This is a list of terms and abbreviations used throughout the cloth diapering community.  I will be updating this list constantly. Feel free to offer suggestions for terms to add. If something isn’t here that you are looking for, let me know!

Cloth Diaper Illustrated Dictionary

Adjustable Insert:
Another term for “one size insert”. (See “One Size Insert”)

AC: Abbreviation for Applecheeks brand diapers.

Agitate: To swish, swirl, or shake in water. This word is often used to describe how an insert can come out of certain brands of pocket diapers on its own in the wash (e.g., “the insert is self-agitating”) or to describe a swirling motion you might use to rinse poop off of a dirty diaper.

AI2: Abbreviation for “All in Two”. (See “All in Two”)

AI3: Abbreviation for “All in Three”. (See “All in Three”)

AIO: Abbreviation for “All in One”. (See “All in One”)

Air Dry: The process in which a diaper is dried by air and or sunlight. Diapers are hung in single layers in a dry warm place, and the natural airflow dries the diapers. This is most commonly done on an outdoor clothesline, but can also be done on a drying rack (either indoors or outside) or on a clothesline indoors. A dryer is not used in this process.

All in One (or AIO): A kind of diaper where the insert is sewn into the diaper.

All in Three (or AI3): A kind of diaper that can be used as a cover over any insert, as a pocket diaper, or as an AI2 with an insert snapped or laid into it.

All in Two (or AI2): A kind of diaper that can be used by either laying or snapping inserts into the cover. Once the insert is soiled, you can take it out, wipe down the cover (if it is not lined with fabric), and replace it with a new one. It is intended to give you multiple uses out of one cover and cut down on cost and space. Many confuse it with a hybrid diaper (because all hybrid diapers are All in Twos). (See “Hybrid”)

Ammonia Burn: A diaper rash caused either by ammonia buildup in diapers or ammonia in baby’s fresh urine. This rash has the appearance of a burn because it is, quite literally, a chemical burn. Ammonia buildup in the diapers can be caused by using too much detergent, or by not rinsing or washing diapers thoroughly enough to remove bacteria. Stripping the diapers will eliminate the problem. (See this post to find out about stripping diapers)

Aplix: A brand of a hook and loop closure. (See “Hook and Loop”)

Abbreviation for BuBuBeBe brand diapers.

Baking Soda: An ancient housewife’s remedy for odor control, many people have found it  useful for controlling diaper pail odor.

Bamboo: Bamboo is a fabric that is very soft and highly absorbent while still remaining trim. It has excellent wicking properties.

BB: Abbreviation for Blueberry brand diapers.

BBC: Abbreviation for “Babycenter”, a popular online parenting forum.

BBOS: Abbreviation for Best Bottom One Size diapers.

BG: Abbreviation for bumGenius brand diapers.

BGOS: Abbreviation for bumGenius one size pocket diapers.

Biodegradable Insert: A disposable insert that can be flushed or thrown away.

Birdseye Cotton: One of the most basic fabrics used in diapering. Traditional prefolds and some modern cloth diapers are made with birdseye. It is quick drying and very absorbent when multiple layers are used.

Blowout: When a baby’s poop escapes the diaper (we’ll spare you the picture!)

BM: Abbreviation for “Bowel Movement”.

Boingo: A diaper fastener used to close any diaper that would traditionally use pins. Functions similar to an Ace bandage fastener, by using a claw to secure each section of fabric.

Booster: Another word for doubler. A booster refers to an insert that can be added to boost the absorbency of the diaper.

Borax: A laundry additive that is somewhat controversial in the cloth diapering world. Many mothers swear that it is gentle on their diapers and on their baby’s skin and works well to remove stink and buildup. Others oppose its use, claiming it is too harsh for diaper covers and elastic and not entirely eco-friendly (it is obtained through surface mining in desert areas of California). Although there is a widespread belief that its use will void most diaper warranties, few major cloth manufacturers specifically mention borax in their warranty information (Rumparooz being one noted manufacturer that does).

Brick and Mortar: A word used to describe an actual cloth diaper store that you can go to and shop at (as opposed to only being able to order online).

Butt Fluff: Slang term for cloth diaper.

BW: Abbreviation for “Baby Wearing”.

Water softener used in washing cloth diapers in hard water conditions. This is NOT the same as the “Calgon Take Me Away” body care items.

CD: Abbreviation for “Cloth Diaper”.

CDS: Abbreviation for “Cloth Diaper Safe”, often used when referring to rash ointments/remedies or laundry detergents.

Changing Pad/Mat: A reusable, washable pad designed to be carried in your diaper bag for diaper changes done on the go.

Chinese Prefold Diaper: A type of diaper manufactured in China and exported to other countries. They are available in different sizes/lengths and have different absorbency configurations (such as 4x6x4 and 4x8x4, where the four means there are four layers of fabric on the outer edges and the six and eight mean there are six or eight layers of fabric down the center of the diaper).

Cloth Wipes: The cloth alternative to disposable wipes. Can be bought or easily made from terry cloth, flannel, bamboo, velour, or a variety of other materials. These can be used with a wipe solution or plain water, and can be stored pre-soaked or dry and then moistened individually at each use.

Coconut Oil: A natural oil that can be used to moisturize and protect baby’s diaper area. Can also be mixed with tea tree oil to use in cases of diaper rash, eczema, and other skin conditions. Because of it’s low melting point, this oil is generally considered safe for cloth diapers.

Contour: A kind of diaper that is similar to the fitted diaper (see “Fitted”), but requires a pin or other fastener to keep it closed. Some brands of contour diapers have elastic around the legs and back, but others do not.

Cover: A diaper cover is made out of waterproof fabric and does not contain absorbent materials. It is designed to be worn over certain types of diapers (such as flats, prefolds, and fitteds) to contain wetness, as these diapers are not waterproof. Covers can be made of a variety of materials, including PUL, fleece, and wool.

