Charlie Banana Cloth Diaper Review - By Hippie Safari

Description: The Charlie Banana pocket diaper consists of a waterproof PUL outer and microfleece inner with two microfiber inserts.  There is a pocket opening in the front, allowing you to add absorbency as needed. These diapers are one-size, which means they'll fit through most of your baby's diapering years.They fasten with snaps around the waist and feature hip snaps to prevent wing droopage. The diaper adjusts to fit your baby via adjustable leg elastics (similar to a bra strap).

 
 

First impressions: I had read that Charlie Banana looks very similar in design to the Fuzzibunz brand which I reviewed a few months ago and I have to say that I agree with this statement. Both brands have a similar waist and hip snap configuration, stretchy PUL outer, super soft fleece inner and no rise snaps. Differences that I was able to immediately spot is that Charlie Banana's pocket opening is in front and has a flap to cover the opening wheras the Fuzzibunz pocket opening is in the back and does not have a flap covering the opening. The adjustable leg elastic, while a similar concept as the Fuzzibunz, is akin to how a bra-strap would adjust and uses S, M, L guidelines on the elastic to help you find the correct setting. Fuzzibunz uses buttonhole elastic to adjust (similar to what you would find on adjustable waist toddler pants) and the settings are marked 1, 2, 3 etc which the user would have to interpret according to the chart on the Fuzzibunz website. The fleece inner is super soft and the crotch is nice and narrow (a personal preference - this type of cut normally works very well on A). On a completely superficial level, I love the jet black colour of the diaper I tested. [Rating: 4.5/5]

Ease of use: While the sizing adjustment on this diaper is not as straight forward to use as the more conventional snap down rise, I did find it easier to use than the Fuzzibunz. The bra strap adjustment mechanism is a lot less finicky to use than the buttons on Fuzzibunz and the slightly wider crotch makes stuffing the diaper easier. I also found the PUL was not as sticky on the inside as the Fuzzibunz, which again made stuffing this diaper much easier. Once the diaper is stuffed it is just as easy to put on as an AIO. The Charlie Banana dries super fast, which is always a bonus. [Rating: 3.5/5]  

Fit: The adjustable elastic in the legs means you can get a really customised fit on your baby. Charlie Banana is nice and narrow through the crotch area and overall we get a pretty good fit with these. They have the same slight poufiness as Fuzzibunz - this is more noticeable on the smaller settings. Stuffed with both inserts I found these a little on the bulky side, but not any more so than other pockets stuffed with two microfibre inserts. These diapers can size down incredibly small and from my not-so scientific experiments with fit on A's doll I think this is one of the very few one-size diapers that will comfortably fit a newborn's little skinny legs.  The waist is similarly able to size down quite small due to the overlapping tabs at the waist. I like the wider elastic at the back of the diaper - it gives a really nice look to the diaper. [Rating: 4/5]  

 

Value for money: These are on the expensive side, though not ridiculously so and cheaper than their US competitors Bumgenius and Fuzzibunz. For what you pay you get a well made diaper that is more customisable size-wise than regular one-size diapers and so you'd probably get longer use out of it. I'll be honest and say that I still probably wouldn't buy an entire stash of these, but adding one or two of them to your stash is quite feasible. [Rating: 3.5/5] 

Performance: We have to use both inserts for A during the day and it holds up fine - we have not had any leaks. Having said that, it's also not the most absorbent diaper we have in our stash - but I also have to add that A has recently turned into a super-pee'er and the absorbency would be more than enough for a smaller baby or less heavy wetting toddler.
 Since we already use the maximum absorbency for daytime, I have not tried this diaper for overnight use, but imagine it would work as well as any double stuffed pocket. [Rating: 4/5]

 

Overall impression: I love the cut of this diaper as well as the fact that the fit is so super customisable. If you have two children in diapers you might find having to adjust the elastics each time a bit annoying - it takes up a bit more time than simply snapping down the rise. We have no issues regarding the performance of this diaper and I will definitely recommend it if your budget is not too tight. [Rating: 4/5]

Disclaimer: All image credits belong to Hippie Safari. Please do not use or distribute without my permission.  I received a Charlie Banana Pocket Diaper free of charge from Tiny Hiney for purposes of this review, but was not in any other way compensated for this review and all opinions are my own.  While I aim to provide detailed, objective reviews of all the diapers that I've used, please bear in mind that this is my opinion and that every mom has her own preferences and every baby is built differently. So what works well for me and A, might not necessarily work well for you and your baby. A the time that these photos were taken, A was 2 years old and weighed close to 12 kg.

