Every day we seem to be waking up to a fresh story about how single use plastics are suffocating our world.
Since 2009 I've used cloth nappies with my children (the third and youngest is still refusing to potty train any time soon).
Two factors were at the forefront of my mind when I made the decision to go reusable:
1) to save money,
2) to minimise our household waste and reduce our negative impact on the enviroment even if just a little.
I bit the bullet and invested £260 in a birth to potty kit from the fabulous Little Lamb Nappies and never looked back.
8 & 1/2 years ago, many people thought I was mad to opt for reusable.
In a society geared towards convenience, why would I bother adopting an 'old fashioned' concept? But to me, these nappies were easy to use, easy to care for, highly effective and when number 2 child came along a mere 12 months after prototype #1 it was a no brainer.
It’s been estimated that modern humans have been around for 50,000 years, and textile production developed by the Ancient Egyptians around 5,500 years ago.
Plastic is a mere 111 years having been invented in 1907.
Even so, born in 1981, I was still a cloth bummed baby too. Plastic coated single use disposable nappies have really only been around for 1 generation since the late 80s.
It's shocking that in only a century, a fraction of humanity's existence, we've managed to choke our world with single use plastics of all kinds.
I'm increasingly aware of my own plastic consumption. With a family of 5 & 3 cats, we go through a lot of food & household commodities. Plastic packaging is everywhere! I try to buy loose when I can but with a limited budget it's hard, and it irks me to see how much plastic accrues in our bins (and much of it sadly still unrecyclable).
Coming back to nappies, we at Snuggleblanks and Blanken Care Ltd more often than not focus on the comfort, quality and capacity of our products, but let's not forget the environmental impact.
Last year we worked out that a year's worth of single use disposable nappies for one individual, stacked up and before they've even been used, would reach around as high as Nelson's Column. That's a staggering 52 metres!!
Reusables can be washed hundreds and hundreds of times, and even then when they're worn out and threadbare, can be recycled or reused as cloths. Yes they contain a small element of microfleece alongside natural bamboo & cotton, however we're always looking for new alternatives. And we're not talking about single use here of course.
We all need to think more about our consumption of single use items and the likes of Blue Planet and the wonderful David Attenborough can only continue to raise awareness of this matter.
What could you do today to reduce your impact? Even just one change can make a huge difference in the long term.
As one big brand supermarket may have once said, 'every little helps'.