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Top 7 Best Adult Pull-Up Diapers

By November 16, 2020 803 Views


Date: November 16, 2020
By Burt Cancaster


Best Incontinence Pull-Ups for Elderly


Adult Pull-Up Diapers, sometimes called protective underwear or disposable pull-ups, are absorbent underwear for treating incontinence. Pull-up underwear comes with an absorbent core, waterproof backing, and leg cuffs to prevent leaks around the legs. Advanced designs include an acquisition and distribution layer that wicks moisture away from the skin and transfers it to the core. The acquisition layer quickly dries to help keep the skin dry and healthy. Unlike adult diapers, there are no tabs to secure the garment around the user. An elastic style waistband holds the product in place. The design of these pull-up diapers is for single patient use, and they are disposable after soiling.1

Incontinence is a malady that is difficult to remedy for many people. Determining the best way to treat incontinence for individual situations to improve their health and quality of life is essential. Even those whose incontinence is ultimately treated successfully may have to live with symptoms for a time—for example, while waiting for surgery, or for pelvic floor muscle training to yield its benefits—and they may use continence products temporarily during this waiting period. Others may use them as an adjunct to a treatment that reduces their leakage (eg, bladder training, toileting programs) without eliminating it. Still, others may use products intermittently, limiting their use to particular timeframes or activities associated with troublesome leakage. However, some use products permanently, either following treatment that has not been (completely) successful or because—depending on their frailty, severity of symptoms, and personal priorities—they are not candidates for treatment.2

Successful management of incontinence with products is often referred to as contained incontinence and can bring substantial benefits to [Quality of Life] QoL even though a cure has not been achieved. A wide variety of such products exists but by far the most common are single‐use (as opposed to reusable/washable) body-worn (that is, worn on the body as opposed to bed and chair protectors) absorbent products. The International Continence Society ICS defines absorbent products as … those that have been specifically developed to help manage leakage or soiling, such as absorbent pads and pants, absorbent bed sheets and chair covers and they come in a range of different designs.3

Absorbent products are also useful in mitigating the potential clinical complications from incontinence, such as skin irritation, breakdown, and the development of wounds in the perineal area. High-performing products are also vital in supporting individuals in dealing with the very stressful psycho-social implications of incontinence, such as embarrassing visible leakage, unpleasant odors, and even social isolation.

These products are particularly useful in supporting persons who are unable to benefit from other treatments or interventions and therefore remain incontinent, such as disabled individuals, the elderly, or the very ill. To meet the varied needs of individuals and their lifestyles, these products include a variety of designs, absorbency levels, and options for use, and are utilized across the continuum of care, from the active and independent consumer at home to the mostly immobile or bed-bound dependent patient in a clinical care setting. These products can be readily accessed to provide treatment in clinical settings, or purchased through retail channels in stores or via the web online. Over the past decade, acuity rates and accompanying medical conditions have increased while the population ages.4

Urinary incontinence is a globally recognized issue with social consequences for the individual. The incontinent must be matched to the appropriate solution that best meets their condition and needs. Patients with acute illnesses or disabilities in a home care environment can benefit significantly by matching the right product for their needs. The ease of changing, absorption capacity, and skin health are vital concerns.5


Adult Incontinence Pull-Up Diapers Anatomy

Adult Pullups Incontinence Diapers - Protective Underwear Anatomy


There are certain features of disposable underwear that make them particularly appealing to an incontinent patient. The absence of these features makes the product less desirable when making a purchase decision. A list of these features and a summary is below.

  • Absorbency
  • Breathable fabric
  • Cloth-like outer layer
  • Acquisition and distribution layer
  • Odor neutralizer
  • Tear-Away Sides


The absorbency of the protective pull-ups is critical; otherwise, they serve no purpose. Heavy and super absorbent protective underwear offers the best protection against leaks and embarrassing encounters. Light and moderate absorbent garments provide greater freedom of movement, are more discreet, and provide better comfort.

Breathable Fabric

The backsheet of the garment may use a microporous material that allows vapor permeability. This 'breathability' reduces the humidity on the surface of the skin. Heat and water vapor pass out of the containment area for a more comfortable experience for the user.

