Buying & Selling Cloth Diapers Cloth Diapers Used Cloth Diapers

Used Diaper Condition (EUC, VGUC, GUC, UC etc.) Definitions


Buying diapers used is a great way to pad your stash without breaking the bank. There have been lots of articles written with tips on buying and selling used, and here is another resource to help people wanting to sell diapers. It seems that buyers all expect pretty much the same things, but they continue to see diapers described as “EUC” or “GUC” that don’t meet those expectations.

In both my research, and your survey responses, most people have the same general idea of what they expect for each condition “rating.” A diaper’s “rating” is based on the condition of the PUL, elastic, inners, closures and soakers. If your diaper has most or all of the possible flaws for a category, it should probably be bumped down. When you are thinking that a diaper is borderline & hard to categorize (is it VGUC or GUC?) it’s probably an indication that you should “rate” it in the lower category. Snap diapers generally fare better than Velcro/Aplix closures when being “rated.”

When you’re rating your diaper, I also recommend taking a peek at a new diaper in comparison, since sometimes you don’t realize how dingy a diaper is looking until you see a spanking new one! Same goes for elastic. Seems nice and springy until you tug on a brand new one and realize how relaxed yours is!

So here is a description of each used cloth diaper rating category, based on the consensus of the cloth diapering community! I’ve included photos of my own diapers, and I used mostly the same brand to make comparing easier.

Like New (LN)

ln 1 ln 2
ln 3

A “Like New” (LN) diaper should be virtually indistinguishable from a new diaper, aside from not having packaging. It will have bright white, fluffy inserts, zero pilling or fading, bright white inners and all inserts that came with the diaper will be included.

Excellent Used Condition (EUC)

euc 1 euc 2
euc 3 euc 4

An “Excellent Used Condition” (EUC) Diaper is nearly new, and may have been washed or tried on a few times. It will be hard to tell it apart from a new diaper without comparing them side by side. There will be little to no pilling, no fuzz in velcro, white, fluffy inserts, and white inners.

Very Good Used Condition (VGUC)

vguc 1 vguc 2
vguc 3 vguc 4

A “Very Good Used Condition” (VGUC) diaper has been used only a short while and has very minor flaws. It will have little to no pilling, possibly some lint in the velcro, and occasional very light staining. If it has several minor flaws (snags, pilling, light staining, velcro lint etc.) it is most likely “Good Used Condition” rather than “Very Good.”

Good Used Condition (GUC)

guc 1 guc 2
guc 3 guc 4

A “Good Used Condition” (GUC) diaper is fully functional, but shows signs of wear such as minor staining, slight pilling or snags and inserts that show some staining and/or flattening. Aplix closures may have some lint or fuzz, and might not be quite as sticky as when the diaper was new. Elastic is still in good shape. It may not look brand new, but a “Good Used Condition” diaper has lots of life left.

Used Condition

uc 1 uc 2
uc 3

A “Used Condition” (UC) diaper has obviously been used, though it is still fully functional and has some life left. It will probably have a stained and/or dingy and pilling inner, as well as dingy, stained or flattened inserts. The velcro & laundry tabs will show definite signs of wear. Closure tabs may be curling & be not quite as sticky as when new, but they are still expected to work. The elastic may be relaxed, and while it still works, may need to be replaced in the near future. Nothing on the diaper should actually be falling apart or need repair immediately.

Needs Repair

nr 1

“Needs repair” sounds pretty self explanatory, but there’s a little bit of gray area as well. Something with totally shot elastic, a missing snap, or Velcro that won’t stick is not functional as is, therefore it needs repair. However, if the laundry tabs are shot, or there is very little use left before the diaper does need repairs, combined with a very well used appearance, you may sometimes see them called used condition or “play condition.” Make sure you ask questions about any flaws mentioned in elastic, laundry tabs, Velcro etc. if you’re not up for diaper surgery!

nr (2)
nr (3) nr (4)

The above diaper’s laundry tabs have shrunken and are no longer functional at all. The diaper is also the previous “model,” being a 3.0 vs 4.0, the diaper’s PUL is snagged and the Velcro strip is pilly. It also has dingy, flattened inserts, a dingy, slightly stained inner and relaxed elastic, so with all those things combined, it’s definitely a “needs repair” diaper. Sure, you can put it on your baby & it will work, but you will have to make repairs to continue to use it for a length of time.

There is such a fine line between categories, that it is always a good idea to have your diapers in tip top shape before selling them. Make sure they are clean, stink free, and don’t have any animal or human hair on them. If there are stains, try to sun them first (in fact, sun the diapers & inserts anyway if you can!) and use a snappi (or this thingamabob) to clean any gunk out of the aplix before taking photos.

