There's A Huge Problem With Diapers, So This Couple's Taking Things To The Changing Table

"Better for baby, better for parents, and better for the environment."

A staggering 20 billion disposable diapers are thrown away every year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). What's more, each disposable diaper can take up to 500 years to decompose. And Real Diapers points out "over 300 pounds of wood, 50 pounds of petroleum feedstocks, and 20 pounds of chlorine are used to produce disposable diapers for one baby per year."

Husband and wife team, Jo and Guy Schanschieff, could not stand for this, so in 1997, they decided to create their own eco-friendly cloth diaper line — Bambino Mio 

"My wife Jo and I were traveling the world when we met an American at the Taj Mahal who introduced us to the idea of cloth diapers," Guy explained to A Plus via email. "Convinced cloth was the way forward, we started our own cloth diaper laundry service when we got back to England and never looked back. Eventually this evolved into manufacturing our own products and creating the global brand that Bambino Mio has become."



Courtesy of Bambino Mio
Courtesy of Bambino Mio

Given that the duo went into the cloth diaper business, sustainability has always been important to them. "Sustainability is at the heart of cloth diapering and has always been important to us. We always ask parents if they would rather use 3,000 disposables per year or 15 cloth diapers? The difference between the two is immediately identifiable and a starting point for a lot of our conversations."

Fun is another factor in the brand, as Bambino Mio produces eco-friendly diapers in an array of colors and patterns.

Courtesy of Bambino Mio
Courtesy of Bambino Mio

And, of course, fit and function are extremely important elements of the final product. 

"The design process takes a variety of elements into account including feedback from customers, discussions with retailers, and our own internal research," Guy explains. "Our goal is to lead the cloth diapering world, so we are always working hard to create the perfect product for modern families."

When it comes to one of the brand's biggest challenges, it's converting them from disposable diapers to cloth. "As for challenges – that's easy … we are a niche product and there are quite a few misconceptions about cloth diapering out there. It can be really hard to change people's perceptions of using cloth, but it is a key part of what we do on a daily basis."

Courtesy of Bambino Mio
Courtesy of Bambino Mio

The Bambino Mio co-founder points out that something people may not realize is just what goes into the making of the products. "To them, it may just seem like a diaper or pack of natural baby wipes; but there's been years of development behind everything," he explains. "We take pride in offering parents a complete range of products that are easy to use, well-designed and better for baby, better for parents, and better for the environment."

This is evident in the Bambino Mio range. For example, the "Miosolo Diaper" features a concealed super absorbent core and stay-dry inner layer. These both help keep moisture away from baby's sensitive skin. Additionally, the diapers are constructed out a stretchy, water-resistant outer fabric and feature a pull out tab system to make removing "the core" from inside the diaper quick and simple.

The brand has been recognized with over 50 awards and it's stocked in 80 countries, but Guy writes that his proudest moments involve other parents.

"Anytime we get personal feedback from a family is a proud moment. It’s always encouraging to hear parents tell us how much they love our products and how much of a difference we have made to their family," he explained.

As for what's next for the brand, Bambino Mio's goal is to become as widely known in the U.S.A. as the U.K. "We're the mostly widely used cloth diaper brand in the UK and now we're looking to mirror that success in the U.S. as well." Guy writes. "We've had great success so far, partnering with retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Babies 'R' Us, and a range of independent boutiques, and are really starting to see a growing interest in cloth. Now we just need to keep that momentum going!"