All about Cloth Diapering with Anuradha, Founder of Bumpadum
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All about Cloth Diapering with Anuradha, Founder of Bumpadum

All about Cloth Diapering with Anuradha, Founder of Bumpadum

First things first, I think our readers need to hear the story behind the origination of cloth diapers and its need. How did you start Bumpadum? What is your story and what inspired it?

Bumpadum has been the first company to manufacture modern cloth diapers in India. You must be wondering what is so “modern” about them since cloth nappies have been an old concept. These are actually not technically cloth nappies but they function exactly like the disposable diapers, they keep the baby’s skin dry and free from rashes. And additionally, they are washable and hence reusable, and thus a very eco-friendly and sustainable option of diapering your child.

Bumpadum started 3 years ago. The reason was that it started bothering me how much waste was piling up from the disposable diaper I had to use for my child. My daughter was on disposable diapers for the first 1 year of her life because at that point, I was of the common mindset that; I am a modern person and I won’t take the hassle of cloth nappies because they are messy, they leak and they keep the baby’s skin wet, and then the rashes. So how am I supposed to deal with all of that? I was in a nuclear family set-up and I didn’t have the manpower to run around behind the kid and clean up after her. Hence, I will use disposable diapers like EVERY other parent in my generation.”

But then as time went by, I observed the garbage segregation bin in Bangalore. I knew the wet waste will get composted somewhere and the dry waste will get recycled. It was only the big pile of disposable diapers, almost 10-12 daily, in my house that would leave my house every day. The horror of imagining the diapers leaving my house day after day and knowing it only piles up in the landfill with no solution was terrifying. And if you imagine the number of babies in an urban city you can easily think of the scale of this problem. At the same time, we were getting news about the landfill issues outside the city, where the villagers who lived near the landfill were complaining about health issues, they faced due to it. BBMP had not picked up garbage for almost a week or so during this time, and there was garbage lying around everywhere in the city. It was a clear wake-up call in the midst of trash, what were we doing to our city?

That’s when I started brainstorming… Is there a way I can combine the advantages of disposables diapers, within the cloth diaper system? It would be the best of both worlds!

And that’s how we started Bumpadum!

That is indeed the need of the hour because we can’t continue with disposables anymore the way we are at the same time we do require all the features and comforts we have been able to enjoy with the modern disposable diapers! But this product is fairly new in the market and we have many burning questions to ask. All collected from viewers on Instagram and some of our own too.

So jumping right into the first question!

How do we decide the right time to start using a cloth diaper for a baby?

The right time is NOW. There is no such age bracket to start using cloth diapers, even if your baby is 2-3 yrs and you just heard about cloth diapers, you can make the switch now. Or if you are expecting a child, you can begin as soon as the baby is born. Different babies have different timelines till when they stop wetting the bed, so you can use cloth diapers till as long as needed. Invest in 2 or more and keep alternating between them.

So it’s okay to use it as soon as the baby is born?

Yeah absolutely, in fact, a lot of people are hesitant to use disposable diapers in this stage as it can hurt the sensitive skin but cloth diaper is perfect. Also during this stage babies pass a dark green stool which worries parents if that might stain the cloth diaper. But it’s absolutely safe and there is no staining. This can be washed away just as easily as regular stool excretion. So cloth diaper is safe to use at all stages.

How time-consuming is it to maintain cloth diapers, compared to the disposable ones?

The key is to figure out two things: How you fit the Diapers and How you wash the diapers.

Once when you buy the diapers, learn how to fit it correctly. Because once you fit it correctly, there will be no leaks, rashes or elastic marks.

What we recommend is to rinse the diapers as soon as you can get to it. If you’re at home it’s easy but if you’re in the office you can do it at the end of the day. Rinse it. Leave it hanging on a bucket. That will barely take 20 seconds. And if you’re using even 6 diapers a day, that’s like 5 minutes of your time. And once in two days, we recommend you put a load into the washing machine. You just have to load the machine, choose the settings and that’s all. You put it out to line dry just like any other clothes.

