Sunday, January 10, 2010

All Diapers Are Not Created Equal.


I am a sucker for a new product. New cosmetic, new miracle wrinkle cream, new cellulite reducing miracle, I am first in line. I didn't realize this would carry over so intensely to baby products. Babies R Us is quickly rivaling Target for the store I spend the most time wondering around aimlessly and leaving with double the purchases that I originally intended. I have an opinion on just about every category of baby products, but for today's post I am focusing on diapers.

I started out with I think a pretty typical, and naive view on diapers, when Icie was born. My thinking was they are all the same, why spend extra money on a brand name. I may have gone on with that thinking had it not been for two events in the young bird's life. Icie was born with a pneumothorax, a slight tear in her lung. Basically after a few scary unsure hours the tear healed on it's own and Miss Icie stayed an extra day in the NICU in order to make sure that she didn't develop an infection. We had a great NICU nurse that walked us through all the basics of taking an infant home, and stocked us up with a package of newborn size Pampers. I figured I'd finish that package and once my packages of diapers from our shower were out I'd switch to Luvs or the Target brand. I had done my research and depending on sales and coupons those would be the cheapest at any given time. The NICU diapers and gift diapers came and went, and I went through my first few packages of Luvs. At this point in time diapers were diapers, just as I figured. Then event number two hit us, hard. Icie came down with RSV at two months old. RSV is a cold virus that affects the respiratory system in children. Infants are almost always hospitalized without question, Icie was no exception. Icie was in Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh for 4 days. I was awake for 4 days. We again had a great discharge nurse who sent us home with a package of Pampers. The virus had not only caused all the respiratory symptoms but also had left my little bird with a nasty diaper rash. I began to see the difference in a quality diaper and a bargain diaper. The Pampers were keeping the moisture to a minimum between diaper changes, and there were no leaks considering how long she was sleeping after being run down by the virus. Icie had never really slept for more than 3 hours at a time before this, so leaks were really a non issue unless for some reason she pushed it into the 4 hour range.

I kept an open mind for awhile and gave other brands a chance depending on sales or coupons available, but for the most part I kept coming back to Pampers. We even received G-Diapers as a gift and I would have tried them but Icie had already outgrown the size we were gifted. We put them aside to try when we have another baby. G-Diapers are a mix of a cloth diaper and a disposable. It's an outer cloth cover with a flushable insert. The idea seems cool, but it maybe more work than they are worth. I recently tried Fisher Price's new diapers, and they were okay, but at the same price as Pampers nowhere near the same quality. I only tried them because Babies R Us was running a 2 for 1 special. Babies R Us also appealed to my environmental side(be it only when it's convenient) and sucked me into trying Seventh Generation diapers, by placing them on the clearance rack. I have no complaints about the performance level of the environmentally friendly, chlorine free diapers, but the appearance just depresses me. Seventh Generation diapers look like a brown paper bag, no friendly cartoon character to make me feel a little better about changing a nasty diaper or to entertain my bird when she's having one of her moments on the changing table. I have lovingly nicknamed the SG's the institutional diaper. So after all my research I give you my official winners for the Diaper Awards!
Best Newborn Diaper - Pampers Swadlers - soft, snug fit on newborns, and a nice cutout for healing belly buttons.

Best Overnight Diaper- Huggies Overnights - just beats out the Pampers Extra Protection, easily protects against leaks as your baby starts to sleep longer.

Best Crawler/Walker Diaper- Pampers Cruisers -the shape and stretch are uncomparable to any other brand, though Huggies comes close with their Little Movers.

Best Chlorine Free Option- Huggies Pure and Natural -very very very soft and also would be my second choice for newborns.
Pictured at the top L-R, Pampers, Fisher Price, Seventh Generation

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