CPF: Abbreviation for “Chinese Prefold Diaper”. (See “Chinese Prefold Diaper”)

CV: Abbreviaion for “Cotton Velour”, a fabric that is comprised of 80% Cotton, 20% Polyester (backing).

Dawn Strip:
A common method of stripping oil or soap buildup from diapers by using small amounts of blue Dawn dish soap in large amounts of water, followed by several rinses.

DD: (1) Abbreviation for “Disposable Diaper”. (2) Abbreviation for “Diapered Daughter”. (3) Abbreviation for “Dear Daughter”.

Delaminating: The tendency of the plastic coating on a PUL cover to bubble or peel away from the fabric. This usually occurs due to faulty manufacturing or overly aggressive laundering (abrasive detergent use, high heat sanitize cycles, high heat drying, etc).

DH: Abbreviation for “Dear Husband”.

Diaper Duck: A plastic tongs-like device that is helpful when dunking, swishing and wringing out prefolds, flats and inserts.

Diaper Safe Detergent: Any number of brands of laundry detergent specifically marketed for cloth diaper washing. These detergents usually do not contain any additives such as brighteners, softeners, soaps, or pthalates that could junk up the diapers or harm the baby. (Specific detergents include Rockin Green, Crunchy Clean, Eco Sprout, Lulu’s in the Fluff, The Laundry Tarts, Clean B, Allen’s Naturally, Nellie’s All Natural, Ruby Moon, Charlie’s Soap, Tiny Bubbles, Vaska, bumGenius detergent, Country Save, Planet, etc.).

Diaper Service: A service rendered by a local business where they pick up your diapers one or more times per week, wash them, and return them to you. Often this service includes renting diapers from the business, so that you never have to purchase diapers. Diaper services vary as to what they will provide in terms of diaper styles, but typically offer either fitteds or prefolds, and PUL covers.

Diaper Service Quality: High quality prefolds.

Diaper Sprayer: This is a device that consists of a hose and sprayer and is connected to the water line of the toilet. It is used to spray poop off a diaper and into the toilet before it is put in the wash or wetbag (as an alternative to dunking and swishing the diaper in the toilet bowl – See “Dunk and Swish”). There are products made specifically for this purpose and usually come with a hook to hang the sprayer off the toilet, but a kitchen sink sprayer can also be adapted for the same purpose.

DIY: Abbreviation for “Do It Yourself”.

Doubler: A way to add an extra boost of absorbency to a diaper. (See “Booster”) It is essentially a mini insert. (See “Insert”)

Dry Pail: A bucket (sometimes with a lid) that is used to store used cloth diapers and wipes.

Dryer Balls: Balls of felted wool yarn or roving that are used in the dryer to speed up drying time and reduce static cling. The more balls you use the quicker your diapers or clothes will be dry (and you will consume less energy).

DS: (1) Abbreviation for “Diapered Son”. (2) Abbreviation for “Dear Son”. (3) Abbreviation for “Diaper Swappers”, a popular online cloth diaper forum and marketplace.

DSQ: Abbreviation for “Diaper Service Quality”. (See “Diaper Service Quality”)

Dunk and Swish: Swishing a poopy diaper in the toilet bowl by hand prior to putting it in the wash or wet bag.

Ebay Diapers:
Diapers sold almost exclusively on Ebay, usually shipping from China. They are typically cheaper than most other diapers of the same type.

EBF: Abbreviation for “Exclusively Breastfed”. EBF poop is water soluble and does not need to be rinsed off of diapers prior to being put in the washing machine.

EC: Abbreviation for “Elimination Communication”, a method where the parent or caregiver learns the baby’s cues and takes them to a toilet to eliminate (pee/poo) instead of using diapers.

Enzymes: A component in many laundry detergents used to break down stains. Enzymes may cause diaper rashes on some babies.

Etsy: Website where you can buy and sell items (mostly handmade). Great cloth diapers and wool soakers/longies/shorties/etc. can be found here for reasonable prices.

EUC: Abbreviation for “Excellent Used Condition”, a way to classify a diaper’s condition when selling it. (Change-Diapers has put together a great article of what constitutes EUC based on survey results and with photographic examples).

Factory Seconds:
A new, unused diaper that cannot be sold at regular prices through a retailer due to a flaw or blemish. Flaws or blemishes may be minor (such as a smudge that will easily wash away, a missed stitch, or incorrect dye lot) to more severe problems (such as crooked stitching or staining). These diapers are normally sold at a discount.

Family Cloth: One step beyond mama cloth, family cloth is when you replace some or all of your family’s biodegradable toilet paper with cloth wipes. Many families use them only for wiping urine, and continue to have toilet paper available for bowel movements and guest use.

FB: Abbreviaion for FuzziBunz brand diapers.

Felting: Wool that has been washed in hot water and (usually) dried in a dryer. It shrinks the wool and tightens the weave of the knitted or crocheted fabric.

Fitted Diapers: A diaper comprised entirely of absorbent material. Because it is not waterproof, it requires a cover. (See “Cover”)

FL: Abbreviation for “Front Loader Washing Machine”.

Fleece: A water resistant fabric that is used to make covers, soakers, longies, shorties, and skirties.(See “Covers”, “Soakers”, “Longies”, “Shorties”, or “Skirties”)

Flat: Large squares of single-layer material (commonly made from cotton and measuring between 27 – 30 inches on each side), that require folding into layers before securing onto baby. You can see different flat fold tutorials here. They are typically secured with a diaper pin or Snappi, and require a diaper cover in order to be waterproof.

Fluff: Slang term for cloth diaper.

Fluff Bling: Cute appliqué patches that snap onto exposed snaps of a diaper.

Fluff Mail: Slang term for receiving cloth diapers in the mail.

