Monday, February 16, 2009

Wool diaper covers 101

Before I feature a shop in this week's theme, i'd like to give a brief introduction to wool diaper covers, for those of you who have not cloth diapered. I started cloth diapering my son while he was was potty training (I know, I know, a little late, but better than never!). At first I used diapers with pul on the outside (plastic coated cloth). He would sweat like crazy from the plastic, and that was in the winter. Once summer rolled around I knew I needed something better. I tried recycled wool covers, and have used only them since.
-Wool is breathable, and wicks away sweat. Did you know many athletes wear wool clothing?
-Wool is natural, and biodegradable. Reuse wool and you are being uber green!
-Wool is insulating, like your favorite thermos. You stay cool & dry in the summer, and warm in the winter.
-Wool is fire resistant. It is the only fiber that naturally resists flaming. Unlike most artificial fibers, which often melt and stick to the skin when on fire, wool usually only smolders or chars. Although it will burn under intense fire, it normally self-extinguishes when the flame source is removed. Did you know that firemen wear wool? Most children's clothes have fire retardant chemicals that are required by law. Chemicals on babies... yuck! Wool does not need them.
-Wool is water resistant, the biggest reason to use it for diaper covers ;) It naturally repels water, but when lanolized (the process of adding lanolin... it's in most wool washes) it repels water even more.
-Wool is non-allergenic, and the lanolin is antibacterial & antifungal. When a wool diaper cover gets peed on it does not have to be washed. GASP! I was disgusted when I first heard that, but when you hang a wool diaper cover to dry the smell of the urine completely goes away. The lanolin kills the bacteria in the urine that causes it to smell. If the smell persists, it is just time to lanolize again. That's about once a month, depending on how often they are used.
-Isn't wool scratchy? Nope! Most diaper cover makers use softer wools, like lambswool, merino, and my favorite, cashmere. My son has very sensitive skin & loves his "wooly pants".
-Wool eliminates the need for extra laundry too. You don't need pants or shorts on your baby when they are already wearing their wool pants/shorts.

Here are some terms for you. The pants are best known as longies, the shorts as shorties, and the pull on covers as soakers.

Well class, wasn't that fun? Any questions?

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