Always be honest with your buyers! If the diaper is stained and it’s been raining where you are, that’s OK to tell the buyer that you don’t know if they will sun out. However, if you’ve already sunned the diaper and the stains did not fade, please don’t tell the buyer that the stains may sun out, tell them the truth. 🙂

Take a look at Over The Moon Diapers’ Used Diaper Pricing Guide for even more help!

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Maria is an aspiring "fit mom" of 3 children, writing about cloth diapers, going green, and her life as a single mom. Maria works with many companies within the cloth diaper industry and beyond, providing social media management, product development, and other services.
  • July 7, 2017 at 8:23 pm

    […] are attached. Diaper condition is described using the terminology definitions from this guide: Please look up for the terms in the above link in case you need further clarifications. Here is the […]

  • Leigh Kitchens
    May 9, 2017 at 1:03 pm

    A great resource for those buying & selling preloved diapers. Unfortunately, not all sellers are aware of the distinctions, so buyers need to be prepared to ask questions and ask for more photos before purchasing.

  • July 27, 2016 at 9:02 am

    […] Used Diaper Conditions […]

  • April 6, 2015 at 9:19 am

    […] what condition is the diaper? Based on survey results, most buyers have the same expectation for used diaper condition terms such as EUC, VGUC, GUC and others. Unfortunately that’s not always the case with sellers, and […]

  • cassie D.
    March 3, 2015 at 7:55 am

    More sellers need to read this I’ve gotten diapers listed as GUC that were like new and then I’ve also seen people selling used conditions diapers as VGUC. It’s a gamble just about everytime.

  • Nansie R.
    November 15, 2014 at 9:53 pm

    I love that this is the “KBB” breakdown of cloth diapers. Comes in handy, especially since I’m still so new to cloth diapers and building my stash on the cheap! Thank you!

  • October 6, 2014 at 10:49 am

    […] For along time, I’ve used a method based on the condition of the diaper. If you are looking for a definition of the different condition types, this is a pretty good resource here.  […]

  • June 26, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    I buy a lot of pre-loved diapers, so this was a great read!

    It’s nice to be all on the same page about how to describe the condition of used diapers.

  • March 11, 2014 at 8:37 am

    […] you use it, you’ll be saving the cost of a disposable diaper. If you end up not liking cloth, sell it to recoup much of your investment (chances are, you’ll fall in love!) If you are using […]

  • August 19, 2013 at 9:02 am

    […] you’re looking at used cloth diapers, you’ll encounter a whole host of abbreviations such as: NIP (new in package), NWT (new with […]

  • Cinnamon
    July 11, 2013 at 3:10 am

    Very informative! Thank you =)

  • February 20, 2013 at 9:24 pm

    […] questionaire is so easy to fill out. I highly recommend using this post written by Change-Diapers that includes information on how to know what condition your cloth diaper is in. You also write a […]

  • Alauna
    July 1, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    Did you ever finish the pricing guidelines? Thanks!

    • July 1, 2012 at 6:01 pm

      I only have 143 entries, so I’m not confident in the accuracy with so few responses.

  • February 16, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    AWESOME article mama!! Congrats on defining each and every category as they should be. It is my hope that your article can be used on other swap sites, etc. as the guidelines. This could help alleviate so much drama and headaches that come with buying diapers, etc. that are sometimes misrepresented!!

  • February 12, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    Great post, Maria! I think we’ll be adding a couple of those (LN and NR, I think) to what we already have on Cloth Diaper Trader 🙂

    • February 12, 2012 at 10:42 pm

      Yay! Glad it was helpful!

  • February 11, 2012 at 11:02 pm

    […] is the owner of and has a great dictionary of Used Diaper Conditions.  Have you ever wondered what EUC, VGUC, GUC, and UC actually mean when buying second hand […]

  • February 9, 2012 at 9:40 am
  • February 7, 2012 at 3:26 pm

    I’m so impressed that you’ve taken on such an incredibly ambitious project! I love the pictures, as well! I also find it interesting that what you say (and therefore, what your readers have said) makes absolute sense, but I don’t get the feeling that most ads you’ll see for used diapers have such high standards. Like it or not, I think most diapers on sites like diaperswappers are going for higher prices than Padded Tush Stats survey responders said, and in less stringent conditions than your survey responders did. It’d be nice if sites like diaperswappers could take your guide and make it mandatory to follow the same guidelines!

    • February 7, 2012 at 6:26 pm

      I think sellers would really benefit from this. If they describe them so the buyer knows what they’re getting, everyone will be happier! I find it interesting that expectations don’t match up, which may be why people aren’t happy buying used and/or why they want to pay very little. I’m hoping I can get some more sales survey responses so I can find some patterns! 🙂

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