Friday, September 21, 2012

diaper dappler

As the oldest of six kids, I've changed my fair share of diapers on this earth. But it wasn't until I became a mom-to-be and started talking to friends with kids that I realized the diaper discussion branched out much further than cloth verses disposable. Sure, I anticipated there would be a lot of chatter about cost and sustainability--after all, it is a sad truth that more than 3.5 million tons of diapers end up in landfills every year and eco-friendly brands bump-up the price of an already-expensive product. But I never thought your baby's bum would factor so much into the equation about which diaper to choose.

Before I go any further with this diaper discussion, let me disclose that Jon and I long ago decided to go the disposable route. We're going to be first-time parents and, apologies to all you cloth users out there, I think disposables are the quickest and most convenient way for us to catch a break. Sure, cloth diapers have come a long way since our parents used them and, sure, maybe once we get a handle on things we'll try them out, but for starters, we're going disposable. 

That said, which disposable? Not all disposable diapers are created equal, it turns out. In addition to the eco-factor, diapers differ from brand to brand in fit, absorbency, and leakage control. And while Pampers will likely be the first diaper to hit our baby's bottom in the hospital, that doesn't mean they'll be the best long-term. For example, boys tend to pee more in the front of the diaper (duh), while for girls the middle and back of the diaper does most of the absorbing. Some babies move around a lot and need a really snug fit around the thighs, while others will find that uncomfortable. Some babies have super-sensitive skin, and then there's the whole day-verses-night thing. But without going out and buying and trying several brands of diapers, what's a mama to do?

The Diaper Dappler ships you three diapers of 12 different brands for about the cost of one pack of diapers. I ordered the "Mega Mom Sample Diaper Pack" for $29 and got a box of pre-packaged size-one diapers to try out once our boo arrives. (Once he or she graduates from the newborn size, that is.) Brands included in the pack are: Honest Company, Earth's Best TenderCare, Seventh Generation Free & Clear, Naty by Nature BabyCare, Nurtured by Nature, Huggies Pure & Natural, Pampers Swaddlers, Pampers Swaddlers Sensitive, Pampers Baby Dry, Huggies Snugglers, Huggies Snug & Dry, and Luvs Super Absorbent Leak Guards.

All in, you get a total of 36 diapers, as well as a score card so that you can rate the fit, feel, function, and overall likeability of each brand. So rather than over-thinking it by spending hours pouring over blog posts and Amazon reviews, in the matter of about three days (and several dozen dirty diapers), you'll have conducted your own research and come to a conclusion based on your very own babe's bum. Brilliant! Will let you know how it goes.