Pampers Swaddlers vs. Cruisers (2023 Comparison)

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Ah, diapers. One of the most expensive recurring expenses you’ll have during this precious time with your little one. And with all of the options out there, it’s hard to know which one is the best.

This direct comparison between Pampers Swaddlers vs. Cruisers should help clear the air about which kind might be best for you right now.

While Swaddlers are great for newborns and infants that aren’t on the move yet, Cruisers tend to be better for crawlers, but we’ll dive into the details so you can understand more.

Pampers Swaddlers

Pampers is a pretty well-known name in the baby world. If you’ve never heard of them, I’m going to assume you’ve been living under a rock. Nonetheless, if you don’t know much about them, here’s a brief rundown.

Pampers was created in 1961 by Procter & Gamble. At first, there was only one bulky design that came in a single size, but since then, they’ve grown to include multiple styles, plenty of sizes, and even gender specific designs.

Pampers haven’t always been well-loved. A number of years ago, there was a lawsuit against their new Dry-Max technology, said to cause severe diaper rash. However, research showed that there was no correlation between this technology and reported diaper rash.

Reactions to diaper brands happen for all sorts of reasons, so you may find that one brand works better for your little one than others, and that’s completely normal. There’s no reason to shy away from a particular brand because someone else’s baby seems to have a reaction to it.

They offer all kinds of baby gear – not just diapers. They’re the company behind the Lumi baby monitor, and they also have baby wipes, swim diapers, and training pants.

The key thing to remember about Pampers Swaddlers is that they have a notch cutout in the front to accommodate the umbilical cord, so they stand out in a duel if you have a newborn with a sensitive tummy.

However, they come in sizes from Preemie all the way to Size 7, so if you fall in love with these from the beginning, you can continue to use them.

They have soft, stretchy sides, so your baby can continue to move, leak-free. The lining is soft and absorbent, keeping your baby dry and rash-free.

Keep in mind that even the newborn size may be too big for your baby, depending on how big they were when they were born. Newborn sizing covers a range, but your baby is unique, so you may have to adjust the sizing to fit better for a few weeks.

People often find that, even with the umbilical cord cutout, the top of the newborn diaper may still be too big. A Preemie size may work better for a short time, or you can simply fold the top of the diaper down and out of the way.

Sizing information

Preemie: up to 4 pounds

Newborn/Size 0: up to 10 pounds

Size 1: 8-14 pounds

Size 2: 12-18 pounds

Size 3: 16-28 pounds

Size 4: 22-37 pounds

Size 5: 27+ pounds

Size 6: 35+ pounds

Size 7: 41+ pounds


  • Cutout for umbilical cord comfort
  • Available in preemie sizes all the way up to 37+ pounds
  • Stretchy sides that flex with movement for increased comfort
  • Dermatologist tested and hypoallergenic
  • Wetness indicator tells you when baby needs to be changed


  • Umbilical cord cutout can still rub
  • Sizing can be confusing

Pampers Cruisers

Pampers Cruisers come from the same well-known brand, but they feature a little bit different design. Without an umbilical cord cutout, they’re designed with more active babies and toddlers in mind.

You can transition to Cruisers when your baby is ready and experience something a bit more convenient, especially when all your baby does is try to wiggle away at diaper change time.

Pampers Cruisers are a great way to transition from diapers to training pants. Where these diapers really shine is in their stretchy sides with no tape. They simply slide on with ease.

However, when it comes to messy diaper changes, the sides tear away easily, allowing you to take the mess away without sliding the diaper back off.

And we’re not done yet. Each diaper comes with a hidden piece of tape that allows you to roll up the mess, secure it, and then toss it away. This helps to cut down on smelly trash and visible messes.

Just like the Pampers Swaddlers, Cruisers seal around your baby’s legs to prevent leaks, which is a common area of weakness in many diapers.

Sizing information

Size 3: 16-28 pounds

Size 4: 22-37 pounds

Size 5: 27+ pounds

Size 6: 35+ pounds


  • Easy to slide on and tear away
  • Convenient disposal with hidden tape
  • Seals around legs for less leaks
  • Meant to move with your baby when they begin to crawl and walk


  • No wetness indicator
  • Premium design means a higher price
  • Doesn’t come in all sizes

Pampers Swaddlers vs Pampers Cruisers: Side By Side Comparison

While both of these diaper designs are great, they each have some clear advantages, so the best one for you depends on what you’re looking for.


Both Swaddlers and Cruisers use AGM gel for absorbency, so you won’t find much of a difference there.

However, Pampers Swaddlers feature what they call an “absorb away liner.” It helps to pull any wetness away from your child’s skin, keeping it in the bulk of the diaper instead. It can help to prevent diaper rash and other discomfort.

