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Choosing reusable cloth diapers is a big decision that can lead to a rewarding journey for you and your baby. But where do you start? Here are the most commonly asked questions on how to start your cloth diaper journey.

Nicki's Diapers is a family business founded by Nicki and later joined by her husband Jesse. As a husband and wife team, they worked together to ensure the highest quality products while following responsible environmental and social business practices. The company is now located in Akron, Ohio.

Reusable Swim Diapers | The Ultimate Swim Diapers Guide

What is quite possibly scarier than discovering sharks in the water? How about discovering your baby has pooped in the water?

Just imagine: It’s a beautiful hot summer day out at the packed public pool.

Everyone is having the time of their lives.

And suddenly...a scream. Everyone flees.

The pool is immediately shut down until it can be further inspected and cleaned.

You’re flushed with embarrassment.

Oh, the terror! The remedy?

Never to be caught without swim diapers again.

Just ask any parent who may have experienced this horror show before - They’ll tell you that it’s far better to be safe than really sorry.

So be safe - Equip yourself with a pair or two of swim diapers.

Swim Diapers

baby in cloth swimming diaper

What exactly is a swim diaper, you ask?

I’m glad you asked.

Having a little one in diapers doesn’t need to hold you back from the water.

Public pools, beaches, and lakes can all be safe places to bring your pre-potty-trained baby as long as you’re safely equipped with a swim diaper.

Swim diapers are simply diapers designed to withstand water and contain solids.

They are made up of two layers - durable nylon on the outside and an inner, soft, and non-irritating layer on the inside.

Do you need a swim diaper?

If you’re planning on bringing your baby to any public pool, lake, or beach and they are not yet potty-trained - Yes.

Yes, you do.

Some public swim areas require it.

Not just for the ick factor, but swim diapers can protect your child and others from spreading or catching waterborne diseases same with the newborn swim diapers.

Swim diapers can also protect your child’s delicate bum from sunburn and help avoid any irritants from sitting in the sand or grass.

How Do Swim Diapers Work

swim diaper baby playing in sand

Swim diapers don’t work the same way regular diapers do.

While regular diapers are absorbent, swim diapers are not designed to absorb liquid.

That’s right, that means pee will pass through to the water.

I know, gross.

But at least pee is a whole lot less gross - and less noticeable - than poop.

And come on, who doesn’t pee in the pool every now and again?

Heh, heh. Moving on.

The fact is that containing fecal matter is the essential part since fecal contamination is what public pools fear the most.

Pools could have to close down for days or even weeks as it is drained and refilled.

That’s not good news for anyone.

Let’s avoid that happening for everyone’s benefit, shall we?

The excellent news is swim diapers can do this. And they do it well.

They keep number twos inside and assure public waters remain a safe environment for everyone to enjoy.

Swim Diapers Over Regular Diapers - The Choice is Easy

There is a critical difference between swim diapers and regular diapers:


Regular diapers are made from materials that absorb liquids like a sponge and expand as they are filled.

If you put your baby in an ordinary diaper and set them in the water, their diaper will quickly puff up and become a heavy, soggy mess.

They’ve even been known to explode in the water due to the absorbent gel they use.

Um, exploding diapers? No thanks.

Not only will this be uncomfortable for your baby, but it will also be ineffective for keeping poo and pee out of the water that other people are swimming in.

Ummm… again, no thanks.

And the worst part of all?

By acting like a sponge and absorbing enough water to become a heavy, soggy mess, regular diapers could act as an anchor in the water and increase your child’s drowning risk.

Need I say more?

Swim diapers, on the other hand, are made from water-resistant materials that absorb fewer liquids.

This makes them safer and more comfortable.

Features such as elasticized leg and waist openings and advanced fabrics make swim diapers rugged bacteria blockers that help protect against the spread of waterborne diseases like e-coli.

In fact, an independent university study found they can help reduce bacteria released into the water by up to 98 percent.

The choice is easy.

Reusable Swim Diapers vs. Disposable Swim Diapers

swim diapers in action

Swim diapers come in both disposable and reusable.

Although disposables are cheap and offer convenience, if you haven’t realized it out already, here at Nicki’s Diapers, we are big proponents of using reusable cloth diapers, so it makes sense that we are just as oo-rah over reusable swim diapers.

Choosing reusable helps cut down on waste and is more cost-effective.

