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The Diaper Debate Lives On

by verdemama on May 6, 2010

Before Orion arrived on the scene I put a lot of thought into what kind of diaper he would use. I always assumed I would opt for cloth, but when I read about how water-intensive washing all those nappies would be (which is a major negative here in drought-stricken Southern California), I started to look into alternatives. Regular disposables were out of the question for a number of reasons: they are made from nonrenewable, non-biodegradable plastic, they take hundreds of years to decompose in landfills and they are filled with toxic absorbent gels, deodorizers and other nasty chemicals. (Case in point: some Pampers products are currently in the news for causing kids major skin irritation.)

The answer for us was Nature Babycare diapers. These award-winning diapers are chlorine-free, plant-based, biodegradable and all-around awesome if you ask me. They’ve been through quite a few design changes in the past year but it seems that they’ve finally settled on a light, thin, comfy design that is nicely absorbent, convenient and won’t spend centuries in the landfill. They have served us well over the past 14 months.

On a related note, there’s an interesting article in the current print issue of Mothering magazine about the disposable/cloth conundrum. Their bottom line is that cloth is the one and only sustainable option, and even the cloth-disposable hybrids, such as gDiapers, aren’t a good option in their eyes. (Note: gDiapers feature a reusable outer cover filled with either a disposable gel insert or a reusable cloth insert. Mothering’s beef with gDiapers is that apparently the disposable gel inserts contain petrochemicals.) The article didn’t touch upon eco disposables like Nature Babycare but I’m guessing they aren’t fans of those, either.

Orion will likely continue using Nature Babycare diapers until that magical day he is potty trained, but I’m definitely still cloth-curious and just may try out cloth nappies on the next bambino.

Any cloth diaper pros out there? What are your favorites? Speak up, lurkers. Come out of the shadows. I know you’re out there!

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