Comprehensive list on why cloth-like disposables can be inferior

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jellyjigger

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If you prefer cloth-like disposables, more power to you as you have a vastly greater selection than those preferring plastic-backed disposables. The general attitude in the medical industry is that there are no good reasons for plastic-backing.

I prefer plastic-backing primarily due to the comfort being better (because the sag/stretch factor is much less) and less side leaks. After being prompted many times to defend plastic-backed disposables, I have attempted a comprehensive list of reasons why cloth-like diapers can be inferior, even listing reasons that might not be applicable to myself. Obviously not all kinds of cloth-like disposables have all drawbacks listed but I was wondering if anyone had other reasons not already in the list below.

Armed with such a list, maybe the community can use it to help shift negative plastic-backed attitudes over time as cloth-like is certainly no panacea.

My list sofar:

-Clothlike has tendency to strech and sag while plastic holds shape better; a better fit leads to better containment of leaks.

-Clothlike overall *breathability* leads to more evaporation and thus increases odors. I think smelling like pee in public is more obvious (and embarrassing) than a slight crinkle, but that's just me!

-Clothlike breathable sides/panels might as well just be a pad in the middle with stretch pants as they provide no side protection; this is important for males who happen to have their member pointing in the wrong direction and the wrong time

-Clothlike are notorous for pinhole leaks!

-Clothlike has been known to chafes people more, although some claim plastic-backing also chafes

-Plastic-backing can be *slid* under patients more easily (especially applicable in bariatric patients) which is why the XLARGE and bariatric styles remain plastic-backed in traditional brands.
 

bobbilly

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I concer that cloth backed nappies stretch and become loser compromising the fit. For me when that happens I feel less secure.

I’m glad some manufacturers have gone back to plastic because I hated cloth backed nappies and that caused me a lot of anxiety. At one stage it looked like all the incontinence manufacturers were going down the cloth route. I think they lost many customers because they soon changed their mind and started stocking plastic nappies again which is good.
 

jellyjigger

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Since some manufacturing has indeed reverted back to plastic such as the victory with Depend and since only a small portion of the market include ABDLs (which my guess overall prefer plastic to cloth if they had to choose), this indicates that a significant portion typical non-ABDL incontinent users DID NOT want the plastic diapers to disappear. This is certainly reassuring as I think the manufacturers are likely to listen to this audience with more interest.
 

Slomo

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Add in that cloth like diapers have an extrememly limited absorbency, and often will not last more than 2 or 3 hours. Ask anyone to drop what they are doing and go to the bathroom every 2 hours. When they say that's not always possible, tell them the same holds true for our diapering needs.

Cloth like diapers also clump and fall apart much faster than to vomparable plastic diapers. This greatly reduces their effeciveness, and comfort.

Cloth like diapers are cheaply made too, they often feel like you're sitting in a pool of urine. Plastic diapers have better acquisition and lock away wetness better, thereby improving comfort while also reducing rashes.

Cloth like diapers are not actually all cloth. They have a thin strip of plastic that makes them waterproof. Except that thin strip of plastic doesn't even wrap around the legs which directly correlates to more leaks when sitting down.

- - - Updated - - -

Oh, and cloth like diapers actually cost more than plastic diapers. True they are cheaper per-diaper, but they require many more changes per day, which multiplies their total cost per day. Often enough, the total cost per day for cloth will far exceed the total cost per day of plastic diapers.
 

jellyjigger

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Thanks Slomo, I had no idea they functionally sucked so bad. Beyond trying them out a couple times, I mostly refuse to wear them. I figured the manufacturers just changed the covers. Apparently you can "judge a book by its cover" in this case :) Can what you say really be true of nearly all cloth-like disposables?
 

Prairie

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Maybe I'm missing something, but I thought that cloth-like diapers simply had a cloth-like cover stuck to a plastic-backed diaper. Adding something can't diminish the diaper. It sounds like the problem isn't with cloth backing itself (except the one point about it being harder to slide around on), rather with the unrelated changes made alongside the change to cloth backing. So the critique is about the many choices makers have made with things like leak guards, plastic backing thickness, etc. rather than the cloth itself (which is fine, just clarifying what the issue is). This is important to clarify since a manufacturer could simply not add the cloth outer layer and you'd have a plastic-backed diaper that had all the same problems.
 

bambinod

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Maybe I'm missing something, but I thought that cloth-like diapers simply had a cloth-like cover stuck to a plastic-backed diaper.

I recently got some of the new magnifico pull-ups, here's what you get when you try to take them apart:

https://www.adisc.org/forum/album.php?albumid=1928

In that case it's basically a high-capacity plastic-backed stuffer with a "hair-net" of a shell glued to it.
 

Slomo

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Maybe I'm missing something, but I thought that cloth-like diapers simply had a cloth-like cover stuck to a plastic-backed diaper. Adding something can't diminish the diaper. It sounds like the problem isn't with cloth backing itself (except the one point about it being harder to slide around on), rather with the unrelated changes made alongside the change to cloth backing. So the critique is about the many choices makers have made with things like leak guards, plastic backing thickness, etc. rather than the cloth itself (which is fine, just clarifying what the issue is). This is important to clarify since a manufacturer could simply not add the cloth outer layer and you'd have a plastic-backed diaper that had all the same problems.

With most, they are NOT just adding an extra cloth like layer. They first take away a lot of the plastic- both by cutting it back and making what's left much thinner. Most cloth diapers also try to cather to the "more discreet" crowd by making them with less padding/absorption. Of course, we here all know that thinner doesn't mean discreet. It means more visible leaks.
 
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