3 Simple Ways To Avoid An Embarrassing Pool Incident

How to choose swim diapers

Swim Diapers are not designed to be absorbent rather they are meant to contain a solid waste. They contain a layer of mesh to keep messes in place and the pool from being shut down due to an escapee. No one wants that to happen.

Disposable diapers and regular cloth diapers are not recommended for swimming as they will absorb the water of the pool or lake and will be very heavy for your little one. Once these diapers are full of water they will no longer hold urine anyway! Generally, public pools require children who are not potty trained to wear swim diapers and many swim schools recommend reusable ones.

Here’s how you can decide which style of reusable swim diapers are well-suited to your child:

Pull Up Swim Diapers

These diapers slide on easily for quick changes at the beach and pool. They usually have an inner string that can be tightened to keep the fit nice and snug.

A pull-up swim diaper is likely going to be sized and need to be replaced more frequently than a snap or Velcro diaper that has more possibilities for a customized fit.

If baby makes a number two in this diaper, be warned. Removal will require some skill on your behalf to take it off it without losing some of the mess or having your baby step in it as their feet come out.

how to choose swim diapers

Take Your Pick: Snaps or Velcro 

A swim diaper with either snaps or Velcro makes removing the diaper in case of a mess much simpler. Rather than shimmying off the diaper while trying to contain the solid, you can simply unsnap or unhook.

Snaps last longer in moisture, won’t stick onto baby’s swim top, and aren’t going to go anywhere during active play.  Swim diapers that have two rows of snaps for both the thighs and the waist are your best bet for crawling babies to avoid “wing droop” as they crawl beachside.

Velcro can be irritating to your skin as you hold your baby close against you in the water but it’s easy to put on in situations where a quick change is necessary.

Using Swim Diapers On Vacation

One swim diaper should be enough to last through your holiday as long as you keep it clean. Even if baby doesn’t make a mess, give the diaper a quick scrub in warm water with some soap each evening and hang to dry. This process will help keep the smell of urine from settling.

Take two diapers if you want to be able to keep swimming without immediately cleaning the diaper in case of a solid emergency.

If you are driving directly to the beach or the pool and want your child to be already dressed and ready to swim, place a booster inside your baby’s swim diaper to absorb any urine they may pass in an attempt to keep your little one’s car seat dry. Remove the booster before hitting the water.

Washing Swim Diapers

Swim diapers do not require any special washing like other reusable diapers. Throw them in with your regular cloth diaper laundry or thoroughly rinse them and toss them in with your towels.


  • Jen @ Go Green says:

    I love reusable swim diapers. They are SO easy to use! The suggestion for snaps or velcro is great because the pull up kind are a nightmare to get off if there is poop in them. Not that I speak from experience or anything….

    • Sara Vartanian says:

      My suggestion for the easy on and off swim diapers just may have been born from some messy (and stinky) life experience!

  • Lori Popkewitz Alper says:

    I so wish these had been around when my kids were little. Maybe they were and I didn’t know about them? The swim diapers I used were horrible- basically the same as swimming without anything!

    • Sara Vartanian says:

      Reusable diapers have evolved quite a bit of the past number of years. Even if they were available they were probably not as nice and trim as they currently are!