12 BumGenius Bought. 3 Left in Rotation.

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For those of you who cloth diaper or plan to cloth diaper, I wanted to give you a little update on my experience these past few months with a brand I have raved about to many of you. I loved this brand. I thought it had a great fit, wonderful colors, and amazing absorbency. And it did have all of these things. For close to a year. Then the PUL started wearing, which meant that my “leak-proof” diapers were now leaving a big wet spot on my hip nearly every time I picked Lilleigh up.

Before I tell you the brand (as if you haven’t read the title), I want to be really clear. I am not writing this post to complain about this diaper or even give it negative publicity. I am writing this post because I want to set straight my view on this diaper. This is one of the top cloth diaper brands there is, and I have actually promoted it. However, I can’t stand behind it anymore. When I was looking to cloth diaper, I was lead to believe this was the brand to use. Now that I’ve had issues with this brand, I realize others have too. Why did I not see any reviews talking about these issues? I have talked to other mommas about it and commiserated with them about having to replace these diapers. I have also contacted the company without much luck. Totally bummed that this diaper didn’t work out because it seemed so promising…

The brand is Bum Genius. When we first began cloth diapering, we bought 12 new or near-new Bum Genius diapers. (I am not counting the 4 we bought very used because it was a given those would wear soon. That just helped me get in the groove of using cloth!) Now that I am nearly a year-and-a-half in, I have 3 Bum Genius diapers left. Well actually 4, but the 4th is on the way out any day. The other 3 are still holding up well. That’s 75% of my Bum Genius stash that has failed. It has had its PUL pull apart and weakened.

I contacted the company. The seconds sale diapers (bought new but a few minor defects that should not affect functionality), they won’t back up, which I guessed this much. I knew seconds sale diapers did not have a warranty, but it still seemed strange to me that if something is wrong with the diaper that does affect its functionality, they won’t stand behind it. Hmmm. The ones I bought new seem to be holding up okay. The company said I may have cared for the failing ones incorrectly. Looking at their extensive list of care instructions, I can see what could have gone wrong.

Just to clear the air. A few things I could have done wrong… 1) hung the diapers out to dry on a hot day, 2) washed them in too hot of water, 3) washed with vinegar. To address these issues… 1) Hot in Texas is 100+. Apparently the diapers can’t handle that kind of heat. Oops, my bad. 2) The hot water thing though is odd to me though because I have an “average” washer. It is nothing special. No special wash cycles. Very basic. It does not tell me temps, as most washers don’t. So when I am told to rinse a diaper on hot, I assume they mean “hot” as defined by a basic washer, right? So this doesn’t make sense to me, but it totally could be the case I suppose. 3) As for the vinegar thing, I read several places to use white vinegar to get smell out. But apparently you aren’t supposed too?? Again, my bad.

So I’ve owned up to what I could have done wrong to cause such a PUL issue. But what baffles me is that most of our diapers are the same age as the Bum Genius diapers, and NONE of them have had any PUL issues! So even if I did something to cause the PUL issues to occur, I still don’t want to buy – or recommend to y’all! – a diaper that needs very particular care. When caring for a baby, who has time for such an H.M. diaper?

(In case you are wondering, I have gradually replaced almost all of our Bum Genius diapers with other brands. (More on those brands to come!) All of these I got great deals on. Keep your eye out for EcoMom.com deals on Plum District (and deals of the like) because many organic baby sites like this sell cloth diapers. Buying a voucher like this allows you to make your own cloth diaper deal!)

What’s your take on Bum Genius? Have you experienced this?


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  1. I am really hoping a bunch of people respond to this. We are looking to start cloth diapering my son. I was literally about to go buy a bunch of Bumgenius with a great deal I got. What other brands do you use? Please shoot me an e-mail with any advice you have at this point. We really need to get the ball rolling on the cloth diapers since we are almost out of disposables.
    Liz @ Tales From Astoria recently posted..Mommy and Me: 2 Months OldMy Profile

    • Hey Liz! I’ll talk more on those diapers soon. I have really loved having a diverse stash though. I’ve basically bought a couple in several different brands. We own Happy Heiny, BumGenius 4.0, Sweet Pea, FuzziBunz, Blueberry, Charlie Banana, Sun Baby, and Go Green Champ 2.0. At the moment I am loving our FuzziBunz and Charlie Bananas. I also looove our Blueberry diapers at night. Hope that can get your started!
      Also Plum District has one of those deals right now for EcoMom.com that would be helpful: https://www.plumdistrict.com/?ref=ufcc9fe810d4 I used a similar deal for the same site to buy our Blueberries.
      Thankfully Thrifty recently posted..12 BumGenius Bought. 3 Left in Rotation.My Profile

