Understand cloth diapering terminology and abbreviations

Understand cloth diapering terminology and abbreviations

Gannon Keller
7 minute read

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The cloth diapering industry is full of unique language, terms and acronyms that can be overwhelming for beginners. Understanding these terms is crucial for navigating the cloth diaper community effectively.

Whether you are a seasoned pro or a newbie in the cloth diapering world, this comprehensive guide will break down popular industry terms and acronyms to help make sure you understand cloth diapering terminology.

A —

AIO or All in One: An All-In-One Cloth Diaper is a convenient option that integrates all absorbent materials and the waterproof layer into one piece—everything is attached! This design makes it easy to use as it goes on and off like a disposable diaper. While AIO diapers are simple and user-friendly, they can take longer to dry compared to other types of cloth diapers and can be more challenging to customize to meet your baby's unique needs. 

AI2 or All in Two: An All-In-Two Cloth Diaper consists of two separate pieces: a waterproof cover and an insert. The insert can be snapped into the cover, making it economical as the cover can be reused with a fresh insert until soiled. AI2 diapers are space-saving and ideal for on-the-go use. 

Aplix: Aplix is another manufacturer of Hook and Loop closures. This is also sometimes called Velcro. 

B —

Bacon: Natural fibers, particularly hemp and cotton, tend to shrink a lot in the dryer. For this reason, sometimes laundered inserts can look like crispy, wavy bacon.

BLW: Baby lead-weaning. A form of introducing solids to a 6 mo+ baby. This process skips purees, and goes straight to soft, finger foods. (Consult with your pediatrician before introducing solids)

Booster: A booster, also known as a doubler, is an additional layer of absorbent material that can be added to a cloth diaper to increase its absorbency. Boosters are particularly useful for heavy wetters or overnight use.

BST or B/S/T: Buy, Sell, Trade

C —

CBI: Charcoal Bamboo Insert

CD: Cloth Diaper

Cloth Wipes: Reusable baby wipes are environmentally friendly alternatives to disposable wipes, made from materials like bamboo or cotton. These washable wipes can be used for cleaning babies, children, and adults, offering a sustainable and cost-effective solution. 

CO/Coconut Oil: Using coconut oil as diaper cream is a natural and gentle way to soothe and protect your baby's skin from diaper rash, leveraging its antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties. 

Cloth Diaper Safe Bum Cream Zinc-Free and Petroleum-Free

Cloth Diaper Safe Bum Cream Zinc-Free and Petroleum-Free


Our zinc-free, petroleum-free balm contains a calming herbal blend of calendula and lavender to reduce inflammation, and heal and restore damaged skin. Beeswax keeps moisture away by providing a gentle and effective barrier to the skin. Our carefully selected herbs… read more

D —

Diaper Cover: If using flats and pre-folds a diaper cover is an outer-shell needed to make your cloth diaper water resistant. One notable feature of diaper covers is that they do not have a moisture-wicking inner lining, making them easy to wipe down between diaper changes and reuse with a fresh absorbent layer. This design promotes cost-effectiveness and convenience for parents. 

Diaper Sprayer: A cloth diaper sprayer is a device designed to make cleaning cloth diapers easier and more hygienic. It typically attaches to the toilet's water supply line and features an adjustable high-pressure spray nozzle that allows users to rinse messy cloth diapers directly into the toilet before washing them in the machine. Cloth diaper sprayers eliminate the need for manual dunking and soaking of diapers, making the diaper cleaning process more efficient and less messy. 

DG/Double Gussets: A double gusset refers to an extra panel of elastic around the legs of a diaper or cover, enhancing containment and preventing leaks.

Doubler: An extra insert that can be added to the diaper to “double” the absorbency.

E —

EBF or Exclusively Breastfed: EBF stands for Exclusive Breastfeeding, which refers to the practice of feeding an infant only breast milk for the first six months of life without any additional food or drink, not even water. EBF poop is water-soluble and doesn’t need to be rinsed before tossing in your washing machine.

