Ever wonder what exactly is inside disposable diapers? Because disposable diaper companies are not required to list their ingredients, we asked one of the biggest disposable diaper manufacturers what chemicals are used inside their diapers. Here is the list that they provided of the main chemicals that comprise their diapers and our explanation of these substances:
- wood cellulose fiber (a fluffy paper-like material) Until the mid 80s, this bleached product was the primary absorbent part of disposable diapers. Now companies use this material with sodium polyacrylate
- sodium polyacrylate A super absorbent polymer (SAP) that turns from a powder to gel when exposed to liquids. Sodium Polyacrylate Material Safety Data Sheets warn injury can occur by breathing in the powder and recommend to wash with soap and water if powder or gel is exposed to skin
- polypropylene Considered a safe, food grade plastic. 280 million metric tonnes of it was produced in 2011 alone.
- polyethylene Is a similar compound to polypropylene but is sometimes contains phthalates. When we asked, we were told these diapers are tested to be phthalate free
Most babies wear disposable diapers at least 23 hours a day every day from the day they are born until they are potty trained. Would you even consider exposing your sensitive areas to chemicals day in and day out for several years? Once these diapers are filled with human waste, don’t forget they then go to the dump where it can all leech into soil and ground water. Cloth diapers are made with cloth instead of chemicals and don’t end up in the dump.