      • I have used Grovia and really recommend those! Cute prints and a trimmer fit than other diapers I have used. No problems with leaks yet, but they’re not our main diaper. I have about 18 BGs and 6 or so Grovias. Hope the other brands you’re using make you happy. Nothing worse than feeling confident about something like that and then being disappointed! The line drying thing is bogus… No way that should destroy the diapers! I mean, yes, it’s hot, but it’s not like you put the diapers in a 300-degree oven. Thanks for sharing your experience!!!
        Katie recently posted..Ford’s Birth StoryMy Profile

    • Hi Liz! Almost my entire stash is BumGenius, and I’ve cloth diapered two babies in BG simultaneously for 3 years straight and never had any issues. So there’s that…I definitely wouldn’t say the brand is no good. It’s still my #1 preferred brand! 🙂
      Jenny B recently posted..Giveaway: Reusable SoftCup for tilted ladiesMy Profile

      • For sure! Every one has a different experience. So what I really hoped to convey here is my experience. I felt I needed to share it because I had recommended these as my #1 and now with this issue, well I can’t. I just hate to give faulty advice! So I wanted to own up to that – and to anything I could have done to potentially cause the issues.
        Thankfully Thrifty recently posted..12 BumGenius Bought. 3 Left in Rotation.My Profile

  2. I have a few Bum Genius diapers, but my favorites are fitteds with covers. I’ve not had any issues at all with mine and some were bought new and some used. They don’t leak at all – in fact, they’re my “go to” diapers when I need to go out of the house.
    My friend Brandy bought some used at a consignment sale and they needed new velcro and some of the stitching was worn. Bum Genius was fabulous with her and fixed her right up, no questions asked. I’m sorry they weren’t the same with you. 🙁
    I’ve tried a few brands that everyone else raved about and I just absolutely hated. 🙂 It’s almost like every single batch they make can vary in reliability. Which I admit, is extremely annoying.
    I’m going to use more wool this time around because the absorbency is totally awesome.
    Stacy Makes Cents recently posted..10 Old Wives Tales About PregnancyMy Profile

  3. Jessica Grimes says:

    Sad to hear! We love our BGs 4.0 stuffed w a flip organic insert- I sell off the microfiber inserts- too much stink . Man I use tide, bleach each load. Wash on hot and dry all pul in hot dryer for 20 mins. So far so good. I know our warranty is voided but easy care and no stink override all the cd wasing rules for me. we also use flips and prefolds trifolded. Love that for day time.

    Hope you find what works for y’all 🙂

    • Glad they are working well for you! I’d be careful with both Tide and bleach! I don’t know any cloth diaper brand that will recommend those two things because the detergent has additives that create build up, and the bleach affects PUL and the outer fabric, weakening the whole diaper. I’d check on that! Thanks for your input!!
      Thankfully Thrifty recently posted..12 BumGenius Bought. 3 Left in Rotation.My Profile

      • Jessica Grimes says:

        Oh girl- Ive read so many doom and gloom must use CD safe this and that. I just cant buy into the whole – CDs need special this and that … I think- it has poop and pee- I need these things clean- bleach! Ive never had to strip ( that sounds like a huge pain) , don’t have leaks and no stink, ammonia or barn yard ( even on cows milk now)! I know many moms swear by charlies or tiny bubbles, or Rockin’ detergent but I just went with what has worked for some other mamas. So far so good over here!

  4. Quick thought on the hot water – you might check your hot water heater settings. All the washing machine would do is use the “hot” water from the heater, it doesn’t regulate the temp of the water. So if the heater’s settings are set high then the water going into the machine might be hotter than recommended…
    Jenny B recently posted..Giveaway: Reusable SoftCup for tilted ladiesMy Profile

  5. Jessica Grimes says:

    also- I thinking you many have but just in case- have you tried to reseal the PUL by drying in dryer for 30 mins on high? Ive heard it works for a lot of mamas- thats in part why I dry all PUL for 20-30 mins in dryer- then take out the PUL and dry all the remaining cotton on high until bone dry. Is your PUL visibly bubbling or cracking?

  6. My BG’s have fallen apart, too.
    I also live in TX and hung my BG all-in-ones outside in 100+ degree heat. I also might have washed my diapers in “too hot” water. I also called BG and they told me that was pretty natural wear and tear for a cloth diaper.
    I used only BG (3.0s) and they were all brand new. I had about 21-22 diapers total. There was a phase for a few months when my daughter slept in a paper daughter at night. When she was finally potty trained at 25 months, 3 of the diapers had already began to “shred” at the top about the velcro receiving strip on the front. Several others showed signs of shredding any day. I tucked them away for the next baby… within a week of using them on baby #2, five or 6 more diapers have shredded.
    I resigned to thinking all cloth diapers did this, but maybe it’s not true. I am using Indian pre-folds with a few types of covers and I’m using some Charlie Banana diapers which are my favorite. I hope to gradually replace all the BG’s with Charlie Bananas, I like them so much.
    Thanks for the post.
    tricia recently posted..DancingMy Profile

