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If you’re in a hurry and just want to find out what the best diaper pail for cloth diapers is, I’d recommend the Dekor Plus Hands-Free Diaper Pail.
Learning to change diapers is one of the big parenting rites of passage. Actually, learning isn’t the hard part, it’s changing hundreds or thousands that’s really difficult. These days, more and more parents are going with cloth diapers instead of disposables. If you decide to go this route, you will need a diaper pail that’s suited to the task.
In this article, I am breaking down the best diaper pail for cloth diapers, and in the end, I’ll choose the winner.
Here are the cloth diaper pails I will be reviewing:
- Ubbi Steel Diaper Pail
- Safety 1st Easy Saver Diaper Pail
- Dekor Plus Hands-Free Diaper Pail
- GroVia Perfect Diaper Pail
- Bubula JR Steel Diaper Pail
- Odorless Cloth Diaper Pail By Busch Systems
- Munchkin Step Diaper Pail
- Playtex Diaper Genie Complete Diaper Pail
- Tommee Tippee Simplee Nappy Disposal System
- Vilba Diaper Pail
Benefits Of Cloth Diapers
There is a great debate between the cloth diaper crowd and the disposables crowd. While both have there advantages and disadvantages, here are a few of the benefits of cloth diapers.
One of the biggest benefits of cloth diapers is that they are far more eco-friendly than disposable diapers. Disposables generate over 3.5 million tons of waste every year. By using cloth instead, you can play a small part in making the world a little greener.
Potentially Save A Lot Of Money
Cloth diapers can also save families a lot of money. Even though each disposable diaper is fairly cheap, babies go through them at an amazing clip. So, the cost adds up. Cloth diapers will cost a bit more upfront, but can easily save you hundreds of dollars in the long run.
May Make Potty Training Easier
Cloth diapers may making potty training easier. Disposable diapers do a great job of making babies and toddlers feel really dry. However, this can actually lower their motivation to learn to potty train. Since cloth diapers will feel a bit wet after your little one goes, they actually provide a nice incentive to learn to use the toilet.
What To Look For In A Cloth Diaper Pail
There are some diaper pails that work well for both cloth and disposable diapers. However, more often than not, the ones that work well for disposables don’t work well for cloth. So, when you’re shopping for a cloth diaper pail, be sure to pick one that is designed to work well with cloth diapers.
Cloth diapers take up quite a bit more space than disposable diapers. So, you will want to get a diaper pail that has a large capacity. Often times a diaper pail that is big enough for disposables, ends up filling up after a day or two with cloth diapers. If you get one with a large capacity, you won’t need to do laundry as often.
Lock In Odors
The primary reason to get a dedicated diaper pail is that they tend to do a much better job of locking in odors than garbage cans do. So, make sure to get one that actually does the job well.
In general, steel diaper pails tend to perform a bit better than plastic ones in this department, since plastic tends to absorb odors over time.
Ease Of Opening
Diapering an infant is one of the many challenges that parents need to overcome. One of the things you’ll learn along the way is that getting dirty diapers into the pail harder than it looks.
You will need to keep one hand on your baby, while opening the diaper pail to put in the dirty diaper. If you can find a diaper pail that opens with a foot pedal, it makes things much easier. Otherwise, you need to learn to open the pail with the same hand that puts the diaper into the pail. Keep in mind that with most pails, the longer it’s open, the more that the odor contained within is released.
My Top Cloth Diaper Pail Reviews
I have included reviews of my top cloth diaper pails below, and I’ve also chosen my favorite. However, each of these diaper pails has its own benefits and drawbacks. So, take a look and see which one works best for you.
Ubbi Steel Diaper Pail
This diaper pail is quite well regarded, and that’s reflected in the numerous awards that it has won.
It has a rubber seal around the rim to help lock in odors. It’s also made of steel. So, unlike plastic diaper pails, it doesn’t absorb scents over time. This is, of course, the main purpose of a diaper pail and this one does the job quite well.
There is a childproof lock which keeps kids out. This won’t matter much for infants. But toddlers love exploring just about everything, and diaper pails are no exception.
You can use any tall kitchen bag or cloth liner. This can potentially save money since you won’t have to purchase a special custom liner.