FOE: Abbreviation for “Fold Over Elastic”. (See “Fold Over Elastic”)

Fold Over Elastic: Product used when sewing diapers. It is a type of elastic that has a crease down the center to be used on the trim to finish and bind the leg holes of some diaper patterns.

Fold Over Pocket: This is a flap of fabric that folds over a pocket diaper’s insert opening (or “pocket”) which prevents the insert from slipping outside of the shell (thus avoiding wicking).

FSOT: Abbreviation for “For Sell Or Trade.” This is used on a page or forum where people are trying to sell used diapers.

FST: Abbreviation for “Flour Sack Towel”, an item you can purchase at stores like Target or Wal-mart that is the approximate size and thickness as a flat cloth diaper. Great for diapering on a budget.

When part of the diaper (such as the waistband or leg) does not lie flush against the skin, thereby increasing the possibility of a leak.

GM: Abbreviation for Goodmama brand diapers.

GM One: Abbreviation for “Goodmama One”, an AIO made by Goodmama.

GMD: Abbreviation for Green Mountain brand diapers. (People often purchase their prefolds, so you will hear “GMD prefolds” frequently).

GNHW: Abbreviation for “Goodnight Heavy Wetter”, a style of overnight diaper by the brand Kawaii.

Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE): A powerful, natural disinfectant that can be added to laundry detergent to disinfect cloth diapers and keep them free of bacteria. Only 3-5 drops per load is necessary.

GSE: Abbreviation for “Grapefruit Seed Extract”. (See “Grapefruit Seed Extract”)

GUC: Abbreviation for “Good Used Condition”, a way to classify a diaper’s condition when selling it. (Change-Diapers has put together a great article of what constitutes GUC based on survey results and with photographic examples).

Gusset: The part of the diaper around the baby’s leg

Abbreviation for “Hook and Loop”. (See “Hook and Loop”)

Hang Dry: Another term for “Air Dry”. (See “Air Dry”)

HC: Abbreviation for “HyenaCart”. (See “HyenaCart”)

HE: Abbreviation for “High Efficiency Washing Machine”. Most of these are front loaders, but there are also top loading HE washing machines. The amount of water put into the machine is based on weight sensors, which is why many cloth diaper users put a damp towel in the machine in order  to trick the machine into filling up with more water.


HH: Abbreviation for Happy Heiny’s brand diapers.

Hip Snap: An additional snap on the waist of the diaper spaced further back for smaller waisted diaper settings (usually on a one size diaper) which help prevent wing droop

Hook and Loop: The common term for a kind of diaper closure. Most people know of it as “Velco,” but Velcro is just a brand (so it’s like using the term “tissue” instead of “Kleenex”). (This is not to be confused with “Hook and Eye”, which is the type of closure found on bras).

Hybrid: A kind of diaper that gives you the option using both reusable and disposable inserts.

HyenaCart: A website where you can buy diapers and accessories made by different WAHMs.

Abbreviation for “I Have A” when selling cloth diapers (typically used when interested primarily in trading diapers).

Indian Prefold: A prefold made from Indian cotton, making it generally softer and fluffier than Chinese prefolds.

Infant Insert: Smaller, thinner insert used to make one size cloth diapers fit infants and small babies. Can also be used as a doubler for older babies. (See “Doubler”)

Insert: Typically the main source of absorbency for a diaper. It usually consists of multiple layers of fabric sewn together.

Interlock: A type of wool used to make longies, shorties, skirties, or covers. It is usually softer and thicker than merino or upcycled wool.

ISO: Abbreviation for “In Search Of”, usually used on forums or websites that facilitate the purchase or sale of used cloth diapers. People who already have a particular diaper may then contact you to arrange a trade or sell you what you are seeking.


Abbreviation for Kissaluv brand diapers.

KL0: Abbreviation for “Kissaluv, size 0”, a popular brand and size of newborn fitted diapers.

A pure, wax-like substance derived from sheep’s wool which can be used to waterproof wool diapering products, or as a therapeutic ointment for dry, chafed, or cracked skin/nipples.

Lanolizing: A method of reapplying lanolin (see “Lanolin”) to woolen knit items so that they can retain their natural wicking and water repellent properties.

Laundry Tabs: On diapers with hook and loop closure, these allow you to secure down the tab so that it doesn’t snag on other items in the wash.

LF: Abbreviation for “Looking For,” usually used on forums or websites that facilitate the purchase or sale of used cloth diapers. People who already have a particular diaper may then contact you to arrange a trade or sell you what you are looking for.

Liner: (1) Liners are a fabric or material that is placed between the diaper and the baby’s bum, and are typically made from fleece or a flushable material. Both kinds of liners can help serve as a barrier between a cream that may be on your baby and the diaper (though I don’t recommend risking this with something harsh like Desitin). Fleece liners can be used to keep baby from feeling the wetness of the diaper (see “Stay Dry”), and disposable liners catch the poop before it hits the diaper and can be flushed when soiled. Disposible liners usually look like dryer sheets. Silk liners, though more expensive, are also available for babies who are exceptionally rash prone and need a natural fiber stay dry material. (2) Slang for pail liner.

LO: Abbreviation for “Little One”.

Longies: These are wool or fleece pants that can be used to cover a diaper that isn’t waterproof.

Mama Cloth:
Cloth menstrual pads.

ME: Abbreviation for Motherease brand diapers.

MF: Abbreviation for “Microfiber”. (See “Microfiber”)

Microfiber: A terry-like fabric made of synthetic fibers that is utilized for its ability to absorb moisture and attract debris. Commonly used to make inserts for diapers.

Microfleece: A type of synthetic fabric used in pocket diapers and liners for its ability to wick moisture away from baby’s skin.

