Reviewing as although there are quite a few reviews already I have used the hemp inserts rather than the cotton ones as previously reviewed and there are a few more options now too...
Nappy Name: GroVia Hybrid
Type of Nappy: Hybrid / AI2
Fastener: Snaps (also available in hook & loop).
Material: Outer is 100% Polyester - TPU shell with polyester mesh lining. Soaker pad - option of organic cotton / 55% hemp & 45% cotton / microfibre / compostable disposable. All with TPU backing.
Size: one-size nappy to fit 8-35lbs
Drying Speed: 8/10
Value for money: 9/10
Overall Comment: Fabulous!
As previously described they are made up of a waterproof 'shell' with a super soft polyester mesh lining which keeps baby's skin feeling dry and the shell fresh. There are then absorbant soaker pads which are snapped onto the shell. The idea is that as long as the shell is not soiled you can just change the soaker pad so the shell can be used several times (I wash after 2 / 3 uses). This makes the nappy more economical (and hopefully the shells will have a longer life) as you require fewer shells than soakers. The soaker pads come in pairs so I have 4 shells and 8 soaker pads and could even do with a couple more soakers to make full capacity use of the shells. Looking ahead to the future the resale value of the shells and soakers seem good so this eventually helps on an economical level.
There are now 4 options for the soaker pads:
STAY DRY - 4 layers of hemp (55%) and cotton (45%) mix with a soft microfleece top layer to stay dry next to baby's skin. It is in 2 sections joined only at the top and bottom to aid a speedier drying. The soaker has a TPU backing which not only keeps wetness away from the shell allowing you to reuse it but also enhances the overall efficiency of the nappy further reducing the risk of leaks. In addition they have a microfleece gusset which helps keep poop from over spilling onto shell or worse still escaping altogether.
This is the soaker pad I have used and they are fantastic. The microfleece stays beautifully soft and they are super absorbant. The 2 section design is really useful for drying as I do not have a tumble drier so I turn them inside out and peg one section to clothes horse so air can pass through to underneath section to speed up drying. As a comparison they tend to take about the same amount of time to dry as my 2 layer Little Lamb bamboo boosters.
ORGANIC COTTON - another 2 sectioned soaker with a cotton jersey top layer, cotton leg gussets and TPU stay-dry backing. These are the original soaker pads which I haven't tried myself but have been reviewed several times by others.
NO-PREP - 4 layers of microfibre terry with microfleece top layer, soft leg gussets and TPU waterproof backing. These soakers are designed to be fully absorbant after just 1 wash.
I haven't tried these myself but a friend has and she was amazed. She was in a rush and took it straight out of packet and fixed to the nappy (no pre-wash at all) and it worked a charm. To quote her 'it's magic'!
BIO SOAKER PADS - a disposable option made from natural 100% Ingeo spunbound, non-woven fabric with an absorbant biodegradable wood pulp fibre centre. Only 3 grams of SAP (Sodium Polyacrylate) gel used compared with 10-20g in 'normal' disposable nappies. These also have the TPU under-layer to keep shell dry. These have no plastics, chlorine, fragrance or dyes and are compostable (if only wet), so for a disposable nappy option they really do seem very environmentally sound.
I haven't tried these yet but am seriously considering getting a packet (come in packs of 20 / 50) for our long journey to and from New Zealand at the end of the year so we won't arrive and immediately need to stick loads of dirty nappies in MIL washing machine!
There are also additional organic cotton or hemp stay-dry boosters available to lie inside the nappy, however I have not tried these (and haven't felt extra absorbancy necessary) so can not comment on their effectiveness.
The nappy as a whole is surprisingly slim fitting as the shape and design of both the shell and soaker pads have very little bulk to them. The section between the legs narrows slightly (in a similar but in my opinion more efficient way to an Itti Bitti) so they don't have as much of a 'just got off a horse' look when walking around like I tend to find with many other nappies.
The snaps can overlap for small babies and at a tall 15 months and 24+lbs we are still on the middle rise settling with more width allowance left. With only 1 row of snaps the nappy is quick and easy to put on, yet I find it fits just as snugly as my nappies with separate leg and waist snaps. Due to its simplicity and fit I would recommend this as an easy nappy for grandparents / child care and I imagine the hook & look version would be even easier.
The photo of the nappy above is taken at the fitting she currently uses. Even with a chunky buba it really does seem like this could last us through to potty training.
The containment is fantastic, even with a LO that is very regular and a heavy wetter I have never had an escaping poop explosion in one of these nappies and the only leaks (of which there have been very few) have occurred when I didn't get chance to change her in time so she was in nappy for 3.5 - 4+ hrs.
On a frivolous level the prints are gorgeous and I think quite different from the designs most other nappies have. They also have lovely bold block colours. These nappies definitely give my LO a bum I want to show off.
In short I love, love, love these nappies! Although they are not cheap I personally think they are well worth the outlay and you really can reuse the shells so don't need as many. I would love to get more if I could.