Saturday, November 19, 2011

The Ammonia Slap

Since it's on my mind right now (because I have my diaper inserts in the washer soaking in hot water as I am writing this), it's going to be my first topic.

I have had a love/hate relationship with my microfiber inserts since day one of using pocket diapers. I loved how absorbent they are, but I hated that they stink easily. And when I say stink I mean 'Ammonia Slap!' stink. I didn't have this problem with my son, but I also used prefolds and gauze flat folds with him. I have been trying desperately to figure out why they stink so bad. I thought it was my washing routine, so I changed that. Nope. Thought maybe it was the detergent I was using, so I now have each CD safe detergent you can buy off of 'Kelly's Closet'. Nope. It has now ended with me having to soak and strip my inserts at almost every single wash.
This is not why I do cloth diapering. I do cloth diapering for the easy factor. The not having to shower, dress, pack up the kids, drive to the store and buy diapers factor. Because really, no one cares that I am outside hanging diapers up to try in my pjs, at two in the afternoon. Especially me.
So this has been the bane of my cloth diapering for the past three months. And mind you, I don't cheat unless I have the rash from heck. My daughter is in cloth even at night.
Then I read something that has brought great, IMMENSE relief to me and answered my question of WHY my inserts stink and slap me in the face when I change a diaper or dump them into my washer.
Microfiber is a polyester fiber. Polyester is made from oil. Microfiber is also man made, it doesn't occur naturally. There is no microfiber tree/plant that people go pick it off of and weave it into something usable.  So basically, by using microfiber, I am expecting something made of oil to absorb a water like fluid. Oil doesn't like water and microfiber doesn't like to let water flow through it. (Very scientific, I know.) So this is the reason my inserts stink! Despite my desperate attempts at washing and rinsing and soaking. PHEW!! I thought I had suddenly developed stupid or something.
So, after the holidays, maybe even before since I really am sick of this. I will be attacking the 5yds of hemp my friend is so kindly going to let me have some of. I'm going to cut it into really long strips that can be folded over themselves for greater absorbency and commence with the washing. Why hemp? Hemp is more absorbent that cotton and I have never ever had an ammonia issue with my hemp inserts. Especially now that they are completely fluffed up. They last up to 6hrs for me, another layer and I foresee awesome night time absorbency and dry mornings in my future.

And I think I'm going to leave this one open with a question. Have you experienced the Ammonia Slap? How did you resolve it?

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