As a first time parent, I didn’t put much thought into what brand of diapers I put on my son. I used a variety of diaper brands that I received at my baby showers. When Nolan turned 6 months old, I started clothing diapering because it was way more affordable than buying diapers every month. I LOVED cloth diapering and I would suggest it for anyone who can take the time to clean them correctly. When I got pregnant with Harper, I eventually gave up on cloth diapering because I was so sensitive to smell and the cleaning process would get backed up every time. I miss those days but I know that they are way behind me. The best part is sunning them outside after they are washed. I don’t think I’ll ever forget that smell.
For those of you, like myself, who are to busy to cloth diaper… finding a non toxic brand of diapers can be difficult. Like I said before, I didn’t think about what was in the diapers I was using for my precious babe. One day, someone shared an article about it and it really threw me for a loop. I was so upset with myself for caring so much about what baby products I applied to his skin but not putting in any effort learning what was in the diapers he would wear 24/7.
The sad truth is that many toxic chemicals are used in the making of diapers, even the most trusted name brands.
Most disposable diapers are bleached white with chlorine, (Chemistryexplained.com) resulting in a byproduct called dioxins that leach into the environment and the diapers. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), dioxins are among the most toxic chemicals known to science and are listed by the EPA as highly carcinogenic chemicals. According to the World Health Organization, exposure to dioxins may cause skin reactions and altered liver function, as well as impairments to the immune system, nervous system, endocrine system and reproductive functions.
Sodium polycarbonate is a super absorbent chemical compound that is used in the fillers of many disposable diapers. It is composed of cellulose processed from trees that is mixed with crystals of polyacrylate. This chemical absorbs fluids and creates surface tension in the lining of the diaper to bind fluids and prevent leakage. Sodium polyacrylate is often visible as small gel-like crystals on the skin of babies and is thought to be linked to skin irritations and respiratory problems. This chemical was removed from tampons due to toxic shock syndrome concerns. As it has only been used in diapers for the last two decades, there is not yet research on the long-term health effects of sodium polyacrylate on babies.
Many disposable diapers contain a chemical called tributyl-tin (TBT). According to the EPA, this toxic pollutant is extremely harmful to aquatic (water) life and causes endocrine (hormonal) disruptions in aquatic organisms. TBT is a polluting chemical that does not degrade but remains in the environment and in our food chain. TBT is also an ingredient used in biocides to kill infecting organisms. Additionally, according to research published by the American Institute of Biological Sciences, tributyl-tin can trigger genes that promote the growth of fat cells, causing obesity in humans.
Disposable diapers frequently contain chemicals called volatile organic compounds (VOCs). These include chemicals such as ethylbenzene, toluene, xylene and dipentene. According to the EPA, VOCs can cause eye, nose and throat irritation, headaches, damage to the liver, kidney and central nervous system. Some VOCs are even suspected of causing cancer in humans (EPA.gov).
Other chemicals often used in disposable diapers include dyes, fragrances, plastics and petrolatums. Adhesive chemicals are used in the sticky tabs to close the diapers and dyes are used to color and make the patterns and labels that mark diapers. Perfumes and fragrances are used in some disposable diapers to help mask odors.
I have come to find all of this out over the course of six years during Motherhood. Now that I am more knowledgeable about the subject, I have tried numerous non toxic brands. I have found that most leak or still leave my littles with irritated skin. The only brand that I have tried and absolutely love is called Parasol. I buy them from Amazon and it ships directly to my house within two business days. You can also subscribe and save a percentage on a monthly bundle. Anytime I run out and put Scarlet Reese in another non toxic brand, she gets the WORST diaper rash. It’s like clockwork! Anytime that Scarlet Reese has gotten a diaper rash, I have been able to clear it up within hours of using the Beautycounter Diaper Rash Cream. This is hands down my favorite brand of diaper rash cream and I have tried numerous ones throughout the years. Not only is it safe but it’s effective. I’ve had the same bottle since she was born and she is almost two years old!
Regardless of what brand of diapers and diaper rash cream you find works best for your little, I love sharing what works for mine. Please feel free to ask me questions and know that I am always here to help!