Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Comparison of GroVia Hybrid Cloth Diaper Soakers ~ Review

From the beginning of our cloth diapering journey last May, hybrid cloth diaper covers and inserts have been a part of our stash. For us they just work well around the house during the day, and we especially like to use them while visiting family and traveling. The cloth diaper covers and inserts just take up less space in a diaper bag. I am able to over pack, which I tend to do, and still have room in the bag for other items.

*I received the products below for reviewing purposes. I was not required to write a positive review. As always, all opinions are my own. see disclosure.
GroVia recently sent me their First Steps Hybrid Package. This cloth diaper package is perfect for those who are interested in trying GroVia's Hybrid cloth diaper system to see if it's the right "fit" for your family. The package includes everything you need to get started.
  • 1 GroVia Hybrid Shell
  • 1 2 count Package of Soaker Pads (You may choose between Organic, Stay Dry, or No-Prep)
  • 1 Package BioSoakers (50 count)
Since we already know that GroVia Hybrids are a perfect fit for our family after reviewing these while traveling last fall (check out that review here), I decided to do a bit of comparing. Below are my thoughts on the 3 soaker types we have tried so far, and also how the Hybrid Shells compare after 5 months of steady use.

The GroVia Hybrid shell has a 100% polyester mesh lining inner layer with a water proof outer cover. This is a one-size shell that has an adjustable rise which should fit baby from 8-30 lbs. You are able to chose from snap or hook & loop closures to get a comfy fit around the waist. ( hook & loop is what I have always used in their covers) On the inside of the Shell is two places to snap in the soaker. All the GroVia Hybrid Soakers will snap into place on the inside of the Shell except for BioSoakers they can just be placed inside or held in place with the sticky tabs on their backs.

After using the GroVia Hybrid Diaper Shell for just over 5 months, I can see some visual signs of wear in the loop area on the front with pilling, but the snaps, elastic, hook tabs, and mesh lining are still fabulous. The closure is still very "sticky", and holds tight. For us the shell has really held up. I them wash with our cloth diaper laundry, and always lay flat or hang up to dry. 

While I haven't used the Stay Dry Soaker (yet), I have had a chance to thoroughly put the BioSoaker, Organic Cotton, and new No-Prep through the paces with our little guy. Though my results are not scientific, they are my own personal opinions and observations after using the Hybrid soakers over the last 5 months and being 24/7 cloth diapering Mom of a 11 month old little guy. 

The GroVia BioSoakers are disposable. These are all natural, dye, fragrance, plastic and chlorine free. You just lay them inside the Hybrid Diaper Shell, and fasten on baby as usual. I prefer to use the sticky tabs on back to hold it in position better. I have found that they can be trusted to stay put even on a little mover.They are great for when I am out shopping, or visiting family and want to pack a bit lighter. The BioSoakers make diaper changes quick and easy!

How they compare- I can only use the sticky tabs to keep them in place with our GroVia Shells. They move around in other diaper covers for some reason. When I tried to use the sticky tabs in the other shells, it was a mess when it came time to change our little guy. I couldn't get the sticky residue off the other cover very easily. This was only a problem once after that I just use them in my GroVia Shells. I reach for those shells first anyway, so decided why mess with a good thing. (Although we are no where near potty training with our 11 month old, these can be used in cotton underwear to protect against accidents with the sticky tabs to hold them in place according to GroVia's product overview on their site.) As far as absorbency goes feel like both the No-Prep and Organic Cotton hold more, but the BioSoaker's convenience factor is a huge plus. They also give a Very Trim fit on the bum, so which outfit we choose to have our little one wear is never an issue.

Organic Cotton Soaker Pads~
The Organic Cotton Soaker Pads made using IMO-Certified Organic Cotton jersey are super soft, and have a waterproof backing. They have a true elastic leg gusset, which means no leaking on the sides! I have used these soakers during nap time which can last up to 3 hours without a booster, and our little guy awoke with dry clothes and bedding. Their absorbency is surperb! They are also very trim when snapped in the GroVia Shell. 

How they compare- They will and do stain being the organic cotton which I haven't had to deal with when using the No-Prep Soakers, and we have a few shadow stains that haven't came all the way out even after sunning in our window over the winter. I can't wait for our spring break trip in March just so I can take them with us and give them some outdoor direct sunlight. While the BioSoaker does give a trimmer fit we prefer to use reusable soakers like this Organic Cotton Soaker day to day. The Organic Cotton are also a bit smaller in length and width compared to the No-Prep Soakers. I do feel that these Organic Cotton Soakers are the most absorbent of the three GroVia Hybrid Soakers we have tried. 

No-Prep Soaker Pads~

The No-Prep Soaker Pads that I chose in the First Steps Hybrid Package feature a 100% water resistant polyester TPU bottom. They are made of 4 layers of microfiber terry with a super soft and fluffy polyester microfleece top touching baby's skin. The leg gussets are made of 100% polyester. 

How they compare- One of my favorite things about these No-Prep Soakers is that they are longer and wider in both the front and back areas than the BioSoakers and Organic Cotton Soakers. It gives our little one much more coverage for the icky messes. We haven't had to change the Shell just because of a blow out in back. If I could change one thing about the No-Prep Soakers, it would be that the leg gussets on these aren't quite the same as on the Organic Cotton Soakers. I would like the elastic to be as springy and above the soaker section in the center. If you look at the picture above you can probably see that on the Organic Cotton Soaker (pictured center) the leg gussets are higher than on the No-Prep (pictured right). The No-Prep leg gussets are practically even with the soaker pad. I do feel these soakers absorb very well, and we haven't had any leaks. I believe the Organic Cotton Soaker seems to hold more liquid, but the No-Prep does stay a bit dryer against my son. They are also the fluffiest on the bum of the three soakers, but hands down these are the softest soakers that we have tried. Know they must feel so comfortable on my son, and what can I say... We Love That Fluffy Look!

