Guest Author - Julie Renee Holland
Hemp cloth diapers are super-absorbent, naturally anti-bacterial and great for the environment. Hemp is grown without pesticides or fertilizers and actually helps improve the soil as it grows. Hemp is much more absorbent than cotton and is also more durable so your hemp diapers will last longer than similar diapers made from cotton. Despite the myths surrounding hemp, there is no way anyone can become high from contact with hemp - it does not contain the same chemicals as its more well-known cousin. And, smoking any part of a hemp diaper is just a waste of a perfectly good diaper - again, hemp is just a durable, absorbent natural fiber with no nasty chemicals.
Hemp is softer when mixed with cotton, so you will typically see a blend of cotton and hemp such as 45% cotton/55% hemp. Whenever possible, look for a blend that contains organic cotton so you can be sure that no pesticides were used in growing the fabric that touches your baby's sensitive skin.
Hemp cloth diapers are available in many different styles. You can find hemp fitted diapers, hemp contour diapers, hemp prefolds and even hemp pocket fitted diapers so you can add extra absorbency. Mama cloth or reusable menstrual pads are also available with hemp as the absorbent inner or as the whole pad.
Hemp cloth diapers are prone to detergent build up due to their absorbency, so be sure to use the minimum amount of detergent necessary to get clean diapers. Usually this is about one quarter of the amount of detergent recommended by the detergent manufacturer (makes you wonder how much detergent your other clothes need, doesn't it?).
If your hemp cloth diapers do develop a detergent build up you will notice that they are less absorbent or that they may smell of ammonia once wet. You can fix this by "stripping" your hemp cloth diapers. Simply wash them in plain water until the wash water no longer bubbles. You can also clean out the detergent buildup by adding one TEASPOON of the blue Dawn Dish Detergent to the wash water, then rinsing several times.
Which hemp cloth diapers should you choose? That depends on your budget and your preferences. Hemp prefolds or contours are the least expensive diapering options, fitted hemp diapers or using hemp prefolds as inserts in pocket diapers are the most convenient. Whichever hemp cloth diapers you choose, you will love how well they work - and knowing that you are helping keep the planet clean for your baby.
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