Once you’re set with these two there really is no big difference in time consumed from disposable diapers. If anything, it will actually save time especially during situations of those explosive poops (you’ll understand if you’ve experienced it) where I’ve even cleaned poop out of baby’s hair. And this has never happened while using the cloth diaper because of the snug fit.

So, the answer is 5-10 mins of your day. It’s all about removing that mental block, just tell yourself “you got this” and you will do it!

Are there any chances for rashes with cloth diapers?

In cloth diapers, the risk is only prevalent if the diaper is not cleaned properly, or if there is way too much detergent being used. Excessive use of detergent might leave residue behind, only then there are chances of rashes. Every manufacturer of cloth diapers will give you a wash routine to follow. If you want to clear more doubts there are plenty of cloth diaper customer forums online who share their tips, machine setting etc. It’s very easy to understand your way around it.

So if you have well-maintained diapers you will not face rashes AT ALL.

So if we have any doubts regarding this we can leave you a message on Instagram?

Ya absolutely all our online channels, Facebook, Instagram are always open and we answer and accept all queries. Send us an email on support@bumpadum.com

How long can I use one diaper for?

Each time the diaper is on, it may last about 3-4 hours in the day just like a disposable diaper. The same diaper lasts about 7-8 hours at night. That’s also because babies develop bladder control at night.  Each of Bumpadum diapers can be used at least 100-200 times. Or even more than that if you maintain them well. If you have a bad wash routine, not only do you risk rashes but the fabric of the diaper may also start disintegrating. So ensure you are able to maintain a common-sense wash routine.

What is the difference between the diapers that you have and the other cloth diapers in the market?

So we have a crowd favorite design called the Duet diapers which people love for its adjustable size with multiple snaps. Duet diaper can be used for the entire lifetime of the baby’s needs, right from the first day till the last since the diaper’s size also adjusts with the baby’s size.

Watch the full video of the demo to see the various features, recommendations based on budget/situations and how to use of types of Bumpadum diapers!

Click here

Do you have any special washing hacks for lazy people?

Sometimes I do this when I’m in a hurry. I skip the manual rinse that should be done every day, I dump all the diapers at the end of the day and run the machine in the rinse mode with water only. And then I let them dry. And then just like we suggested you can put these to laundry every 2 days as suggested.

But just make sure you don’t leave it for 2 entire days without washing it. It’ll just get more difficult to clean and might add on to more work later.

Always, always, always follow the wash routine!

How can we be prepared when we are outdoors for a long time?

You need to have enough additional diapers when you are out so you can cover the time.

Another thing you need to figure out is where do you keep the diapers. We make wet bags that are waterproof and seam-sealed from the inside to keep all the moisture inside. There will be no smell or anything coming from the wet bags. You really can’t make out the bag has soiled diapers inside!

If you are out for a shorter period of time, we make smaller wet bags. This is sufficient to carry 2 soiled diapers.

Don’t worry about carrying soiled diapers, nothing happens. If you find access to the bathroom, just jet spray rinse it and put it in the wet bag. Otherwise, also it’s okay.

For multiple days, if you are out for 2-3 days or more, in that case, air it out wherever you can so it’s not DRIPPING wet. If you don’t have access to the machine you can also handwash in a bucket with some soap/detergent and rinse it manually, or use a plunger in the bucket and that helps to create agitation with diapers.

Just find a way to rinse it in once in 24 hours’ time.

You can’t possibly carry 50-60 diapers, so finding little opportunities to rinse and air it out, will be your best shot.

Which diaper is suitable to use at night?

Both duet and cover diapers can be used for overnight purposes. For most babies, it will suffice the entire night. But if you have a heavy wetter, you may need to add a little hemp booster to pack a huge amount of absorbency, below the insert. It’s a really thin layer that gives a lot of additional absorbencies.

So this would also be helpful for the travel?

Yes, it’s very handy during train journeys or situations when you won’t have a source of water to wash immediately. Ask for a hemp booster! During monsoons and winters, babies tend to pee a lot.

Does the diaper dry easily during monsoons?

The shell will dry sooner but the insert takes some time. However, I traveled to Mumbai in the thick of monsoon. What worked the best for me, while I was in an AC room, around 1 am night, I dried the diapers with the AC on at 25 degrees. And you can also probably fan dry it. In the morning by around 10 everything was dry.

