You are done with the registry, painted the nursery, choosing a name, buying a crib, baby gear all set. Everything is the best you could’ve done. After making so many decisions for your newborn, there is one that has still left you gaping….. cloth diapers vs disposables diapers for your little munchkin’s soft plumpy bums.
Cloth diapers are economic, chemical-free, and nature friendly. But the decision depends on your lifestyle and personal preference.
Still not sure? We have made a detailed comparison here which will help you decide what to go with. Let’s find out the difference between the two, pros & cons, the costs, comfort, and convenience!
Cloth Diapers vs Disposables
Cloth Diapers are traditional diapers that have come a long, long way. They are made from natural fiber materials, like terry cloth and cotton. They are available in various types and forms. Flat, pre-fold, All-in-one, Alaa-in-two’s, pocketed, and contoured. They are reusable. They can be washed and sanitized.
Cloth Diapers are softer and chemical-free. Cloth diapers are undeniably easy on the budget but require a lot more work than disposable ones. They are made up of cotton or terry cloth with pre-folded layers just like disposable diapers. Cloth diapers are dye-free so the child is unlikely to get any infection or rashes. They can be re-used, eco-friendly and light for sensitive skin. Some cloth diapers come with attached liners that make these diapers easy to clean. Cloth diapers also help in potty training as soon a child will notice he is wet he will help himself to remove his pants
Cloth diapers are less absorbent and can be messy. They required time to time changing and deep cleaning which requires water and electricity. In some cases, they lead to rashes as they don’t absorb moisture as disposable diapers do.
Disposable diapers were introduced in 1948. They are made with absorbent inner layers that keep the baby dry. Disposable diapers are less messy and more comfortable. They save a lot of time.
Disposable diapers are more absorbent and breathable than cloth diapers. These diapers are convenient and easy to throw when done (pull the strip attached at the back and roll). They come in various sizes and have better fits and sizes than cloth diapers. Traveling in disposable diapers is easy because one can toss pooped diapers, unlike cloth diapers that you have to cart back home and wash. Per day you will require 5-8 maximum as they are ultra-absorbent. These diapers have fixed inner lining which keeps wetness and leaks away. Most importantly, disposable diapers are rashes-free as they absorb moisture quickly.
The disposable diapers are made with dyes and gels which are likely to irritate the baby. Some babies can have an allergic reaction that means redness and deep diaper rashes. If the diaper is pulled hard the tabs can easily rip during changes. The ultra-absorbency of these diapers makes potty training harder for the child as he doesn’t feel wet and won’t have the urge to remove his pant. They are expensive.
Are Cloth Diapers Cheaper than Disposables?
Let’s discuss in detail cloth diapers vs disposables considering all decidable factors best suited for you.
Cloth diapers are made of natural materials like terry, cotton, linen, bamboo, muslin, and wool. They are super comfortable and offer more space while holding everything in place. Cloth diapers are more preferable and liked by babies because of the softer feel.
Disposable diapers are made of plastics and chemicals like polyethylene and SAP. A study in Germany concluded the babies wearing throwable diapers have a higher genital skin temperature which can reduce sperm production potentially.
Although Disposable diapers absorb more than cloth diapers, they tend to irritate the baby’s skin. The plastics and gels used to provide better absorbency harm the skin and pose serious health problems. Do not leave the baby wet, whatever diaper you choose. Leaving a wet diaper may increase the risks of allergies and rashes in both cloth or disposable diapers
A normal family spends Rs 150000- 200000 on disposable diapers every two years. Whereas cloth diapers cost about 50000-60000 for the same period if you wash the cloth diapers yourself. Diaper laundering services may be expensive which could cost much more than using disposable diapers. One advantage of cloth diapers is that they can be reused on new siblings or you can resell them. This makes cloth diapers cheaper than disposable diapers.
Cloth diapers don’t come in complex folds and with pins anymore. Nowadays, they come with Velcro pasted on both sides to make changes as quickly as possible. New cloth diapers come with great fitting and waterproof lining that can be removed. But Cloth diapers are not quick absorbent as disposable ones and you have to change them more often. If you are on a trip then cloth diapers won’t work great because you have to carry the smelly diaper along with you. While the disposable diapers can be toss when the baby is done.
Cloth Diapers are eco-friendly but need a lot of laundries. You need gallons of clean water for washing and produce dirty soiled water. You use energy too.
Disposable diapers use plastic and trees. They are less biodegradable and end up puling in pits and landfills.
Deciding whether to choose cloth diapers or disposable diapers totally depends on your personal choice. Talking about the price, clothes diapers which are home laundered are definitely the best to go for. If your concern is to pick eco-friendly diapers, then cloth diapers are best and safe. There are environmentally friendly disposable diapers too but they are much high priced.
If you are thinking about convenience then you can go for cloth diapers.
I would recommend going for cloth diapers vs disposables in the ratio of 80:20. When at home or at daycare, use cloth diapers which should be washed at home and not laundered outside because you never know what bleach or detergent, they are using to wash the diapers. After all, you can’t compromise with your baby’s health. When you are away from home use eco-friendly disposable diapers so you don’t have to worry about carting the baby’s poop back home.