top of page
Poops Pocket Slim Polka Lots Child.png

Material in cloth diapers and inserts

There are a variety of materials to choose from when it comes to cloth diapers, and it can feel overwhelming to delve into this at first. Below, we will explain some materials found in our products in a general overview, and why they are suitable for this purpose.

On the outermost layer of a cloth diaper, there needs to be a water-resistant cover. The most common materials for this part are what is called PUL (polyurethane laminate) covers and wool covers. A PUL cover is made of polyester fabric coated with a very thin layer of polyurethane. The lamination method used in Poops! diapers is heat-based and referred to as TPU (Thermo-PU). The PU layer also has microscopic holes, allowing the material to breathe. Due to this, the cover is not completely waterproof, but it does not let moisture through as long as the inserts have the capacity to absorb the liquid.

Wool covers also have water-repellent properties because it is a natural characteristic of sheep's wool. In its natural environment, sheep produce lanolin, which makes the wool water-repellent. Therefore, wool material needs to be treated with lanolin to regain these properties after washing. Wool can be a good choice for those who want to use more natural materials against their baby's skin. Some babies are sensitive to synthetic materials, while others may react to natural materials like wool. It's a matter of trial and error!

Inside the cover of a cloth diaper, absorbent layers are needed. There are many different materials to choose from for inserts, and it is also possible to combine them.

Poops! offers inserts made of Tencel and bamboo blended with organic cotton. These are two different material groups that differ slightly. We explain them below.

Tencel is a trade name for cellulosic textiles produced by the manufacturer Lenzing. The actual material is called lyocell. The properties of lyocell depend on various factors, such as how the yarn is spun and the appearance of the fabric itself. However, there are some basic characteristics that make this type of lyocell particularly well-suited for inserts and for having direct contact with the baby's skin. The main characteristic is its excellent absorption capacity, which is due to the fibers allowing liquid to accumulate inside so that the fibers can swell [1]. Tencel has also been found to spread out the liquid over an area approximately 20% larger than cotton and bamboo, however, it takes slightly longer for the liquid to be absorbed [2]. For example, cotton is known for absorbing liquid very quickly. This makes a combination of Tencel and cotton or bamboo very suitable for inserts in cloth diapers.

Tencel is also a material, like bamboo, that has been shown to inhibit bacterial growth better than materials such as cotton and synthetic materials [3]. Additionally, Tencel has durable fibers [3].

Poops! inserts made of bamboo and organic cotton exclusively use organically grown cotton certified by the Organic Content Standard (OCS). You can find more information about OCS here: The organic cotton is then blended with bamboo viscose to create a final product with excellent properties for inserts, providing a gentle and comfortable surface against the baby's skin. The composition of Poops! bamboo-cotton inserts is 70% bamboo viscose and 30% organic cotton for optimal absorption capacity.

For most children, using natural materials like Tencel or bamboo/cotton directly against the skin works great, but some children may find it uncomfortable when it feels damp (bamboo and cotton can be perceived more damp than Tencel). In that case, it may be good to have a stay-dry layer in between, such as using a pocket diaper or a separate stay-dry liner made of 'Athletic Wicking Jersey' (AWJ). AWJ is sometimes referred to as Coolmax, because Coolmax is one of the brand names used for this material.

References for material facts:

[1] Crawshaw, J., Vickers, M. E., Briggs, N. P., Heenan, R. K., & Cameron, R. E. (2000). The hydration of TENCEL® cellulose fibers studied using contrast variation in small angle neutron scattering. Polymer, 41(5), 1873-1881.

[2] Suganthi, S., Pachiayappan, K. M., Priyalatha, S., & Prakash, C. (2023). A Comparative Study on Moisture Management Properties of Natural and Manmade Cellulosic Fabrics Produced from Plain and Its Derivative Knitted Structures. Journal of Natural Fibers, 20(1), 2131685.

[3] Badr, A. A. (2018). Anti-microbial and durability characteristics of socks made of cotton and regenerated cellulosic fibers. Alexandria engineering journal, 57(4), 3367-3373.

bottom of page