Review: NorthShore Supreme Briefs

Long story short: In an earlier post, I said I was looking at trying some new premium plastic-backed diapers soon, possibly NorthShore Supremes. Then I posted a comment on that post saying I’d changed my mind. Then I changed my mind back and bought some. I did go with the Supremes. Now I’m going to review them. . . .

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The NorthShore Supreme, in my eyes, is like a cheap version of the Abena M4—which is ironic because the Supreme is quite a bit more expensive. To be precise, I got a pack of 14 Abena M4s in January for about $18 and a pack of NorthShore Supremes recently for about $27.

I have been very disappointed with the Supremes ever since I first opened the pack I bought. The first thing about them that disappointed me was that they have these hard, sand-like bumps on them in random places. I’ve seen these on brand new diapers before, but not so many of them. I’m guessing it’s some issue with the padding. It’s not that big of a deal, but it is aesthetically displeasing, so it gave me an early burst of disappointment.

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For another thing, the briefs are quite thin. At least, they’re thinner than I expected. And, probably partially for that reason, they act quite like super-thin MoliCare Super Pluses do when I first put them on: they stay pretty far from my skin. That’s not a characteristic I like in my diapers.

One thing about the Supremes I do appreciate is that they include an elastic part in the back of the waistband. At least, I appreciate the thought; the thing has largely been inconsequential/ineffective in my experience. The first time I wore one, even though I made sure the waistband was snug against my skin when I first put it on, I still got a leak out the top of the diaper when I peed while laying down. Granted, maybe that’s not what the waistband is really for. Maybe it’s more for a nice fit and/or to delay sagging.

It doesn’t help there either. Subsequently to using my first Supreme, I’ve noticed that the diaper does not rise high enough in the back, at least the way I’ve been taping it. The waistband normally portrudes just above my butt cheeks and doesn’t contact my back, despite the elastic. Maybe this was how it was my first time, too, and it was just the way I was standing while looking in the mirror that made me think the waistband was flush with my skin. Either way, the diaper fits uncomfortably in the back and the waistband is no line of defense against sagging.

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One big problem I have with these briefs is that they aren’t very absorbent. This is the part that really makes them seem cheap. I swear, when I was using Abena M4s, I had to work hard to fill them up. The Supremes, on the other hand, have reached capacity about as fast (with about as much liquid) as my cloth-backed MoliCare Super Pluses and Prevail Airs. Though it’s kinda nice that I feel less trapped when I’m in a NorthShore than I did when I was in an Abena, why am I wearing a bulky diaper (and, yes, it is fairly bulky even though the padding is quite thin—however that works) if the bulk doesn’t allow me to stay in it longer?

One thing that might have a little (no more than a little) something to do with the absorbency problem is the amount of the diaper the padding covers. I’m pretty sure the Supremes have padding covering less of the diaper than the M4s do, even though the package for the Supremes says, “Extra-wide protection in both front and rear.”

Moving on, I don’t really like the plastic backing on these diapers. The plastic used on Abena M4s, and even Tranquility ATNs, feels super premium, but this plastic feels cheap and lackluster.

Also—and this is super unimportant, I must admit—it bothers me that the yellow wetness indicator isn’t centered on the diaper. Let me explain for anyone who hasn’t used these: There are two wetness indicators. One is a yellow line and the other is blue text with information about the diaper (like its name). The yellow line turns blue when wet, and the blue text disappears. And since the two indicators are side-by-side, the only one remaining when you’re wet is off-center.

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Now, I’ve only used around 5 of the Supremes so far, so you may want to take this review with a grain of salt. That said, if I have any changes of heart regarding what I’ve written, I’ll make sure to write about them in a future post.

So, have you ever tried NorthShore Supreme Briefs? If so, did you like them or feel more like I do? If you haven’t tried them, what’s the best premium plastic-backed diaper you’ve tried? Please leave these or any other thoughts in a comment below, and please click the Like button if you enjoyed my review. Thanks for reading!

5 thoughts on “Review: NorthShore Supreme Briefs

  1. I switched to the NS Supreme about a year ago as my daily diaper from the M4. I’ve been incredibly impressed with them.
    NorthShore recommends “fluffing” the diaper before wearing – fold it in half lengthwise. It makes a huge difference in comfortability in my opinion.
    For me, biggest advantage over the M4 is that the padding doesn’t break apart. Diaper also distributes wetness well…entire diaper gets used before its time to change.
    As for fit, maybe you need to go down a size? NorthShore is great about samples… Ask one of the chat agents on their website to send you a small. They’ll do it for free!

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    1. Thanks a bunch for sharing your thoughts! I really appreciate it.

      I have folded and stretched each Supreme before use so far (as suggested on the package). With the most recent one I used (last night), I also did what might be called “massaging” it before putting it on. That did help the padding fit closer to my skin and feel more comfortable than when I just folded it (and it didn’t cause any problems with the padding).

      I don’t recall the padding breaking apart in the M4s I used earlier this year. I’ll keep an eye out for that issue next time I buy them (which I anticipate will be in a little less than a month).

      I don’t remember how good the M4 is at distributing liquid, but I have noticed, as you have, that the Supreme is excellent at it. I should have mentioned this outstanding attribute in my review.

      I don’t think the problem I have with the fit of the back side could be solved by a size change. I can make the diaper very tight but still feel discomfort based on how low the diaper rises in the back and how far away from my skin that puts the waistband (when I’m not wearing anything over it). Like I said in the review, though, maybe this issue has to do with the way I’m taping the diaper on. I’ll be checking this theory out in the near future.

      Again, I appreciate that you’ve shared your thoughts. I’m sure others do too. And, even though I don’t like the Supreme so far, I’m glad you’re super pleased with it. It’s great that enough diversity exists in diapers that diaper users like us can have different preferences (etc.) and still each find diapers we like.

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  2. I like the Supremes because they hold well for me and don’t leak but I don’t like Abena because they have gotten too thin, they smell and have poor odor control.

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    1. When you say the Supremes hold well, what exactly do you mean?

      You’re talking about plastic-backed Abena M4s, right? (That’s what I’m talking about.)

      I’ve only used one pack of the plastic-backed M4s. It’s a real bummer if they used to be thicker than when I tried them or have gotten thinner since.

      It has been a while since I’ve used an M4, so maybe they’re worse than I remember. I’m going to get some again soon so I can be more sure of how they compare to Supremes.

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  3. I have been using Supremes a long time now and I like them a lot. I too do not like the little bumps but if you notice as you wear them your body heat makes those bumps disappear. I have found that the Supremes do fit differently so maybe you just aren’t putting them on correctly. I have tried the abena m4s and the old abena xplus and I noticed that they had pin holes in their plastic especially when sitting down you can see it bead out. And abena does not have odor protection at all they smell extremely horrible after you go once in them.

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