Cruisers vs. Swaddlers Compared – Which is Better?

Pampers is known for providing good quality diapers that can cater to the needs of a baby. Cruisers and Swaddlers are two types of Pampers that parents often prefer due to their excellent absorbency. Both are good in terms of comfort and wetness protection, which are the foremost considerations when deciding on the best diaper for a baby.

Depending on the specific needs of the baby, either of these two can be the better choice. Pampers Cruisers are great for older and more active babies due to the maximum freedom, flexibility, and leak protection they provide. Pampers Swaddlers, on the other hand, are an excellent choice for newborn babies because of their superior softness.

This article will provide a detailed comparison between Cruisers and Swaddlers in terms of their absorbency, fit, comfort, availability, price, and other features that can help parents decide which diaper best suits the needs of their babies. It will also discuss the components and ingredients of both diapers to explain further their differences and the advantages of one over the other.

Pampers Cruisers vs. Pampers Swaddlers

baby sleeping


Pampers Cruisers is designed to cater to the needs of older babies who tend to be more active and pee more frequently. It features a unique 3-way fit technology that prevents all forms of leakages. Also, it has more absorb channels that allow it to hold more liquid.

Pampers Swaddlers, on the other hand, is an excellent starter diaper for babies due to the maximum comfort it provides. It is mainly known for its superior softness. Its Heart Quilt liner feature makes it soft against the baby’s skin, preventing irritation and possible rashes.

Absorbency & Absorb Channels

fit baby diaper

Both Cruisers and Swaddlers have Absorb Channels. The main purpose of this feature is to keep the baby’s skin dry to touch even if the diaper is wet. It helps prevent rashes in babies – a common problem encountered when the baby’s skin is soaked in poo or pee for extended periods.

Essentially, the Absorb channels are grooves in the surface of the diaper. These grooves divide the absorbent layers of the diaper, which helps reduce the concentration of urine in a single area. With this feature, both diapers can last longer than others since they can absorb more and also reduce irritation due to wetness.

In terms of absorbency, Cruisers are designed to absorb more fluid compared with Swaddlers. They have three absorb channels, whereas Swaddlers only have two. Due to the extra channel, Cruisers are guaranteed to provide overnight protection (or around 12 hours) since it can distribute the moisture even further and prevent it from settling in one area.

The additional absorb channel in Cruisers also gives them an anti-sagging feature. Since the urine is not concentrated in a single area, the weight is properly distributed, minimizing the chances of a saggy diaper.


monochrome baby diaper

Pampers Swaddlers have soft and stretchy sides that offer a customized fit for a baby. In addition, they also have velcro-like tapes that help keep the diaper in place and allow more effortless refastening when necessary. The velcro-like tapes are an excellent replacement for the sticky tapes that were used before.

On the other hand, Pampers Cruisers are known for their superior fit technology. They have a unique 3-way fit design that solves the leaking problem. The diaper can be adjusted on the waistline, as well as the bottoms and legs.

Cruisers are mainly intended for active babies; therefore, the ability of these diapers to stay in place even during playtime is one of their key features. As babies become older, they tend to move more and do all sorts of acrobatics, making their diapers more prone to unwanted leakages. The 3-way fit design, however, can adapt to their movements and adjust itself to avoid leakages.

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baby comfortable diaper

Swaddlers diapers are advertised to be “blanket soft” due to their superior softness. Their “Heart Quilt liner” feature makes them twice as soft and comfortable as other diapers, so it is ideal for the delicate skin of the baby.

Similarly, Cruisers offer excellent comfort to babies. The extra spaces due to the grooves on the surface of these diapers make them breathable. They also provide longer protection from wetness because of their extra absorb channels, making them more comfortable for babies for longer periods.

The softness of the diaper is an essential factor in keeping a baby comfortable during sleep. It is an outstanding feature of a diaper for babies who have very delicate skin that may be more susceptible to rashes. Likewise, breathability is important to ensure that air can adequately flow inside the diaper. It is necessary to avoid any feeling of suffocation and irritation that the baby may experience.

Both diapers offer great comfort. Pampers Swaddlers are softer, whereas Cruisers are more breathable.

