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Polyester in cloth diapers

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 



I have been using cloth since DS was a month old. I intended to use them from the start but all the ones I had were too big, he was just over 6lbs. Next time I will have some smaller options and hopefully can do it right from the get go. Anyways I have a mix of prefolds, covers, AIOs, and pockets. I have quite a few charlie bananas diapers, in fact they are my favorite! But, I have just been reading about the safety of polyester. And now I feel sick about it, I thought I was doing what was best for him and now I am not sure. Here is the link I was reading:




I am usually so careful about what we put in, on, or around our bodies. I feel guilty for maybe missing this. Anyone have any thoughts about this article?? I was wondering if they were talking about polyester in general or just the recycled version. Thanks so much for your thoughts! wink1.gif


post #2 of 13

Very interesting article. Thank you for posting it. I understood it to mean polyester in general...not only the recycled kind. I have been trying to steer clear of polyester clothing and bedding in general. Thankfully my boys only had a few sweatshirts and pj's I had to get rid of, and a few polyester/acrylic blankets. I am expecting a baby in Nov, and have a big diaper stash...but will probably try to get a few wool covers in each size, and only use my PUL ones as backup. It'll cost more, but my peace of mind will be worth it. Why put that junk even near a tiny infant's sensitive skin.

  I wouldn't feel guilty or bad about it...now you know and slowly make the changes that you can. Most are pretty easy...don't buy polyester pj's for the kids, focus on only cotton and it's not really any more expensive. The expense is in such things as diaper covers etc, but of course you can keep any prefolds and cotton fitted diapers you already have.

   Thankfully my sister agreed to buy anything I buy for 50% of what I paid for it...after I use it...as she is planning another baby too. So in the next five months I'm going to figure out how to slowly accumulate a few..and if I don't have much money, then I'll just buy one or two at a time...Hope you can work something out that works for you!         ~Kristie

post #3 of 13

We cloth diaper and were very excited to use BG 3.0s.. we bought a ton.. and since then have become more aware about the polyester, although our original concern was because of hard water and STINK issues. We've switched to stuffing out pocket, polyester PUL covers with unbleached cotton prefolds.  It seems to be helping the stink issue, and it helps me feel a little better about what's on her skin.  We're slowly switching over to wool covers and cotton diapers, and I can't wait until we're totally switched!

post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thank you both for your responses. I have ordered some wool covers and I was going to stop using prefolds but I guess I will order some more!! Do you think it would be alright to use prefolds and use the charlie AIOs as covers?? That way the organic cotton is what is mainly touching his skin. what do you think?


And congrats Kristie on the upcoming baby : ) on t


Osker too bad about the stink issues, what a pain! I use the BG at night but we haven't had any problems yets (fingers crossed)! Also where do you get your wool covers??

post #5 of 13
I like etsy.com for hand made covers. Also my aunt generously made us some before E was born. She was thrilled that we were interested in her knitting!
post #6 of 13

Don't feel bad- it took me 2 YEARS to realize that I was putting polyester diapers on my babies. I started with organic then started using a lot of pockets (BG and Bluberries etc). Then I tried everything under the sun. It wasn't til my daughter started having rash issues at a few months old that I realized that I was essentially using plastic against her most delicate areas. I always found the stay dry fabrics to be very clammy and not stay dry at all. And when my son was a baby I would ONLY dress him in organic cotton LOL. I have to wonder how I totally missed the fact that the cloth diapers he was wearing were polyester until after my daughter was born. Although to be fair we did a lot of EC and so he was in cloth jocks the majority of the time. But still, can't believe I didn't think about it when I was so obsessed with him not wearing anything but organic for his clothes. All you can do is make the decision to change and do things differently. I will be doing all organic nappy materials- mostly cotton with wool covers- for the next bubba. Hemp is also a great alternative and very durable. Be careful of bamboo- I have read a lot of conflicting stuff about it being not very 'natural' at all. Honestly I think there are so many toxins in our homes and environments it is impossible to even quantify/eradicate them all.... 

post #7 of 13
Bumping in hopes of hearing about Motherease cotton terry with the polyester net inside.
post #8 of 13
Originally Posted by here we are View Post

