Review: AppleCheeks Diapers

One of my favorite aspects of reviewing cloth diapers is seeing the creative and innovative ways diapers are made!  In many ways, each diaper is a unique work of art; it is the result of many hours of thought, ingenuity and creativity. While some diapers are just variations of other brands, others are truly unique and in a class all their own.  Enter Applecheeks.  These diapers are unlike any other diaper I've tried so far!

The outer shell, or "Envelope Cover" is amazingly versatile, both in terms of fit as well as function.  The two size options cover babies from 7-35lbs, so this is a system you could most likely use until potty training!  The feature that makes Applecheeks truly unique however, is the ability to be a pocket-type diaper--with no unstuffing required--or an AI2!!  And that my friends, is only the beginning of the innovation!

Style: Pocket, Cover OR AI2
Closure:  Snaps
Sizing:  Size 1:  fits babies from approximately 7-20lbs, Size 2:  fits babies from 18-35lbs
Materials:  Outer is PUL, Inner is super-soft microfleece lining, Inserts are Bamboo/Cotton Viscose
Pricing:  Envelope covers $19, 2 pli insert $8.80, 3 pli insert $10.80, 2 pack stay dry inserts $8, bamboo booster $3.80, stay-dry bamboo booster $6.70
Colors and Prints:  9 vibrant colors and 2 adorable prints

Shell Outer
 One look at the Applecheeks Envelope Cover and you can see that it is unlike other diapers.
For starters, the shape is entirely unique--you'll notice is doesn't have the distinct "T" shape that most front snapping cloth diapers have.  Secondly, the entire perimeter of the diaper is serged, not turned and topstitched.  This accomplishes two things:  1)serging accomodates more stretch, making the cover very flexible and stretchy and 2) serging keeps the edge as trim as possible, so you get a very slim-fitting cover!

The front has two rows of snaps, ensuring that you get the perfect fit in both the waist and the legs.  The front panel also has super-soft elastic gathering in the front, which acts as a barrier against leaks and prevents gaping.  The back also has the same soft elastic gathering to guard against blow-outs and contain the nasty messes.  The extra-wide tabs prevent annoying wing droop.

Shell Inner
Take a peek inside the envelope cover and you'll find amazingly soft lining and a pocket opening in the middle of the diaper.  While most pocket diapers have the opening at the front or the back of the diaper, Applecheeks places theirs in the middle, make it hassle-free to stuff the pocket even for wider hands.  This ingenius placement also means that the insert will work its way out in the wash, unstuffing itself so you don't have to!
I'm just going to slip a little personal preference in here and say that I love bamboo in cloth diapers!  It's soft and holds twice as much as cotton.  This means that you can have the same amount of absorbency with half the bulk!   Plus, bamboo is anti-microbial so it's a healthy choice for babies bottom and in my experience, resists the stinkies better than other fibers.  Naturally then, bamboo is the perfect choice for Applecheeks Inserts!  Depending on the absorbency needs of your baby, you can choose from either 2 or 3 pli inserts and if you need additional absorbency, boosters are available as well (including a stay-dry option!).
 The insert is rectangular and meant to be folded in thirds, giving you either 6 or 9 absorbent layers depending on which pli insert you are using.  Fold it lengthwise for a longer insert and widthwise for a shorter one.

Below:  2 pli insert, folded widthwise and set on top of the Envelope cover to be used as an AI2.
Below:  2 pli insert folded lengthwise and set on top of the Envelope cover to be used as an AI2.

Below:  Insert folded widthwise and inserted into the envelope cover to be used as a pocket.
The following pictures have a 2 pli inserts inserted into the envelope cover

My daughter is 17 months, 20lbs and approximately 29" tall.   In the pictures below, she is wearing an Applecheeks envelope cover size 2, with a 2 pli insert trifolded inside.  Both the legs and waist are snapped to the smallest setting and are perfectly snug.  The cover fit her well, and I imagine that a size 1 would actually still fit her alright at this point, judging from how much room she has in the size 2 cover.  Because she's smaller, the cover does "blouse" a little, but under jeans you don't really notice it.  It really is a fairly trim fitting diaper.  The blousing isn't a negative issue--it just means that there is plenty of room to grow :)

The Applecheeks reusable diaper system is fabulous!  I loved being able to use it as a pocket, cover or AI2, depending on what I needed at the moment. 

As an AI2, it is very easy to use and reuse!  Simply lay the insert on top of the cover and put the diaper on.  When it's time for a change, pull the wet insert out and put a dry one in it's place. 

The reason I love being able to use the Applecheeks as a pocket is because it made a great night time diaper--I just placed a Babykicks hemp insert in the center of the insert and wrapped the 2 pli insert around it, then stuffed it in the pocket!  (The 2pli insert wasn't quite absorbent enough for a 10 hour stretch).

If you prefer fitteds for nighttime, the envelope cover can also be used over flats, prefolds, fitteds or contours. 

Regardless of which way I was using the system, I never had any problems with leaks or irritations. 

The versatility of type and material (the option for natural fibers or stay-dry), make Applecheeks an ideal system for those who want to cloth diaper, but aren't sure if they need natural fibers or stay-dry and don't know if they would prefer pocket, AI2's, or covers and prefolds.

You may also be interested in Softbums Omni.

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