Umbilical Cord Notch

baby inside crib

This is a unique feature of Pampers Swaddlers present in sizes newborn (N), 1, and 2. Essentially, it is a slight dip in the front of the diaper which takes into account the baby’s umbilical cord. This feature reduces any irritation to the cord stump.

Wetness Indicator

The wetness indicator is another feature of Pampers Swaddlers that is not present in Pampers Cruisers. It is the yellow line on the front of the diaper, which is actually a pH-sensitive strip that is similar to those used in science classes. It changes color (from yellow to blue) once wet, which then serves as an indicator that the baby’s urine hit the diaper.

This feature allows for easier monitoring of the baby’s diaper. Just by looking at it, the parent will know whether the diaper is full or not.

Gel Absorbency

dad changing diaper

Gel Absorbency is a feature unique to Pampers Cruiser. Often, absorbing gels leak from the diaper of the baby. This usually occurs when the diaper is supersaturated or due to the excessive movement of the baby.

Cruisers feature a contoured fit, which prevents the gel from leaking out, making these diapers ideal for very active babies.

Odor Protection

Both Cruisers and Swaddlers have a light baby powder scent. This subtle scent makes the two great in terms of hiding away the odor of pee and poop without smelling like harsh chemicals.

The smell of the baby’s pee and poop may be off-putting to some and may even create inconvenience for others in public. Thus, this feature of Cruisers and Swaddlers is necessary to keep the bad smell to a minimum, especially in crowded places.

Available Sizes

pile diapers

Pampers Swaddlers is better in terms of the size range. It is available from size N, for babies less than 10 lbs, up to size 7, which is for babies weighing more than 41 lbs.  Pampers Cruisers, on the other hand, is available from size 3, for babies 16 to 28 lbs in weight, up to size 7, for babies 41 lbs and up.

Swaddlers are often preferred by parents for their babies due to the range of available sizes. Babies can use Swaddlers diapers from birth until they reach potty-train age. This minimizes the risk of irritating the baby’s skin due to the frequent shift in diaper type.

Cruisers are made for older babies who tend to move more, which explains why these diapers are only available from size 3 to 7. Some parents prefer this type of diaper due to its leak protection feature. In addition, these diapers can hold more liquid in them, making them ideal for babies who pee more frequently.

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Amount per Pack

variety diapers

When it comes to the number of diapers included in one pack, Swaddlers have 216 diapers per pack. This number is ideal for babies who need a frequent change in diapers. It is also efficient for parents who have more than one baby.

Cruisers, on the other hand, only have 152 diapers included per pack. Although relatively lesser, this number can suffice the diaper needs of a baby with average changing schedules.

In the long run, it is more efficient and more economical to buy diapers in bulk. Babies will need a lot of these, so availing in bulk will save both money and time.


counting money

In terms of price, the Swaddlers are a few dollars cheaper than the Cruisers. This is apparent since the former is intended for newborns, whereas the latter is for older babies; hence, Cruisers are bigger in size and offer more durability and features, and thus more expensive.

Both diapers are relatively more expensive in the market compared with other brands. This, however, should not be a factor to avoid them. The extra dollars are for the better protection and comfort that Pampers diapers provide to babies.

Components and Ingredients

Every ingredient used in Pampers diapers undergo tests and clinical trials to ensure their safety and compliance with various health standards. They are guaranteed to be safe for the baby’s delicate skin.

The way Pampers diapers are built is essentially the same for all types. However, each type has an added feature designed to cater to the specific needs of babies.


The topsheet is the layer that comes in contact with the baby’s skin. Both Cruisers and Swaddlers use hydrophilic polypropylene nonwoven topsheet. This material allows urine to pass through it and reach the absorption layer.

Grooves are present in the topsheet of both Cruisers and Swaddlers. These grooves serve as wetness and air channels, which help pull away moisture from the baby’s skin and ensure adequate airflow in the diaper, respectively.

Skin-Protecting Lotion

diaper blue

The topsheet of Pampers diapers, including Cruisers and Swaddlers, is coated with a skin-protecting lotion that helps maintain the health of the baby’s skin by pulling away wetness from it.

The lotion is made from similar ingredients used in baby cleansers and lip balms that keep the skin hydrated. The ingredients are petrolatum, aloe barbadensis leaf extract, and stearyl alcohol, designed in a perfect ratio to cater to the baby’s sensitive skin.

