The other night I was flipping through channels and was stopped in my tracks when I heard the upcoming story on ABC Nightline called, “The Diaper Wars.” After I heard that the diaper market in the US rings in about $7 billion per year, I couldn’t help but think of exactly how many physical diapers that looks like. WOAH!
I also learned that Pampers employs over 500 scientists, seamstresses, and chemical engineers (yes I said "chemical" engineers) to work in its top secret research and development center. What are they doing in there? Well even some of the top level execs do not have access to know exactly how their diapers are developed and tested.
The show goes on to talk about various development and testing (the stuff that's not top secret) that goes on in the background at Pampers. Yes, folks, people actually send their baby's poo and pee to Pampers to test extensively - wow! There is so much testing that goes into marketing these little urine soakers that Pampers officials were shocked at the Facebook campaign that had moms groaning over the severe diaper rashes their babies got after using Pampers Dry Max diapers. Their research showed no evidence of that, they say. They hint that environmentalists who favor cloth diapering may have been behind the campaign.
I winced a bit when I saw how the two companies are trying to give their plastic saggy diapers a makeover - employing designers and even that crazy Huggies jean diaper that got moms in an uproar (in a good way, I think!).
As I watched in disbelief I was reminded about how much I love cloth diapering. I don't know if I could trade in my cute, fluffy diapers for anything that requires so much engineering just to soak up my baby's urine. I think I'll do it the natural way without man-made tampering.
By Sarah W.