Monday, July 7, 2014

Speaking of Diapers

This post is dedicated the number one baby product that you cannot live without. That's right, diapers.

Last weekend, my baby and I experienced a first together. It was the first time my sweet, happy, affectionate baby pooped on me. That's right, pooped. On me. How did this happen? Well, for starters, waking your baby up from a nap to take him to the pool for the first time because you're sure he'll just fall right back asleep once you get there is foolish and ill-advised. Once you're there, if your baby begins having a full-blown meltdown and nothing you do seems to console him, you should leave. Immediately. In the off chance that you don't leave, however, you may find yourself in the exact position I did, which was sitting in a pool chair, legs up on another, holding baby in my lap, and feeling the warm, slimy, ugly avalanche out of his pants and onto my bare legs with incredible speed and efficiency. I must say, for as long as it takes for him to push it out sometimes, it seems to have no problem whatsoever finding its way out of that diaper and all over everything else. Oh laundry.

This picture was taken just before "the incident".

Early on in my pregnancy I was intrigued by and interested in cloth diapering. Cloth diapers have come a long way since the days of oversized white pads and safety pins. Cloth diapers today actually look and function a lot like disposable diapers, making them super cute and lot less scary (look at how cute these are!). I've heard some wonderful success stories from friends who have cloth diapered their babies and I do believe it may be something I'd be interested in trying in the future, however, given my budgetary and time constraints, it just wasn't going to be a realistic goal this time around. So I opted for disposables.

If you're going to go the disposable route, yet still want to feel morally okay about how your diaper footprint will affect the environment and how your diaper ingredients will affect your precious baby's skin, the next best option to cloth diapers is the world of "natural" diapers. I'm not going to spend a great deal talking about natural diapers, except to say that I did try BabyGanics Size 2 diapers and feel pretty ambivalent about them. That's actually putting it mildly. These diapers are skinnier than most average size 2 diapers and they do not stay fastened very well. They leak. Oh my how they leak. Be prepared to do a lot of laundry when using these diapers. Because I was given a box of them and did not want to throw them all away, I've resorted to using them as daytime diapers, which I check frequently and change at the first sign of any wetness. I know that a lot of parents have had great success with natural diapers, so I would not knock them altogether. I could not afford to continue experimenting in the hopes that I would find a good natural brand that worked for us, so I quickly turned to my most trusted veteran moms and asked for their opinions.

Overwhelmingly, people seem to love Pampers, Target, and Sam's Club/Costco brand diapers. I have heard, though have not verified, that a lot of major box store brand diapers are actually manufactured by the other big name diaper companies, and are sold to the box stores at wholesale and to you as a generic. If this is true, then it may be safe to assume that we're still actually comparing big name brand to big name brand, but in the event that this is not true, I'll treat them as separate.
  1. Pampers Swaddlers: LOVE LOVE LOVE these diapers. From NB to our current Size 2, they never fail. They fit perfectly; they are snug, but not too tight. Minimal leakage. Cute characters pictured on the front and that awesome yellow to blue line down the center to indicate wetness. What is not to love? Oh yeah, the price tag. The only downside to Pampers is the price, but if you buy in bulk and look out for sales (or just register for them for your baby shower - wink wink), you should be able to save a few dollars here and there, which is good for baby and great for your wallet.
  2. Target Brand (Up & Up): I read some diaper reviews online a while back and found that Target dipes were generally considered to be the best brand for the best price, and I have to agree with this. Functionally, they are great - well fitted and they also have the wetness indicator. Plus, Target frequently runs sales or specials on their baby products. The last two times I went in for diapers and wipes, they had a buy two products, get a $5 gift card promotion going on. In total, I've received $20 in gift cards just for buying items I already needed. Not too shaby, Target.
  3. Sam's Club/Costco: I have yet to try these, but the only downside I know of is that you have to have a membership to shop at either of these places and you may have to travel a bit to get to one, depending on where you live. I've heard great things about these diapers, though.
  4. Huggies Snugglers: Not sure if this is a play on Pampers' Swaddlers, but the Huggies Snugglers are probably my least favorite diapers so far. They may be tied with BabyGanics, though. Either way, my advice would be to save your money and pass on these. It very well could be a baby size issue, but I found these diapers to leak almost 100% of the time in the early days. They became a little more reliable as the little man beefed up some, but still not great. Like the BabyGanics, they also do a poor job of staying fastened, which is kind of a deal breaker where diapers are concerned. Unlucky for me, this was the first brand I recalled when registering for diapers, so I now have a closet full of untouched Huggies, that of course I cannot return because I had to be extra prepared before baby was born and unpack most of them. Looks like I'll be making a few diaper cakes in the coming months! Or simply donating them.
The bottom line is that every baby is different and some diapers may work better on some babies than others. These are simply my opinions based on our experiences. Hopefully this will help some other frantic soon-to-be mom feel a little more prepared - or her friends and family who will be shopping for her :)

Happy diapering!

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