Minky: A soft, plush, fuzzy fabric that is made from synthetic fibers (polyester microfiber) and used for both inserts and covers. Minky is softer to the touch than microfiber and many mothers feel that it lasts longer and is more absorbent. Some minky is also laminated to make it waterproof.

Minky Insert: A diaper insert made from minky fabric. (See “Minky”)

Mutts: Abbreviation for Muttaquin brand diapers.

Another word for “diaper.” Used mostly in European countries.

Natural Fibers: Fabrics that are made from naturally occurring materials (i.e., not synthetic fabrics), including cotton, bamboo, and hemp. These fabrics are generally more durable.

NB: Abbreviation for “Newborn”.

Newborn Diaper: Diapers that are designed to provide a good fit during the gap in age and weight from birth until a one size diaper will provide a good fit. These typically fit most babies at birth, generally 6-8 pounds, though some may even fit 5-10 pounds.

NIP: Abbreviation for “New In Packaging,” typically used in the selling or trading of diapers.

NWT: Abbreviation for “New With Tags,” typically used in the selling or trading of diapers.

Abbreviation for “Organic Bamboo Fleece”. (See “Organic Bamboo Fleece”)

OBV: Abbreviation for “Organic Bamboo Velour”. (See “Organic Bamboo Velour”)

ODC: Abbreviation for Orange Diaper Company brand diapers.

One Size Cloth Diaper: This is when a diaper is meant to fit a baby from birth to potty training. Sizing can either be adjusted using a snap down rise (see “Snap Down Rise”) or by adjusting the elastic in the leg casings.

One Size Insert: An insert designed to go into a one size diaper that has snaps or marks which allow you to adjust the length of the insert to match the rise setting of the shell.

Organic Bamboo Fleece:

Organic Bamboo Velour:

OS: Abbreviation for “One Size”. (See “One Size Cloth Diaper”)

OTB: Abbreviation for “On The Bum”, a question many mamas pose to one another on forums or Facebook (e.g., “What’s OTB today?”)

OTW: Abbreviation for “On The Way”, typically referring to when you have made a diaper purchase online and are awaiting it in the mail.

Oxy: Abbreviation for Oxiclean brand oxygen bleach, which is commonly used as a laundry additive.

Pad Fold:
A method of folding a flat diaper into a long rectangular pad which creates a lot of absorbency in the center. (See here for a video demonstration of this method, or to see other ways to fold flat diapers).

Pail Liner: A liner made for a dry pail to store dirty diapers. They are essentially a waterproof garbage bag, frequently with an elasticized top to hold it in place, that are made to be washed with the diapers and prevent the need to wash the diaper pail.

PF: Abbreviation for “Prefold”. (See “Prefold”)

Pilling: Little collected balls of fabric that stick out (usually off of leg bindings, hook and loop, or inner fabrics) over time. This can happen if they get worn or rubbed in a certain area (e.g., if one area of hook & loop is used more often) or even just along the edges of things (where they are more likely to be rubbed). For most items where pilling occurs, the function is unaffected by the item looks “worn” or “old”.

Pilly: An adjective used to describe fabric that is pilling. (See “Pilling”)

PL: Abbreviation for “Potty Learning”. (See “Potty Learning”)

Plastic Pants: Old fashioned pull on diaper covers. These are still available for purchase very cheaply, but are less preferred than modern diaper covers.

PM: Abbreviation for “Private Message”, commonly used on diaper swapping sites. Can also be used as a verb (e.g., “I PM’d you!”)

PNP: Abbreviation for PrimmNProper brand diapers.

Pocket Diaper: A diaper with an opening in one or both ends that you stuff an insert into. The top of the diaper (the part touching the baby’s bottom) is usually built with a “stay dry” fabric that wicks moisture away from the baby’s bum and helps prevent rashes.

Pod: Another term for soaker, used specifically by Softbums brand diapers. (See “Soaker”)

Poppers: A British term for snaps.

Potty Learning: Similar to potty training, but the emphasis is on the child playing an active or leading role in becoming independent in the bathroom.

PPD: Abbreviation for “Paypal Dollars” or “Postage Paid”. This term is usually used when selling cloth diapers, and means that shipping costs are included in the price of the diaper (e.g., “I’m selling this diaper for $15ppd”).

Pre-Wash: A brief agitation cycle or short wash cycle done prior to washing diapers with detergent. It helps rinse away ammonia and other impurities on the diapers and prevent staining prior to the hot wash cycle.

PT: Abbreviation for “Potty Training”.

PUL: Abbreviation for “Polyurethane Laminate”. Polyurethane laminate is a fabric that has been laminated to a layer of polyurethane. This process makes the fabric durable and waterproof, which is why it is used in the construction of diapers, wetbags, nursing pads, and mama cloth.

Prefold: A kind of diaper that is a square or rectangle of fabric and has multiple layers sewn down the middle. It is usually fastened using a Snappi or diaper pins, and requires a cover to be waterproof.

Prepping: The process of preparing a new cloth diaper to be worn. Depending on the fabric, this could involve 1-5 hot wash cycles. The purpose of prepping is to remove natural oils or manufacturing dust before putting a new diaper to use. Diapers used before being fully prepped may not be as absorbent as they will after repeated washing.


Abbreviation for “Rinse and Wring”. (See “Rinse and Wring”)

RaB: Abbreviation for Ragababe brand diapers.

Rapid Pee-er: Baby may not necessarily pee a LOT, but leaks are experienced because they pee too quickly for the diaper to absorb. Microfiber is often a great choice for rapid peers because it absorbs quickly.

RaR: Abbreviation for Rumparooz brand diapers.

Rash Prone: The term associated with babies that are easily susceptible to diaper rash or have chronic diaper rash problems. Many parents have chosen to switch to cloth diapers due to their baby being rash prone, especially when the proneness to rash is associated with disposable diapers.

