Thursday, March 31, 2011

An Early Parenting Decision: Pampers Are Bad For My Baby's Butt.

Having spent a little over a year working as a teacher in the 1 & 2 year old room at a learning center before I moved away to be with my Soldier hubby, I quickly learned the ins and outs of every diaper imaginable. I learned which brands are bad for kids who have blow-outs every day, which brands leak, which brands get bulky and heavy when wet...and which brands are actually potentially dangerous for little tushies.

Back when I started, Pampers diapers, specifically the Cruisers, were the greatest disposable diapers ever. They never leaked, they never sagged unless they were peed in by an elephant, and for kids who blew out diapers regularly they held it all in pretty well (again, unless it was pooed in by an elephant...or a very regular two year old). Huggies for me came in second, being a pretty decent competitor, followed by Target Up & Ups, Luvs and generics. But really, Pampers diapers rocked.

Just when I thought so highly of Pampers, all of the sudden, I started noticing that the Pampers Cruisers had changed...probably back around Spring of 2010. They were thinner, almost see through, with less padding and a weird blue tint where "stuff" would land in the diaper. They were leaky and messy and I was quickly losing my faith in the ultimate disposable diaper.

Then, the diapers turned dangerous. Literally, dangerous. Pampers had changed the design of their Cruisers diaper to include this new "technology" called Dry Max, which was a chemical treatment (hence the blue tint I had seen) they put on the diaper to make it stay drier when wet. RED FLAG number 1 right there for me. Chemically treating a diaper?!? Really??? It just didn't seem right. Then a parent of one of my kiddo's mentioned that she had tried the new Pampers on her son only to discover that he was getting a nasty, aggressive diaper rash suddenly (and, knowing her kid, diaper rashes were beyond rare for him). She tried switching him to a different diaper and, low and behold, the rash went away.

I did a little research and came up with some interesting information at that point: tons of other parents were having the exact same problem with the new Pampers. This Dry Max chemical was giving babies rashes on their poor little tushies that, unless the parents had thought to change the diaper, were coming out of nowhere and getting pretty nasty. Essentially, these little guys were getting chemical reactions on their sensitive butts because of what Pampers was treating their diapers with. In fact, I saw it happen myself with a few of the other kids in my class. One of my kids had gotten a rash so quickly and so badly that we ended up suggesting to all parents in the school to stop using Pampers on their kids all together. Scary, right?

The worst part about it was, and still is, that Pampers denied having any problems with this diaper and that rashes happen to every kid. Aggravatingly enough, when parents posted on the Pampers website about it, Pampers deleted their comments and have continued to act as though nothing is wrong with putting chemicals on baby diapers. At that point, I quickly decided that when it came time to have a baby of my own, Pampers will be a 4 letter word in my household.

I stand by the fact that I will never use Pampers for any of my children, and encourage other parents to do the same. Whether it be switching to another brand or giving up disposable diapers all together, like several of my good friends have done, not using Pampers is going to be one of the best things you can do for your the little bottoms in your life. It is not in any way ok to put chemicals like that on on a diaper that is going to sit on such sensitive and gentle skin. Even worse, it's scary to think that a company so well known and respected would care so little about the product they are producing and it's awful effects on bare bottoms.


  1. Wow I have two little hineys in my life at the moment- a niece and a nephew. I know my brother is using these for my niece and she has the WORST infection and diaper rash from them. I'll have to show this too him! Why would papmers think its okay to put chemicals in a diaper?!

    Congrats on mommyhood! :)

  2. I noticed it too! I watch a 15 month old and he used the cruisers for a week, and he got such a bad rash they actually thought it was because at the time he had started milk. When he want back to Pampers Baby Dry (the ones without the chemicals) it cleared up and now thats all they used and he hasnt had a disper rash since. He leaks through rarely but usually if he doesn't get changed during the night he will, this tinkles a lot...its quite funny. but now he is showing amazing interest in using the potty! He's already gone on it once or twice since they brought it out in the past 4 days. I hope his diaper days are over soon. As for the newborn coming in September at my other job she uses the huggies, so I wont have to worry just yet about the cruisers.

  3. We use a combo of cloth and disposables (cloth around the house--or no diapers at all sometimes) and we use the paper ones while we are out and at night time. Cloth has come a looooong way since the whole safety pins and folding thing. As a matter of fact, buying cloth diapers can kinda get a little buying shoes and purses (guilty confession) They just have so many wonderful designs now and so many products to make it super easy. Check out Cotton Babies, Fuzzi Bunz, and Thirsties to get you hooked...i mean started :) It is a big initial investment to get going with, but you can build up your stash over time if you start in pregnancy.

    As for the paper diapers, we use the store brand ( don't have them out there, right?) or when we can, we use Earth's Best or Seventh Generation to avoid the icky chemicals that are in ALL paper diapers. Dioxins are the main ones that worry me. I only use organic, unbleached pads/tampons for my cycle, so putting anything else on my baby's tiny heiney is worrisome. But I try not to get crazy about it. I also have to live a life that is not a constant struggle to keep up with, ya know? The good news is that it does not have to be all or nothing....a combo of cloth, regular paper and eco-friendly paper are a reasonable way to go. I have friends who do ALL cloth, and frankly, that seems a bit overwhelming to me! But then again, I do have 5 kids and have been doing this for 22 years, so I am not as young or energetic anymore! LOL!