Monday, December 10, 2007

santa came early!

A month ago, I was contacted by a company asking if I would be interested in participating in the Pampers Stages campaign. Because I love Pampers and I also love receiving free stuff, I wholeheartedly said "YES!"

Within a week of my response, we received several BIG boxes in the mail. Within those boxes there were a variety of diapers in a variety of sizes and a variety of wipes in a variety of styles. A person who is organized and on top of the game, would have immediately taken inventory and written down the quantity of everything that was received.

But well ... I'm going to pull my "I've got four children under the age of four" card here, and emphasize that three of my children think that a cardboard box is the greatest invention ever and they will stop at nothing to climb inside and play. In the time the box was delivered to my door and I peeled it open to peek at the contents inside, and then ran off to use the bathroom for 7.4 seconds, the box had been flipped upside and completely emptied.

The boxes of free diapers were then mixed with my monthly shipment of several more boxes that I had received on the exact same day from 1800 Diapers. Suffice it to say, there were enough Pampers in my living room to cover our entire 1,600 square foot house in baby soft protection.

Since I didn't order Cruisers, Easy-Ups, Swipers or Clean 'n Go from 1800 Diapers, I'm going to go out on a limb and write that those were the diapers and wipes I received from the Pampers Stages campaign.

So, let's review. Shall we?

Baby Dry are my all-time favorite Pampers diaper. Although I have purchased Cruisers before, I always veer toward Baby Dry because you get more diapers for your buck. On average, the cost of a Baby Dry diaper is approximately $0.05 less than a Cruiser. When you go through 100 diapers a week (give or take 20), that can add up over the years.

The Cruisers that the Pampers Campaign sent for me to review were in a size 3, for my little Henry. These diapers held up just fine during the day when I would change him every 3 to 4 hours. But every night when he would go without a diaper change for 8 hours or more, he would be absolutely saturated and require an outfit change before we were up for the day. Henry was bumped up to a size 4 diaper at the end of November. But even when I had him in a size 3 Baby Dry, he didn't have breakthrough that would require new pajamas at 4 AM.

I'm really not sure what the advantage is with the Cruisers over the Baby Dry. My opinion is that they cost a little more and have less absorbency. When our triplets were babies and just starting to "cruise" I never had a problem with them leaking out of the Baby Dry, nor have we ever had any kind of diaper rash, so I'll continue to stand by those diapers that have worked best for us.

Moving along.

Easy-Ups. These work just fine although I have to admit I like the Pull-Up velcro siding better than the tear-a-way with Easy-Ups. If your child is overly ambitious whipping off their diaper (as mine are), there is an excellent chance that the Easy-Up will be a one-time use product because the sides are destroyed. The Pull-Up with velcro siding, however, can be used again and again if the diaper is dry, or, if you are the kind of parent that doesn't see a problem with keeping your child in a slightly damp or semi-smeared poopette diaper.

I cast no judgment.

I'm going to caveat the statement above with my opinion that I no longer think that diaper-like-underwear are the way to go with potty training. My children have become just as proficient pulling a regular Baby Dry diaper up and down as they are any of the diapers that are specifically designed to be reused. Considering Easy-Ups cost on average $0.08 more than Baby Dry ... or $0.03 more than Cruisers ... I see no advantage for the extra cost.

However, I have yet to try Feel n' Learn and might see a benefit with those. Considering I have a particularly willful child that is adamantly opposed to going on the potty and has no problem walking around in underwear that are dripping wet, these might be a good alternative. Or, I could just put a pair of plastic training pants over his underwear and save my money for the therapy that I am surely going to need if he doesn't get the hang of this whole toilet gig soon.

Next on the docket: Wipes.

I've tried just about every kind of wipe on the market. Once upon a time, a long time ago, before I realized that we could get Gifts to Grow points with wipes, I thought that the Pampers wipes were too thin. But then, I got used to them. And, I accumulated more Gifts to Grow points then if I wasn't using them.

For the most part, I have no preference in the Pampers wipes that are marketed. I see no benefit with Sensitive over Baby Fresh (Aloe or Lavender) and that is coming from someone who had premature babies with highly sensitive skin. The downside is that unless I want to lug around a plastic tub with me, the small packets are not resealable and will dry out in my diaper bag. I'm also not fond of the hard travel pack because the wipes dry out too soon which is probably a function of their thinness.

Pampers' answer to thicker wipes comes in the way of their new product, Swipers.

These are noticeably thicker than the other Pampers wipes and have a fragrance that is positively lovely. Because I have become used to using thinner wipes, I hadn't planned on changing our wipe variety. But I just did a little cost comparison and in the event I want a thicker wipe - or one that is aromatically pleasing - I can purchase Swipers for approximately the same cost as Baby Fresh.