Red Marks: Pink or red marks left on the baby’s skin at the waist or leg holes of the diaper. Although it is possible for this to be caused by a reaction to the materials in the hem of the cover, it is more typically an indication that the diaper is fitting too tightly in the area where the marks occur.

Repelling: When a part or all of a diaper repels moisture instead of absorbing it, leading to leaks. This can be caused by detergent, mineral, or diaper cream buildup.

Rinse and Wring: A method for preventing ammonia buildup in diapers by rinsing urine from the inserts immediately after a diaper change (with a diaper sprayer or faucet) and wringing out the excess liquid. This prevents the urea in the urine from converting to ammonia while sitting in the diaper pail.

RLR: A high-foaming laundry additive with proprietary (though purportedly natural) ingredients that is commonly used for occasional stripping of cloth diapers. It is especially useful for removing mineral buildup left from hard water. RLR comes in single use packets and is sold through many major cloth diaper retailers.

RnG: Abbreviation for “Rockin’ Green,” a brand of cloth diaper detergent.

Ruffled Elastic  A form of providing elastic around the gussets of the waist and legs of the diaper that looks like this:


Abbreviation for Sustainablebabyish brand diapers and wool covers.

Seconds: Abbreviation for “Factory Seconds”. (See “Factory Seconds”)

Serged: A serged diaper is the opposite of a turned and topstitched diaper (see “Turned and Topstitched”). The edges/threading are exposed and sewn over with a serger and look “ruffled”.

Shell: Another term for “cover”. (See “Cover”)

Sherpa: A soft and absorbent breathable fabric (which is good for rash prevention). Sherpa has a textured surface on one side and a smooth backside. Some people like to use this fabric in mama cloth and cloth wipes.

Shorties: These are wool or fleece shorts that can be used to cover a diaper that isn’t waterproof.

SIO: Abbreviation for “Snap-in-one”. (See “Snap-in-One”)

Skirties: These are wool or fleece skirts with an attached wool soaker underneath (the skirt is fashionable, and the soaker is functional). They are used as a cover for diapers that aren’t waterproof.

Sloomb: Another term for Sustainablebabyish brand diapers and wool covers.

Snap Down Rise: This is when there are rows of snaps in the front of the diaper to allow you to adjust the sizing.


Snap In Liner: Removable, waterproof liner used in the gDiaper. Can be wiped clean or exchanged for a new one after each use, allowing the cover to be reused.

Snap-in-One: A diaper where the insides snap into the shell or cover. Much like an all-in-one except the insides can be removed for faster drying time and customization of absorbency.

Snappi: This is a plastic T-shaped device with grabbers on each end that allow you to fasten prefolds, fitteds, and snapless diapers (instead of using diaper pins).

Snaps: A type of diaper closure. Diapers commonly come with snap or hook and loop closures. (See “Hook and Loop”)

Soaker: (1) Frequently seen as “wool soaker” or “fleece soaker”, it is a type of cover that is pulled on over a prefold or fitted diaper. (2) The absorbent part of a diaper, either sewn-in or added in the form of a booster or insert.

Soap Nuts: A berry, native to India and Nepal, that contains saponin (a natural detergent). Soap nuts are used in place of traditional laundry soap.

Spot’s Corner: An offshoot of HyenaCart, where people sell or auction their used diapers.

Spray Pal: A device that assists in the spraying of poopy diapers so that you don’t have to touch the diaper or risk backspray. It has a clip to hold the diaper and sides to contain the spray, which also aid in squeezing excess water from the diaper when you are finished spraying.

Click for review

Sposies: Slang term for disposable diaper.

Stash: Slang term for all the diapers you own (i.e., “I shouldn’t buy any more diapers, my stash is big enough already”).

Stash Content: A slang phrase that means a mother is perfectly happy with her current diapering system and is not looking to buy, sell or trade (i.e., being content with one’s cloth diaper stash).

Stay Dry: When a diaper is lined with a fabric that wicks moisture away from the baby’s skin, ensuring that they “stay (feeling) dry”. Stay dry fabrics and liners can also help prevent rashes.

Stink: When used in the context of cloth diapers, this refers to odors that linger in washed, clean diapers or become noticeable once the diaper has been peed in (the most common of which are “ammonia stink” and “barnyard stink”). When diapers retain odors, it can be an indication that stripping is needed. (See “Stripping Diapers”)

Stripping Diapers: Washing a diaper repeatedly in order to remove stink or buildup. For more information, see “The Comprehensive Guide To Stripping Diapers”.

Stuff: The act of placing an insert inside the sewn-in sleeve of a pocket diaper.

Stuffins: Another term for an insert, doubler, or some other absorbent material added to a cloth diaper to increase absorbency.

Suedecloth: A nonabsorbent, synthetic material usually used on the inside of pocket diapers. It wicks moisture away from the baby and into the insert underneath, leaving baby with a “stay dry” feeling and preventing rashes. (See “Stay Dry”)

Sunning Diapers: A method of removing stains from diapers by hanging or placing wet inserts, diapers, etc.  outside in the sun or in a sunny window. The sunlight bleaches the fabrics and naturally removes stains.

Swish Stick: A stick manufactured by gDiapers that is used to swirl the disposable insert in the toilet before flushing. This helps break down the insert and allows it to flush easier.

Abbreviation for “Turned and Topstitched”. (See “Turned and Topstitched”)

TB: Abbreviation for Tiny Bubbles brand laundry detergent.

Tea Tree Oil: An essential oil from Australia that has antimicrobial/antibacterial properties and is commonly used to disinfect or deodorize cloth diapers naturally. Tea tree oil can be added to wipes solution, butt balm, diaper pails, and your washer to prevent problems such as rash and stinkies, and should always be diluted.

TL: Abbreviation for “Top Loading Washing Machine”. Some TL are also HE, but most aren’t.