If you wash it in the night and by the time the baby wakes up in the morning it’s 80-90% dry.

Watch the video to watch more details on this answer.

Just invest in extra inserts, for your peace of mind. You will not regret it. They can also be used as cleaning clothes later; they have excellent absorbency.

What can you do with the diapers once the baby doesn’t need it anymore?

These diapers last for a really long time. You can give it away or use it on your second child. If you’re okay, there is a forum where people sell second-hand cloth diapers for people who may want to try cloth diapers for the first time. We have not yet figured out a way to officially recycle cloth diapers. But if it does end up in landfill you will be disposing 900 gms of non-biodegradable waste with cloth diapers vs 1000s of kgs with disposable diapers.

So you can keep reusing the diaper, use second hand, donate it to someone until the diaper is literally torn to bits and de-laminated. Which won’t happen unless you’ve gone through multiple babies! And if it does de-laminate, you can remove the plastic (polyurethane layer of fabric into recycling) and the rest of it can go wherever old clothes can go.

How many reusable diapers are advisable to buy in a child’s lifetime?

How often you wash your diapers entirely determines how many diapers you buy. We recommend once every 2 days. Anywhere between 15-20 diapers are the maximum number of reusable diapers. Compare this to the 1000s of disposable diapers thrown away!

So what is the cost difference of reusable diapers vs disposable diapers?

The initial investment will be high. They will cost you anywhere between 800-900 per diaper. 1 diaper means an entire unit, shell + inserts. Say you want to buy 15-20 diapers. That’s around 20-15,000 will be your total investment on the cloth diapers (maximum case scenario). The number you want to buy depends on your needs. Start slow and figure out how many you need. Get only 3-4 at first. Which will only be 3000-4000

If you look at disposable diapers, it costs around 1500-2000 per month, which seems like a small amount at first. But if you look at it over the year. People spend anywhere between 4000-7000 diapers in 3 years. That’s 40,000-70,000 diapers over the course of 3 years.

It’s literally like all your hard-earned money has been pooped on and goes to landfill. At least with cloth diapers, it’s still a reusable product and it’s still functional for more babies! So if you have a second child you end up saving even more!

Most people sell their used cloth diapers online when they are done so it’s always more economical with reusable cloth diapers.

Added note from the founder:

Do get in touch with us if you have twins, we can connect you to some amazing twin mommies who are handling reusable cloth diapering for their kids! I think with mothers we are always very consciously listening to advice from other moms who have the same experience. And twin mommies or mothers with multiple babies are always under added pressure. So it’s helpful to find your tribe & feel assured.

What platforms can we sell and buy the used diapers?

On our Facebook group, we have BST posts every Wednesday for 24hrs. That’s a great forum. There are many preloved forums that aren’t cloth diaper specific but you can find second-hand baby stuff.

Last question! What is the question you are asked frequently and how do you deal with them?

Hands down the question is “how do you deal with pooped on diapers” And the first thing I say is Do not Panic.

Click here to watch the video for the demo on how to clean a pooped-on diaper.

What is the best way to reach out and find your diaper products? And for any doubts or queries?

Yes, you can always reach out to us on Facebook or Instagram and check out our website www.bumpadum.com to see all our products. For doubts and queries, you can email us at support@bumpadum.com and we will recommend you on the basis of the uses, your baby’s weight, and your specific needs. You can check out the learn section on our website to read all the detailed information that may not have been covered in this lovely interview today. We also have perspective and viewpoints of father, grandparents, and mothers all of whom are people who have used cloth diapering. Sometimes it happens that the mother is convinced but the father isn’t, or the father is convinced but the mother isn’t. So you can check out these articles and stories to convince your partner to opt for cloth diapering to go trash-free and pick the sustainable option!

Interview Transcribed by Mridula Joshi

About Mridula Joshi

A sustainable lifestyle enthusiast who hopes to change the narrative on how we approach the dialogue of climate change in our society. She runs an educational website and lives a zero waste-minimalist life. Strongly prescribes eco-conscious living as the key to a fulfilling life.

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