Katie Katie Parsons is the creator of Mumbling Mommy and is a freelance writer, editor and communications specialist. She works from her home office on the east coast of Florida. Most often she writes about life in a combined family of five children and what it's like being a full time work-from-home parent. Feel free to pitch guest post ideas or just drop her a line at katie@mumblingmommy.com.


When researching diaper types for this post, I came across an abundance of cloth diapering websites advocating for just how wonderful their products are. The benefits of cloth diapering range from helping the environment to being more comfortable for your child. Check out this site that compares the two diaper types. I found very few sites however in the tune of “Go Disposable!”

The article describes the diapering decision as a war and quite frankly, I don’t understand why it has to be that way. I don’t think it is fair to insinuate that cloth diapering is superior in some way. If cloth diapering is so fantastic, why is there an entire two sided aisle at Target with five different brands of disposable diapers?

The article goes on to explain about the only real benefit of disposable diapers being convenience. Almost every cloth diapering website I’ve read states that disposables are still suggested for emergency preparedness, vacations, during illnesses that may involve dirtier diapers than normal or when the parent has a weakened stomach (for example, morning sickness). I think Zany Zebra says it all better than I do.

So with all of that positive information, you’re still wondering why I choose to use disposable diapers? (And yes, most of them DO in fact have to do with convenience)

–     It’s not just about what I want to do. My children have a father. He is an amazing man. He takes the driver’s seat in parenting and we make decisions together. (I find this is not always the case with dads which is the only reason I am mentioning.) Even if I wanted to cloth diaper, he doesn’t. It’s not fair for us to not agree on something this important. We had a full rational conversation about the benefits and disadvantages of each and decided cloth wasn’t for us.

–     One of my daughters has an ulcerated hemangioma on her left perineum. She has a spray, a cream, and a drop that has to be applied daily. These medications cannot be used under a cloth diaper as they can damage the insert. In fact, most diaper rash creams are not recommended for use with cloth diapers.

    I simply hate doing laundry. HATE. I hear my cloth momma friends talking about pre-soaking and soaking and the special organic laundry soaps they use, line drying, and folding… I’m not even a little bit interested in making my 5-people-family piles of laundry grow.

–     The cost savings are over time, not immediate. For families like mine, extra money is hard to come by. A fellow twin mom told me she purchased two full diaper systems with 5-7 days worth of diapers for each baby in adjustable sizes for only $1200 per baby. She was so excited because she “never has to buy a diaper again!” (And because she got two free Ergo carriers with the purchase.)      At first I was amazed. It sounded like an awesome deal and yes, much cheaper than 2-3 years worth of disposable diapers but we don’t have $1200 let alone twice that… I then thought, “what if we buy one diaper at a time until we have a whole collection.” Each diaper is on average $20 but we still had to buy disposable diapers at the same time so we didn’t normally have the extra money.

Even if I managed to buy a diaper once a month, it would take me two years just to have 24 diapers (which with twins would last me just over a day… ONE DAY!) I know the argument could be put out there that we could cut back on other things to afford the diapers but it simply wasn’t a priority for us.

–     There is a lot of conversation about the “green”friendly ways of cloth diapers and I 100% agree. We do as much as we feasibly can to compensate. We often walk to the library instead of driving. We use reusable bags instead of plastic or paper. We recycle. We try to keep our windows open instead of using our AC or heat. We use sites like freecycle to get rid of our old things. I’m not saying that these things will save the Earth but we are conscious about our decisions.

I think what it all boils down to is that there is nothing wrong with cloth diapering but there is nothing wrong with disposable diapering either. If you choose one route, it’s not fair to judge those who do otherwise.

Category: Babies

Tags: cloth diapering

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  • Anonymous says:

    I totally agree on all these points…except the cost. Most of my friends who cloth diaper spend $200-400 total. That's the only reason it IS tempting to me. Because we spend $200 in 5 months, for one baby's disposable diapers. And that's buying LUVS, not Pampers or Huggies! (The cost is slightly under that when I buy them on sale, which I try to do.)

    Anyway, love the article. Cloth diapering isn't for everyone. My husband is pretty adamant about that! But paying $1,200 for cloth diapering a baby is pretty near insane! Lol

  • Ali Cepeda says:

    Thank you for your post. I'm four months pregnant with our first and was already starting to feel "mommy guilt" for struggling with this decision. Thanks again!

  • Unknown says:

    I love the idea of cloth diapering, they are adorable and soft, etc. BUT I hate laundry. Was still considering it, even with up front cost of at least $200, am still considering it. Number one reason I might not? I want DH to change diapers too!

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