All About… fastening systems
My preferred fastening system is Touchtape. First, Touchtape is superior to Velcro in so many ways, I would never use Velcro. Not for diapers. My first trial diapers were made with Velcro, and it lost its “stick” within a few washes. (Yes, despite everyone on the internet saying not to use Velcro, I did it anyway.)
Many people use Aplix in their dipes – I used to, but switched to Touchtape after about a year – I just like it better, but they’re really very similar.
I personally don’t like snaps as much -I like the flexibility of being able to fasten a diaper wherever I want, rather than just at either Snap Setting A or Snap Setting B. Also, many parents, particularly daddies, get a little overwhelmed by rows upon rows of snaps. It gets hard to figure out exactly how to close the diaper!
I do offer snaps as an option for those who want it – I use one row of snaps with three settings on each side.
I also don’t buy the whole “kids can remove touchtape but not snaps” “fact” that circulates on the internet. Some kids might be able to remove hook-and-loop tape but be stymied by snaps, but both Wally and Genna could remove both with the same amount of ease (at about 4 months). Stories shared by customers, friends, and just others who I know would seem to indicate that some kids can’t get off diapers with snaps, some can’t get off diapers with hook-and-loop, some kids can’t get off anything, some kids aren’t stopped by any type of fastener, and some kids never try to take their diapers off.
(I’ve found, though, that for kids for whom this is really a problem, using rounded-edge Touchtape closures that are JUST Touchtape and not any fabric covering it are REALLY hard to remove – at least for a while. After several months, the Touchtape starts to curl a bit on the edges, and then the gig’s up.)
The most common question I get about Touchtape: Does it lose its “stick”? I’ve never had Touchtape lose its Stick. I know it does have a lifespan, I’m just not sure what that lifespan is – longer than I’ve had diapers in circulation with Touchtape, anyway.
The most common problem is Lint Creep. You know, lint catches on one small edge of the tab. Then a month later, the whole thing’s covered. Get yourself a pin, safety pin, bobby pin, etc, and pick that stuff out. It takes like 3 seconds. Voila, good as new.
The second most common problem is pilling on the loop (soft) part. This most often comes from other fabrics in the wash rubbing up on the Touchtape and getting its pilling embedded in the soft fibers of the touchtape. Solution? Scissors or a sweater shaver and cut those pills right off.
I am in the process of testing hook and loop tape from another manufacturer. Their testing indicates that it’s got a high peel strength (how much force is needed to unstick it) as well as a long life (how many uses you get before it quits working). Testing so far is going well, and I like it, but it’s only been a few weeks. If it tests out as better than Touchtape, I’ll be seriously considering making a switch, and I’ll definitely keep you informed!!