The history of disposable diapers
So how did we end up with disposable diapers anyway?
Disposable diapers arrived back on the scene around 1930. To say they were not well received may be an understatement! For the most part the industry struggled with the same issues that plagued societies as far back as the ancient Egyptians, where early disposables were used. These first 'modern' versions were made out of natural materials, such as paper products, with poor absorbency and a distinct tendency to leak or fall apart. It wasn't until after WWII that the age of disposable began in earnest. More modern materials and manufacturing allowed for more absorptive and robust products at an affordable cost, while the rush of new mothers to the work place meant that convenience was now a priority.
As they gained in popularity, the large diaper companies realized they could make significantly more profit selling cheap disposable diapers then the simple cloth napkins and safety pins that were the state of the art in cloth diapers at the time. As one generation of mothers led to the next, families began to forget all about the benefits of cloth while the diaper industry was in no rush to continue to develop cloth diaper technology.
Using the same market forces, soon these same companies found another source of never ending revenue from new mothers: baby food and then, ultimately formula! These large companies, looking to grow revenue, did their best to convince our society that these new technologies made traditional methods obsolete. For example, it wasn't that long ago that many sources actually suggested that formula was BETTER for your baby then breast milk. We were bombarded with a fantastic set of new diapers; special ones for girls and boys, for walking, for over night...sold as if these were new ideas.
Towards the end of the '90's and into the new millennium mothers started to reject the powerful corporate influence in their home. New parents, with the help of baby groups, the internet, and some pioneering spirit, started relearning old techniques. Science came to the rescue as well with responsible, non-corporate funded research showing that millions of years of mammals drinking their mothers milk was because it has extraordinary benefits beyond simple nutrition. Science also has reminded us why cloth diapers and natural materials were used in the first place (you can read all about that on our site and many others).
With a new demand for a product that didn't exist, dozens of new diaper companies started up with modern interpretations of the classic cloth diaper. The same ingenious scientists, engineers, and a lot of common sense, now has been applied to combine natural materials from all over the world with modern baby safe textiles to make a product as convenient as disposables, with superior performance. New parents can now benefit from an unprecedented variety of styles, materials, and colours. At Bumz on the Go we believe the primary reason many new parents still don't use cloth is that there is simply no one out there to introduce them into this new wave of diapers. The initial cloth diaper investment can be a bit scary if you aren't confident in your buying decisions. With all of the variety it can be somewhat intimidating, and odds are your own parents used disposables on YOU, so any traditional family knowledge has been lost. Those that do remember using cloth think of diaper pins and folding sheets.
We believe that we can change that one family and one bum at a time.