 

 

 

Charlie Banana 2-in-1 Swim Diaper/Training Pant Review - By Hippie Safari

Description: The Charlie Banana 2-in-1 Swim Diaper/Potty Training Pant is made of a stretchy lycra fabric on the outside (think swimsuit fabric) and an organic cotton interior lining. It has a hidden PUL layer inbetween the two layers to make it waterproof  and extra layers of absorbency in the wetzone. These swim diapers/potty training pants are sized, so you can get the perfect fit on your little one, without having to worry about adjusting snaps on the rise and waist. It features a drawstring at the waist, so you are able to adjust the fit at the waist. 

First impressions: These make very cute swim diapers or training pants. Both the outside and insides are soft and stretchy and they look exactly like little underpants. I like that the waist drawstring is on the inside, it just makes for a sleeker appearance vs having the strings hanging on the outside.They come in adorable prints - just check out the awesome Robot Girl one that A is wearing in these pics. [Rating: 4/5]

Ease of use: These are super easy to use - simply pull up and pull down again. There are no rise snaps to worry about and no fastening to be done around the waist. The waist is adjustable via a drawstring - again, super easy. Because they are so nice and stretchy, A is able to comfortably pull them up and down herself as well. The con of no waist closures is that there is no easy/non-messy way to remove the swim diaper/training pants when your little one has made a poo in them - you will most likely end up with smears down their legs resulting in a more difficult cleanup. They dry fairly quickly, considering the natural fibre interior and the extra layers of absorbency in the wetzone.  [Rating: 3.5/5]  

Fit: These seem to run a bit big - at 12.5kg A comfortably fits into the size medium, which is rated to fit babies from 7 - 9 kg. The mediums fit her beautifully though - snug (but not too snug) around the waist and legs for a good seal and to keep everything in that should stay in. They are pretty trim, but slightly poufy - I think this looks cute on though. [Rating: 4/5]

Value for money: Considering these can be used as both training pants and swim diaper, I think they're pretty decent value for money. Unlike a shell and inserts potty training system though (eg Flip or Best Bottoms), you have to wash the entire training pant when wet or soiled, which ends up working out a bit more expensive. On the plus side though, you can use these as swim diapers even before your child potty trains and after they are potty trained as well, so I guess that evens out. [Rating: 4/5] 

Performance: These work great both as swim diapers and as training pants. They are able to hold small wees, which make them super convenient to use as swim diaper as you can change your baby into them at home when you head to the beach and be fairly confident that the carseat won't end up drenched. With other swim diapers, you have to change your baby into the swim diaper immediately before going to the beach/pool since they are not designed to hold in pee. As training pants they work equally well - able to hold small accidents and the snug fitting leg and waist openings keep all solids contained as well. They are also easy for my toddler to pull up and down - which lets face it, is a pretty important feature in a training pant!
 [Rating: 5/5] 

Overall impression: I love the versatility of the Charlie Banana 2-in-1 Swim Diaper/Potty Training pant as they are not limited in use to just potty training or just a swim diaper. I also love love love the super cute prints these come in - who wouldn't want to see their little one's bum wrapped in a print like Blackberry or Lovey & Dovey? I appreciate the excellent quality fabrics used (organic cotton interior) and the fact that, despite the added sewn in absorbency the drying time is quite reasonable. These are a great investment, whether your little one is just going to the beach or actively potty training. [Rating: 4.5/5]

Disclaimer: All image credits belong to Hippie Safari. Please do not use or distribute without my permission.  I received this diaper free of charge for purposes of this review, but was not compensated in any way for my review and all opinions expressed above are my own. While I aim to provide detailed, objective reviews of all the diapers that I've used, please bear in mind that this is my opinion and that every mom has her own preferences and every baby is built differently. So what works well for me and A, might not necessarily work well for you and your baby. At the time that these photos were taken, A was 2 years old and weighed approximately 12.5 kg.

 

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Tiny Hiney is an online company based in South African that was created by Nadia du Plooy and her love for eco-friendly products and her passion for waste reduction.  The inspiration to start Tiny Hiney begun with my first-born son, read more ...

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