By Tami Main
“Surviving the Diaper Years-Environmentally”
Did you know that over the course of birth to potty training years you will change approx.7200 diapers? Over 4million diapers are thrown away everyday in Canada. When my daughter was born, cloth diapers were not as widely used as they are now. Cloth diapers have greatly evolved from pins and complicated folding techniques of old. I was surprised to see that the new cloth diapers come in cute designs with easy to use snaps. There are many misconceptions about how functional and convenient cloth diapers are. I recently sat down with Karen Randall from New & Green Baby Co. who gave me the scoop on poop and cloth diapers.
On average you will spend $3290 to diaper for disposable diapers compared to $444-$1042 for cloth diapers.Home laundering costs vary from $430-$690 based upon 15 loads per month including washer, dryer and detergent. In addition using cloth will help keep 1 tonne of garbage per child out of the landfills.
One of the keys to succesful cloth diapers is a good fit, as this will prevent leakage ,which can be one of the frustrations for new cloth diaper users. Check to make sure there are no gaps in the legs and tummy area. You will need one diaper pail which can be a simple garbage can with a lid. Use a waterproof bag to line the garbage can .The bag will hold and transport your diapers to the washing machine and may be washed right along with the diapers. You will also need a waterproof tote bag to carry home dirty diapers, approx. 24 diapers for a newborn, 36 reusable cloth wipes, a cleanser such as Taslie Cheeky Bum Wash, and cloth diaper specific laundry detergent.
Every 2 -3 days you will dump the diapers, wipes, totes and pail liners into the washing machine. Set on cold or cool rinse/soak cycle, then spin. Wash on hot and rinse twice to ensure diapers are well rinsed. Dry on medium. Do not use detergents with whiteners, brighteners and enzymes. If they are not completely rinsed out the enzymes can cause a rash when baby urinates. Fabric softeners and bleach are also not recommended as softeners can leave a residue and bleach can damage the diaper fabric. Diaper creams will cause the fabric to become non absorbent. Taslie Cheeky Bum Wash is recommended as it is aloe vera based and calming on baby’s sensitive skin. If a rash develops, it is best to try and keep the area clean and dry and allow your baby some diaper free time .Bum Bum Balm by Dimpleskins is also compatible with cloth diapers if a diaper cream is required. Always, consult with a physician for any skin sensitivities or rashes.
Additional accessories such as flushable biodegradable liners can be purchased for approx. $7 for 100 liners.These can be used if you need to use a diaper cream or if you formula feed your baby, as theyl allow you to dispose of the poop a bit easier in the toilet. With breast fed babies you may just put the entire diaper in the washing machine.
Karen demonstrated to me that cloth diapers are easy to use and are not a lot of extra work.”They are better for the environment, healthier for your baby and easier on your budget.” Whats a little laundry compared to 7200 non biodegradable diapers in a landfill.
Tami Main is the director of Taslie Skin Care based in Langley B.C. She specializes in producing natural and organic skincare products for babies and children. Special importance is placed on environmentally friendly packaging solutions. Contact her direct with any queries, questions or comments .She would love to hear from you and welcomes your feedback firstname.lastname@example.org
Information obtained in this article by Karen Randall at New & Green Baby Co.