Touch Tape: Another term for “Hook and Loop”. (See “Hook and Loop”)

TPU: Abbreviation for “Thermoplastic Polyurethane”, a waterproof material that is heat bonded onto fabric. TPU feels softer then PUL, but is not supposed to be washed in hot water as it will make it less durable.

Trainer: A waterproof undergarment for toddlers and children who are potty training. Can be pulled up and down, and may have side snaps for easy removal in case of accidents. They vary in absorbency, and many can be customized by adding doublers.

Trifold: Trifolding is a simple way to use a prefold in a diaper cover without using a Snappi, diaper pin, or other fastener. The prefold is is folded into thirds (with the thickest part in the center) and placed in a cover, which is then attached around the baby.

TT: Abbreviation for Twinkie Tush brand diapers.

TTO: Abbreviation for “Tea Tree Oil”. (See “Tea Tree Oil”)

Two Step: Term used to describe diaper brands that are not made to fit babies from birth to potty training, but have two sizes of diapers. The size 1 will usually fit much better on a newborn than a normal one size diaper, and the size 2 will usually fit a toddler with more coverage. Applecheeks and Thirsties both offer this type of sizing on some or all of their diapers.

Turned and Topstitched: The opposite of a serged diaper (see “Serged”), this term is most often used in reference to a fitted diaper. A turned and topstitched diaper will have a clean edge with no exposed threads or “ruffles”.

Abbreviation for “Unbleached”. (See “Unbleached”)

UBCPF: Abbreviation for “Unbleached Chinese Prefold”.

Unbleached: A fabric that has not been bleached to make it bright white, making it khaki/tan colored.

Upcycle: The act of converting used or unwanted textiles into new diapers and accessories of better quality (e.g., wool sweaters are frequently upcycled into diaper covers).

A very plush and thick knitted fabric which can be made of either cotton or synthetics.

VGUC: Abbreviation for “Very Good Used Condition”, a way to classify a diaper’s condition when selling it. (Change-Diapers has put together a great article of what constitutes VGUC based on survey results and with photographic examples).

Vinegar: White vinegar is sometimes used as a natural additive to soften diapers and get rid of smells. It is generally thought to be quite safe for use with soft water. However, although vinegar can act as a natural water softener for hard water and some cloth mamas use it very successfully for that purpose, many feel that it is best to avoid it for this purpose, since the acid from the vinegar can sometimes react with hard water minerals to cause a strange, unpleasant odor.

Vinyl Pants: Another term for “Plastic Pants”. (See “Plastic Pants”)

Abbreviation for “Work at Home Mom”.

Wet Pail: A diaper pail full of water (and possibly detergent or other additives) sometimes used to store dirty diapers before wash day. Many within the cloth diapering community feel that these are unnecessary and promote bacterial growth within the diapers, as well as other problems. Owners must be sure the the pail has a securely fastened lid that cannot be opened by curious toddlers, as it could be a drowning hazard.

Wet/Dry Bag: A wetbag which has a dry pocket that can be used to carry clean diapers or other diaper changing accessories.

Technically this is a wet-wet bag since both pockets are waterproof…but you get our drift

Wetbag: A water and smell-proof bag that can be used to hold wet or soiled diapers. Large wet bags can be used as a hamper and smaller wetbags can be used with (or for) a diaper bag when away from home.

Wicking: The ability of a fabric to pull moisture away from one location and onto another. This can be a good thing (e.g., when a stay dry liner wicks moisture away from the baby’s bottom and onto the microfiber insert underneath it) or a bad thing (e.g., when an insert is not tucked into a pocket diaper properly, the moisture can be wicked away from the insert and onto the baby’s clothing).

Wing Droop: When a diaper is placed on a small waist setting and there is excess fabric in the “wings” of the front of the diaper, those wings can then droop or sag. Some diapers have additional waist snaps in order to prevent wing droop.

WIO: Abbreviation for “Wool in One”. (See “Wool in One”)

Wipe Bits: Another term for “wipe solution cubes”. (See “Wipe Solution Cubes”)

Wipe Solution: A liquid solution used to moisten cloth wipes. Can be store bought or homemade.

Wipe Solution Cubes: Solid cubes that are dissolved in water to make a wipe solution. (See “Wipe Solution”)

Wipe Warmer: A device that stores and heats wipes (either cloth or disposable). Some wipe warmers are made specifically for use with cloth wipes, though regular wipe warmers intended for disposable wipes can be used with cloth as well.

Wipeable Inner: A waterproof diaper cover with exposed PUL or TPU on the inside. The inside is not lined with fabric or mesh and can be easily wiped clean for another use without immediate need for washing. (Reuse without washing is not recommended when poop has leaked onto the cover).

Wool in One: A diaper that is an All in One, except that the outside is made out of wool. (See “All in One”)

Wool Soaker: A diaper cover that is made of wool. (See “Soaker”)

Wool Wash: A special detergent that is used to launder wool. Many, though not all, wool washes contain lanolin, which helps extend the length of time you can go before needing to re-lanolize your diaper covers.

Woolies: Slang term for any diaper cover made from wool.

Wrap: Another term for “cover”. (See “Covers”)



Zinc Oxide:
An ingredient in some traditional diaper rash ointments. As zinc oxide creates a moisture barrier, it is not safe for cloth diapers.




Diaper Jungle



  1. MarryR says

    I don’t see many comments here, it means you have low traffic. I know how to make your website go viral. If you want to know simply search in google for:
    Kimting’s Method To Go Viral

  2. Donna-Lynn Craig says

    This is great!!!! When I first started cloth diapering it was very hard understanding what people were talking about. I still get stumped on some. Will be using this!!!!

  3. Amanda O says

    No wonder some people are turned off by the idea of using cloth! There’s so many different diapers, ways to use etc that can just be overwhelming! I really love this article though, ive book marked it for easy reference!