On the downside, parents note that opening this pail can be a little bit of a pain since it doesn’t have a foot pedal. In addition, while this pail does a great job of locking in odors when the lid it closed, odors do tend to escape when it’s open. While you might think that is unavoidable, there are actually other pails on the market that do a better job of opening and closing quickly to keep odors from escaping.
Finally, this one is priced on the high end of the range. While it’s a high quality product, it’s also priced accordingly.
- Made of steel so it locks in odor and doesn’t absorb it
- Childproof lock keeps kids out
- Rubber seal around the rim to lock in the smell
- Doesn’t require special liner, which potentially saves money
- Smell escapes when lid is open
- No foot pedal to open
- On the expensive end of the range
Safety 1st Easy Saver Diaper Pail
This is an affordably priced diaper pail that works really well for cloth diapers.
One of the reasons that this works so well is that it has a a lot of capacity. Cloth diapers tend to take up more space than disposables, so this is rather important.
In addition to being affordable itself, it also works with regular bags. So, there is no need to spend money on custom liners.
Parents note that it does a good job of locking in odors, though perhaps not quite as good of a job as some others. It comes with a Dorizer disc which theoretically helps keep the pail smelling fresh. However, many parents report that this gets in the way, and really doesn’t do much.
This one doesn’t have a foot pedal, and it’s not the easiest to open. The reason this is an issue is that often times you’re trying to open it while keeping one hand on your baby and holding a dirty diaper in the other.
- Affordably priced
- Great capacity
- No need to buy custom bags
- Doesn’t always open easily
- No foot pedal
- Dorizer disc doesn’t seem to help with odor, and often gets in the way
Dekor Plus Hands-Free Diaper Pail
The Dekor Plus is a remarkably well designed diaper pail, and it works well for cloth diapers. This is the one that I used with my kids, and of all of the ones I tested, it’s my favorite.
The most impressive thing about this one is the way that you open and close it. You simply step on a pedal and the lid on top pops open. However, there is also a spring loaded OdorKeeper trap door on top to keep scents trapped in. You simply drop the dirty diaper on to the trap door, and watch it quickly open and shut. It’s truly hands free and prevents excess odors from escaping.
In order to use this with cloth diapers, you will want to purchase the Dekor Cloth Diaper Liner. This comes with two cloth liners. So, you can simply swap one out through the open access service door when it fills up and swap the other one in. These liners have a large capacity and are machine washable.
As an added bonus, this diaper pail converts into a garbage can once your little one is out of diapers. So, you’ll get plenty of use out of it.
- Pedal allow for hands free opening
- Does an excellent job of trapping odors
- Spring loaded OdorKeeper trap door only opens briefly to keep odors from escaping
- Has an open access service door to pull out diaper liners when full
- Converts into a garbage can once your diapering days are behind you
- Will need to purchase custom cloth diaper bags separately for optimal performance
GroVia Perfect Diaper Pail
The GroVia Perfect Diaper Pail has a unique design that lets you hang it anywhere you want.
It’s self closing. So, it does a nice job of keeping odors locked in when you put in dirty diapers. Some parents did report that they sometimes get a bit of the “mess” from the dirty diapers onto the flap because of the way that it opens.
Once it fills up, you simply hold it above your washing machine and unzip the bottom. This is a really convenient way to wash cloth diapers. By the way, the bag itself is machine washable. So, you can simply toss it into the same load.
This bag has a large capacity. So, you won’t have to do laundry more often than you want.
One issue with this one is that the zipper tends to break off after a while. That said, a lot of parents liked it so much that they just bought another one when the zipper broke.
- Uniquely designed to hang instead of stand on the ground
- Self-closing so it keeps odors locked in
- Zippered bottom makes it easy to drop dirty diapers in the the washing machine
- Good capacity
- The bag itself is machine washable
- Some parents reported that the zipper broke off after a while
- Sometimes mess gets on the outside flap when putting a dirty diaper in
Bubula JR Steel Diaper Pail
This is a steel diaper pail, so it does a great job of locking in odors without absorbing them.
It has a safety lock on top. So, your toddler won’t be able to open it up and get into trouble. It has a no skid bottom to prevent tipping or scratches on hard wood floors. I haven’t found this to be too big of an issue with other pails. But, I suppose anything that reduces the possibility of your diaper pail tipping and spilling is a good thing.