    • Agh! Hate that you had a similar experience, but it def makes me feel like I’m not incompetent! Thanks for commenting! I do LOVE our Charlie Bananas! They’re new to our stash, so I feel it’s too early to officially review them. But I really love them so far! And they are soo cute!
      Thankfully Thrifty recently posted..DIY Powder Laundry DetergentMy Profile

  7. I have been using gdiapers since Brooke was born. We LOVE them. Haven’t tried any other brand because we are so happy with the g’s. Great product, great company, easy to use! Lots of support for questions from the gdiaper community.

  8. Jennifer says:

    I only use BG 4.0 OS I have 24 and never used any other diaper on my 17 month old. I love them they still look new. I use very little soap and rinse rinse rinse and hang dry. The only issue I had was I bought 4 with hoops and loops I call BG and they sent me 4 brand new ones no questains asked with snaps on them.

  9. Elizabeth G says:

    I have not had issues with BG PUL but I always felt that BG elastic would wear out quicker that the elastic in other diapers I own! So I slowly stopped using my BG and starting using other diapers more. I love Blueberry and sustaniablebabyish fitteds!

  10. I had the same issue…We only use prefolds with covers now and I LOVE them. They may not be as “cute” but they never ever leak and they are so easy to clean. Also super super cheap. We are on baby #2 with our prefolds and covers and I haven’t had to replace any so far. If they get stained I simply lay them in the sun for an hour or so to bleach them out. I wished more mamas knew how easy and affordable prefolds are instead of wasting time using all the the “cute” diapers. You can get the full set up for less than $100! Talk about thrifty!

    • That’s awesome about cost! Not about the BGs. Sorry you had the same prob. I’ve never tried prefolds and covers, but I hear they’re wonderful! I really don’t know the first thing about using them. I might have to look into them next round. Hopefully though I won’t need any more replacements!
      Thankfully Thrifty recently posted..DIY Powder Laundry DetergentMy Profile

  11. I use BG exclusively (4.0’s & Elementals). I’ve never experienced any problems like that. We love our BG’s. I’m sorry. 🙁 I think the washing instructions are pfffft. They say to only wash in 100 degree water. That’s warm, not hot. I’m not washing something covered in urine & feces in just warm water. Ridiculous.

    I’m glad that you’ve found a brand or brands that do work for you!!

  12. Sad for you! I’m just starting to make the swap to cloth diapers (note that Katy has encouraged me unknowingly *wink*) and I only have 2 fuzzibunz on the rotation for now. Have ordered 2 more fuzzibunz and have been considering trying other brands. Thanks for this review because it encourages me to keep with what I have…. I hope these last for our next baby? Keep us updated about your experience with them. I just purchased mine 2 months ago. I don’t even know what “stripping” the diaper means… hmmm… will have to google that one! 😀 Brand new to this whole cloth diapering thing…

    • So I am not an expert on stripping diapers, but basically every 6-8 weeks, I wash them as normal and then wash again with 1 T of Dawn in the wash. And rinse, rinse, rinse till the Dawn smell is gone!
      As far as diaper brands, I also really love Charlie Banana! They are super similar to FuzziBunz!

      • Diana Lawhead says:

        Thanks for letting me know… wasn’t quite sure what that meant. LOL. Just got a BG as a gift … have only used it a couple times but I like it so far. Will def have to try the Charlie Banana. Isn’t that at Target?

  13. We started CDing 2 1/2 years ago, I ordered BumGenius, FuzziBunz, Happy Heiney’s and another diaper (can’t remember the name). The BG were great for about a year, then I had a problem with a couple of them and I had to replace them, I ordered more BG’s but most of the newer ones are in the garbage now (the velcro wouldn’t stay stuck, or the PUL seperated). We have had to toss a few FBs also due to the PUL coming apart. None of these happened within the same time frame. I really think that there is good and bad in every brand. I am still a die hard CD fan, and I hope more people will start CDing.

  14. I know it’s been a while since you posted this, but I found it by googling “PUL fail on BumGenius”

    I have the exact. same. problem. And I’m so frustrated because the first year I used them I LOVED them and recommended them to many friends who bought them on my word! And now 2 years in I’m having so many problems!!!! And I bought some brand new and some seconds, and I’ll be honest, I’m having the most trouble with the new ones!