Absorption Layer

The absorption layer is placed directly beneath the topsheet layer. For Cruisers and Swaddlers, it is made from polyester fibers that have a cloth-like feel, making it soft and effective at pulling away moisture from the baby’s skin.

It also acts as a filter that traps the baby’s solid wastes while letting the liquid pass through. It ensures that only liquid will reach the distribution layer.

Distribution Layer

The distribution layer catches the liquid from the absorption layer. It then seamlessly transports the liquid to the absorbent core.

This layer is necessary for both Cruisers and Swaddlers to evenly distribute the liquid to the absorbent core. In Cruisers, the absorbent core is divided into three channels, whereas in Swaddlers, it is divided into two. This layer guides the liquid to ensure that all channels are filled at equal rates.

cute print diaper

Absorbent Core

All Pampers diapers, including Swaddlers and Cruisers, use elemental chlorine-free pulp and super absorbent gel as their absorbent core. According to Pampers, the elemental chlorine-free pulp to be sustainably sourced and environmentally friendly. It acts as the initial absorbent of the diaper, and it has a capacity of up to 10mL of water per gram of pulp.

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Upon reaching the chlorine-free pulp’s limit, the absorbent gel will continue absorbing liquids. The super-absorbent gel is fine granules of dry sodium polyacrylate, which turn into a gel as it absorbs moisture. It is a very effective absorbing medium. In fact, it can absorb an amount of liquid equivalent to 30 times its own weight. It locks away wetness and prevents the moisture from resurfacing to the diaper’s topsheet; thus, keeping the baby’s skin dry.

Leg Cuffs

Both Cruisers and Swaddlers use hydrophobic polypropylene nonwoven for the leg cuffs. Unlike the hydrophilic polypropylene nonwoven, hydrophobic polypropylene nonwoven does not allow water to come in contact with it (similar to how oil rejects water). It is used for the leg cuffs to prevent any leakage from the diaper.

Fastening System

cotton cloth diaper

Pampers Cruisers and Swaddlers uses polypropylene and stretch film to hold the diaper in place and to fit the baby properly. Polypropylene is a durable, high-performance fiber that is used in almost all disposable diapers and many medical devices; therefore, its safety for the baby’s skin is guaranteed.

In addition to the stretch films, both diapers also feature an added velcro-like fastenings. However, Cruisers are more secure since they can be adjusted in 3 ways as compared to the Swaddlers, which can only be adjusted in two ways.

Seams and Joints

Cruisers and Swaddlers diapers make use of thermoplastic polymers to keep the diaper in one piece. Pampers guarantees the safety of the adhesives used for their products. Furthermore, the adhesives are evaluated to ensure that they are solvent-free and non-sensitizing. They are also tucked away from the baby’s delicate skin.

Soft Outer Cover

Cruisers and Swaddlers both use polypropylene and polyethylene for the outer cover. These are the same materials used in soft fabrics and most hospital garments. According to Pampers, these two are combined in a perfect ratio to make it soft and breathable.


The inks used by Pampers for its diaper prints, including those in Cruisers and Swaddlers, are made of pigments, not dyes, since some dyes are potential allergens. The pigments used are safe to the skin and allergen-free. They are similar to the coloring material used in food products, contact lenses, and other consumer goods.


pink diaper

Both Cruisers and Swaddlers have a subtle baby powder scent in them, which helps mask away odor when the diaper is full. The fragrance used is kept to a minimum level to avoid irritating the baby. It also underwent all the necessary tests to ensure that it is non-allergenic and safe for the baby’s skin.

Final Thoughts

Pampers Cruisers and Pampers Swaddlers are both excellent in terms of catering to babies’ needs. Cruisers are a better pick for active and mobile babies because of their maximum leak protection. They can also hold more liquid since they are mainly designed for older babies who tend to pee more frequently. Likewise, Swaddlers are a great choice due to the superior softness they offer. They are ideal to avoid skin irritation in newborns who need frequent changes in diapers. These two have unique features that give them an advantage over the other. Therefore, the baby’s specific needs will be the deciding factor in determining which of the two is a better choice.

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