Friday, June 28, 2013

Bamboo Charcoal Pocket Diaper & Wetbag from ecoWays.ca: Review & Giveaway! (Closed)


ecoWays.ca is a new family-owned and operated small business based in Mississauga, Ontario which offers a large selection of cloth diapering and other eco-friendly products for babies, toddlers and moms. The store carries a variety of 3rd party cloth diapering brands including AMP, bumGenius and Flip, and recently introduced its own line of custom-made diapering gear, designed to be comparable to the "big name" brands at a lower price point. ecoWays.ca-branded products are sourced in Canada, China and the Philippines and are tested first-hand on the store owner's son before going to market. I've had the opportunity to review several of these products which I'll share with you here today!


My Review Package / Product Info:

The owner of ecoWays.ca sent me the following items to test out:


    • Outer: Waterproof Polyester PUL
    • Inner: 100% micro-polar bamboo charcoal fleece (stay-dry)
    • With top front leak protection for tummy sleeper.
    • Available in 16 different colours and shades



    • One size design: S.M.L all in one size, could fit 3Kg to 13 Kg
  • 2 bamboo charcoal inserts

    • Combines the benefit of bamboo charcoal and microfiber materials to make it more absorbent
    • 5 layers in total (Approx. 35cm x 13cm, 14" x 5")
      - 2 outer layers: 100% bamboo charcoal material
      - 3 middle layers: 100% microfiber material
    • Non-flimsy design for easy stuffing on pocket diapers or for use on diaper cover
    • Easy to clean, washes well and quick to dry
  • 1 AMP bamboo fleece insert


    • 70% rayon derived from bamboo, 30% cotton blend
    • Super soft and silky
    • Very breathable
    • Anti-bacterial
    • Absorbs 3 to 4 times more than cotton
    • Doesn't feel sticky or uncomfortable when wet
    • Fold them once for four layers in a size large original pocket diaper or fold in three in the size smalls.
    • So trim you can easily double them up for a heavy wetting baby all night solution
  • 1 bamboo fleece insert

    • Made in Canada
    • 2 layers of Bamboo fleece, 70% bamboo rayon, 30% organic cotton
    • 1 middle layer of double Bamboo Terry 70% bamboo rayon, 28% organic cotton, 2% polyester
    • Size Large, approximately 5.5" x 15"
    • Cuper soft , thirsty and with full texture
    • Serged edge
    • Good option for moms who prefer natural fabric as opposed to microfiber
    • Recommended use for heavy wetter: used two or combine with bamboo charcoal insert
  • 1 ecoWays.ca wetbag with pocket

    (Note - my wetbag has a different pattern than the one seen here.)

    • Made in Canada
    • Outer layer: 100% home decor polyester
      Inner layer: PUL (polyurethane laminated) polyester
    • Has hidden seams and additional layers of enclosed PUL to avoid leakage
    • Size: 11" x 15", holds approximately 6-8 diapers
    • Detachable handle that opens and closes with a snap
    • Made using DiaperMaker PUL fabrics that meet CPSIA and OEKO-TEX 100 standards and are manufactured in the USA in modern non-polluting EPA compliant facilities.
    • Can also be used to store your wet swim suit, as lunch bag, as a reusable gift bag and more!


My Review - Cloth Diapers and Inserts:

The first diaper I received is in the Bella Flores print with snap closures. There are 10 "standard" waist snaps plus two crossover snaps, and three different rise options. Here you can see the diaper set to the smallest and largest sizes, as well as fully unbuttoned.




Here is a close-up of the wing snaps. There are three on each side (two top and one bottom).


The second diaper I received is in the Pisces print and has hook and look (aplix) closures, including crossover aplix. Here it is set to small and large sizes, and fully unbuttoned.




The aplix strip at the front does not go right to the edges, which on the one hand may mean it won't fit as large as some other diapers, but on the other it prevents the diaper from being fastened so far out that the laundry tab chafes your little one's skin.

The aplix on this diaper is very sticky and rugged, which is good to see as I own a few diapers with "wimpier" aplix that has lost stick after several months - boo!


The pocket opening of both diapers is quite wide and easy to stuff. Dads, you have no excuse with these. ;)


Both the PUL outer and bamboo charcoal fleece inner of the diapers are soft and pleasant to the touch, and the waist and leg elastics are nice and stretchy.