This one uses standard liners, so there is no need to spend money on anything custom.
It has a large capacity. So, you won’t have to do the laundry more often than you want.
Some parents report that it can be difficult to push the button on top to open. Like most of the others, it doesn’t have a foot pedal, which would have been nice.
It’s on the more expensive end of the range. However, it does convert into a garbage can once your kids are out of diapers. So, you at least you will get a lot of use out of it.
- Steel and aluminum construction traps odors in without absorbing them
- No skid bottom prevents tipping and scratching on hard wood floors
- Uses standard size liners
- Large capacity
- Converts into a trash can after your little one is out of diapers
- Safety lock keeps kids out
- A bit difficult to push the button to open
- No foot pedal
- On the more expensive end of the range
Odorless Cloth Diaper Pail By Busch Systems
This diaper pail by Busch Systems is definitely one of the pricier pails that you can choose from, costing almost double the price compared to some of the others.
However, with saying that, it’s also definitely one of the biggest. This pail holds an impressive 14 gallons and should last at least a few days before needing to be emptied.
That makes it a great commercial pail for small businesses such as a nursery or kindergarten. It’s also handy for a household with multiple kids in diapers, too!
As per the name, the pail is completely odorless, so once those dirty diapers go into it and the lid is closed, you won’t even realize you’ve got 14 gallons of soiled cloth sat next to you!
The pail has charcoal filters that are specially activated to keep the stinky smells inside it, while also allowing for moisture to be let out. Clever and effective.
The plastic handles make the bin easy to maneuver, and the clip lid locks to make it easy to secure the pail and keep it sealed tightly.
The pail is made from strong plastic that’s durable and long-lasting, so your investment in it will definitely save you money in the future.
The biggest flaw of this pail is the design. I’m sorry to say but it is pretty ugly! It’s only available in a beige and off-white color combination, which makes it look very clinical and obvious.
Its square shape gives it a bulky look and it could be a little difficult to place it somewhere in the home that doesn’t get in the way.
- Odorless design
- Perfect for households that go through a lot of diapers
- Doesn’t require changing for at least two days
- Good quality
- Bulky design
- Looks very clinical
- Lid has to be opened by hand, making for poor cross-contamination control
Munchkin Step Diaper Pail
This is another pail that is priced at the higher end of the market; however, this one is award-winning and was impressively voted best diaper pail in 2017 and 2020.
A beautiful thing that this company does is that it plants a tree for every diaper pail that is sold. This could definitely be a big factor for those of you who are particularly environmentally friendly and want to do your bit in helping out.
This pail is odorless and features a smart self-sealing system. This means that every time you drop a diaper into it, the technology twists the bag and keeps odors in so you aren’t faced with a nasty smell blasting at you each time you open it!
It has dual refill compatibility, so you aren’t stuck with only being able to buy certain bags for this pail. You can have peace of mind knowing it works with both rings and snap as well as seal and toss bags.
The Munchkin Step pail is of a sleek and slim design, making it easy to fit between furniture and subtlety blend into the home environment without looking out of place.
The white and silver color should allow it to fit in with every home’s decor, too.
It features a foot pedal for opening, so you don’t have to worry about juggling dirty diapers and pail lids between your arms. Simply press the pedal with your foot for easy and convenient access.
Another great feature, especially for when your little one starts to wander and explore, is that it has a locking system that’s childproof.
The button is safely out of reach for curious toddlers, so you don’t have to worry about finding your little one headfirst in a heap of dirty diapers!
- Childproof lock
- Self-sealing system
- Dual refill compatibility
- Foot pedal to eliminate cross-contamination
- Doesn’t hold many diapers
- Some reports of mechanical faults due to high technology presence
Playtex Diaper Genie Complete Diaper Pail
This is another award-winning diaper pail, with lots of great features but at a much more reasonable and affordable price.
The diaper pail will arrive to you 100 percent assembled and ready to use, with a full-sized refill already installed. So all you have to do is take it out of the box and you’re good to go!
Fully odorless, this pail has multiple systems in place to ensure that not even the smallest smelly odor is sneaking out of it.
It has antimicrobial built into it, which is odor-controlling and will also limit any nasty bacteria from growing inside of the pail.
