Pampers Swaddlers or Pampers Baby Dry?

Neve Spicer
Written by Neve Spicer Updated on January 12th, 2022

We only include products we know and trust. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Learn more about our review process.

You’re gonna be changing your newborn’s diaper up to 10 times a day.


Let’s make sure it’s the right one for you.

Pampers is a solid choice, but which is best: Pampers Swaddlers or Pampers Baby Dry?

Side by side comparison

Let’s see exactly what separates these two Pampers diapers…

Pampers SwaddlersPampers Baby Dry
Price:Check priceCheck price
Sizes AvailablePreemie to size 6Newborn to size 6
Hours of Protection1212
LinerHeart QuiltsUltraAbsorb Core
Absorbency Channels
Absorbency Layers23
Flexible Sides
Overlapping Tabs
Latex & Paraben Free
Wetness Indicator√ (in sizes Newborn to 2)
Umbilical NotchX
IngredientsPetrolatum, Stearyl Alcohol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf ExtractPetrolatum, Stearyl Alcohol, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract

Related: The Ultimate Diaper Guide (Cut the Crap!)

What are Pampers Swaddlers?

The Swaddlers line (check price on Amazon) is designed for the smallest babies up to size 6. (See Pampers’ own size and weight chart to figure out which size you need). 

This diaper has a notch in the front that prevents a baby’s umbilical stump from rubbing against it. Since they’re for little ones, Pampers designed the Swaddlers to have less bulk between the legs, avoiding that unfortunate frog-like look.

You might think a newborn wouldn’t wet that much, but, believe me, you’ll appreciate the ease of switching out and replacing the diaper.

The Swaddlers sport a wetness indicator right down the front of the diaper, a bright yellow line letting you know when it’s time for a change.

Is your sleeping baby dry or wet? Now you can know with just one glance! The Swaddlers’ air channels keep wetness contained and away from the baby’s delicate skin, while the blanket-like softness of the outer surface keeps the diaper feeling comfortable.

Related: Pampers Swaddlers vs. Cruisers (5-mins. Decision Made.)

What are Pampers Baby Dry?

Billed as three times more absorbent than ordinary diapers, the Baby Dry (check price on Amazonline is designed for heavy wetters.

It features an UltraAbsorb core and a three-channel interior construction that gives extra protection against leaks. This diaper is perfect for those 12-hour overnights, or when traveling.

The Sesame Street characters printed on the diaper offer kids some extra decoration they really appreciate.

Size Newborn through 3 has a color strip that indicates that the diaper is wet and ready to change. One glance allows you to bypass that two-fingers-inside-the-diaper move.

The diaper’s area between the legs is slimmer than that of many other brands. The lack of bulk makes it easier to sit, crawl and walk.

Even if using other diapers during the day, Baby Dry is an ideal pick for nighttime use, keeping the baby comfortable and asleep all night.

Pampers Swaddlers: A quick overview

The Swaddlers (check price on Amazonline has an exceptional reputation with new parents, nurses, and caretakers, frequently winning contests of competing endorsements.

The umbilical notch, snug fittings on legs and sides, and unmatched softness make them a top choice. While this diaper fits the youngest babies, the upper limit, at size 7, makes it appropriate for any child.

Not every child wets the same. For light-to-normal wetting, Swaddlers are a great choice for new parents.

What we love
  • Extra-soft for sensitive newborns
  • Very absorbent for a small-size diaper
  • Umbilical notch for the newly-born
  • 12-hour protection
Watch for
  • Some parents are not happy with the redesign of Pampers Swaddlers, citing poor performance and construction
  • Heavily scented
Check Price on Amazon

Related: The Best Diaper Pails of 2021 (Ultimate Guide & Reviews)

Pampers Baby Dry: A quick overview

The Baby Dry Diaper (check price on Amazon) is, in many ways, an extension of the Swaddlers line. Once baby wets through more often, or the Swaddlers need less changing, it’s time to move up to the three-channel construction of Baby Dry.

This diaper can be used right up until the child is ready for toilet training pull-ups. You need only use Baby Dry at night time. The Baby Dry can take heavy wetness and soiling in its stride due to its superior dryness construction.

What we love
  • Three-channel absorbency
  • Can handle all-night diaper needs
  • Long-term use throughout both baby and toddler stages
  • 12-hour protection
Watch for
  • Some have complained about the new design and construction of the Baby Dry line
  • Heavily scented
Check Price on Amazon

Related: Best Baby Wipes Of 2021

Which is right for you?

The decision on which diaper is best will rest with one person alone, your baby! That, and how their bodies respond to the diaper, will determine whether Swaddlers (check price on Amazonor Baby Dry (check price on Amazonis the one for you.

Before your baby arrives, buy the smallest packages of some of the newborn-size diapers and give them all a trial run for one day each.

You’ll soon discover which fits the best, is most comfortable, and best protects your baby’s skin, clothing, and bedding. For long trips and overnight visits, you may want to move up to a product like Baby Dry.

A sidenote on diaper rash

Let’s look at what good diapering means to you and your infant. If you’ve yet to see a baby with severe diaper rash, believe me, you won’t soon forget it!

Little ones can appear to have blisters all over their cherry red bottoms, which can often lead to parents feeling terrible about their skills, so let’s get you up to scratch…

The medical term for the red inflammation of the skin you see is called ‘dermatitis’. Usually, diaper rash of any severity is due to either wet diapers being left on too long, sensitive skin, or chafing of the diaper against the baby’s skin.

There are available diaper rash creams, and many good home remedies, to help with a rash on the bottom, but see a pediatrician for advice if it hasn’t cleared up after a few days. Call the doctor if any of these symptoms are present:

  • If the rash looks severe, or appears unusual
  • If the baby’s skin is looking worse, despite your home treatment
  • Itching, bleeding, or oozing
  • Your infant cries in pain with each urination or bowel movement
  • The rash is accompanied by a fever

It’s important to change your baby’s diaper before it gets too wet. Never leave a baby lying or sitting in a pool of urine or worse. Diapering is easier than many first-time parents think.

Neve Spicer
Written by Neve Spicer Updated on January 12th, 2022

Pin for later

Pampers Swaddlers vs Baby Dry
The Very Best Baby Wipes

With new parenthood comes new challenges. One of the first, of course, is cleaning infant poop messes and keeping babys’ behind