I get "the look" from almost everyone when I mention cloth diapers. If I don't get a look then more times than not I hear "oh I thought about it but *insert excuse*". Now don't get me wrong, I'm definitely not looking down on those who use "sposies" (disposable diapers). If you want the truth, cloth diapers didn't even enter my mind until my 3 year old was almost potty trained so I was a user (and lover) of sposies for several years. Now that I use cloth diapers I can see the massive amount of benefits to me, my children and future generations. Why use Cloth Diapers? Why not?? Here is a list of common questions/concerns/myths and my response to them.
Cloth is too much work.
Gone are the days of thin fabric and plastic pants. It ain't your mama's cloth diapers!! There are so many options today. I'm not going to lie and say EVERY option is as easy as pulling a sposie out and pulling the Velcro tabs...but some of them are! Yes, it adds to your laundry...but the chances are, if you have a child and a husband/SO you are doing lots of laundry anyway. I promise you that after a few weeks it will become just as easy as any load of laundry (and easier than socks!!).
Cloth diapers cost more.
I will admit that the idea of spending several hundred dollars up front is a little overwhelming. Before Trace was born I found myself thinking "what if I can't do this...then I'll be stuck with this huge pile of decorative drawer fillers". Let's look at the big picture though. The average family spends 1600 on disposable diapers. Depending on the child that number can even be a good bit more. Cloth diaper systems can be as low as 300, though the average is around 600-800 from birth to potty training. That's a pretty significant saving. Add to the fact that if you take care of your "fluff" then you may be able to sell them and recover some of the initial investment. What a deal!!
What do you do with the poop?
I always get a good chuckle out of this question. If this is not your first child you are well aware of the fact that no matter what you use to catch it with, you will be blessed with a rainbow of surprises from your precious little one. Here's the truth. It's not meant to go in the trash can! If you look on a box of diapers it will say to dump the stuff in toilet and then toss the diaper. Now raise your hand if you've done that ha ha.
The idea of doing anything other than placing poo directly into the closest garbage can be a little unsettling but I'm here to put your mind at ease. First ask yourself "am I planning to breast feed". If your answer is yes, give a big sigh of relief. The human body is an amazing thing. Not only will you be providing your bundle of joy with the absolute best nutrition, but you have just made your diapering journey exponentially easier. As long as you are breast feeding your babes "output" is water soluble. What does that mean? You take the diaper off, stick it in the bag and toss it right into the washing machine! Easy Peasy.
If you are formula feeding then it can get a little more difficult. It's best to clean the diapers off as good as you can (by scraping into the toilet or either attaching a 30 dollar sprayer to your toilet) OR you can use liners which you then just dump right in.
And the best part...no more poop explosions!! Ever heard of someone going in to get their child after a nap and instead of a sweet smelling baby they find the mother load? Disposable diapers are flat in the back (meaning that if your babe fills it up, it just comes on out). CDs have elastic which, with the correct fit, can contain the worst mess. Are you swayed yet? If not, I have one more discussion.
Disposable diapers aren't that bad.
Like I said earlier, I used disposables for Hailey. Little did I know that I was creating a metric TON of garbage. That's a ton of pee/poo soaked chemicals that sit in a landfill for around 500 years. Yep, you read that right...500 years.
Diapers also contain the chemical Dioxin which is one of the most toxic chemicals known in science. Add to that Sodium Polyacrylate, TBT, VOC's and others and you get a combination of things harmful to the environment and your sweet little one.
I'm definitely not trying to scare anyone into using cloth diapers. I only wish I had had someone that got the word out earlier so I was more informed. I think I would have hopped on the bandwagon back then.
I will be doing, hopefully, a lot of posts covering types of diapers, reviews and useful information. I still have a lot to learn and I hope some of you find this stuff useful as well. Thank for reading!!
Next up... diaper systems: explaining different types of cloth diapers and the pros of each.