I've been battling a chronic rash in Little Guy. It is incredible that he has it, given that he spends most of the day dressed in his Angel Costume wearing more hair than clothes.
I had to totally give up un cotton and start using pockets with him for nights and naps, which makes it harder to keep up on laundry since I only have 17 (including 5 AIOs) for Tiny Guy to use, and I can't use the Fuzzibunz
on him because they are a little on the small side and it would require me sizing them back and forth all day long. I also can't use the GroVias because, as I've said, I've given up cotton on him, so that leaves me to the Ecconappi (sad face).
So, how come Little Guy's butt is all burned if he's wearing diapers with "no chemicals"?
Well, here's the catch: no such thing.
First, and most important, is the pee itself, which is a very complex compound. Which is why I'm wearing a layer to take it away from his butt. The problem is that, contrary to what people may think, it is very hard to clean. Some fabrics tend to retain urea crystals, no matter how many times you rinse, and over time, the amount grows and decomposes to ammonia, to a level that will at any contact with liquids and on some occasions burn the skin.
No matter how hypoallergenic the stuff is, or how "free and clear". It needs cleaning agents. Period. No cleaning agents, no urea removal. If someone uses plain water to clean diapers, it would take some 20 washes or more every time. And those chemicals will, again, build up and leave residues in the fabric. Next thing you know, in the best case scenario you'll have repelling. In the worst, rashes again.
There's no place on earth in which you will get plain H20 from the tap. Not only it does not exist in nature, but as a solvent, it grabs whatever is there, so it would be impossible to keep it pure and clean. Some places do better jobs than others in keeping it free of toxins and adding a balanced combination of stuff to make it potable. Others have wells and water takes whatever is on them. In any case, water will mostly come with chlorine and fluoride and some other salts. That means that you can not trust your washing routine to work on a different location and that those salts will build up too. For some hard water places, the easiest solution seems to be Calgon. I'll tell you my experience when that happens. Right now I have extremely soft (and not good at removing soap) East Coast water.
So far, no detergent has proven to remove all the crystals and leave no residue with just a couple of rinses regardless of location and water composition. We can only do the old fashion trial and error and do our best to keep those bums as chemical free as possible. As always, with cloth it's our choice and our chore, not a corporation's.