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Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Not Your Mom's Diapers!

I can still vividly picture the 1980's sloppy, urine soaked, brown cloth diaper being whirled around the toilet as I stood watching in horror. Water spraying from the toilet as the diaper made its rounds.  And then, the disgusting, dreaded, wringing of the toilet dunked diaper. For that reason, I have always said, "I will NEVER use cloth diapers".  That is, until the day I walked in to Nicki’s Diapers in Madison, WI to look at swim hats. The selection of swimwear is great, but the vivid patterns of Nicki's Planet Wise bags are what really sucked me in.  Before I knew it, I had sidestepped half way through the store and was standing face-to-face with reusable diapers. Gulp. A pamphlet caught my eye and I read the following horrifying statistics… One baby is responsible for 2 approx. 2 tons of landfill waste from disposable diapers, which take 500 years to decompose, by the way. While I won't be granted sainthood for my green-ness, I do try to reduce and reuse whenever and however I can. Recycle at this point seems like a given. I started slowly asking questions to the girl behind the counter.  She was super sweet and came over, picked up an adorable Best Bottoms Cover, snapped an insert in and we started chatting. Picturing the 1980's diaper, I brought up the whole toilet swirling thing.  She smiled gently and said, "they have diaper sprayers now that you can attach to your toilet". Then I thought from a cost perspective, it must be super expensive if you have to keep purchasing different sizes.  She informed me that the shells are all one size and the inserts come in 3 different sizes. They have overnight inserts that attach to the regular inserts for "overflow" protection. Washing instructions seemed very simple and the gross factor seemed to diminish the more we chatted. I remember thinking, I can certainly get over myself and touch a peed on diaper in exchange for my daughter to have a cleaner world.

I have been cloth diapering my now 18 month old since she was about 2 months old. When I am away from home or when life gets too crazy to wash a load of diapers every 2-3 days, I do use disposables. While I am not proud of the landfill waste I have contributed with disposables, I am extremely proud of the waste that I saved with the BestBottom diaper system. I imagine just another piece of land that in the future will remain green and lush with trees and wildlife instead of a land with three eyed birds and condos built atop mountains of soiled diapers. My next personal goal for cloth diapering is to use them when we go out in public. I am sure that I can brave whatever will happen as long as I have a Planet Wise wet bag with me.  Those things are awesome too!

While speaking to the girl behind the counter today, we talked about chemicals that exist in disposable diapers. Yikes. It almost makes me want to become a Best Bottoms door-to-door sales person.  Or, maybe I could be that crazy lady at the hospital that goes around trying to inspire new moms to use the system not only for the world, but also for all of the ways it benefits babies. They are cute, I have yet to have a stained insert and we aren't throwing away bags and bags of disposable diapers.

So, just in case I didn't clarify how I feel about Best Bottom Diapers… I think they are great!!!

Katy is a stay at home mom, a freelance graphic designer and artist who lives in Madison, WI with her husband, 18 month old daughter and two cats. She travels quite often and her new cloth diapering goal is to do it during short trips out in public so that she can work up the confidence to cloth diaper on long trips.


Tina said...

Going out with the diapers is super easy! Just bring along one of the smaller wet bags to keep the soiled diaper in and it's a piece of cake. We use biodegradable liners (especially when we go out in public) to make handling/disposal of poo easy.

Of course, we haven't had our daughter in cloth overnight yet for fear of having to get up every 2 hours to change her.

Betsy Parr said...

I love my Best Bottoms! Currently I am only using the covers and am using prefolds instead of the inserts, but this is only because I thought I knew I wanted to use prefolds so I ordered them... I kind of wish I had gone with the inserts just for the simplicity. I plan on buying inserts though for when DS becomes mobile as just with kicking his legs around he gets the prefold to shift sometimes. I feel that the inserts being snapped in will work better in the wiggly, crawling, walking stages. We have done cloth since 2 weeks old and I don't think I could ever go back to disposables!!!!

Betsy Parr said...

As far as overnight, I find cloth works MUCH BETTER than the disposables we used for the first 2 weeks! Only the occasional leak, but we also aren't using any doublers or anything yet... starting to look into it though since DS is starting to sleep 10 hours straight now (at 12 weeks!)

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