It’s a pretty well-known fact that babies are expensive. With everything from new furniture, to food, to diapers – costs can be overwhelming. But there are some little-known tricks out there that have kept my family’s budget from breaking down over the past year. Check out this post I wrote a couple months ago about how to score the best used baby gear for some great tips on thrifting, borrowing, and reusing.
As for diapering, I know disposable diapers seem a LOT easier. But to be honest, we’ve almost exclusively cloth diapered for my daughter’s entire 11 months, and I don’t feel burdened by cloth diapers at all. My husband had never changed diapers before she was born anyway, so cloths are almost easier to him! Let me break down the benefits of cloth vs. disposable diapering point by point, so you can see why cloth diapers are infinitely more ethical and affordable (and so you can see why Ethikos Market, selling nuababy cloth diapers and accessories, should be your new cloth diaper shop!)
The All-Around Benefits of Cloth Diapers
Cost: I can’t sum this up any better than this post over at The Natural Baby Co did. As they explain, “The cost of cloth diapers is significantly lower than the cost of disposables. Diapering a child in generic disposables costs over $1,400 over 2.5 years. With some premium earth-friendly options, this cost can go to almost $2,500.” Though with cloth diapers, the cost is more up-front, you can literally save thousands of dollars by using a cloth diapering system. Even using a mixture of cloth and disposable will save you a lot in the long run. My advice? Buy 1-2 cloth diapers each month you’re pregnant, or on an adoption waiting list, and you’ll have a decent stockpile by the time the baby comes. Or if you’re lucky, you could convince someone to throw you a “diaper shower” like a friend did for me. We got all of our cloth diapers this way. For everything you need to cloth diaper (20 diapers, 20 inserts, 8 boosters, 2 laundry bags, 2 wet bags, and 4 packs of liners/wipes) from nuababy, the total cost is about $540. That’s almost a third of what you would spend on disposable diapers in a year, and you can use them beyond just one year!
Environmental Impact: Did you know disposable diapers take almost 500 years to break down? This shocked me. Every diaper I wore as a baby is still in a landfill somewhere, in basically the same state as it was originally. Additionally, disposable diapers are made with plastic, which is brutal on the environment and atmosphere and never actually breaks down – it just turns into microplastics. They also are full of chemicals, needed for absorbency, which can be damaging to a baby’s skin and is certainly harmful to the environment. Cloth diapers, on the other hand (or cheek), can be reused hundreds of times if taken care of properly, don’t contain any chemicals (bonus points if they use organic cotton or hemp), and can even be biodegradable. The nuababy brand sold by Ethikos Market claims just that: all of their products are “manufactured predominantly from biodegradable, natural materials.” Buy diapers in a neutral design so they can be used with any child you may have (or your friend may have once you’re ready to pass them on!).
Social Impact: This is one factor that varies a lot from company to company, so definitely do your research before deciding on a brand. Let me help you out a little by saying that nuababy diapers are the first ethically made brand I’ve seen. The nuababy website says, “Our products are manufactured according to global health and safety requirements for baby products. We source affordable, quality materials for each product and carefully choose manufacturers that adhere to fair and ethical labour practices.” Ethikos Market has direct contact with the manufacturers of nuababy diapers and can insure the validity of that statement.
My Favorite Things about Nuababy Diapers
First and foremost, they’re ethically made, as I’ve already stated. That’s crucial to me, because I can’t stand the thought of taking advantage of other people to save my family money.
Second, the diapers are very absorbent, and very easy to adjust based on the needs of your child. Basically, there are two insert pieces that snap on to either side of the diaper (you can use one or both), and if needed, you can also add a booster pad in the pocket of the diaper for a third layer of absorbency (like for overnight).
Third, the style of the diapers is also very easy to adjust. The inserts can be snapped in on either side and in any direction, so you have flexibility for the fit of the diaper. The inserts are sort of triangular, which I love so that there’s not so much padding between the baby’s legs. Beyond that, you can put the inserts inside the pocket or leave them lying on top, depending on your preference and need. And, all the designs are gender-neutral, so they can be passed from kid to kid with no problem!
Finally, the quality of the products is amazing. The diapers have held up well and washed easily. The laundry and wet bags are still completely waterproof after having been washed several times. The liners/wipes are incredible. I actually put these in the washer with the diapers if they’ve only been peed on, and they don’t even begin to fall apart until maybe the fourth time being washed. I also put a few through the dryer on accident, and though they shrunk considerably, I was able to stretch them out (without them tearing!) and use them again anyway.
But don’t just take my word for it! Let’s hear from the owner of Ethikos Market herself – Michelle Cuevas.
Tori: Why did you decide to name your business “Ethikos Market”?
Michelle: Ethikos is the Greek word for ethical. I named it that because I am focusing on selling products that are ethically made – the people that make them get paid a fair wage and the manufacturers have ethical labor practices.
T: The products say “Ethically made in China.” Can you explain what that means, and how it’s different (if at all) from “Fair Trade”?
M: It’s not really different from Fair Trade. The factory doesn’t officially have the Fair Trade mark, but basically they adhere to fair labor practices and wages for their employees.
T: If you had to pick one, what would be your favorite product that you sell?
M: Since both of my boys are out of diapers now, my favorite product is the Amberley diaper bag. Every product from nuababy is so well thought out and has little details that make them stand out!
T: What are two interesting facts about you, your company, or your vision?
M: Originally I was going to name my business Ético Market because I speak Spanish, but on the day I filed for an LLC, my husband came home from a trip to Greece and suggested using Ethikos. I loved it and went with it! Another thing is that the nuababy products I sell are from an Irish company. I’m a quarter Irish myself, so working with this company has a special meaning to me.
T: Is there anything else we should know about nuababy or Ethikos Market?
M: We are hoping this brand becomes one of the major brands of cloth diapers in the US. We would love for you and your baby to join the nuababy family and help us spread the word!