In a nutshell

If they were cheaper, they might tempt me away from regular big-name brand because they perform quite well

What we tested

  • Snugness of fit
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Absorbency
    A star rating of 5.0 out of 5.
  • Comfort
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Quality
    A star rating of 4.0 out of 5.
  • Durability
    A star rating of 5.0 out of 5.
  • Worth the money
    A star rating of 2.5 out of 5.
Overall Rating
A star rating of 4.1 out of 5.


  • Soft against skin, extremely sticky tabs


  • Lumpy when wet, expensive for an own-brand

Boots active stretch nappies are absorbent, free from leaks, and can even withstand bouts of very runny poo.


Since my daughter Tirion was born 9 months ago, I have only veered from my big-name brand of choice on a rare occasions, and none of these times convinced me to change my loyalty to the brand. But I was pleasantly surprised by Boots active stretch nappies, which proved a solid competitor.

Boots active stretch nappies are aimed at older babies who are moving around, and so come with extra stretchy tabs to secure them around the waist and elasticated edges around each leg to insure against leaks. They’re shaped to fit neatly between your baby's legs and have a similar multi-layer pad to absorb urine and runny poo to those found in most disposable nappies.

Boots active stretch nappies are styled similarly to others, except they don't have trademarked cartoon characters, such as Winnie the Pooh or The Muppets on the waistband. In all honesty, Tirion doesn't care about this - but her older cousin Oran, 2, looks forward to seeing who is on his nappy.

In the spirit of investigation I dissected a Boots nappy to see how it compared to Pampers. I discovered that the liquid absorbing granules in Pampers, which turn the urine into jelly to prevent leakage, seem scattered throughout the absorbent cotton-wool type material, whereas in the Boots ones, the granules are in a layer. This meant that, once wet, the Boots nappy felt a bit lumpy, whereas Pampers seems to distribute the gel more evenly through the pad, so it remained more flexible and moulded to your baby's bottom.

The acid test is of course how much urine the nappy can absorb. As a former scientist and part-time geek, I decided to perform a controlled experiment to investigate pouring ¾ of a pint of liquid onto each nappy. Pampers absorbed significantly faster, and also kept the top sheet dryer than Boots, but within a matter of minutes, both top sheets were dry and the liquid absorbed, with little difference between them.

What we love

The nappies are very robust, and in terms of absorbency and leakage, the Boots active stretch performed just as well as I would expect. They certainly kept her as dry and happy as she was in her normal ones. We had no leaks or spills, even through a bout of very runny poo.

The sticky tabs are especially strong (more so than both Pampers and Huggies), so a good option if you have a toddler who likes to remove nappies, or you need to make regular re-adjustments.

The materials feel slightly less luxurious and soft than Pampers, but softer and better moulding to baby's shape than Huggies. While the elastic round the legs is single stitched, whereas Pampers is double stitched, this didn’t appear to make any difference to my baby's comfort or to mean there were more leaks.

What to watch out for

Had these nappies been significantly cheaper than the branded market leaders, I might have been tempted to swap loyalty, but this was where the Boots active stretch fell down. At around 17p per nappy (19p each in smaller packs), they work out only couple of pennies cheaper than the big-name brands bought in Boots. Compared to frequent supermarket offers that can see Pampers and Huggies down to 12p to 15p per nappy, they’re actually more expensive at times. In short, they’re comfortable and perform well, but aren't quite as good, or enough of a cost saving, to tempt me away from my usual brand.

Who are Boots active stretch nappies best for?

Mums after a decent performing nappy, with sticky tabs that can thwart little fingers.


MadeForMums verdict

Boots active stretch nappies are robust and free from leaks. They don’t appear to draw liquid away as swiftly as some nappies, but they do absorb all the moisture within a few minutes. However, they don’t offer the same degree of cost saving as other own-brands, and at times can be just as expensive as the big names.

Product Specifications

Modelactive stretch
Available sizesSize 3 midi (4-9kg/9-20lb), size 4 maxi (7-18kg/15-40lb), size 4+ maxi plus (9-20kg/20-44lb), size 5 junior (11-25kg.24-55lb)
Suitable for
Child age (approx)From 5 months
  • Elasticated legs and waist
  • Multicentre core keeps baby dry and prevents leaks
  • Extra sticky tabs
  • Shaped nappy with wide waistband and high back