The product has doubled air-tight clamps, which also help to seal in any odor as well as a carbon filter at the top to capture any smells leaking out from any direction!
The Playtex Diaper Genie is available in five different fun colors, so you’re sure to find one that suits the color scheme in the nursery or playroom. The modern, slimline design is stylish, which also makes it easy to fit into any home.
Opening the pail is easily operated by a foot pedal, so you don’t have to worry about putting dirty diapers down to open the lid or struggle to hold diapers in one hand and baby in another.
Simply step on the pedal, and the lid will lift so you needn’t have to even touch the pail with your hands.
Changing the pail bag is super easy, too! With a convenient front tilt bin you only simply need to pull the bag through the built-in cutter. No need to pull the pail away from the wall or unscrew the lid. However, as the bag is designed to be knotted and thrown out, you’ll need to cut it open to get your cloth diapers out.
As you can only use branded bags, this could end up being quite costly in the long-run.
- Good value for money
- Slimline design, available in five colors
- Foot pedal operated
- Can only be used with branded bags
- Bag is designed to be knotted off, which you’ll have to cut open to get to the cloth diapers
- No child lock system
Tommee Tippee Simplee Nappy Disposal System
This diaper pail would be ideal if you’re limited on space, or are only looking for a small unit.
However, with its small size, this pail will see you having to change it pretty regularly. Cloth diapers tend to be bulkier than disposables, so this could end up becoming more work than the pail is intended to cause.
Similar to a desktop waste bin you may have in the office, or next to the computer, this diaper pail is only about knee-high.
The design is created to stop odors and keep them inside the pail; however, it doesn’t contain any special or specific features to ensure that odors will not leak, especially when the lid is opened and closed.
The model has a pop-up lid to quickly dispose of diapers into this pail, but you’ll need to remove the entire lid to empty the bag when it’s full.
It is only compatible with its own branded bags that are specifically designed for this pail. However, the Tommee Tippee bags are designed to block odors, and they kill 99 percent of germs.
The Simplee disposal system is available in grey and pink, both of which look classy and will easily fit in with most home decor.
- Compact design
- Two colors to choose from
- Easy to wipe clean
- Requires frequent bag changes due to small size
- No touchless opening design
- Only compatible with specific bags
- Odors may leak from the pail.
Vilba Diaper Pail
This is another small pail, standing around knee-high. However, it does look very stylish and has a somewhat simple yet elegant look to it.
Considering its smaller size, I feel that it is priced rather highly—but then again, it does have great features that come with it.
The Vliba can hold up to the equivalent of 45 newborn diapers before it needs emptying, which is pretty impressive considering it’s deceiving compact size. In terms of cloth diapers, this number will be much less of course, but it’s still enough for a day or two.
It’s available in six modern and fresh colors that will surely stand out in nursery, but for all the right reasons. You will surprise visitors when they’re informed that it is merely an old diaper pail that’s grabbing their attention!
The pail’s design is made to trap odors inside, from its innovative double-locking seals to its double-lid closing technology.
Disposable bags are easily removed and replaced when full, with a large front opening access door so there’s no need to remove the lid.
The pail features both a lid lock and a child safety lock, so you don’t have to worry about wandering toddlers digging for gold or getting fingers caught in this one.
The design also features a foot pedal, so you can easily have hands-free access for quick and effective disposal of diapers and a cleaner environment for all.
It comes with a six-month supply of refill bags, so you don’t have to worry about stocking up straight away. This also eases the take on the higher price of this pail.
You’ll also get a sample pack of their extra thick individual disposal sacks that you can try for those extra messy, extra stinky diaper changes!
- Child lock system
- Available in six colors
- Modern, classy design
- Foot pedal operation
- Six months’ supply of bags included
- Smaller size makes for more bag changes
- Reports of mechanical issues
There are a lot of good options included above. However, when all is said and done, I think the Dekor Plus Hands-Free Diaper Pail is the best diaper pail for cloth diapers. This biggest reason is that the combination of the foot pedal and trap door makes it really easy to put in dirty diapers, without letting odors escape. It’s also a high quality product all around. That said, I would recommend any of the pails included in this post. So, if another one has a feature that really appeals to you, it might just be the right choice.