Swaddlers also feature grooves in the surface that help to channel wetness and distribute it evenly throughout the diaper. This means less frequent diaper changes at night and less risk of leaks. They advertise 12 hours of comfortable protection.

As your child grows, they are able to eat more and hold more in their stomach at a time, which can mean bulkier diapers and more frequent diaper changes if the absorbency isn’t there.

For this reason, Cruisers use a contoured fit that prevents this gel from leaking out as they bend and twist. They’re better for mobile babies, even if the diaper becomes overly saturated. They also advertise 12 hours of protection for busy babies.

Winner: Tie

Comfort, fit, and design

Pampers Swaddlers are made of a blankie soft material, so they feel less scratchy against your baby’s skin. They have a cloth-like feel that leaves your baby dry and happy.

Plus, small diaper sizes up to Size 2 have a newborn notch to create added comfort at the umbilical cord site. This helps to give breathing room to the umbilical cord, allowing you to treat it without frequent changes, so it will fall off when it’s supposed to.

On the other hand, Cruisers fit snugly around the legs, preventing leaks for more mobile babies. They slide on easily and are stretchy on the sides for a better fit. The lack of tape creates a more comfortable experience.

Winner: Tie


This is where the two diapers are more distinguishable. While Swaddlers come in a variety of sizes ranging from Preemie all the way up to Size 7, Cruisers only come in sizes 3-6.

Some people prefer to start with the Swaddlers, thanks to the comfy notch, and then transition to Cruisers later, while others prefer to stick with the same diapers throughout their baby’s first few years to provide consistency.

Winner: Swaddlers


There’s not too much of a cost difference between the two designs. All diapers are pricey, especially because you have to buy so many of them, but Cruisers do tend to be a bit more expensive than Swaddlers.

Winner: Swaddlers


When it comes to convenience, Cruisers are hard to beat. If your child is on the move, these diapers give you the absorbency and leak protection you need with the added convenience of simply slipping them on at changing time.

They also feature tear away sides that make messy changes quicker and easier, with a hidden piece of tape that allows you to roll the diaper up and secure it before throwing it in the trash.

Swaddlers take a bit more time and care during changes because they feature tape rather than a slip on design.

Winner: Cruisers

Stand Out Features

Both Pampers Swaddlers and Cruisers have their own set of stand out features worth noting. They’re great for their intended purposes, so you may find one beneficial over the other depending on the stage of growth your baby is in.

Pampers Swaddlers:

  • Notch design: This cutout, featured on diaper sizes up to 2, allows you to provide your baby with a little extra comfort during those first few weeks. When they’re born, their umbilical cord takes time to heal, so it’s important to reduce irritation at the site as much as possible.
  • Wetness indicator: The yellow stripe on the front of these diapers turns blue if the diaper is wet, helping you know when exactly your child might need a diaper change. It can be tough to tell with already bulky diapers, so this helps you be more efficient and less wasteful. Plus, it saves you time having to feel or guess.

Pampers Cruisers:

  • No-tape design: Cruisers make it easier for busy parents with active babies. They’re almost like training pants in design. They have stretchy sides with no tape, so you can just slip them on your blur of a baby as they’re already taking off across the room. In the case of a super messy diaper, the sides tear away so you can remove it easily without having to slide the mess back off. Not only that, but there’s a hidden piece of tape that allows you to roll the diaper up and secure it before placing it in the trash. It cuts down on smell and unsightly messes.

Final Thoughts

While both of these products are fantastic for babies, they shine very clearly in their own specific ways.

Use Pampers Swaddlers if:

  • You have a newborn who still has their umbilical cord stump and needs the extra comfort of the notch cutout.
  • You need the wider range of sizes from Preemie to Size 7.
  • You rely on the wetness indicator to tell you when to change your baby’s diaper.

Pick up Pampers Swaddlers for your baby and give them a try today.

Use Pampers Cruisers if:

  • Your baby is more active and needs the more secure fit around the legs for less leaking.
  • Your baby squirms at diaper change time and you need something quick and convenient.
  • You want the added convenience of no tape around the waist and a hidden piece of tape to dispose of dirty diapers more easily.

Make sure you try out Pampers Cruisers when your baby is on the move.

Different diaper designs fit everyone differently. You may find that your baby’s body shape doesn’t do well with Pampers, and that’s okay. There are a lot of other great diaper brands out there.

However, Pampers is one of the most well-known brands, and worth a try if you’re finding that your current diapers aren’t doing the trick.

Sarah is a full-time freelance writer and mother of 4. She loves Jesus, cars, and coffee.