Next, a close-up of the three inserts - bamboo charcoal, bamboo fleece and AMP (trifolded), respectively.




A couple more pics of the AMP - up-close and unfolded. Notice the top-notch stitching, and the green thread colour gives the insert a unique look.



All inserts feel soft, plush and "thirsty" - ready to take on whatever your babe has to throw at 'em!

As per its product description, the bamboo charcoal insert can be used in a cover. Here it is laid on top of the Pisces diaper in "all in two" fashion. Notice both the insert and diaper inner are lined with the same bamboo charcoal material.


My 2 1/2 year old, 25 lb daughter is day-trained, and currently wearing disposable pull-ups at night (so she can "operate" them more readily herself). So, as I'm sure it goes without saying, I didn't want to put her in the situation of actually "performance testing" these diapers. However I did get her to briefly model the flower one (stuffed with the AMP insert) by explaining that we were trying it out for other little girls who are still wearing diapers. As you can see, it fits her well - trim and snug, moves with her well and no wing droop. And she told me it felt comfy too! Also notice that the waist snaps are only on a middle setting, so I can definitely see the diaper accommodating a 30+ pound child.





To show off the Pisces, I recruited my 6 month old, 13 lb skinny li'l man. Up until now, we've mainly used prefolds and fitteds with covers on him, since he goes through so many and since most single-piece diapers have resulted in a significant leg gap. I'm happy to report that the Pisces (and yes, the Bella Flores too; don't judge ;) achieve an amazing fit on him. Take a look for yourself!






Next up - my official evaluation! Note that unless a specific item is referenced, comments apply across the board (i.e. to both closure types and all inserts).

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Appearance/Style:
+ Attractive design
+ Nice, trim fit - on both a super-skinny 13 lb baby and 25-lb toddler
+ No notable wing droop or sagging
+ Available in a wide variety of gender-specific and gender-neutral colours and patterns
Score: 5/5

Performance (tested on 13 lb long/skinny, medium night-wetting baby):
+ Super day-time performance with all insert types - only one leak in about 8 test wears and this was due to user error (oversaturation).
+ Perfect night performance on four test occasions, using a combination of both aplix and snap diapers, and charcoal bamboo and AMP insert types.
+ No leg gap present
+ Even after a single wash, all inserts were already quite absorbent and able to hold an impressive amount of liquid
? Haven't been able to test yet on poop, as our guy currently only does a #2 once every 4-5 days!!
? Haven't tested performance on our toddler as she's potty-trained and we obviously don't want regression!
Score: 5/5 (Note: test situations limited as indicated above, but no issues so far with everything we have been able to test out!) 

Comfort & Health:
+ Nice, stretchy waist and leg elastic; does not leave notable marks on baby's skin
+ Achieves a snug fit without pinching at both 12-13 lb and 25 lb weights
+ Bamboo charcoal inner starts out very plush and maintains its softness well over multiple washes
+ Our daughter commented that the diaper felt comfortable during her test wear (she had on the snap diaper with an AMP insert)
+ Does not appear to cause/exacerbate diaper rash (bamboo charcoal is naturally anti-microbial and hypoallergenic so it is a recommended material for sensitive skin)
+ Shell combined with organic cotton sherpa insert is a great option for super-sensitive skin
Score: 5/5

Ease of Use:
+ Easy to stuff via large pocket
+ Easy to launder; no special instructions
+ Quick & easy to change baby
+ Nice, sticky laundry tabs on aplix shell
? No poop yet so haven't been able to test spray-down/clean-up. Though, from experience, pocket diapers are easy since there is just a single piece to spray down.
- Snaps are a bit loose on both diapers which can cause the rise to come undone during a change if you pull up on the front of the diaper. And a more adventurous toddler could probably bust out of the snap closure variant fairly readily.
- Inserts do not appear designed to come out in the wash on their own
Score: 4/5 

Quality & Durability:
+ All shells and inserts appear very well-made; no loose seams, flawed stitching, etc.
+ Aplix is very strong; I expect it to last a looong time (unlike the aplix on a few other diapers we own which has lost stickiness after several months)
+/- Snaps appear sewn in snugly, though as mentioned earlier, would ideally snap together a bit more firmly.
+/- Most items have maintained their size and shape perfectly after laundering, however the bamboo fleece insert has become slightly bunchy/uneven (but still perfectly usable).
Score: 4.5/5