Cloth-like Outer Layer

A backsheet construction is with polyethylene film or textile. This layer retains moisture within the core. The textile versions are soft cloth-like material that is discreet and comfortable, mimicking regular underwear.

Acquisition and Distribution Layer

Polymer or natural fibers separate the core of the product from the skin. These fibers wick moisture away from the body and convey it to the core. The core locks moisture away from the skin. The acquisition layer is one of the most important advances in the recent technology of incontinence products.

Odor Neutralizer

Additives to the core counteract the smell of waste. These additives usually consist of styrene-butadiene and butyl acylate woven into the polymer fibers. Containment of waste within the core is also essential.

Tear-Away Sides

Protective underwear with tear-away sides provides for easy removal of soiled adult pull-ups. This feature is particularly significant when changing in public restrooms. The user does not need to remove their shoes and trousers to change the pull-up diapers.


Ranking the Top Protective Underwear Brands

Ranking the Best Protective Underwear Brands

  1. Prevail Daily Underwear
  2. Sure Care Plus
  3. Depend Real Fit for Men
  4. Attends Advanced Underwear
  5. McKesson StayDry Underwear
  6. Tranquility Premium OverNight
  7. Attends Premier Premium Overnight Protection


#1 Prevail Daily Underwear

Prevail Daily Underwear


These pull-on disposable underwear use a gel core to absorb and lock away moisture. The garment protects users from odor and incorporates a cloth-like outer layer that protects against rustling. This discreet underwear contains Chamomile, aloe, and vitamin E to promote skin health. These incontinence garments come in five sizes ranging from 20 to 80-inch waist sizes. Prevail /prevail.html is the best selling brand of First Quality.

  • Absorbency – Maximum
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - Yes
  • Odor Neutralizer - Yes
  • Tear-away Sides – No
  • Extras - Chamomile, aloe, and vitamin E


#2 Sure Care Plus

Covidien Kendall Sure Care Plus


Covidien manufactures the Sure Care Plus. This pull-on diaper offers a wide garment for extra comfort. It offers moderate to heavy absorbency with a gel core that locks away both moisture and odor. A cloth-like outer layer is quiet and discreet. A color indicator on the back of the garment quickly identifies the backside for donning.

  • Absorbency – Moderate to Heavy
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - No
  • Odor Control - Yes
  • Tear-away Sides – Yes
  • Extras – Back indicator with colored strands identify which side is the backside


#3 Depend Real Fit for Men

Depend Real Fit for Men


The design of this product supports urinary incontinence. These male pull-ups offer heavy absorbency. The material is cotton-like, which is soft and comfortable. Elastic around the leg openings provide leak protection. There is also elastic around the waistband for a comfortable fit. These men's incontinence underwear are washable and reusable. The size accommodates men with a 28 to a 40-inch waist.

  • Absorbency – Heavy
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - No
  • Odor Neutralizer - No
  • Tear-away Sides – Yes
  • Low-profile Design - Yes
  • Washable and Reusable - Yes


#4 Attends Advanced Underwear

Attends Advanced Underwear


The Attends Advanced Underwear design bolsters an active lifestyle. It has an acquisition layer that quickly takes moisture away from the skin and transfers it to the core. The waistband is stretchable and breathable to allow heat and vapor to escape. Tear-away sides make these incontinence pull-ups easy to change in public restrooms. Four sizes are available, ranging from 22 up to 68 inches.

  • Absorbency – Moderate to Heavy
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - Yes
  • Odor Neutralizer - Yes
  • Tear-away Sides - Yes


#5 McKesson StayDry Underwear

McKesson StayDry Underwear


The StayDry Underwear from McKesson has a new name, the Ultra. This product has contoured leg cuffs to protect from leaks. Stretchable elastic in the waistband is comfortable and provides a secure fit. It has a dual-core for odor control and to help keep you dry. This incontinence underwear has five sizes to select from, starting at a 25-inch waistline up to 80 inches.

