Should You Use Cloth Diapers?
True tales from satisfied and disappointed families who've tried them.
Cloth Didn’t Pan Out
“Our daycare turned us down”: Morly Shoshan of Toronto, Ontario, chose cloth diapers when her baby was born. Her first daycare center agreed to use them. But when she switched to a new daycare that would not accommodate her needs, she switched to disposables.
“If you have your child at a daycare, and they won’t do it, you’re out of luck,” Shoshan says. “Especially if you work fulltime.”
“Cloth just wasn’t practical”: When Jenny Bender Berz of Boston, Mass, had her first son, she decided to give cloth diapers a try. She lasted two days.
“On day two [with a newborn], in addition to having to learn to live with no sleep, breastfeed, and be a new mom in general, I found myself blow drying a plastic diaper cover,” says Berz, whose son had frequent explosive diapers.
“Maybe I should have bought more diaper covers, but in my sleep-deprived daze, I just went out and bought some [disposables].”
“Financially, it didn’t add up”: Susan Silva of Weston, Mass, considered cloth after a friend made the switch. She decided against it after realizing the initial costs and time investment.
“You can’t just try it for a few days and then decide,” she says. “You need to really commit to a lifestyle choice. It’s not anything like, ‘should I buy Huggies or Pampers?’ or trying out an organic diet for baby.”
“The ‘green’ cons outweighed the pros”: Marsha Moshinsky of Toronto, Ontario, researched cloth diaper services for her newborn. She thought her free time would be better spent sleeping than doing laundry. Moshinsky was discouraged that many laundry services use chlorine and admits she was daunted by the idea of using cloth diapers on the go.
“I sweated the decision because I really wanted to do my part for the environment,” she said. “But ultimately the cons outweighed the pros.”
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