ECF or Exclusively Chestfed: An inclusive alternative to EBF following the same definition as above. 

F —

Fitted Diaper: Made from absorbent material shaped like a diaper with elastic around the legs and waist. Fitted diapers are secured with either snaps or hook and loop fasteners. They look like a diaper but are not waterproof and require a diaper cover. 

Flat: A square of fabric, often cotton, folded around your baby to form a cloth diaper. Flat's also require a diaper cover. 

FST: Flour Sack Towel. An affordable 1ply cotton towel you can find in the kitchen towel isle of most stores. 

FSO: For sale only.

FSOT: For sale or trade.

H —

HE: High Efficiency, in reference to your washing machine. HE washing machines use HE compatible detergent. 

Hook and Loop: Hook and loop refers to the fastening system used in some cloth diapers, similar to Velcro. This closure method allows for easy adjustments and secure fastening.

I —

ISO: In search of.

Insert: Rectangular or contoured strips of material that is inserted into the pocket opening of a pocket-style cloth diaper, or laid in a cover. Common types of inserts are MicroFiber, Bamboo, Hemp, and Cotton. 

L —

Liner: A liner is a cloth or disposable material that is placed on top of the cover for easy clean up of poos. They serve two main purposes: keeping solids away from the diaper for easier cleaning and providing a stay-dry layer against the baby's skin.

M —

MF: Microfiber

N —

NWT: New with tags

NWOT: New without tags

NIP: New in Package

NOOP: New out of package

O —

OS: One size diaper

P —

Pre-fold: A pre-fold is a type of cloth diaper that consists of a rectangular piece of fabric with multiple layers, typically made from natural materials like cotton, bamboo, or hemp. These diapers are designed with extra layers in the center panel for increased absorbency in the wet zone. Pre-folds are versatile and can be folded in various ways to fit a baby's size and shape, offering a customizable and cost-effective diapering solution. They require folding before use and are secured in place with pins or Snappis, then covered with a waterproof diaper cover. 

Pocket Diaper: A pocket diaper is a type of modern cloth diaper that features a waterproof outer layer with a pocket opening to insert absorbent inserts. These diapers are adjustable and suitable for babies from birth to potty training. Pocket diapers are known for their ease of use, eco-friendliness, and versatility.

Boho Basics Pocket Cloth Diaper with Athletic Wicking Jersey

Boho Basics Pocket Cloth Diaper with Athletic Wicking Jersey


Kinder Cloth Diaper Co. modern, reusable pocket cloth diapers feature a three by five adjustable rise setting that is flexible enough to fit most babies from birth to potty training. Our diapers feature a soft breathable, athletic wicking jersey (AWJ)… read more

PUL: Polyurethane Laminate or PUL is a waterproof material commonly used in cloth diapers, wet bags, and other reusable products. It provides the necessary water resistance to keep diapers leak-proof.

S —

Snappi: A Snappi is a type of diaper fastener used as an alternative to traditional diaper pins. It is designed to hold prefold or flat cloth diapers in place without the need for pins, providing a secure and convenient way to fasten diapers. Snappis feature grippers with teeth on each end that grip onto the fabric of cloth diapers, pulling the points to the center and ensuring that the diaper stays in place without bunching up under a cover.

Soaker: another term for insert

Sposies: Disposable Diapers

Stash: Your collection of diapers

R —

RLR: RLR is a specialized laundry additive used for stripping cloth diapers and other fabrics. RLR Laundry Treatment works by removing particles, suspending them in water, and preventing them from being redeposited on fabric. It is effective in removing build-up from various materials like cloth diapers, kitchen rags, towels, shirts, chef wear, and aprons. 

W —

WAHM: “Work At Home Mom”

Wet Bag: A wet bag is a reusable bag designed to store wet or soiled cloth diapers when you are away from home. It helps contain odors and moisture until you can wash the diapers. 

Wipe Solution or Wipe Bits: The soap used to wet cloth wipes. Plain tap water is fine, or you can mix your own wipe solution or buy wipe bits that dissolve in water. 

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