You can use them multiple times and with various children.

They are also adorable.

But just like cloth diapers, this does mean that you will need to put in a little bit of extra work, but for the benefits mentioned above (and the cuteness factor, which we’ll get into next), we feel that it’s worth it.

Like, totes worth it.

What I mean by putting in the extra work is this: after changing your child out of a reusable swim diaper, you’re going to need to flush the contents of the diaper down the toilet, package the dirty reusable to take home, and then once home, rinse it and run it through the wash.

If you’re already used to using reusable cloth diapers, this shouldn’t be anything new to you.

If you’re not yet used to using reusable diapers, don’t worry. With a little practice, it becomes like second nature.

Here’s an excellent 5-step guide on how to clean reusable swim diapers:

  1. Rinse any stool out of the diaper immediately.
  2. Turn the diaper liner inside out.
  3. Use hot, soapy water to machine or hand wash.
  4. Don’t use bleach, and it can be harsh on the elastic.
  5. Machine or line dry as directed.

Done. You can do it. I believe in you!

Features of a Good Reusable Swim Diaper


Fit is the most important thing to get right as it’s the key to your swim diaper’s function. Accept that there will be some trial and error to finding the best fit that suits your little one. You don’t want the diaper to be too restrictive that it hurts your baby’s legs, nor so loose that it lets out waste.


Most reusable swim diapers can be adjusted to fit your growing baby, which is an added plus. Elastic, wing tabs, adjustable velcro, or snaps not only help you to get the right fit and make for an easier on and off, but you won’t need to purchase a new one each swim season; instead, you can continue to use the same one year after year.


An excellent reusable swim diaper should be made with materials that are waterproof, hypoallergenic, washing machine safe, soft, non-chafing, and have UPF for protection from the sun.

Reusable Swim Diapers Are Crazy Cute

swim diapers ultimate guide to reusable swim diapers

One of the benefits of choosing reusable cloth diapers is the many patterns and prints there are to choose from. Reusable swim diapers are no different. Need some convincing? Browse through our vast collection of reusable swim diapers and become a believer. There are many patterns to choose from, and our different styles include one-pieces, two-pieces, and swim trunks. They come in a range of sizes, including newborn. There’s no reason your baby can’t be both cute and protected while in the water at the same time. You just can’t reach the same cuteness factor by using disposable diapers. Fuggedaboutit.

Things to Keep In Mind Before Using Swim Diapers

tips for swim diapers

Before you head off to the pool with your baby in their fabulous new reusable swim diaper, here are some things to keep in mind: Swim diapers need to have a snug fit to contain poop, so they will probably be a little bit tighter than your everyday cloth diapers. A well-fitted swim diaper will prevent your baby's stool from leaking into the water and will trap over 95 percent of the accompanying E. coli bacteria from ever reaching the water, ensuring higher water quality for all swimmers and preventing the spreading of bacterial diseases. Take frequent bathroom breaks and check the swim diaper for soiling every 45-60 minutes. Once soiled, change your child or infant in the bathroom, away from the pool. Swim diapers that have velcro or snaps at the side instead of the pull-up style will help you to avoid having to drag a poopy diaper down your baby’s legs and feet, possibly making a huge mess. (Just sayin’.) Change to a new swim diaper. (Be sure to have more than one on hand! I suggest having at least two). Consider bringing along a wet bag to hold your soiled or extra swim diapers. If your child is experiencing diarrhea, they shouldn’t be swimming. Not only are swim diapers not designed for loose stools, whatever is causing diarrhea can spread to everyone else in the water, so for everyone’s safety, keep them away from the pool or water. If you want to introduce your baby to water before two months of age, rather than heading to the community pool, first try filling up the tub at home or using a kiddie pool.

Never Be Caught Without a Swim Diaper

baby in swim diapers by the pool

At this point, you’re probably well aware that you should never be caught without a swim diaper.

It could be a disaster.

No pressure, but it could ruin a perfect day in the water - for everyone.

We’re here to help. Click here to shop Reusable Swim Diapers at Nicki’s Diapers.

Don’t let your little ones keep you from enjoying a day in the water.

Public swimming facilities can be kept safe for all swimmers as long as everyone does their part.

Consider sharing the information you’ve learned about swim diapers with other parents and adults.

As always, you can chat more about swim diapers and any other diaper-related chatter in our Facebook Group.