July 28, 2017 1:38:52 PM EDT
If you have seen our Facebook Live videos, read other blog posts, talked to me in our brick and mortar store, seen any of my social media posts, or know me in real life, you have probably heard me gush about using wool as a diaper cover (or as very beautiful clothing). Not just any wool, either; you have heard me majorly name-dropping the brand name Sloomb (sustainablebabyish if we want to throw it back to their older name). So if you have, I apologize, because I am about to gush a little (or a lot) more.
Wool is an incredible textile. It is self-regulatory in temperature, meaning that it holds in heat when it is cold, but it breathes when it is warm. That’s why hikers can wear the same wool hiking socks all year long, no matter the climate. It is antimicrobial and antibacterial, and because it breathes so well, it allows water vapor to pass through, making it naturally repellent of growing mold or mildew. MAGIC! These properties allow for wool to be worn frequently, without holding an odor or needing to be washed after each use. Further, wool is a natural fiber (as opposite to synthetics like polyester), and it is biodegradable, so it is an incredible choice of textile for any garment if being eco-friendly is the name of your game.
So what makes wool an incredible diaper garment? Shew, how much time do you have? Wool has the incredible ability to be water repellent AND absorbent. Come again? Yes, that’s right. When treated with lanolin, a wool diaper cover can absorb liquid (read: baby pee) but not transfer that moisture to the outside of the wool garment (read: “waterproof”). Dwelling on that thought for a moment: imagine putting an overnight diaper on your baby, throwing a cozy wool diaper cover (or wool shorts, or wool pants) over that diaper, and knowing that even if the diaper runneth over onto the wool, it will not leak onto your bed linens. No. Wet. Sheets.
Next cool thing? Jumping back to the antimicrobial/antibacterial-ness of wool, when wool is properly treated with lanolin, even if your baby’s wool gets soaked in pee, you don’t need to wash it. Wait, germaphobes, don’t leave! Listen up, cause this bit is just the coolest. Lanolin and urine create a chemical reaction when they meet, and the lanolin neutralizes the urine; what is left behind is nothing to shake a stick at. All you have to do is lay the item flat to dry. Your baby can continue to wet their wool, and you can continue to lay flat to dry and reuse. It is time to wash when your wool garment is completely dry and smells like pee. This means that the lanolin has worn off with wear, and is no longer neutralizing the urine. Then, it’s time to rinse and wash with a wool safe soap until the wash water is no longer yucky, and then treat the garment with a lanolin solution, and you’re back in the game for another stretch. The more pieces you have to rotate between, the longer each piece keeps it’s lanolin without wearing off. What a great excuse to #buyallthewoolies.
So, why Sloomb? There are many brands that produce wool diaper garments, so why this one brand? Sloomb is amazing. A small business, and a woman-owned business no less, this is a company dedicated to their customer base, who are committed to providing high quality products and to providing transparency for their business and sourcing practices. Further, the sizing has the most incredible ranges on babies. For example, Sloomb playwoolies in a size 6-18 months truly do fit for an entire year - just cuff when there’s extra length, and let that cuff out as they grow. Knit wool covers and underwoolies, same thing. Otto has worn a size medium in covers, and a size 2 in underwoolies, for over a year (while growing many, many inches, and gaining many, many pounds!).
Here's Otto is size 2 Sloomb underwoolies at six-ish months old, and....
...that same size, different color, on a much bigger Otto!
A one-year-old Otto is 6-18 month Playwoolies in Hunter. Look how much length he still had to grow! The little ribbed cuffs at the bottom can be folded up so that they aren't stepping on them, he probably just wouldn't sit still long enough for me to do it that day!
Also, Sloomb is just incredibly high quality. My two-year-old has worn Sloomb as his regular pants/bottoms exclusively, since he was about five months old. Guys...he is not a gentle, docile child. He is active. Like, endlessly active. He is outdoors, unless it is below freezing or weathering. He gets muddy, he climbs fallen logs, he steps in creeks, he stands knee-deep in lake water. We do not baby our wool, because we do not have to. There is nothing that wool wash, paired occasionally with the help of Fels Naptha or Buncha Farmers stain sticks, has not gotten out. We have only once had a snag in our wool, and with the help of a very talented friend who knits, we were back in business in no time. There are also women who have small side businesses to mend injured woolies, so nothing is ever beyond repair. But, like I said - two years of hardcore wearing, and only one teeny fixable uh oh. I like those odds!
So, just a quick recap: if someone asks you why they should buy Sloomb woolies for a baby, you can now reply with:
+ Temperature regulating fabric - comfy all the time!
+ Environmentally friendly textile.
+ Each size fits for a longer time span than traditional baby clothing sizes.
+ Leaking diapers are no match for lanolin and wool.
+ Highly durable for the active toddler.
+ Supporting a small, woman-owned business.
+ Dry bed sheets.
+ Beyond adorable.
Do you need more convincing? Do you have questions about how to treat your wool? Reach out in the comments or in the TGN Tribe facebook group - we are happy to help you out!