Or, the same cost as Clean n' Go.

This is another new product by Pampers. My opinion of Clean n' Go wipes is that they are great for no other reason than the travel pack is soft sided with a resealable plastic lid. Just because diaper wipes are marketed for cleaning a babies bum, that doesn't stop me from using them for anything and everything. Once my free stash runs out, I plan to purchase more of these wipes to bring with me in my diaper bag and keep stocked in my car.

In summary: Baby Dry diapers are the best. Wipes are wipes are wipes. But because Pampers now makes a thick wipe and a good travel case wipe, you can buy all of your diapering products from Pampers and collect points to earn cool toys for your kids or a Blockbuster movie night with your spouse. Or, you can donate your points to such charitable causes as March of Dimes, Unicef, or the Today Show Toy Drive.

That concludes my review.

Now if Sandals Resort would like for me to do a review, I've got January and February wide open. But do you think I could just ship our children in a cardboard box that they love so much - or would I need to bring them on the plane?


  1. Love it! Great job!

    I'm off to buy some new wipes!

    - Julia

  2. If you like thick wipes in soft containers with plastic lid I would highly, with no reservation, recommend the Costco wipes.
    I use them for EVERYTHING, even as a stain remover. They are cheap, sturdy, and fragrance free. I have a pack in each car, each room, and each diaper bag...
    Ahem... getting off my soapbox.

  3. Thankfully, this post doesn't pertain to me anymore.
    Well, I DO use diaper wipes to clean my rubber stamps, and I keep a travel pack in my van.

    I agree with you on the "pull-ups" though maybe for different reasons. I never thought the child had a "consequence" for soiling in a pull-up, since they absorbed like a diaper. Although; if feeling wet doesn't bother the child, then I guess that wouldn't matter.

    Potty training days were NOT happy days at our house....

    Good luck to you.

  4. I second the vote on Costco wipes. They are awesome, come in nice soft sided container that work great in the diaper bag, and I've never ever had them dry out.

    Andy they are cheaper than Pampers wipes by far! Love their diapers too.

  5. Does anyone know if it's true that the pampers gifts to grow program is ending in March? A friend was telling me that it is ending, but I haven't found any information to back or deny it. Anyone know?


  6. Mandy: Thanks for bringing that up, I meant to mention it in my post.

    According to the Pampers website, the Gifts to Grow program has been extended from March 2008 to March 2009. So you've got plenty of time to add up for a new Kettrike!

  7. oh, i so dont miss the diaper days!!!

  8. Jen - I love your blog! How do you get the free diapers????? Thanks

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  10. Are those new wipes from Pampers (Swipers???) flushable? The ones from Costco are not, which is a bummer cuz they are so inexpensive!!

  11. Jonathan and Sheila: I was contacted by a marketing company to test the products that Pampers sent to me and then write the review on my blog. Unfortunately, Proctor and Gamble isn't sending out free diapers to every deserving family in America.

    THAT would be awesome!!

  12. Lorie: I don't know if they are flushable. I'm guessing not, but I haven't tried. Then again, I get a little nervous flushing things down a toilet.

    That's why Charlie had to fish out a mouse with a plastic grocery bag.

  13. This is great informatoin. I really appreciate your insight.

  14. vety the nuts mom12/11/07, 1:55 PM

    Is it sad that I got excited seeing all those packages of diapers? To me it equivalates to "one less trip I need to make to the store".
    how sad is that! I loved your review, they shoudl give you free stuff to do that with more often, i'll listen to you before I listen to some random article in nowhere land.

  15. Informative review Jen

    I liked your idea of getting free stuff and review about the products because this way we will get the products for free and also share the information with others.

    The Parents Zone

  16. Thank goodness! I found out about the points when my first daughter was already a year old, but now with two in diapers they're adding up quick! If not for your blog, I never would have known about the program, a bajillion thank yous!

  17. William's problem -- he has testosterone. I've said it since my oldest boy (now 7-1/2) was about 18mos. "The boy has too much testoterone" and that's after having an 'aggressive' girl. Maybe Carolyn is just learning a few goodies from William???

    YEAH for you on the diapers!!!! Great review; glad I don't need the info. though :)

  18. This is AWESOME. I had no idea about the points thing. Since I'd like to have an excuse to buy the nice lavender wipes, I am a happy girl.

  19. Also, I have to check out that diaper ordering site. I am So Tired of lugging home boxes and packs of diapers (in THREE sizes now, because Edward is so much bigger than Elizabeth and Elizabeth is so much bigger than Henry) every single time we go to the store.