    After 8 months using them the hook and loop junk started wearing out, and I thought well maybe I’m in the minority. I sent three 3.0 diapers back because the velcro strip on the front started coming off and they sent me replacement 4.0 and it’s not even been 8 months and now THAT velcro is unraveling. I’ve replaced the elastic in almost all of my original ones, and after a while I got so sick of replacing hook and loop fasteners that I just bought a snap kit for $15 and am converting them all to snaps. I stopped ordering hook and loop entirely a year ago.

    BTW for anyone reading, converting h/l diapers to snaps is SUPER EASY and much less of a pain than re-sewing those stupid hook and loop fasteners.

    So now I’m looking at some of my newer 4.0 diapers and the PUL is cracking and falling off!!!!! What the crap?! These are just over a year old and the kicker for me is WE DON’T USE THEM FULL TIME! I work part time and my daughter has to wear disposables 3 days a week!

    But my two other friends have had ZERO problems with their BG’s and they use them exclusively. So I don’t know what the deal is. I have only ever washed them how the instructions say, never dried the covers, use bleach 1 time a month. Charlie’s soap, not even a teaspoon, etc. I’ve had no problems with stains or anything, but the dang diapers are falling apart.

    So whatever. I was hoping to keep these and use them if we have another baby but it looks like now with the PUL issue I’ll be tossing quite a few of them.

    Also, I’m in Oklahoma and yes it gets 100 degrees here and I hang them outside… if that’s the kicker on these things then the company needs to re-think their materials!

  15. Same issue here! We bought them while pregnant and when she was less than a year old they messed up but were replaced. They told me what I “could” have been doing wrong. I figured it was the outside line drying and several dryer runs. I loved the BG’s until this one issue and even after having them replaced and blaming myself I bought 2 more new ones. Didnt do anything wrong, hung dried them indoors and the SAME thing happened. I’m so disappointed. I would love to buy them for our next LO but there’s no way. This hasn’t happened to ANY of our other diapers that get just as much use and even a YEAR longer use than the two newer BG’s that are already messed up. I’m talking cracks throughout he entire PUL. My $5 Alvas have held up amazing.

  16. Stephanie says:

    So thankful to have come across your blog posting. I’m having the same problem and thought I was the only one! The PUL is cracked and splitting on every single one of my BG 4.0s. I bought 12 snap and 12 hook/loop in August 2011 and by the time my daughter was big enough to wear them it was mid October. So she has used them for 14 months and they have been leaking almost every diaper for the past few weeks. I only washed them with BG detergent, threw bleach in every 4-6 weeks and occasionally used Dawn. Basically, followed the instructions to a T. I live in a tiny NYC apt so I haven’t been hanging them outside in crazy heat. Perhaps the culprit it too hot of water as you suggest? But really, if the tags say to wash hot I’m not sure most run of the mill washing machines would consider 100 degree water “hot”. Soooo bummed out my stash is useless. (Especially after I replaced all 12 velcro tabs. What a headache!) Maybe I will try out some of your other suggested diapers instead. Thanks again!

  17. I’m kinda amazed… when my son was in them a cloth diaper started out as a 40cm (14 inch) square of either flannelette or terry toweling that was then folded and pinned on… nothing destroyed those things except a pair of scissors and they were interchangeable as spit rags, breast feeding shields… And now that he’s out of them, they’ve been cut up and hemmed as face washers.

    Bleach and sunlight kept them white and not smelling…

  18. Same problem here 🙁 24 bum genius 4.0’s used exlusively and perfectly for around a year and then, bam, cracked PUL and now they’re useless. Followed care instructions exactly, although I’m in Australia so perhaps the sun drying them was hotter? The elastic is still perfect and no stains, but I can’t use them. Such a shame as am pregnant with my second and purchased bum genius due to their fabulous reviews and found them worth the money if used on 2 children. Now I have to decide what to do for bub #2…

  19. I’m glad I found this post. I was led to believe this was the top brand as well and have about 16 diapers. Recently I have noticed that the elastic in many of them is starting to sag BADLY (12 – 16 months later). I am actually going to replace them this weekend. I don’t necessarily have anything against cottonbabies but I agree their diapers aren’t what they claim to be. In fact I have some other pocket diapers (less expensive!) That are holding up much better. Oh well. Live and learn!

    • mommiep says:

      I thought the same! Bought 24 of them as I loved them, but noticed the elastic sagged in less than a year. Wish I had just tried and stuck to prefolds with flip covers. Would have saved me a lot of money.

  20. I’m going through this as we speak…I’m about to throw away a third of my BG stash. They’ve lasted almost 2 years (with the first 6 months or so being used by two kids) and all of a sudden they’ve cracked and leak like crazy. I’ve been reading about it and a lot of people have said that even though BG says that you can use a 1/4 cup of bleach once a month that it eats away the PUL. I’ve used it occasionally, most of the time I forgot to use it (thankfully). It’s either time to restock the stash or push potty training or maybe both:)

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