The first time I heard about cloth diapers was back in 1992. My cousin H just had a baby and was solely using disposable diapers. My grandma was giving one of her back-in-my-day speeches about how she used a piece of cloth and a safety pin and voila, your OG cloth diaper.
The modern cloth diapers, which I will explore further, would be the ones that resemble the characteristics of a disposable. I am a huge advocate for reusable cloth diapers. It may seem alarming at first because you have to wash them or pre-wash by hand (if they had a poo..... yeah.....) then leave them out to dry.
I completely understand that this is a lot more steps compared to just throwing the disposable diaper in the bin but let's step back for a bit. You will need to do laundry every day (especially for the first 3 months) so adding a few diapers in a laundry bag isn't asking too much.
Oh, you're still reading? Fantastic! Let's dive into how cloth and disposable diapers compare when it comes to convenience, price, comfort and lots more.
DIAPER EFFECTS ON THE ENVIRONMENT
There are biodegradable diapers on the market such as Offspring which are chlorine-free to prevent your baby from getting diaper rashes. Great! They are also made from sustainable materials and better production methods but if their final destination is in a landfill instead of being composted properly, the environmental damage of a biodegradable diaper is not far off from a disposable diaper. So.. Not so great for the environment.
DIAPER USAGE & COSTS
For Giselle's daily diaper usage, we use cloth diapers throughout the day and 1 disposable diaper at night. We only put her in a disposable diaper just before bedtime as she sleeps through the night for 8 hours.
The only time we would use more than 1 disposable diaper a day is when there's an event to attend so for a 6 hour event, you'll be using 3 disposable diapers when your baby is 0 - 6 months old and 2 disposable diapers when your baby is 6 months old and above.
Unlike a disposable diaper, there are other costs that go along with using a cloth diaper such as water and electricity. If you only do handwashing then just water. With washing machines, we need to take electricity costs into account. A great tip for conserving water and electrocity is that if you're doing laundry anyway then just dump the cloth diapers along with your laundry and there's NO extra water, electricity and detergent consumption.
FULLY ADOPTING CLOTH DIAPERS INTO YOUR LIFESTYLE
To fully switch from disposables to cloth diapers, you will need 20 cloth diapers. These 20 cloth diapers would save you 5000 disposable diapers. That's B$3000! (Drypers $19.50 for 36 diapers)
If you aren't willing to commit just yet and would like to try out 1 cloth diaper first, you will be saving 912 diapers. That's B$550, which is still a lot for investing in just 1 B$30 cloth diaper.
From birth to potty training, your baby would be using diapers up until the age of 30 months so let's do the math for if you were to exclusively wash cloth diapers with a washing machine on its own cycle with full load settings.
- Water $0.01 per load
- Electricity $0.01 per load
- Laundry Pods $0.30 per load
That's $0.32 per cycle. Let's say you wash them everyday up to when your baby's 30 months old.
- $6.60 for 30 days
- $80.30 for 365 days
- $200.75 for 30 months ( 2.5 years )
The cost of washing and the investment of $600 for 20 cloth diapers for 30 months comes to a grand total of $800.75. You still enjoy atleast 70% in savings for exclusively using cloth diapers.
Having a baby doesn't have to be expensive. Just a bit of awareness and planning would go a long way. We hope you're willing to give cloth diapers a go. Even just replacing 1 disposable with 1 cloth diaper would make a difference.
Disclaimer: Chubby Phat Kisses is here to provide free awareness content and we have the best interests of all parents and babies at heart. We are not the experts but the expert gatherer. All information on our platform had been obtained through expert gathering from paediatric specialists, doctors, nurses and confinement ladies to bring enlightenment to your parenting journey. As parents, we know our babies best. If you ever need a second opinion or you feel that something could be wrong with your baby, please seek medical attention. Thank you.
Mamas. Papas. We'll be alright.
Jo San & Baby Giselle