Did you know...?
One baby can use more than 6500 disposable nappies within their first three years of life.
The average disposable nappy costs between 28 cents and 80 cents. So that’s a cost of between $1,800 and $5,200, as opposed to modern cloth nappies which the average family purchase is $500. Even of you spent $100 a year in washing, that’s still a saving of between $1,000 and $4,400. I know I’d rather keep that money for myself than give it to a big corporation for plastic lined, chlorine bleached products!
So why chuck up to $4,400 in the bin (and have a stinky bin) when you can:
a) Spend it on yourself, your house, garden, pets or family
b) Toilet train your baby sooner (as the baby feels wet, they toilet train sooner)
c) Adorn your baby in gorgeous designs
What about wasting water?
Have you ever stopped to consider the water that goes in to making disposable products?
Not only does it take a huge amount of water to process the materials during manufacture (more than you would ever use in washing); disposable nappies also rely heavily on fossil fuels like oil to make the plastic, coal to power the factory to manufacture the nappies, plastic packaging etc., and then more oil (particularly diesel) to transport the factory-made plastic laden products across the planet to your local supermarket.
Your supermarket then uses more resources, to transport items from store to store, store in a well-lit, air conditioned building for you to browse, and use non recycled paper for copious amounts of catalogues, most of which will never be read, all to market an item that will have only a few hours of use before being sent to landfill. So not all the resources in a disposable nappy are buried, many are simply wasted along an unsustainable supply chain.
It uses a lot less water and chemicals to make a reusable item than a disposable one, as the reusable item only had to be made once, then has years of use, using a fraction of the resources than would be used to constantly replace the item.
Even when you take in to account the water and detergent (hopefully free from palm oil, excessive salts and petrochemicals), cloth nappies still come out on top for resource efficiency – a long way on top!
What about Nappy Rash?
Nappy Rash can be caused from a range of factors, including illness, teething, the harsh chemicals in disposable nappies (particularly chlorine) or even the creams and oils that disposable nappies require to protect the baby. This isn’t needed with cloth nappies.Little Diamond Bums has put together a range of FAQs that can answer this question and more.
Modern cloth nappies start at around $20 ea. Each one gets used at least 1,000 times in the child's first three years of like. So that's an average cost per use of 2 cents!
There are some inspirational mums out there who can run your baby shower for you, teach you how to use the nappies (it’s really easy) and offer you ongoing advice and support.
Occasionally Chooktopia will sell the odd cloth nappy as I come across wholesale specials, but for your everyday needs, talk to the experts – Little Diamond Bums and Soft Bots.
Two of my preferred Cloth Nappy businesses based in Melbourne but servicing all of Australia:
South East Suburbs, Bayside and Mornington Peninsula, contact Nat or Amy from Little Diamond Bums.
Eastern Suburbs, contact Tash from Soft Bots.
A nature loving professional sharing ideas to do good in the world.