  • Absorbency – Heavy
  • Breathable Fabric - No
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - No
  • Odor Neutralizer - Yes
  • Tear-away Sides - Yes


#6 Tranquility Premium OverNight

Tranquility Premium OverNight


This overnight protective garment supports both urinary and fecal incontinence. Its design provides for uninterrupted sleep with super absorbency. It also affords prolonged daytime use for extended trips or outings. Tear-away sides make it easy to remove and dispose. Breathable sides make this pull-up comfortable and skin-friendly. Choose between six sizes ranging from waist sizes of 17 to 80 inches.

  • Absorbency – Super
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer - Yes
  • Odor Neutralizer - Yes
  • Tear-away Sides - Yes


#7 Attends Premier Premium Overnight Protection

Attends Premier Premium Overnight Protection


This premium product protects the user throughout the night to provide an entire night's sleep. It is a full-fitting pull-up constructed with soft, absorbent materials. Elastic leg cuffs ensure against leaks. This product is available in three sizes from 34 to 68 inches, supporting both urinary and fecal incontinence. It offers urine pH neutralization and odor security.

  • Absorbency – Heavy
  • Breathable Fabric - Yes
  • Cloth-like Outer Layer - Yes
  • Acquisition and Distribution Layer -
  • Odor Neutralizer – 8-hour protection
  • Tear-away Sides - Yes










Absorbency or discreet protective underwear, which is more important?

The more absorbency protective underwear has, the less discreet they become. Any improvement to the absorbent core usually results in adding bulk to the brief. The more bulk added to the brief, the greater the capacity to store fluid, the longer wear-time, the better the leak protection, and the less chance of soiling clothing, bedding, or furniture.

However, as the bulk increases, the more noticeable and less discreet, the greater the difficulty of freedom of movement, and the less comfortable the product becomes. So there is an inverse relationship between absorbency and discreetness/comfort.


What are the absorbency levels of incontinence products?


Incontinence Absorbency Levels


Manufacturers disagree upon a single standard for marketing the absorbency level of their incontinence products. Some manufactures use four different levels to describe absorbency, while others have up to six. At Vitality Medical, we employ four levels of absorbency and use objective measurements to assign these levels.

  1. Light – 2 to 8 oz capacity (up to one cup)
  2. Moderate – 4 to 16 oz capacity (up to two cups)
  3. Heavy – 12 to 32 oz capacity (up to four cups)
  4. Super – 32 oz and above capacity (four cups or more)

Unfortunately, some manufacturers of incontinence products do not disclose their products' absorbency level in objective or measurable terms even when asked. One brand's moderate absorbency can be another brand's light absorbency. Another brand's super absorbency can be another brand's heavy capacity. Sometimes, it is a guess as to how many ounces of fluid the product will hold before it fails.


What are the types of incontinence?

There are two basic types of incontinence—urinary and fecal. Urinary incontinence is the bladder's involuntary voiding, while fecal incontinence is the inadvertent elimination of the bowels. Both situations are very stressful for the incontinent person.

Other technical terms used to label incontinence include stress incontinence when impaired control of the bladder during coughing, sneezing, or physical exertion. Urge incontinence is a sudden uncontrollable impulse to urinate. Dribbling occurs when the bladder fails to empty, or an enlarged prostate restricts urine flow. Functional incontinence occurs with a physical or mental disability does not allow enough time to get to a toilet.


What causes incontinence?

There are numerous causes of urinary incontinence. A list of the most common reasons is below.

  • Weak bladder muscles
  • Aging
  • Damage to the pelvic floor
  • Cancer
  • Enlarged prostate



Product Videos


Kimberly Clark Depends Video (0:20 minutes)



Prevail Incontinence Products Video (1:04 minutes)



Tranquility Premium Disposable Absorbent Underwear Video (3:59 minutes)





Medical Studies











Burt Cancaster, Author



Vitality Medical
7910 South 3500 East, Suite C
Salt Lake City, UT 84121
(801) 733-4449
[email protected]



Burt Cancaster Profile



Posted in: Urinary CareIncontinence