My journey to Hybrids ...
Motherhood is the bliss that brings with itself many changes in your personality and life!
Writing this brings back vivid memories of those bygone days, that I can now cherish. My first son was born in the US, where there were several brands of cloth diapers in cute prints (we were spoilt for choice). I tried a few and settled with FuzziBunz, because I liked their nifty sizing tape. I came back to India with my stash, a sprightly 8 month old and an aching will to bring Modern Cloth Diapers to my Indian counterparts. I figured with the help of the proverbial ‘nanny’ culture, MCDs would be a rage for our generally old school, Eco-friendly moms .
With that in mind I started BumChum Diapers in 2013, India's first and only Modern Cloth Diaper brand.
We did fairly well in sales. Being the only MCD brand back then, and with the flood of ecommerce in 2013 our sales were great and business was good.However I soon realized that even for moms working from home like myself, MCDs weren't really convenient. I found it hard to manage the washing, airing, folding, stripping, resizing and then cleaning up the occasional leaks. Thankfully there were a few evangelist from whom I learnt about hard water salt build up, vinegar soaks, boiling, “stripping” and every possible degree I could get on MCDs.
But then I also realized that most of my customers were buying the diapers for the "cuteness" of the prints. The others looking for an alternate to chemical laden disposables would commit to one or two, but wouldn't come back for more, perhaps for the reasons mentioned above.
I was determined to raise my baby with the ‘healthy’ and committed to doing my bit for the environment. And it was around then that I started developing hybrids! An idea born out of my need to reduce trash, increase reuse and keep the convenience of disposables.
That was the start of the design of Bdiapers
I had to shut shop in 2016 due to a personal emergency. When i started work again towards the end of 2019 , "BumChum" Trademark wasn't available. And whilst I still had stock and collateral from where i left off , all of it had the mnemonic "B" embroidered. Hence Bdiapers became my obvious choice.
What’s a Bdiaper Hybrid
Hybrids are simply cloth shell covers with disposable or reusable inserts. Bdiapers is slightly different in that it is a true labor of love by a fan mom (yours truly). The cloth covers are designed in a 2-part system which is trendy and comfortable. The pouch helps separate the “cloth” from the “diaper” making it as close to a disposable (yet it isn’t completely). The shell fabric is selected with cotton spandex and has a lot of ‘give’ for our active babies. The coated pouches are fully waterproof (but not plastic) and will not ‘crack’ like a regular plastic or polyester over several hundreds of washes. We use only imported Velcro, sourced for its soft and not abrasive texture on the baby's soft skin. Each and every aspect of the diaper is carefully designed by an obsessive mom who always stressed on safety and comfort.
I wanted the best for my baby, but the premium price tags on organic diapers was mocking my frugality! It was then that I decided to make Bdiapers affordable, keeping only the part that touches the baby (the disposable bio soakers) as chemical free as possible. The shell covers are creative and simple and we have large pack of disposables for moms who like to save. In the future we plan subscriptions, bundles and special back-to-work program for moms who would like to become our brand ambassadors and buy with discounts.
The Convenience of Disposables
So Hybrid diapers took care of my need for affordable and convenience, now I only had to worry about healthy…which is when I designed the inserts. We had a biodegradable version of it in our previous avatar, and I always have my radar up for a possibility of making this biodegradable, without the high cost in entails and without having to 'import'. Our current inserts and manufactured locally and hold as good as a diaper ( 3-5 hours depending on the age of the baby ) . These are dioxin, bleach, phthalates, dye and fragrance free. The inserts use plant-based materials for absorbency and the SAP content being limited reduces the exposure to chemicals and the chances of baby developing an allergy or a rash. The inserts do use plastic to make them leak proof.
Doing our Bit for the Planet
I also like Hybrids for the reason of proper waste disposal. When I used the inserts, I generally tossed the solid waste in the toilet bowl and flushed it down. Then I wrapped the soiled insert in newspaper and disposed as non-biodegradable separated waste (as one would with a sanitary napkin). This is healthier, as solid waste needs proper disposal so it doesn’t mix with our ground water making our babies sick. Soiled diapers shouldn’t be left in regular trash, which is often consumed by stray animals (milk giving cows and dogs). Because we are also responsible for their health and well being.
The best part of Bdiapers is that the cloth part is pretty insulated from the baby waste. Since it doesn’t touch the baby, it is easy for you to use the same cover through-out the day with a regular change of inserts ( 3-4 hours pls) or pouch. So less washing and more time for baby shenanigans!
Fun and Cute Accessories
As an added bonus, Bdiapers come with matching T shirts to complete the look. I realized that up to 2 years babies were mostly home, and in diapers …So why not make diapers a part of our babies’ wardrobe, rather than just an accessory. I had some fun with this new line of ‘clothing’. The matching T shirts come in different personas so that babies look cute and trendy, and be safe and comfortable all at the same time
And to cover your diapering journey and help you along the way we have launched several nifty accessories that you will love! My favorite of them is the SafetyB Silicone Diaper Fasteners. These are cute and safe, they don’t pose a poking hazard to the baby (they replace those large metal safety pins) and are made from food grade silicone. They’re also our highest selling accessory! Apart from these we have The Diaper Wash Sprays (that replace the use of chemical laden wipes), Soothing Baby Rash Balm (again premium natural ingredients, no preservatives) , Snap on Diaper Changing Pad, Anytime Bdiaper Caddy and several other accessories.
This is my story and my journey into launching Bdiapers . I hope you enjoy my labor of love. Please give me feedback on what you think – whether you love it or hate it, I’d love to hear from you!