Overall the GroVia Hybrid Cloth Diaper System is one of my absolute favorites, and is a perfect fit for our family's needs. I love all the different Soaker options, and super cute shell prints and colors. Hope my observations have given you a good idea of what to expect from these three GroVia Soakers, and how the GroVia Hybrid Shells will hold up over some time. If you are thinking about giving this cloth diaper system a try, I highly recommend this First Steps Package as a starter set to see how GroVia will work for your family. 

Make sure to follow GroVia on Social Media below-
Have you used the GroVia Hybrid Cloth Diapers? I would love to hear what you think about them, or if this comparison helped you decide to give them a try. Share your thoughts in a comment below! 


  1. Wish I'd had something like this 40 years ago. Very handy.

    slehan at juno dot com

  2. I love Grovia's prints!! We didn't cloth diaper my son but I plan to try with my next!! Im so glad that the system gets such high remarks from you :) The prints catch my eye but now that I know they are great in action as well Im pretty much sold on them for my next baby!

  3. Thank you for this! I've been very interested in trying GroVia.

  4. We love love love our Grovia diapers! You should also check out the stay dry hemp insert.

    1. I am hoping to have these within a week or so....been dying to give them and the boosters a try too.

    2. I am hoping to have these within a week or so....been dying to give them and the boosters a try too.

  5. Great review! I have a couple Grovia diapers but I plan to use prefolds with them instead of their hybrid system.

    1. We do use the GroVia prefolds with the shells too. For our family I prefer the soakers, but still love their prefolds since they work and absorb great. Just fyi from my experience they do not have the waterproof backing that the soakers have, and I found that the shell needs to be changed more often. Not a big deal but would make sure to have a couple extra shells ready. ;)

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Thanks for the comparison! I've never tried disposable inserts but I'm sure they work great!

  7. I recently got my first Grovia shell and I really like it, but I was curious about the different soakers. I really like the stay-dry soaker that I have, but my daughter is a heavy wetter and it didn't last very love. I'll have to give the organic cotton soaker a try. Thanks for a great review!

  8. I love GroVia AIOs but haven't gotten into the hybrid shells yet. This is a great comparison review.

  9. I'm still building our CD stash for when our first little one arrives, but so far grovia is the majority of our stash. AI2's are the best because you can snap the soakers in ahead of time to make cloth diapering easier for hubbie and the grandparents, yet you can dry the inserts eperate from the shells which a. saves on drying time, and b. puts less wear & tear on the shells. I'm SO happy grovia offers organic cotton and an insert option, and it's nice to see a review that compares all of them.

    Question: is there a space to add an additional soaker or insert if needed, or would you just have to put it on top of the soaker?

    1. Great question! There isn't a space for an additional insert but GroVia does have Organic Cotton and Stay Dry Boosters that you can lay right on top of the soaker for extra absorbency. They are sold in two packs for $9.50 or $10.50 depending on which you choose. :)

    2. Great question! There isn't a space for an additional insert but GroVia does have Organic Cotton and Stay Dry Boosters that you can lay right on top of the soaker for extra absorbency. They are sold in two packs for $9.50 or $10.50 depending on which you choose. :)

  10. I've been debating on giving grovia a try but honestly everytime I've looked at them they kind of confuse me (yes I'm new to the cloth diaper world) your review definitely answered some questions and cleared up how this system works! Thanks!

  11. I'm new to cloth diapering, and I've been debating giving these diapers a try. Honestly being new and not having any local brick and mortar stores to visit for hands on advice sometimes I get confused exactly what's what and how things work. This was very informative. Thank you

  12. Nice comparison! I have a love/hate thing going on with GroVia. I love the great fit and the ease of use of the snap-in system (no stuffing pockets) but the mesh on the inside kind of bugs me. It probably shouldn't, but it does.lol.

    I've also had some not so great experiences with the brand:

    I had one GroVia newborn AIO. It was the adorable pink peacock print. The fit was amazing but it leaked nearly every time we used it. I didn't have that problem with any of my other newborn diapers.

    I have one AIO that stains horribly. My other cotton diapers don't stain anywhere nearly as bad. I have organic cotton prefolds so the organic aspect can't be the issue. The edges of the organic cotton get insanely stiff. So much so that they occasionally irritate my baby's skin and the gathered material around the leg elastic has tiny cracks forming in it. So far no leaks but I'm expecting it to. It's one of the last diapers I reach for.

    I have a hybrid as well. Again, excellent fit. Love the easy snap-in aspect. But, they're also organic cotton and stain terribly. They get even stiffer on the edges and have even left my baby with abrasions a couple of times. I purchased one package of the bio-soakers and used it when my family had the flu in hopes of making life a tad easier. No such luck. The tabs' sticky pads stuck to the inside of the shell and would not come off. They actually worked much better with my Flip covers but shifted a bit more. I emailed the company about the sticky tab problem and I got no hint of an apology, just someone saying that yeah, they have that problem sometimes and to try to get the sticky stuff off the shells with some GooGone. That made me really upset. I wasn't about to go buy some chemical to put on my baby's diapers. It took months of washing and rewashing before the sticky stuff came off. So disappointing. GroVia is not my favorite and I've had Alvas that performed way above and beyond my GroVias. That's really a let down because I didn't want to like my Alvas and only bought them after my husband insisted.

    Again, great comparison. It was nice to see. I'm somewhat curious about the stay-dry hemp inserts. How did you like those?

  13. Do you prefer having both the organic cotton and no-prep soakers in your stash, or do you find your self leaning toward one over the other? Also, do you find one is better than the other during the day verses the night/naps? Thank you for the review and pictures! They are very helpful!!


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