  4. Christina Howell says

    This is a great resource! I am new to cloth diapering and am still learning all the abbreviations and the terms.

  5. Elizabeth O. says

    Hemp: fabric made from the stems of the Cannabis Sativa plant. Used in cloth diapering for its absorbency and natural anti-microbial properties. Very durable.

    Organic Bamboo fleece: a soft adbsorbent and sustainable materal made from a bamboo and organic cotton blend. Used to make wipes, cloth pads, cloth diapers, liners and clothing.

    Organic Bamboo velour: a soft organic bamboo/cotton velour blend used in diapering fabric. Bamboo is absorbs 4 times more than cotton and dyes extremely well. It is also used in clothing, baby blankies, and changing pads.

  6. Amy Menzies says

    Stinkies – When diapers have an odour when clean.. usually caused by wash routine. Fix: Change of the laundry routine (more/less cloth friendly detergent)

  7. Aimee says

    Bummis – diaper cover
    Bumkins – pocket diaper
    Fluff bling – make your diaper uniquily yours
    GoGreen – cloth diaper
    *the UBCPF should be under U not O*
    Pad folded flat – type of flat hold that is placed in the diaper cover
    diaperbag fold – type of flat fold
    origami fold – type of flat fold
    bikini twist – ” ”
    jelly roll – ” ”
    Little Joeys – nb cloth diaper
    gusset – sewn into diaper to help prevent leaks around the legs
    diaper pin – used to secure flat or prefolds onto baby

  8. Viviane says

    Lay-in soaker: an absorbent soaker that lays in a diaper cover without the use of snaps or in a pocket. Usually found in fitted diapers, or the absorbent part of an AI2.

    Organic bamboo fleece: An highly absorbent fabric usually made up of 70% bamboo and 30% cotton. Primarily used in fitted diapers. The fabric has a tightly knit side and a brushed side.

    Butterfly soaker: an absorbent soaker in a fitted diaper that is seen down in the center with unattached flaps to either side in the shape of a butterfly. Typically used to quicken drying time.

  9. Trisha W. says

    When all is said and done will we be able to click on one of the letters at the top of the page to get to our section of the Dictionary more quickly?

  10. Trisha W. says


    I don’t know if my computer just burped. Did you receive my hemp definition? I hope so because I put a lot of thought into it. =)

    On a different note, I don’t think the AI2 definition is completely accurate. A Flip AI2 meets your definition, but many AI2s do not have wipeable covers. Since my first exposure to AI2s had lining such as suede clothe and fleece, I was not a big fan of AI2s. Also, I think most AI2 systems will require a new cover if a baby poops. The inserts tend to be narrow and as such the poop gets on the cover. Of course, a person could hand wash the PUL type AI2 covers and let them hang dry for another use. But I think generally speaking the cover just gets tossed into the diaper pail.

  11. Alicia O. says

    The definition listed for wicking is incorrect. Wicking is something that is supposed to happen, not something that is not supposed to happen. It is the ability of a fabric to draw moisture away from the skin and KEEP it away from the skin. Like microfleece. It’s even in the dictionary. And Wikipedia.

    • Trisha W. says

      Sometimes if an insert such as a prefold sticks outside of the cover, the baby’s clothing will wick the urine out of the diaper too. Correct?

    • Michelle says

      Actually wicking can be both good and bad. It can refer to when moisture is pulled from the stay dry layer of a diaper onto the absorbent part of the diaper. However, it can also refer to when even just a tiny thread is loose sticking out of a diaper and the wetness travels along it onto clothing. Both are the same definition but what may be good (pulling onto absorbent part of the diaper) and may be bad (pulling onto absorbent clothing) make it seem confusing when it isn’t :)

  12. says

    Here I am furiously typing away suggestions on and off for the past two hours or so (in between actually doing mommy duties) and suddenly the whole list updates and pictures magically appear. I swear that I checked the list each time before I made a suggestion and at the time I checked it was not already listed 😉 Tara you are “magical”

  13. says


    The items listed that do not have definitions already inserted, are you looking for people to propose definitions for those items? I was not sure since they are not “new” to your list but they are still lacking a definition

  14. Rhonda says

    I don’t see where to enter definitions, (maybe because I’m on my phone?), but I just want to note that longies, shorties, soakers, and skirties can all be made from fleece as well as wool.
    Fleece: a water resistant fabric that is used for covers, soakers, longies, shorties, and skirties.

  15. Victoria says

    Minky Insert – A soft, odor resistant insert that can be stuffed inside of a Pocket Diaper or laid inside of a Diaper Cover to provide extra absorbency.

  16. Rachel G says

    Cover: Waterproof outer layer of a cloth diaper used with diapers that are not AIO (ie. AI2, prefold, fitted, etc). Can be made in various materials including PUL, TPU, wool, fleece.

    Shell: Another word for cover

    Soaker: Another word for insert. It refers to the absorbent part of the diaper. Typically made a many layers of 1 or many materials including cotton, bamboo, microsuede, fleece, sherpa, wool, etc.

  17. Alicia O. says

    I don’t know how I missed the form…probably because I just went right to the bottom of the page. Now I can’t see any of the comments I left to copy and paste. Darn!

  18. says

    Wet bag: A bag that is water-proof and smell-proof and can be used for storing and/or carrying soiled diapers. Large wet bags can be used as a hamper and smaller wetbags can be used for or with a diaper bag. Most wet bags also have a dry pocket that can be used to hold clean diapers.

  19. says

    Infant Insert: Smaller, thinner insert used to make one size cloth diapers fit infants and small babies. Can also be used as a Doubler for older babies.

    GSE (Grapefruit Seed Extract): A powerful, natural disinfectant that can be added to laundry detergent to disinfect cloth diapers and keep them free of bacteria. Only 3-5 drops per load is necessary.

