Amazing Cloth Diapers That Will Have Everyone Feeling Good
Cloth diapers are the most sustainable, cost-effective, chemical-free diapers that you could possibly put on your baby’s bum. And despite what you may think, there are great benefits to using cloth diapers!
- You can adjust the number of inserts for coverage depending on the time of day/night or your child’s particular needs. Going on a long road trip? Add an insert. Your little one have a tummy ache? Add an insert. Super easy to make the diaper fit YOUR needs.
- Children in cloth diapers tend to be potty-trained first because they recognize the discomfort of being wet earlier on. The SAP (superabsorbent polymers) in disposable diapers absorbs the liquid (which is what makes wet diapers bulky) and wicks the wetness off or your baby’s skin. This makes it harder to potty train children because you first have to teach them about what being wet feels like AND THEN what to do about it.
- There is a lesser likelihood of blow-outs with cloth.
- EXPONENTIALLY cheaper than continuously buying pack after pack. Though it does require a bigger upfront cost than disposable diapers, most cloth diapers available now are a one-size-fits-all situation, meaning you don’t have to buy the next size up when your baby gets bigger and you can use the same ones for your newborn after you potty-train your toddler. Even using more water than before, the financial savings is still immense!
- Cloth diapers don’t have chemicals in them and help to prevent diaper rash. In the 1950s an estimated 7% of children suffered from diaper rash (before the introduction of disposable diapers). Today, it’s at least 50%. Fifty percent! And what has been the difference in the last 70 years? Disposable diapers, wipes, and the chemicals on them. It’s also thought that cloth diapers offer better airflow that help to prevent the dreaded red bumps.
- Cloth diapers have less of an environmental impact. Traditional disposable diapers take up to 500 years to break down in landfills. That means a disposable diaper Shakespeare wore (if such a thing existed then) would STILL be decomposing today. And because people don’t generally dump the poop in a diaper down the toilet (I’m so guilty of not knowing this!), there is potential for this fecal matter to leak out in the landfill and contaminate the soil and water.
(For more fun facts about the environmental effects, health, and cost, head over here to Real Diapers and be amazed!)
We now know the benefits of cloth diapers. In the list below, we are looking at bamboo-based diapers inserts because they are naturally antibacterial, antimicrobial, hypoallergenic, renewable, are grown without the use of pesticides and are more environmentally conscious than cotton. We are also checking out hemp inserts and wool shells! (Some of these may have pieces of cotton in them, but it is not the primary material.)
Cloth diapers can either come as in all-in-one, where the shell and insert are built into the diaper, or they can come in separate pieces. Below is a list that is comprised of both the whole pieces and the parts.
Cloth Diapers and Inserts to Explore
Fun fact about wool: It’s naturally breathable and antibacterial, making it a self-cleansing material, minimizing the need for cleaning. These covers go over a cloth diaper and are the cutest things you could possibly put your baby in.
Babee Greens uses upcycled 100% Merino wool sweaters to create their diaper shells. These require the slight maintenance of lanolizing to keep them absorbing liquids well. These also need to be hand washed. They also offer upcycled 100% cashmere diaper shells that require the same care, but it doesn’t add that much more time or effort to your routine. (Fitted diapers made from 100% organic cotton are another option you can find here.)
Lovey Bums carries organic wool covers for diaper inserts. (They do also carry an impressive line of organic cotton diapers if that is what you’re looking for.)
These inserts are made from 100% organic bamboo with no microfiber or fleece (which are both polyester/plastic bi-products).
Damero carries inserts with five layers of bamboo for maximum absorption. This particular link comes with a wet bag too!
Cloth Diaper Companies with TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) Shells or Organic Cotton Inserts
It is much easier to find diaper shells/all-in-ones made with a TPU outer lining. TPU is a laminated coating, usually heated over polyester, and it provides a thorough waterproofing outer shell, keeping everything inside until you’re ready to face it. Though it is determined safe to use, it is still a plastic product. But because of the process, TPU is able to withstand higher heat and more usage from the laundry and such. Cotton is also a very prevalent material used in cloth diapers, so we’ve included companies that offer organic cotton inserts to keep your baby and the earth as unaffected as possible.
Here we go…
A small mom-run company who used cloth diapers on three of her own kids. This company carries all-in-ones, inserts, shells, all the things. Cute designs with bamboo/hemp, charcoal bamboo/hemp, and hemp only inserts. They also carry swim diapers!
So these diapers come without a waterproof shell–they are soft shells made from 55% hemp and 45% organic cotton. These say they are great for nighttime, but I wouldn’t recommend the inserts that come with. Their inserts are made from bamboo-made rayon (which goes through a chemical process that isn’t good for anyone involved). They do offer these 55% hemp/45% cotton blend inserts as well.
Kawaii Baby one-size diapers are made with a TPU laminate and 100% organic fiber insert. They also offer organic bamboo, bamboo/charcoal, and just bamboo inserts for cloth diapers.
Thirsties Natural cloth diapers have an outer layer made from 100% polyester and a TPU laminate. The inserts are made with 55% hemp and 45% organic cotton. These are made in the USA. They also have hemp/organic cotton inserts available.
Ragababe’s BULLETPROOF inserts are designed for “heavy wetters” and are made using 100% organic cotton sherpa and hemp.
These “Workhorse” diapers are fitted, meaning it functions as a diaper as-is, but does require a shell. Using a fitted diaper means it is easier to wash separately from the shell and the shell can be reused multiple times before cleaning. They offer four different kinds of fitted diapers including unbleached organic cotton.
Oso Cozy offers 100% certified organic cotton products including prefolds (diapers you fold and hold with a clip), wipes, inserts, and fitted diapers.
Overwhelming? Perhaps a little bit. Worth it? Absolutely, in more ways than one. It is entirely up to you which company you choose and what your guidelines are. Hopefully this research will give you a jumping-off point to make the journey to cloth diapering short and sweet.
Used diapers and wipes need a place to be stored when you’re out and about and don’t have your laundry basket nearby. Check out these wet bags for such an occasion!
Here is a round-up of companies mentioned in the article for your shopping convenience!
- Ecoable Organic Merino Wool Diaper Covers
- Babee Greens
- Lovey Bums
- Kawaii Baby
- The Fluffy Penguin Company
- Ecoable (nighttime)
- Thirsties Natural
- Oso Cozy
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