According to studies, approximately 90% of parents use disposable diapers. We always want the best for our babies, and since they wear diapers 24/7, buying non-toxic diapers may be top of mind for many of us.
Unfortunately, many diapers (and other baby products) are green washed, making it difficult to decipher which diaper brands are truly safe and non-toxic.
We’ve found some of the best non-toxic diapers that are available on the market and wanted to share them with you to make your shopping experience a little easier.
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I could be compensated if you decide to make a purchase. You can read my full disclosure here.
Short on time? Skip straight to our list of the best non-toxic diapers.
Why You Should Switch to Non-Toxic Diapers
We always want our babies to be safe and healthy, right? Well, their diapers may be causing a range of health issues.
Chemicals in Disposable Diapers
Traditional disposable diapers often have a range of additives and chemicals that you don’t want touching your baby’s sensitive skin.
Let’s talk about some of the worst offenders below.
Many brands use chlorine as a bleaching agent to make their diapers white. As nice as it may look, it’s anything but clean.
Chlorine emits dioxins, which the EPA classifies as a highly toxic health hazard with a cancer risk to humans.
Dioxins may also damage the immune system, interfere with hormones, and cause reproductive and developmental issues.
That being said, dioxins are a huge presence in our day-to-day lives anyway, and you won’t even get away from them if you use cloth diapers. In fact, dioxins are in our food supply. According to the EPA, 90% of the dioxins that we’re exposed to are actually from meat and seafood because they accumulate in the fatty tissues of animals.
Some people argue that since dioxins are everywhere, we shouldn’t be too concerned about whether or not they’re in our babies’ diapers. However, it’s still a good idea to avoid them when possible because they pose such a great risk to the environment, which ultimately affect us even more.
Now, don’t worry too much if you’re in a pinch and you have to use a non chlorine-free diaper on your baby, but you should try to find chlorine-free diapers when possible.
Some diaper brands use fragrances to mask the scent of poop or pee.
Have you ever walked past someone who had a lot of perfume on? Sometimes it can give us a headache or temporarily cause breathing issues. (Which is why you may cough or have an urge to pinch your nose.)
Imagine how much worse that feeling is to a baby who hasn’t been exposed to fragrances and perfumes!
Not only can fragrances cause respiratory and skin irritation, but they can pose other health risks as well.
That’s because, as we’ve mentioned in past articles, the FDA does not regulate the ingredients in fragrances. Fragrance and perfumes are considered a proprietary trade secret, so companies are not required to disclose the ingredients that they use in them.
Often fragrances contain phthalates and parabens (both of which can cause reproductive issues), and they may contain other harmful chemicals as well.
Furthermore, U.S. law does not require companies to disclose whether their products contain phthalates (at least not yet), so you should look for diapers that are explicitly marked “phthalate-free.” Even some “non-toxic” diaper brands don’t make any claims about phthalates.
Always be skeptical. If a box of diapers isn’t marked phthalate- or paraben-free, you should assume that the diapers include phthalates and/or parabens.
So many disposable diapers have cute little patterns and designs on them. The dyes that brands use to create these pictures, however, can cause skin irritation and diaper rashes.
The wetness indicator on some diapers also use dyes. Some brands even dye the stretchy fabric that goes around your baby’s legs.
If your baby is sensitive to certain dyes, you really need to be careful and try to buy diapers that are as plain as possible. That’s because the word “dye” isn’t very highly regulated, so some companies claim to be “dye-free” but instead use “pigments” or “inks” in their diapers.
Lotions, Latex, and Other Irritants
Some diapers have other ingredients that can irritate your baby’s skin and respiratory system.
When possible, you should avoid lotions, latex, and other irritants in disposable diapers.
Something You (Probably) Don’t Have to Worry About
Super Absorbent Polymer (SAP)
Super Absorbent Polymer (SAP) is what keeps your baby nice and dry, even overnight.
If you’ve ever put your baby in water while they were wearing a regular diaper instead of a swim diaper (Oops! I’ve been there!), you’ve probably seen SAP.
These tiny little plastic beads can absorb 300x their weight in liquid!
There hasn’t been a ton of research on SAP, but it’s thought to be fairly safe and non-toxic.
SAP is petroleum-based, and since it’s a plastic, it is an environmental threat. Some brands are working on plant-based SAP, but I’m not aware of any that are on the market yet.
