I wouldn’t describe myself as a “granola” person. But, like most people, I do a lot of things for the environment that are a given nowadays– recycle, turn the lights off when I’m not in the room, use reusable sandwhich and shopping bags…and now I also use cloth diapers.
Never in a million years would I have thought that I would use cloth diapers on my kids.
I confess, I bought my first cloth diaper on a whim; there was a little black AppleCheeks diaper that was so cute I could not resist. (It turned out to be one of the best cloth diaper brands I’ve found.) I had tossed around the idea of using cloth diapers when my oldest son was born but my husband talked me out of it – too messy, too much work – or so he thought. (Come on, just say it, honey. I was right!)
My friends laughed at my purchase, too, and bet that one black cloth diaper wouldn’t last past the first washing. Then, as a Super Picky Mom, I became mildly obsessed with finding the best cloth diaper on the market and testing every brand I could get my hands on. And now here I am, having cloth diapered three kids and loving it!
Here are five great reasons why you should use cloth diapers:
Reason #1 – Planet Earth
• In Canada, we throw away 4 MILLION diapers per DAY or 1.4 BILLION per YEAR. If you choose to use cloth diapers on your baby’s bum instead, 250 throwaways stay out of the landfill (based on 2 washes per week over 2.5 years) for each cloth diaper that you use.
• Your baby will need 5000-7000 diaper changes from birth to potty training. That’s a lot of garbage for the landfill. (By the way, it takes anywhere from 200-500 years for a single disposable diaper to decompose in ideal landfill conditions. Since conditions are unfortunately not ideal, decomposition takes much longer. That means since the invention of disposable diapers, not a single one has actually decomposed yet. Ew.)
• Reuse – the forgotten ‘R’! When you’re done with your cloth diapers from baby number one you can hang on to them for baby number two or pass them along to a friend. Reusing cloth diapers for a second (or third!) baby saves even more money – as much as $3000 – and rescues potentially 14,000+ diapers from the landfill. Wow! Well done, you!
• There is excellent resale value in high quality brands such as AppleCheeks on sites like craigslist and Facebook groups.
Reason #2 – Moola
Yet another reason why using cloth diapers is smart – who doesn’t love saving money? Reusable diapers will save you at least $1000, if not more, for one baby over approximately two and a half years of use. With disposable diapers, add in the cost of throwaway wipes, a fancy garbage pail so your house doesn’t stink, and you’re throwing away a ton of money every week, as well as trash.
Reason #3 – Health
Lots of studies have been done to prove the safety of disposable diapers, and while they have been deemed “safe enough”, why not choose something more natural? Cloth diapers don’t contain gel (ie: chemicals) that hold an unnatural amount of liquid. You could leave your baby in a disposable for 6 hours in the day and 12 at night, but why would you want to?! If you were a baby would you choose crunchy paper pants or soft fleece against your skin?
Reason #4 – Cute!
So…freakin’…cute. Need we say more?
Reason #5 – Performance
Forget the idea of diaper pins and plastic pants. Modern cloth diapers have come a long way in the last 10 years and now offer excellent fit, no blowouts, fewer leaks and consistent performance. All this makes them super easy to use and to wash. These features provide the best cloth diaper experience yet. And in all my testing of cloth diapers, I’ve found Applecheeks and Fuzzibunz to be two of the best cloth diapers available. Check out the Yaya Blog to see why.
What about all the washing and water being used?
• Cloth diaper laundry uses about the same amount of household water as a potty trained individual flushing the toilet.
• Use a renewable resource (water) to wash and reuse your diapers – just as you wash and reuse your clothes and dishes.
• Cloth diapers use much less raw material and natural resources (crude oil & trees) in the manufacturing and transport process than disposables because it eliminates the need for repeat manufacturing processes to make, package, and transport diapers over and over again.
• Overall impact on land fill – 24 cloth vs 7000 disposables
What about dealing with the poop?
• I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but all babies poop no matter what kind of diaper they are wearing. Even more bad news – you are supposed to flush ALL poop down the toilet, even with a throwaway diaper. Human waste in a landfill is bad. Real bad.
• If you’re not used to changing a poopy diaper, you will be soon. And trust me, when it’s your baby it doesn’t seem so awful.
• Here’s some good news on the poopy front – YAY for FLUSHABLE LINERS!! Put one of these bad boys on your diaper and you can just flush the whole liner down the toilet, poop and all. Whoo hoo!! Check out the AppleCheeks Flushable Liners here.