pregnant). Maybe it’s BECAUSE of the fact that there wasn’t cotton sewn into the cover. My favourite way to CD my wee one is still a tri-folded prefold in a cover, and the 2.0 is so similar except it’s attached at each end. My son didn’t experience reactions to the PUL though, so that’s why it works so well. The 2.0 was always the perfect absorbency too, and to this day it is the only bumGenius diaper we have that has never leaked either #1 or #2. I kind of wish I had more, but it’s way easier for our daycare providers to use the velcro Kawaii and bumGenius pocket diapers.

    In any case, the 3.0 looks very interesting. Hard to say if I’ll pick up a couple or just see if some retailers sell the 2.0 at a discount now. Thank you for your thoughtful and thorough review!

  11. Emma Try

    Thanks for clarity regarding all the different versions!! I like that the current one has a liner that’s longer, to adjust where you want more protection. That’s especially helpful when you have more than 1 in cloth.

  12. Caitlyn Quinn

    Thank you for the review! Good to know bumgenius has listened to feedback and put that cotton lining back in their Elementals!

  13. Camille W

    I love the fit of BG pockets but hate wasting money on the microfibre inserts as I never use them. I think I would like the elemental but haven’t always wondered if the fold style flap would be confusing for daycare/other caregivers. Sure, I would fold/tuck it ahead of time but would they be completely lost if it came unfolded?

  14. Wendy

    Love the fact that it has a cotton liner and room for extra liners if needed. I appreciate you pointing out the cons along with the pros – it can be so difficult to compare. L

  15. Lisa

    How would you say this compares absorbency wise to Bummis AIO?

  16. Holly MacRitchie

    Love Bum Genius products, they are so well made and durable.

  17. Linda

    I love that this doesn’t require stuffing, the most annoying thing about my other diapers.

  18. […] Bumgenius Elemental 3.0 from Maman Loup’s Den (ends 1/31) Open to the U.S. and Canada GT […]

  19. I’ve only tried a Bummis AIO, so seeing this is interesting, as I’m a fan of the pocket bumGenius diapers. I agree the OBGE looks more absorbent.

  20. There are so many great colors to choose from.

  21. Calvin F.

    This is a wonderful product, thanks for being so detailed to share your experience with it. Really helps.

  22. Rosa Cross

    Great designs and colors!

  23. Ashley Stone

    Great review! I really like that you not only compare the different element versions but also that you include pictures. It’s always great to actually see the differences rather than just read about it. Thanks for the review!!

  24. Molly

    Great review! I’d love to try the 3.0. I haven’t tried any of the elementals yet. We only have one AIO, most of our stash consists of pockets. But it sounds like this would be a great one to try.

  25. Jill Pleasance

    Have not tried this brand yet but they look really nice

  26. Anita D.

    Thanks for the great review. I am expecting my first child and want to use reusable diapers. I’m currently doing my research but this diapers sound great!

  27. I love bumGenius! I am hoping to stash my day care bag with only that brand of AIOs. Glad to hear that these are as good as the rest.

  28. Karlee walsh

    Love bumgenius. Looking forward to trying get them out!

  29. I have never tried bumGenius (therefore I had no idea that bum was spelled with lowercase b, nor that it was one word, for that matter) and all my diapers are pocket (save for one, AI2?) but with a new little one due soon, and my current stash getting worn out, I am open to trying!

  30. Emily

    Great review! I’ve always liked BG so I definitely would like to try these!

  31. Elizabeth C.

    Half of my cloth diaper stash consists of BG Freetimes but I have at least two NBGE diapers. I was surprised by how much I enjoy using them and I would love to try the new 3.0! Thanks for the detailed review 🙂

  32. […] *Bumgenius Elemental 3.0 from Maman Loup’s Den (ends 1/31) Open to Canadians only GT […]

  33. Ruth Entwistle

    I would love to try an elemental! We have only tried the regular pockets and freetimes from Bumgenius.

  34. Jan Kam

    I would love to try out diapers in the eco friendly way.

  35. Amy Hall

    Makes you wonder why they changed it if they had such a winning design the first time!

  36. […] Natural Fibre All-in-One (AIO) Diaper: bumGenius Elemental 3.0 […]

  37. RJ

    trying to compile a stash for baby’s arrival in December….for AIOs do you think babygenius elemental 3.0 & thirsties natural AIOs would be a good combo to start with (with organics being top on my priority list 🙂 ?

  38. […] Read my bumGenius BGE 3.0 review. […]

  39. […] bumGenius Elemental 3.0 Review, sponsored, 2015, Maman Loups Den. […]

  40. […] Elemental has gone through three redesigns since I first started using cloth, and I first published my review of the current version in January 2017 when my daughter was 18 months and I never dreamed I was going to be adding twins […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Welcome to my Wolf Pack!

My name is Lindsay and I am a 40-year-old mama of four trying to live an eco-friendly, budget-friendly life! I am a substitute teacher and Child Passenger Safety technician in Calgary, Alberta. Join me on my adventures!

Wildcard SSL Certificates