Unfortunately, ALL disposable diapers contain SAP, so you couldn’t get away from it even if you wanted to (unless you’re cloth diapering). That being said, some brands specifically state that their SAP is non-toxic.
Things to Consider When Buying Non-Toxic Diapers
Aside from the chemicals in disposable diapers, there are a few more things that you might want to consider before buying non-toxic diapers.
Are Non-Toxic Diapers More Expensive? (+how to save money)
Diapers are so expensive.
But are non-toxic diapers more expensive than their conventional counterparts?
They certainly can be, but you can often find coupons and discounts available for various diaper brands. Some non-toxic diaper brands offer a subscription service where you can get a discounted rate (and have your diapers automatically delivered each month, which is super convenient). Others are available on Amazon with the subscribe and save option.
In this table, I’ve compared Pampers Swaddlers (which is what they give you in the hospital) with our favorite non-toxic diaper brands to give you an idea of how much more you’ll be spending if you want to buy chemical-free diapers. For pricing and quantity information, I looked at size 1 or equivalent.
|BRAND||# OF DIAPERS IN BOX||PRICE PER BOX||PRICE PER DIAPER|
|Andy Pandy||108||$37.97 (with subscription)||$0.35|
|Eco by Naty||100||$35.96 (with subscription)||$0.36|
|Sprouted||140||$40.80 (4 packs with subscription)||$0.30|
|Honest Company||245 + 4 packs of wipes||$79.95 (with subscription – $61 when taking out the price of wipes)||$0.25|
|Little Toes||216||$99.99 (with subscription)||$0.47|
|Earth & Eden||176||$27.99 (with subscribe & save)||$0.16|
Ingredients & Materials in Non-Toxic Diapers
As mentioned above, you should try to find a list of ingredients and materials used in your baby’s diapers.
Look for non-toxic diapers that are chlorine-free, fragrance-free, dye-free, phthalate-free, and paraben-free.
Are Non-Toxic Diapers Biodegradable?
No. Not all non-toxic diapers are biodegradable.
If you’re looking for biodegradable diapers that are safer for the environment, be sure to check each individual brand. Learn about their production processes, and dig deeper into the ingredients that they use to make sure your chemical-free diapers are also environmentally-safe.
Obviously, you should always check out the reviews of any diaper brand that you’re considering.
Not all diapers will work for every baby, however, so use your best judgment when looking through reviews.
If the diapers have fairly good reviews but one or two people say that the diapers leak or that their babies get rashes, it may be a good idea to test them out with a small pack and see how they work for your baby.
The Best Non-Toxic Diapers
There are a ton of diaper brands that claim to be safe, non-toxic, and maybe even eco-friendly… so we looked through them all, read reviews, and compared them to our list of “must-haves” above. Here are the winners!
Dyper is a subscription diaper service intended to keep your baby’s bottom safe and dry (and save you time and money along the way).
Dyper’s diapers (haha) are totally chlorine free, fragrance-free, and dye-free. They also don’t have any latex, lotions, or other nasty chemicals that could cause irritation and other health issues (like phthalates and parabens).
The diapers are delivered monthly, and they guarantee that you’ll never run out. In fact, if you need more diapers, they can deliver them to you in as little as 4 hours.
We used these diapers with my daughter when they first came out, and we did deal with some leaks. However, in the two years since then, they have improved the diapers’ design and have incredibly good reviews from customers.
If you look at the chart above, the price of these diapers simply can’t be beat. They’re the least expensive option on our list, but they still have amazing qualities.
Earth & Eden doesn’t use chlorine in their diapers, and their ingredients don’t include any fragrances, lotions, latex, parabens, phthalates, or any of the EU 26 allergens.
There is a small design at the top of the diaper, but it doesn’t touch baby’s skin and the inks are made without lead or heavy metals.
With over 5,000 5-star ratings on Amazon, these diapers might be a great fit for your little one.
They’re only available on Amazon, but the brand does have a website where you can learn more about them and their non-toxic philosophy.
This is a new diaper to us, but looking at the reviews and overall list of ingredients (and non-ingredients), it’s one of our top picks.
Created by a mother who wanted the best diaper for her baby, Sprouted checks all of our boxes. Their diapers are chlorine-free, fragrance-free, and latex-free. They don’t have any lotions, phthalates, parabens, or TBT, and they’re solid white (aside from the wetness indicator), so there aren’t any inks or dyes touching your baby’s sensitive skin.