Bumping in hopes of hearing about Motherease cotton terry with the polyester net inside.
Desperate to hear about what people think of Motherease. I need to decide what to get. I heard the all cotton ones wont last but am afraid of the polyester net inside the cotton terry which helps with durability. I just dont like pokyester at all for breathability issues, but have never diapered & have no clue. Motherease says the polyester is hidden & cant be felt greensad.gif. Going back to my DDC, I feel really torn up over this choice b/c i fear my all cotton diapers wearing out & i wanted to have less leaks than prefolds. I just don't know what to do.
post #9 of 13

I can't read the article, what does it say are the dangers of polyester in diapers?  Oh, I found this: http://www.fireflydiapers.com/articles/diaper-article_artificial-materials.htm

post #10 of 13
All i know is that this is too depressing.
post #11 of 13


^This article makes perhaps the most important point of all:

"As you can see, there's no good reason to use petroleum-based products like polyester, PUL or PVC in your child's diapers when natural fibers work so well and pose no health risks."


It certainly requires more effort to go this route when on a budget, but peace of mind over constant worry is priceless.  Even the route suggested doesn't truly guarantee 'no risks'--as anyone who uses cloth knows.  Factors such as proper treatment of said materials come into play (The ease of bacterial growth, for example, must be handled properly.).  But even so, it can be done.  With petroleum-based products and carcinogenic monomers--who knows?  Go with the tried and true--our babies are certainly worth it!


This post is coming from a daddy who prior to our first baby, bought a sewing machine, learned how to sew, and got busy sewing wool covers* and then my own cotton cloth diapers--with cotton thread (after having started with organic cotton pre-folds).  Having diapered my daughter, and soon now another baby, with my own diaper creations adds satisfaction and joy to the peace of mind my wife and I enjoy as a result.  Plus, I have to admit that I never get tired of hearing people say, "You made those??" :wink




* I do use polyester thread when sewing together the wool covers--one of my "give-and-takes."  Wool covers sewn together this way do not require daily...or even weekly washing due to the lanolized wool, and the repel-ency of the polyester thread.  a wool cover sewn together with cotton thread runs the risk of absorbing urine from the soiled diaper, and cannot be left unwashed for days at a time.  Of course, there are wool thread$...

post #12 of 13

Here is the Mother-Ease page describing their fabrics, just to make sure we're all talking about the same things: http://www.mother-ease.com/cloth-diapers/AboutDiapers-Fabrics


When my son was born, my cousin gave him a Mother-Ease diaper with the stay-dry liner, as this was what he used on his baby and recommended.  We did not like the idea of polyester right next to baby's skin, the fabric felt synthetic and "sticky" even when new, and after a dozen uses it was pilled and nasty-looking.  However, we liked other things about the diaper, so we bought 2 dozen of the unbleached regular cotton (not organic).


It appears that their organic cotton may not have the polyester base, but the regular cotton does.  Indeed, these were super-durable diapers; after 2 full years of use, we passed them on to a friend who also got 2+ years out of them and said only one (which had gotten caught on the washing machine agitator) was no longer usable when her son toilet-trained, so the rest went to yet a third baby.  We loved the fabric, which always feels soft even when line-dried, doesn't stain much, and is wonderfully absorbent.


That said, yes, it does contain polyester, and I am a little concerned about that as I consider whether to buy the same diapers for my new baby.  I am much more concerned with what TOUCHES the baby.  (It freaks me out that so many people use synthetic microfiber liners--microfibers against thin genital skin are a very scary idea to me!)  But I do wonder if polyester only 1/8" away from the skin for hours at a time, getting soaked in urine and then washed in hot water, might release carcinogens.  It was a risk I was willing to take before; this time, I'm still deciding.

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
It seems as though this thread has been rejuvenated! My son is now three, shortly after this thread I ended up selling the majority of my stash. I began using the elemental BGs, prefolds and wool covers for day. I only used bumboos with a grovia cover for nighttime. The cover wasn't ideal because of the material, but my son is a heavy wetter. Now my son is potty trained and we are getting ready for baby #2 I am slowly growing my stash, some of the diapers just won't be able to be used again.

Excited to follow along, always looking for natural fiber suggestions!
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