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Total "Diaper Awesomeness" Score: 23.5/25 (Pretty much a perfect diaper. Go out there and buy some NOW! :) )

Overall Comments: This is one amazing OS pocket diaper! Terrific performance, fit and comfort, and comes in a wide variety of colours/patterns and both aplix and snap closure types. Multiple insert options are also available for ultimate customization. Particularly notable is the diaper's snug fit on a skinny baby (and, presumably, a newborn), which can be hard to find!  Criticisms are few and minor; the only one which I feel may affect a purchase decision is that the snaps are a bit loose, so the aplix closure type, given its strength, may actually be a better choice for an "adventurous" toddler.

Estimated Stash Cost: $485.76 to $676.56.
Calculation details: Bamboo charcoal cloth diaper shells cost $13.99 each, so 24 would total $335.76. A single bamboo charcoal insert is included with each shell at no extra charge, however if you would like to add a second one and/or prefer to "upgrade" to AMP or organic cotton sherpa inserts, the price increases accordingly. Let's assume a "luxury" option would be two inserts per shell - a bamboo charcoal and an AMP bamboo - then the cost for 24 diapers would be the base $335.76 + $190.80 for 24 AMP inserts = $526.56. Diapers are advertised to fit from 3 to 13 kg = 6.6 to 28.6 lb so the OS premium is $150.00 for a total estimated "stash cost" of $485.76 (base) to $676.56 (premium). Note: since this diaper fits small/skinny babies so well, you should be able to start using them right away on your newborn (or very young baby), and then wait and see to determine whether they'll last all the way to potty training, or whether your toddler will outgrow them. They would have definitely worked from birth to potty training on my daughter, who weighed 8 lb 8 oz at birth and trained at 25 lbs.

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My Review - Wetbag with Pocket:


I love wetbags. We own several and use them for numerous purposes (aside from dirty dipe storage, we also fill 'em with used wash cloths and take 'em to the pool for wet bathing suits, among other uses). I really like the ecoWays.ca wetbag with pocket, for the following reasons:
  • Its two compartment design means you can store both dirty and clean items together. The main compartment (for dirty items) is lined with PUL and has a standard zip closure, and the clean compartment is simply an open pocket on the outside of the bag.


    I often fill the pocket with everything needed for a single change (diaper, cloth wipes and solution bottle) when I know I'm going to be some place where a super efficient change is desired (e.g. a restaurant bathroom). I'm undecided whether I prefer the open pocket over a closed compartment for clean items (which I have on another bag I own); on the one hand, an open pocket allows easier access and can probably fit a bit more stuff, but on the other said stuff could potentially fall out. In any case, a clean compartment in general is a Good Thing.
  • Its inner PUL layer is truly leak-proof; it passes the "fill with water and squeeze" test, unlike other wetbags I own. This also helps ensure unpleasant smells don't escape!

  • It has a hanging loop. A simple feature, but a useful one - and surpringly not all wetbags have one! We hang small wetbags on our son's change table, the bathroom cupboard and other places. The detachable nature of this one means you can hang it from an enclosed fixture - for example, a stove handle if you want to use it as a kitchen wetbag.
  • It is large enough to hold 7-8 dirty diapers, which is key if you're going to be out & about for a full day! The bag below is holding 7 dirty diapers plus wipes, and I could definitely cram a bit more in there.
  • Maintenance-wise, no complaints. It washes well and hang dries quickly, thanks to its two separable layers.

I really can't think of anything bad to say about this bag, and would wholeheartedly recommend it for dirty diapers and other "wet storage" tasks. Note that (as of this writing) it is only available in a single print, so hopefully additional choices will be available shortly.


Buy It:

Visit ecoways.ca to stock up on bamboo charcoal diapers, inserts and/or wetbags of your own! While you're there, be sure to browse all the other eco-friendly baby products the store has to offer! Shipping is free to Canada on orders of $150+ and to the United States on orders of $200+.