Additionally, they’re 40% biodegradable, which isn’t exactly the best they could be, but the company admits that it has some work to do here, and they’re working toward creating diapers that are even better.
The reviews are phenomenal too, and you can try them out for 30 days. If you don’t like them, you can get a full refund.
Get 10% off your first box with the code NESTING10
Yes, these diapers are more expensive than any other diaper on our list, but they are really great diapers, and if you’re looking for something that’s truly eco-friendly, these should be your top pick.
Nest diapers are made with plant-based sustainable materials, they’re vegan and cruelty-free, biodegradable, and compostable.
If you usually use cloth diapers but you’re looking for a diaper that you can use for those one-off days, I highly recommend this brand.
They meet all of our requirements for non-toxic diapers as well (aside from a bit of dye in the print, which doesn’t touch baby’s skin), and they clearly list all of their ingredients on their website, so you can rest assured knowing that there isn’t anything sneaky in them.
Oh, and they’re incredibly soft. Seriously the softest diapers we’ve felt. Read our full Nest Diapers review.
These bamboo diapers are about 67% biodegradable and safe for your baby and the environment. With soil and sunlight, they degrade in 180 days (compare that to traditional disposables, which can take up to 500 years to decompose in a landfill). They do not recommend composting them at home though.
They meet most of our requirements for safety as well, but they do have cute designs on them, and we’re not sure what kind of inks or dyes they use. However, the designs are only on the outside of the diaper and do not touch your baby’s skin, so they shouldn’t cause any skin irritation.
Another great eco-friendly option!
Eco Boom bamboo diapers decompose in 150 days, and they don’t use any chlorine bleaching.
The bamboo makes the diapers naturally hypoallergenic, and they are also free from fragrances, phthalates, parabens, TBT, lotions, and latex.
According to reviews, they’re leak-proof, soft, and absorbent, and they’ll keep your baby from breaking out.
Andy Pandy’s solid white diapers are becoming a favorite among parents, and it’s no wonder why.
These non-toxic diapers are super-soft and absorbent, prevent leaks, and they’re made of bamboo fibers instead of cotton, which makes them better for the environment.
As with all of the diapers on our list, they’re chlorine-free and fragrance-free. They don’t have any phthalates, TBT, or latex either.
Additionally, Andy Pandy plants TWO trees for every item that you purchase.
These diapers are great quality, and they make sure only 100% plant-based materials touch your baby’s skin.
They are not solid white. In fact, each pack has a different design. We’re unsure of what kind of dyes Naty uses in their diapers, but the designs and colors do not touch skin.
They are, however, chlorine, phthalate, and fragrance-free, and they don’t contain latex either.
The diapers have multiple certifications, and they go through additional testing to screen for harmful chemicals.
Bambo has two options for their diapers: Classic and Love.
Both are relatively equal for our purposes, but the Love collection does have an additional certification from Asthma Allergy Denmark.
They’re elemental chlorine-free (which isn’t necessarily as good as being total chlorine-free, but it’s not a deal-breaker for us). They’re also free of parabens, phthalates, and fragrances.
They have fairly good ratings and reviews (with over 3,000 5-star reviews on Amazon), but many people do complain about leaks because the diapers are a bit wider than most.
If you’re interested, we recommend purchasing a small pack to see how they work for your baby.
This one is our honorable mention, simply because Honest’s diapers are so easy to find (they’re on the shelves of nearly every grocery store), and they’re inexpensive, coming out at the same price as Pampers when you subscribe.
Obviously, they have adorable designs too. We always love picking out diapers each month! That being said, Honest’s diapers are not dye-free, but they’re careful not to allow the designs to touch baby’s skin.
They do have a plain white diaper though, which we’ve used many times in the past.
Honest Company diapers are totally chlorine-free, they don’t use any fragrances, phthalates, or parabens, and they’re soft and comfortable for all-day wear.
They’re not as environmentally-friendly as some of the other diapers on this list, so if you’re looking for diapers that are biodegradable, you should look elsewhere.
They’re perfect when you’re in a pinch though, and we love their training pants too!
Hopefully you found this list of non-toxic diapers helpful in your search!
If you like to support sustainable brands and prefer eco-friendly products, we’ve made a list of the best biodegradable diapers too!