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3 Top Tips to Reduce Your Baby's Carbon Footprint!

Aug 5, 2008
You've decided to use cloth nappies but are now worried about the effect of your decision on the environment. Fans of disposables and their manufacturers will try and convince you that reusable nappies are just as detrimental to the environment. Whilst using real nappies does mean that your washing and drying loads increase, there are ways of combating this.

Here are 3 top tips to reduce baby's footprint.

1. Buy second hand reusable nappies

You can purchase nappies from your local mum and toddlers groups or via eBay. Sell or donate your baby's nappies when your own family is complete. Organic cloth nappies are best as they are made without using bleach so are kinder to the environment.

2. Do not boil wash or tumble dry your nappies

Modern washing machines have largely dispensed with the need to boil wash nappies. Whilst storing used nappies prior to the wash - add a couple of drops of tea tree oil, a natural antiseptic and disinfectant, into the soaking container. These oils also help to reduce any odour and remove remaining traces of ammonia which can trigger nappy rash. Wash nappies at 60 degrees, with eco-friendly non biological washing powder in an A rated washing machine to use less water and energy. Where possible, allow the nappies to dry outside on a washing line. Countless mums have noticed that the sun has beneficial bleach like effect on any stains which may remain. Finally, nappies, or diapers as our American cousins like to call them, do not need to be ironed.

3. Start potty training your baby early

Studies have shown that wearing real nappies usually makes potty training easier. Modern disposables are made with chemicals which reduce the wet feel of the nappy thus baby finds it more difficult to associate going to the toilet with a feeling of discomfort! Most parents find that cloth nappies make their children more eager to become potty trained.

Fans of disposable nappies will tell you that your baby is more likely to suffer nappy rash if you use cloth nappies. Whilst it is true that modern disposables can sometimes help prevent nappy rash, in a lot of cases the chemicals contained in modern nappies can cause allergic reactions. The key to preventing nappy rash is to change baby regularly and where possible allow baby to enjoy some "nappy free" time giving him a chance to kick their legs and feel the sun on their bum.

With a large variety of types and styles available, using cloth nappies can be an easy, economical, and environmentally friendly option for any parent.

Cloth nappies today are not just for the natural parenting crowd and a far cry from the images of leaky plastic covers and nappy pins that many parents have ingrained in their minds. If you understand what's available and have the information to make the best choices for your baby and your family, you may find that cloth nappies are easier and more cost effective than you thought.
About the Author
Pam Pearson is a guest writer for the Fluffy Bums "Nappy Advice" blog: where you'll find lots of practical advice and guidance on using environmentally friendly nappies.
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