Win It:

One lucky Manager to Mom reader will win a bamboo charcoal diaper in the gender-neutral "Happy Face in Red" print + two bamboo charcoal inserts from ecoways.ca! Winner chooses closure type (aplix or snaps). Open to CANADA ONLY.


To enter, fill out the Rafflecopter form below. Please follow all instructions within each entry option to ensure your entries are valid.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure:  The prize is being provided and shipped to the winner by ecoways.ca.  I received no financial compensation for writing my review or offering this giveaway, although I did receive the sample items free of charge.  This is my completely honest opinion above and may be different from yours.

84 comments:

  1. i like the nature print and also would try the cloth nursing pads

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  2. like the jungle world print :)

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  3. LOVE those prints, I like the classic robot!

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  4. Pisces like my son :) Also like the jungle print.

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  5. mariko lafontaineJune 29, 2013 at 12:16 AM

    I like the nature print!

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  6. I love all the colors! Especially the Lavender!

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  7. I like the lime green and the sky blue!

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  8. I like the Pisces print. I have been wanting to try a charcoal diaper. Thanks!
    - AaronandKasi Erwin facebook/rafflecopter

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  9. I like the Nature pattern and also like the Kushies Organic Crib Sheet Green.

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  10. I'd pick the magical cat diaper with the organic inserts! and i'd love the bamboo fleece fabric!

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  11. I like the nature, and happy face in red the best!! Looks like a great website :)

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  12. I like the magical cat print!

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  13. love the Pisces or the Jungle world prints!

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  14. Love the Pisces or the Jungle world!

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  15. Oh, I'd love the lavender one. My stash does not have enough purple in it.

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  16. I like the Classic Robot and Jungle World patterns.
    angela mitchell

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  17. nature and the athlete are my fav prints!

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  18. I like Lavender the best, and I also would love to try AMP Duo One Size Diaper

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  19. I love bella flores

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  20. My favorite print probably is the Jungle
    World print!

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  21. I like the jungle world and the aquas diaper sprayer. We started solid foods so we will need one soon! Thanks for the giveaway!

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  22. Love the Vcar Bright red looks so good on my boy

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  23. I like the nature and the bella flores prints

    (Rachel N)

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  24. Love the Bella Flores print!

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  25. the bella flores or the bright tangerine

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  26. I like Bella Flores print and thought it was neat that they sell diaper making fabric too.

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  27. Oops. I just saw this isn't for US. Sorry. Tired momma.

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  28. the athlete and vcar are my two favorite.

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  29. I like the magical cat print and I liked the Kushies Organic Crib Sheet

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  30. Bella Flores and Nature are super cute!

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  31. We like the jungle world and g car!

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  32. I love the Magical Cat print!

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  33. I love Jungle World and Pisces.

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  34. I like Jungle world and Pisces.

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  35. I like the lavender color and the jungle world print.

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  36. Wow, that was a great, thorough review. I really like the pisces diaper and the jungle world diaper.

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  37. I LOVE the happy face in red - comic strips are awesome =)

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  38. I love the pisces... and jungle... and nature... and bright lemon... too hard to choose!

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  39. I love the pisces, and jungle, and nature, and bright lemon! Too hard to choose!

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  40. I like charcoal bamboo and love the aplix option as I have a skinny legged baby.

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  41. I think the bella flores is the prettiest, but I like the Jungle world print too!

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  42. I like the tangerine colored diaper. We're sort of collectors of orange diapers.

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  43. I like the Jungle World. I also like the swim diapers http://www.ecoways.ca/amp-swim-diapers.php

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  44. Bella Flores, Magical Cat,and Classic Robot are prints I really like! I liked that they had bamboo fleece listed but sad that it was out of stock.

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  45. I like the sky blue

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  46. I like the Bella Flores print.

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  47. Delacey von BusseJuly 12, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    I like the V Car print and the nature print. Great review btw.

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  48. Love the pisces print!

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  49. i like the tangerine charcoal snap all in 2

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  50. I love the Pisces print, and the swim diapers!

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  51. LOVE the jungle and pisces prints. :)

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  52. So I take it these don't have double gussets... which is almost a deal breaker for me, but I am so tempted!

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    1. No double gussets - but these don't seem to be necessary since the legs achieve such a nice, snug fit! You could always try a few and see if they work for you?

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