GroVia shells are considered a hybrid cloth diaper, a diaper in which you can use a variety of different cloth inserts, including disposable inserts with a shell or cover. With GroVia shells, you have a choice of an organic cotton insert or a disposable insert which is called a BioSoaker. The great part of GroVia shells is that you can snap your insert of choice into the shell. This allows the insert to stay exactly where it needs to be and not slide around. This feature is very important to help cut down on how many shells you may need in a day.
The GroVia cotton soakers are made from super absorbent organic cotton. They wash up really well and absorb quite a bit. A unique feature of their cotton soakers is that they have elastic in them on the sides. The elastic on the sides allows the soaker to fit more snugly against a baby bum. What this also means, is that they do a pretty good job of holding poop in place and not soiling the cover. With all hybrid (or insert and cover systems), the idea is to reuse the cover until it gets soiled. With the elastic along the insert edges, helps to minimize how many complete cover changes you may have to do in a day.
The BioSoakers are very handy environmentally friendly disposable inserts that are great to use if you’re travelling or you just don’t have a chance to do a load of diaper laundry. The GroVia Biosoakers unfold to a nice size that provide you with excellent coverage and absorb quite well.
The GroVia shells are a little different from most brands as they are made of a material called TPU. TPU is similar to PUL, it is a waterproof outer layer that keeps baby’s clothes dry. The shells are a one-size cover that fit on average from 10-35 pounds. With the testing we’ve done, we find that the GroVia shells with the soakers start fitting well around the 12 pound mark as any organic cotton soaker/insert does provide more bulk to a diaper than a microfiber, hemp, or bamboo insert does. However, the shells are great to use with infant prefolds from the newborn stage. With an infant prefold, you can reuse the cover until it’s soiled and then the covers work well with the soakers (or larger prefolds if you go that route) once your baby gets a little bit bigger.
The big question with GroVia that we always get is “how many shells do I need?” We recommend one shell per four soakers. For the most part, you should get 3+ changes per shell, sometimes a few extra changes, sometimes a few less. For a full day, once your baby is past the newborn stage and lots of diaper changes, we suggest four shells per day. With washing every second day, eight shells and about 24 soakers or inserts will get you through with extra’s while your diapers are washing. As your little one gets older, you will be able to extend washing to every third day or so.