Post may contain affiliate links. If you are thinking about using cloth diapers but afraid it won’t be possible with your lifestyle 100% of the time, you may consider using hybrid cloth diapers. Using this system gives you a chance to dip your toe into the cloth diapering world without completely diving in.
Hybrids are the best of both worlds, a cross between the two. You will still be able to use cloth, (helping the environment) but you will also have the convenience of disposables. This article will dive into some of the top rated hybrid cloth diaper brands and the advantages they offer!
Hybrid Cloth Diapers
Hybrid cloth diapers are like regular cloth diapers on the outside except they don’t have any built in soakers or inserts. They are most comparable to ALL IN TWO (AI2)cloth diapers. Like the AI2 style, hybrids come in two pieces; the cover and the insert. The waterproof cover or shell can be used with reusable or disposable inserts.
Hybrids are great for traveling or camping since you won’t have to tote around as much dirty diaper laundry.
The disposable inserts can be biodegradable and some can even flush down the toilet. However, I would personally never recommend flushing them for fear of clogging up the pipes. Since hybrid cloth diapers are meant to be convenient, the last thing you want is a clogged toilet!
Some of the disposable inserts have a sticky back that can help keep them from shifting around. The others simply tuck into your diaper shell or cover. Almost any cloth diaper could be used in conjunction with a disposable insert. Some diapers such as GroVia, Charlie Banana, or gDiapers are made with the intention of being hybrids and have both disposable and cloth insert options.
Types of Disposable Inserts
GroVia offers a line of amazing HYBRID DIAPERS and their inserts stick to your diaper shell, keeping them from shifting around. gDiapers offer compostable inserts (for pee diapers only). gDiapers are advertised more as hybrids or for using more disposable inserts than cloth.
CHARLIE BANANA is a unique type of hybrid cloth diaper because they are also in the pocket diaper category. Charlie’s disposable inserts can be tucked partly into the pocket to keep from shifting around.
Composting your pee inserts
For all of you half-hippies out there, if you want to compost a disposable pee insert you will need to shred it apart first. It should take up to 50-150 days to completely break down depending on how you compost it.
The Advantages of Hybrid Diapers
Using hybrids cloth diapers are a little better than using regular disposables, especially if you use the compostable ones. They don’t possess all of the nasty chemicals that disposables are notoriously known for. For example, the gDiaper disposable inserts are only made out of cellulose and wood fluff pulp.
For parents who are concerned about the environment but are unable to cloth diaper full-time, this could be a great option. The hybrid system offers a nice alternative without sacrificing too much convenience.
Save on diaper laundry
By using the hybrid system, you will have less dirty diaper laundry to wash. You can reuse the diaper shells a couple of times as long as they are only pee diapers. Just make sure you are washing your diaper laundry no longer than every 3-4 days or they will be a lot harder to get clean.
Hybrids are perfect for traveling, camping, or leaving with the babysitter. If you know your babies “schedule” you can slap a disposable insert on and not have to mess with the DIAPER SPRAYER.
And let’s not forget how much more adorable a cloth diapered bootie is (even if it’s only partly cloth) compared to a boring old disposable.
Obviously, Hybrid cloth diapers are not 100% green and you will be using more paper based products if you go this route.
You may also consider the additional costs
Cloth diapers are a little more costly up front but in the long run, they will save you a lot of money. Hybrid diaper shells are a little more expensive than other cloth diaper types. Additionally, disposable inserts are also a little more pricey than regular disposable diapers.
If you are constantly purchasing disposable inserts, you may end up paying more money than you would for regular disposable diapers. However, if you are using cloth most of the time, you will cover the additional costs and end up saving money over the long haul.
You still have to deal with crap
Even if you use disposable inserts, you will still have to deal with cleaning the diaper shells. If you have a poo explosion you may need to spray off the shell before tossing into the wash. However, If your baby is 100% breastfed then you can go ahead and toss the poopy shell into the wash. breastfed poo is completely water-soluble.
I prefer using my cloth diapers but I do use the disposable inserts every now and then. It’s nice to have a slightly greener alternative to disposable diapers as a back-up for traveling or whatever.
If you are a busy mom or just want to have an alternative to using disposable diapers, go ahead and give hybrid cloth diapers a go. Maybe you already use the hybrid system, let me know in the comments which brands are your favorite!