  20. Tara says

    For all who just wrote in comments, be sure to fill out the actual form at the bottom of the dictionary for a chance to win a $20 diaper of your choice. Thanks for contributing!

  21. Alicia O. says

    For Angela:

    Delamination: the tendency of the plastic laminate on PUL covers or pockets to separate from the fabric. Sometimes occurs from faulty manufacturing or from the user improperly washing and drying the diapers.

  22. Sissy says

    Wetbag: A wetbag is essentially a wet bag. You put your wet (dirty) diapers in it. The inside is usually waterproof so the wet can’t leak out. Sometimes the big version of a wetbag – the kind you would put in a garbage pail, is called a pail liner. It is not necessary to have a wet pail or bucket filled with water to soak your diapers in.

  23. Erin says

    PUL – Polyester urethane laminate – similar to TPU. It is the layer in a cloth diaper that makes the diaper waterproof.

  24. Erin says

    Compression Leak- when a diaper leaks due to compression from baby sitting (like in a car seat, jumperoo, etc) when an insert is saturated with urine. Known to happen more often with synthetic materials (ex: microfiber).

  25. says

    PUL: Polyurethane Laminate, a type of laminated (plastic coated) fabric most often used for covers and pocket diapers to prevent leaks.

    Wicking: the ability of certain fabrics to allow moisture to pass through without allowing it to pass back through and touch an overlying surface (such as a baby’s skin).

  26. Delice says

    Wool interlock: A type of knit wool that is thick and waterproof.

    Felting: The process used to make wool mat together, usually referred to when upcycling wool sweaters into soakers, wraps, shorties, longies, etc. This is done usually with a hot wash and dryer cycle on hot, but can also be done accidentally while rubbing wool vigorously.

  27. Erin says

    Microfiber – An absorbent synthetic material usually used in pocket diapers. More widely known to be used as a cleaning rag. It is very drying to skin and should never be placed directly against baby’s skin. Known to more easily get stink issues and cause compression leaks than natural fibers.

  28. Erin says

    Sherpa- a versatile textured absorbent material sometimes used in WAHM diapers and wipes. Great for cleaning up messy diapers. Sometimes organic bamboo velour (OBV) is described as “sherpaish” – meaning that it has lost some of it’s silky softness and has become more like sherpa.

  29. Delice says

    Wool soaker: specify that these are usually the shape of a regular diaper and pull up.

    Wool wrap: a wool diaper cover that snaps or uses buttons or velcro to fasten.

  30. Ruth says

    PUL: Polyurethane laminate. Used in most brands of diapers, this is a plastic laminate that is applied to the inside of the diaper cover for waterproofing.

  31. Erin says

    TPU – thermoplastic polyurethane – similar to PUL. It is a material that provides the waterproof barrier on a diaper.

  32. says

    Felting: the tendency of wool items to shrink and “fuzz up” when washed too vigorously or thrown in the dryer.

    Lanolizing: a method of reapplying lanolin (a waxy substance derived from sheep’s wool) to wool knitted items to allow them to retain their natural wicking and water- repelling properties. This is usually done by hand in a tub, sink or bowl.

    Microfiber: A terry-cloth like material made from synthetic fibers used for its ability to pick up and hold moisture and debris. Many diapers, particularly pockets, come with inserts made from this type of fabric.

    Microfleece: a synthetic fabric often used in pocket diapers and liners for its ability to wick moisture away from skin.

  33. Delice says

    RumpaRooz: a cloth diaper brand that makes pocket diapers and covers. Known for their awesome gussets and cute prints.

  34. Erin says

    Microfleece: a nonabsorbent synthetic material usually used on the inside of pocket diapers. It wicks moisture away from the baby and into the insert underneath, leaving baby with a “stay dry” feeling and preventing rashes. Example: Fuzzibunz uses microfleece on the inside of their pocket diapers.

  35. Erin says

    suedecloth : a nonabsorbent synthetic material usually used on the inside of pocket diapers. It wicks moisture away from the baby and into the insert underneath, leaving baby with a “stay dry” feeling and preventing rashes. Example: Bumgenius 4.0 uses a sudecloth inner on their pocket diapers.

    Microfleece: a nonabsorbent synthetic material usually used on the inside of pocket diapers. It wicks moisture away from the baby and into the insert underneath, leaving baby with a “stay dry” feeling and preventing rashes. Example: Fuzzibunz uses microfleece on the inside of their pocket diapers.

  36. Miranda Sullivan says

    Wet bag: a place to store soiled cloth diapers until washing. Come in a variety of sizes, closures, and other features.

  37. Sissy says

    Diaper Service – A diaper service is a service that includes a weekly (or bi-weekly, etc, will vary by the service) pick up of your soiled diapers and drop off of new clean diapers at your door. The diaper service will take care of washing your diapers for you and providing you with new clean diapers. Diaper services vary as to what they will provide in the way of diapers but most will offer either fitteds or prefolds.

  38. Ruth says

    Soap Nuts: A berry, native to India and Nepal, that contains saponin – a natural detergent. Used in place or traditional laundry soap.

  39. Delice says

    Bamboo: an extremely absorbent natural fiber, that in cloth diapers tends to be a trim solution for heavy wetters. It is not stay-dry, however.

  40. says

    CV – Cotton velour, 80% Cotton, 20% Poly (backing)

    Zorb – Zorb is made of non-allergenic bamboo/cotton/viscose and poly micro fibers and absorbs much faster than other diaper fabrics.

    PUL – Polyurethane Laminate, or PUL, can be said “P-U-L” or “pull”. This laminate-backed diaper fabric was originally developed for the medical community, but it’s softness, flexibility and water-proof qualities make it perfect for cloth diapering. PUL was meant to be autoclaved so it easily tolerates high dryer temperatures and heavy use. PUL is perfect for diaper covers and All in One or Pocket diaper outers.

    Fold Over Rise:



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