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What is in your diaper?

Cheryl Karge chemicalfree cloth diapers disposables parenting

As most of you are noticing, there has been a great deal of hype behind cloth diapering, while our older generation will tell you not to waste your time. There has been many changes to cloth diapers since our grandparents and parents used them. In addition, there has been changes to big box disposable diapers too. Today we are going to share those changes, educate you on the materials in our diapers, and show proof why disposables are not what you expect. 

Our grandparents and parents cloth diapered due to not having a choice. Now you can choose to cloth diaper with some amazingly cute prints that can be in stock ready to ship, or even custom made to your liking. Back in the day and even now in present time, prefolds were the most economical cloth diapering system. So swishing and swirling, plastic pants and detergent, you were ready for cloth diapering. In fact at one time, I personally converted 36 of these so called prefolds into contoured diapers for our little Rowan. The main issue we had, was the fact that the prefold material was not a stay dry, so Rowan would get red and rashes were starting. We had to make a change and fast. 

We started using pocket diapers. Homemade of course. It was great! I never minded stuffing them with microfiber inserts. But this too became a challenge. The pul would crack and leak, the microfiber never seemed to come really clean. So even though we washed daily, the stink started to happen. We also noticed that our son's bum we still pink/ red when we would change him. 

This lead to hybrids! What is a hybrid, what is it made of, and why is it better than prefolds and pockets? (In our opinion of course). Let's get you started now. A hybrid is a cloth diaper that has a polyester center. The poly center pushes liquids back into the soaker zone and prevents instant leaks. These can be made with regular polyester or windpro. A hybrid allows air movement around the diaper area, nearly eliminating redness, rashes and irritation to your child's skin. 

Here at 4wardthinking we offer three types of hybrid cloth diapers. First our Daytime, next our Utility and lastly the Extended Wear. Each has been proven to fit, absorb, and keep leaks from happening. The Daytime has a hidden core of poly, which pushes liquids back into the soaker zone and allows bamboo to absorb. The outer is a cute knit or woven print. The Daytime allows for 3+ hours of protection, lighter weight, and a great deal of breathability, the perfect summer time diaper. The Utility has a hidden core of windpro, windpro is fabulous for keeping the diaper from leaking. It has the potential to last 5+ hours in most cases. Lastly, the Extended Wear, often referred to as our night time solution. Poly core with windpro outer, eliminates all leaks. This amazing hybrid will last 12+ hours with no cover. This diaper will allow you and your child to get a better nights sleep and eliminate the need to wash soaked pj's and bedsheets every morning. 

We put disposables to the test, why? Because we want you to see that the actual chemicals in the diapers can be absorbed into your child's body through the diaper area. Have you ever been with family, or at a park and noticed the one kid with the disposble diaper hanging down to their knees soaking wet. Ever think, jeesh the child can pee a ton. Sodium Polyacrylate crystals were once used in tampons until they were later removed due to their relation to Toxic Shock Syndrome. The bleaching process also leaves many chemicals behind in the fibers of disposable diapers. Chlorine bleach leaves behind toxins called “dioxins.” Let's put these to the test and show what happens when a disposble gets that wet. Let's also discuss why the disposble should not go in a pool or lake ever.

Once a disposble is wet the micro beads start to swell, when the diaper is no longer able to absorb, it starts to explode with these beads. So when in a pool or a lake swimming, now you are dumping those chemical beads into the water. Worse in my opinion, those beads come through the layer that is laying on your child's diaper area. Our skin is made to absorb, so now your child is absorbing those chemicals. Photos showing an unused and used disposble. (for the sake of photos, we simply added lukewarm water.) We are also showing a cloth diaper unused and used. As you can see, zero beads or chemicals. A comfortable and adjustable fit, that is proven to work. 


Zero chemicals, perfumes, Dioxin, dyes! Cloth diaper is a safer way to diapering your child. As you can see the bottom layer of the snake soaker isn't even fully wet, bamboo absorbs an incredible amount of liquid. 

We hope this helps when learning the difference between cloth and disposable diapers. 


* A special thank you to Meghan for donating the disposables and Liam for pouring the water during our experiment this morning. 

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