The benefits of switching to baby cloth diapers vs. disposables
Are you considering using cloth diapers for your baby? Have you done your research about them? What benefits are you and your baby going to get by making the switch? Well in this article we may be able to help you. We are going to give you all the facts, so you can make an informed decision.
First, cloth diapers have come a long way. In the past, they were ill-fitting pieces of cloth that used a safety pin to hold. Maybe you remember your mom using them on a younger sibling? Or maybe you're too young to have ever seen one. In any case, they have improved since those days and they are making a come back.
There are a number of benefits you will discover by making the switch from disposables to cloth diapers. Let's start with two main reasons why mothers decide to make the switch:
- Cost-saving and
- Environment-friendly (less impact to the environment)
Cloth diapers can save you money in the long run. One of the biggest expenses mothers worry about when they are expecting is disposable diapers. A baby could use approximately 7,000 disposable diapers until potty training, the cost of each diaper goes between $.17 to $.25, so if you add that up, you could be spending $1750 in diapers for one baby.
For some families that is a lot of money, cloth diapers could help you reduce that cost. The amount of money you can save will depend partially on the number of diapers you buy and which kind. We'll talk in detail about this further along.
The second benefit of switching to cloth diapers is that it helps the environment. Disposable diapers help create millions of tons of waste that are dumped into landfills By using cloth diapers you could help reduce the clogging of landfills, which is a great issue according to the EPA.
But you may also take into consideration that the cleaning of cloth diapers required a lot of hot water, a lot of detergents and a lot of energy (you will use your washing and drying machines more), So where you live can determine the environmental impact of using one or the other. Still it can be an option, just keep this in mind.
Easier Potty Training
The potty training gets easier. If you are a mom you know that potty training can be challenging for you and your baby and it requires a lot of patience, So anything that makes it easier is definitely welcome.
Using cloth diapers is helpful because they prompt your little one to try potty training earlier on. Disposable diapers absorb the moisture when your baby pees, so they don't have the sensation of being wet.
With cloth diapers, the wetness is acknowledged immediately.
The baby gets an instinctive knowledge of what being wet and being dry feels like, so this serves as an incentive for him and for you. Once your baby is sitting in the potty, you will save time by not having to wash anymore diapers! Happy times :)
Your baby is more comfortable
Your baby's comfort is something very important to you, so you can help him or her feel comfortable by using cloth diapers. Why? Cloth diapers help by allowing a better airflow so that the moisture that sits on your baby's skin would evaporate. That leaves your baby's skin drier and less prone to diaper rash.
Also, babies that use cloth diapers get changed more frequently because when the baby feels the wetness he or she will let their parents know.
This reason is highly debatable but is worth mentioning so you can take it into consideration while making your decision.
Cloth diapers are made of natural fibers (although some brands use synthetic fabrics) but still, this material is more breathable than the plastic one woven in the disposables. This is important, from a health point of view, because it helps to regulate the heat. This is good for your baby girl as it keeps yeast from growing and that helps to prevent urinary tract infections.
Cloth diapers are reusable
Cloth diapers have a longer lifespan, they can be reused. There are many uses for them once your little one graduates to potty training.
Do you want ideas on how to reuse them? Here are some:
- Use them with your next baby.
- If you don't plan to have another baby, you can sell them to other parents-to-be or you can inherit them to someone in your family.
- You can make burp cloths or convert them into bibs.
- If none of the above work, you can use them as cleaning cloths.
See, the possibilities are endless :)
Cloth diapers are more reliable
Almost all brands of cloth diapers and covers have elastic in the legs gather and in the back, this help prevent blowouts, because the poo stays where it should be. That's a big win for cloth diapers, right?
Solid waste ends up in the right place
With cloth diapers, you can dispose of the solid waste in an appropriate way. When you use cloth diapers, you dump the solids in the toilet, one flushing and all that ends up where it's supposed to be, in a septic tank or processed as black water. If there are any remains in the diaper, it goes away in the wash which then is treated as gray water.
Cloth diapers are fashionable
Modern cloth diapers come in different designs and materials. They come in cotton, but if you prefer a different material, they are available in hemp and bamboo. Regarding designs you have polka dots, plaids, bright colors, anyway I'm sure you can find one that would look cute on your baby.
Promotes conversation between parents and the community
Questions like Should we switch to cloth diapers? could start conversations that can help you not only with this issue but with a lot of other questions you have about raising babies.
It is a great idea to have these conversations with your partner, but it is really helpful when you share this with your community, you get input and ideas, but most important you get the support of other cloth diaper parents.
Cost of switching over
There are upfront costs so you can switch to cloth diapers. You will need to make an upfront investment in the range of $300 to $500. This would depend on the brand you choose (with or without inserts) and how many diapers you can make do with at the beginning. You have to add the extra cost of water ($5) and electricity ($) and detergent.
You can expect to spend between $650 and $800 on cloth diapering. So the savings on the first year are practically zero, the savings begin in your second year or with your second child. With your second child, you could be saving somewhere around $1300 on diaper costs.
Reviews of the best cloth diapers
With all these choices, you probably need a little more information so you can make a choice. Well, here are some reviews of the best cloth diapers according to cloth diaper experts.
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The all-in.one from Bum Genius is a favorite because it's easy to clean, dries quickly and you don't need inserts. Also less leaking problems and one size fit all because you can adjust it via a snap system, so it grows with your child.
Get your selection at Bum Genius
The Hybrid Diaper from GroVia has very good reviews because the cover works with a snap-in cloth insert or a disposable insert. This allows the parents to throw the disposable inserts and just put a fresh one in the cover. Plus the cover prints are really cute.
Get your selection at GroVia
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The Rumparooz Pocket diaper has different levels of absorbency and the elastic barrier around the leg openings is a great protection against leaks.
Get your selection at Rumparooz
Other brands which carries baby cloth diapers
These other alternative brands carry many different styles of cloth diapers. Check them out and choose your own personal favorite:
Now you have all the facts about cloth diapers, the benefits vs the disposables, the cost of making the switch, the types and the brands that carry them and even some reviews of the best ones.
As you can see cloth diapers have come a long way. Now instead of complicated folds and scary pins, you have different styles of cloth with fashionable designs and velcro or snap closures. When you compare them with disposables in terms of price, convenience and comfort, they make a good case.
Take all this into consideration and decide if switching to cloth diapers makes the best sense for you and for your baby.