I'll say up front, though, that I put the Lotus Bumz cloth diaper through a far more rigorous routine than is normal for me in review testing.
I wasn't exactly meticulous when it came to washing the cover and insert separately, for one. (Normally, I don't wash both together.) My washer died during the test period, and I had to make do at a local laundromat. It was just too spendy to sort different loads, so everything got piled in at once into some massive industrial machine. Back home, the inserts went into the dryer but yes, I was careful to hang dry the cover. But because of the laundry situation, the Lotus Bumz wipe (and every other one I owned) sat dirty in the pail far longer than the general recommendation of two days. Vinegar and baking soda were definitely called for when my washer was back in service.
On top of that, Seven is now (ahem) using her diapers far more, shall we say, vigorously. This is a fully active, table-fed 22 pound 15 month-old who also still nurses a couple of times a day. Trust me ... a diaper is put through the paces by this lady.
And finally, the Lotus Bumz diaper was tested for almost double my normal time. Why? Well, when I mentioned the diaper to several experienced cd'ing mommas, nearly every one of them was somewhat dismissive. Turns out, the patterns and fabrics in the Lotus Bumz line are repeated in other brands. One momma noted that she had searched online and found several of these products, all seemingly from the same pattern, and that she was hesitant to order any of them because of their lower price point and the similarities, which seem to indicate that they're being sewn up in one factory, slapped with an individual seller's label, and sent on their way.
"I think they're all [insert name of popular cd brand here] knock-offs," was her rant, "but without the quality control."
Now, I'm just a reviewer. I can't speak to the where and why of a diaper, or to the motivations of a seller, or anything so deep. I'm asked to report to folks whether or not a diaper does what a diaper was meant to do, and to do my best to make sure that what I write is an accurate representation of our personal experience.
Taking into account the skepticism surrounding the quality of upstart diaper brands, I decided to run Lotus Bumz through the wringer and see how it held up.
Turned out, it was up to the job.
I was given a one-size pocket diaper with a silky exterior. Prints like this retail for $16.97 on the Lotus Bumz website, with solids a dollar cheaper. The snaps all proved solid, and the interior was buttery soft. Actually, it's a neat fleecy material completely unlike any other diapers I have. I can see this perhaps getting a little pilly after a few dryer runs, so I'd be extra careful to keep this one on the "hang dry only" routine. The neat aspect of this fleece, however, is the way that it lets go of solid. I've literally never swished this diaper. Everything just seems to roll out. Your mileage may vary with newborn poops, but for older kiddos ... how refreshing!
The fit of this diaper was perfect on Seven's long, skinny little frame.
At 22 pounds, she's still at the second setting. This is a diaper with a nice bit of give in the places where you want to see it, ensuring the long wearing-life that makes OSs such a bargain. Also, it's a fairly trim fit. My sample came with one, OS insert. Just stuffed that way, it was only just enough to keep the butt of Seven's leggings from seeming saggy. The pocket easily accommodates more stuffing, though, so you can adjust absorbency (or just fill those sized-up jeans you bought for your cloth diapered little one!).
Like any snaps, be prepared for a bit of finagling at change time. Seven is no dream to change these days, so I actually "hire" a helper to keep her occupied while I snap her up. Lotus Bumz snaps are slightly counter-intuitive to me in their placement, but I never claimed to be a professor of ergonomics. Mr. Blandings has no problem with them, and will often pick this diaper out of the stack, saying it's an "easy one." Daddy approved!
Performance wise, I can honestly say that this diaper performed almost exactly the way the brand my friend claimed it knocked off does on a day to day basis. The only leaks we encountered were when the diaper was single-stuffed and time (and rice milk consumption) had gotten away from me. Even then, the leakage was of the garden variety dampness around the back of the legs--just enough to make tights or leggings slightly wet. When supplemented with an additional soaker, Lotus Bumz OS happily held through nap time. (I didn't try this diaper for an overnight, because I simply don't like pockets for that duty.)
From my hardcore trial period, I can say that the Lotus Bumz OS isn't of shoddy quality. Far from it. Even when not treated with kid gloves and treated like, well-- a diaper--it held up. The cost is right in the mid-range of many brands, and the patterns and prints are adorable. This isn't a compromise product. You know-- "Well, I can't afford that, so I'll buy this." It's a great diaper. Buy with confidence!
Disclaimer: I was given a free copy of this product for review purposes. Refer to my general disclaimer for more information on my policies regarding reviews.