It’s really funny how dependent one becomes from the Internet. You quickly learn that when it becomes unavailable and so with two days of intermittent access on my stationary computer due to problems with my service provider I was unable to work on this article and have again fallen behind schedule. Anyway, for this review we’re moving into new territory. Since we have already covered so many conventional onesies/ diaper suits, we’re moving on to the more serious products with (home) care suits/ bodies. As a start, we’re going to look at a product that is available in most parts of continental Europe and provides a nice baseline reference to compare the others to. Say hello to the Suprima Care Body.
Colors and Patterns
Something you need to get used to with these kinds of products right away is that they tend to come only in a limited number of colors, usually solid, uniform colors. The reasoning behind this is that for hygienic purposes the cloth has to withstand washing at at least 60 degrees C and that in turn means it has to have some form of permanent, heat-resistant coloring – or none at all. This can be achieved in a number of ways by hot-dyeing the yarn or cloth, but usually precludes patterns unless they use genuine (expensive) silk-screen printing.
In case of Suprima this means you are for the time being limited to two colors which incidentally also represent two types of cloth (more on that in the Materials section). Yes, there is indeed only white and grey, with the latter being the mélange type often used for sports clothing and turning out as a light medium grey.
Size and Fit
For this article Suprima were kind enough to first send me the tank top version depicted in the images in size M. Right out of the gate, that is unpacking it from its bag, I knew that it would never fit. As much as I might like to be a 1.70 meter athletic twink, it is more than clear that I’m not. ;-) A few e-mails later the company agreed to send me another sample in size L and sent me the white version seen further down. As per my preference it also came with sleeves since I’m not the biggest fan of sleeveless tops. The good news for you is that they allowed me to keep the undersized version, and since I have no use for it and don’t want it to catch dust in one of my stowage boxes I’m giving it away in another little raffle. Look out for a separate post in the next few days for that.
As already stated, the size M is definitely too small and in my case even the L fits snuggly. Of course I do prefer it this way, but if you don’t, you should go even bigger. At 1.80 m body height things work just fine for me, but I guess at 1.85 m you definitely have to get an XL already, anyway, or else you will struggle with freedom of arm movement and a few other things. Of particular note here are the legs. You mustn’t underestimate how much cloth it actually takes to wrap around reasonably thick/ muscular thighs and how difficult things can get trying to close up the zipper when the tension exceeds certain limits. This is even more the case if you are in some way impaired with your hands or immobilized in your legs. This is yet another reason to consider a larger size then.
The overall size and proportions nicely match up to European standard clothing sizes with the L being in line with a men’s size anywhere from 46 to 50 (typically I fall into the size 48 area with only my tummy requiring extra room for trousers, naturally). The size M in the giveaway therefore would be something like size 40 to 44. Of course the details will vary depending on your physique. In any case, and without trying to beat this to death, the fit is definitely more on the tight side, which is something you need to keep in mind.
Depending on your choice of size this can be either pretty good or non-existent. Beyond stating the obvious there’s an added difficulty here with the zipper. As long as it’s not closed up, nothing will hold on its own and unlike with buttons you don’t have the freedom of some sort of temporary fixation by doing this step by step one button after another. Rather the opposite is true – you need to close it up in one single move, which increases the chances of making a mess considerably.
A lot of this stems from the fact that most likely you will have to sit or stand up and bend forward to actually thread in the zipper and need to hold it while you pull the lug. No fumbling blindly under the sheets like you could do with buttoned products, if you get my meaning. This also increases the risk of accidentally dislocating your diaper. It may slide down while you stand or puff up when you sit. Therefore you should expect this to take some practice before it becomes second nature to you and goes smoothly. With those products being designed for people with specific care needs of course it helps if you have someone to assist you and you can lean back.
With the leg hoses being part of the game it also changes the physics when you move. If you’re not already following my advice on this matter, this is definitely not the time to use oversized diapers and only put them on loosely. If there’s too much material in the lower sections, the risk of them creating doubled up folds is quite large and you may get yourself a nice undesirable sponge effect, where you squeeze out liquid every time you move. Short and tight is definitely the way to go here.
Materials and Manufacturing Quality
As hinted in the Colors paragraph the available colors at this point equal two separate materials. After the little hiccup with the undersized tank top version I then had the white suit made from a mix of 92 percent cotton and 8 percent Elasthane for my initial testing. Because I was still curious how it would feel I then got myself a matching grey one as seen in the opening picture of this article on my own budget. The grey variant is made from a polyester/ cotton mix, also with Elasthane thrown in for good measure.
Both items having this magic synthetic fibre already bodes well for their ability to retain their shape in the long-term. The white suit is very fine and soft, with the textile feeling very smooth on the skin. The grey version feels slightly coarser, but not anything you couldn’t handle. Some of the more affordable cotton products like the SaveExpress onesies are much worse in that regard. Another difference much more important is inherent in the choice of materials. Like pretty much all polyester products, the grey suit tends to feel considerably warmer and potentially also more sweaty after a while.
As you would expect from a product originating from Germany, the overall manufacturing quality is top-notch. Anything else would have been disappointing, anyway. Nothing here is wrong or crooked, no loose threads, no yarn leftovers. The only thing that occasionally tends to give the impression of slight warping is the zipper, though this really is merely a perceptive thing and doesn’t affect the actual quality.
Pricing and Availability
In this part of the world you can get Suprima products pretty much in every of our Sanitätshaus homecare stores and also many online outlets dealing with similar subject matter. This doesn’t mean that each and every one of them always has stocked a generous supply of these suits, but it would not be too difficult to get them even in sparsely populated regions in the next larger city if you have the patience to wait two or three days. So if your favorite onesie gets lost with the baggage at the airport it would not be impossible to get a substitute in a timely manner for the remainder of your holiday here in Germany.
While you may not have the luxury to be picky and haggle over prices in an emergency situation as described, making a planned purchase is worth spending some time with research. The suggested retail price is somewhere around 25 Euros, but if you look carefully, you can find enough offerings for around 21 Euros. You might even be lucky to find some examples on sale for even less occasionally, though these are rare and often only cover not so popular sizes that are clogging up storage space. Overall this product doesn’t cost more than some cheap China stuff and comes without the quality issues, so it’s definitely worth considering.
This care suit fully lived up to my expectations in terms of quality and comfort. Unfortunately it’s quite limited when it comes to variety, making it really only suitable as your nightwear or a replacement for your undershirt. It’s just not fashionable on its own (unless you are someone who does distasteful things like wearing white T-shirts plainly) nor does it stimulate the senses in any other way with patterns, colors or specific unique features. It’s really 100 percent “practical” in all the meanings the word implies. Still, there’s no harm in having one or two of those around, especially at this time of the year where the warmer cloth and the extended legs may offer that extra bit of coziness while not yet fully transitioning to long pajamas for the night…