Huggies® puts safety first when it comes to protecting baby’s skin. Back in August there were a few claims on the Internet that Huggies has foreign materials in their wipes. The brand leapt into action to test the wipes and they’ve proven again and again that Huggies wipes are safe and made with the highest standards. Sadly, it’s hard to un-ring a bell.
Once claims are out there, what can a brand do to repair an unfairly damaged reputation? At Momtrends we’ve been a partner with Huggies for years. During the diaper years of my motherhood journey, they were the sturdy & soft wipes I relied on for 5,000 changes (yes, that’s a real number—the average parent changes 5,000 diapers per child!). When Huggies invited me to participate in their first ever Parents Council, I made the trip happen. I wanted to hear from the scientists and engineers about how Huggies is protecting babies and I wanted to become a well-educated brand advocate.
First, let’s talk about the claims. It’s impressive how seriously Huggies took the parents’ claims. When a mom posted a video claiming to see glass, Huggies contacted her immediately, and then dispatched a representative to get the sample and take it McCrone independent labs--an independent testing lab AND the FDA swooped in and went to the Huggies wipes’ facility in Arkansas to investigate.
The lab found no glass shards. The FDA found no glass shards. There are no glass shards.
In fact, the Huggies team made the sample wipes (a portion of the opened pack that were collected from the mom who made the false claims) to the Parents Council members. You guessed it, we didn’t find shards either.
While this is all impressive. It’s not surprising to me. Huggies makes a commitment as a brand to talk and listen to parents every day. From social media to focus groups, their business is about keeping babies safe and parents happy.
But back to the false claims. The lengths Huggies went through to test, retest and verify safety made me proud to be associated with the brand. You know what else? Go check them out on social media. They answered EVERY SINGLE QUESTION from concerned parents. Every tweet, every Facebook post, every call.
Once we got the elephant in the room out of the way, we were able to hear more about Huggies' and Kimberly-Clark’s commitment to safety. We heard from a team member with a PhD in Toxicology. Her job is too keep toxic materials as far away from your family as possible. In an nutshell, it’s a loooong involved process to get new products developed.
We also heard from Huggies’ consultant Dr. Bill Sears (father of 8, author of more than 40 parenting books and Harvard-trained doctor). Dr. Sears has made it his life’s work to take some of the worry and stress out of parenting. His opinion goes a long way. Dr. Sears told us there should be three things in wipes—lots of water, vitamin E and aloe. Check, check, and check. Huggies has them all.
NEW PARENT TIP: Dr. Sears recommends getting a little air in the nether regions. He advises letting baby get 30 seconds of fresh air on his/her bum before putting on the new diaper.
While Dr. Sears can tell you what should go into wipes, let this experienced mom tell you what else you want—softness and thickness. Wimpy wipes won’t get the job done. Scratchy wipes can irritate baby.
We learned more about wipes than I ever thought possible. From deconstructing them by hand (did you know there are three layers in each wipe!) to seeing microscopic views of the fibers that make up wipes, I feel really comfortable telling you, these wipes are developed with baby and parent in mind.
Huggies uses TripleClean layers: the first layer is made of a bottom and top layer of polypropylene microfibers and a middle layer of absorbent cellulose fiber (this is the same pulpy stuff that makes paper). The cellulose is fluffy and soft and absorbent. The polypropylene is made of long strands of microfiber to make the wipes strong and soft. Here's what the wipes have inside:
When it comes to the ingredients that keep the wipes moist and allow them to clean, it’s 99% purified water. Then there are cleaning agents called surfactants (coco-betaine on the label) and some preservatives to keep them from drying out (but the patented wipes container does most of that work!) in the form of sodium benzoate. Then there’s the yummy stuff- the botanical and vitamins to nourish baby’s skin. I left the Council knowing about EVERY ingredient seen below and was extremely happy with the science behind it all.
Oh, and that “shimmer” that folks see in the wipes? No it’s not glass, it’s merely the light reflecting on the moisture in the wipes. And yes, if you do rub the wipes with fervor, you can gather enough polypropylene fibers to make a little flake. But rest-assured—it’s NOT FIBERGLASS OR GLASS.
After all the care that went into developing the wipes, Huggies doesn’t stop there. All the wipes in the US are produced at a facility in Arkansas. Each product is tested and each package is inspected before it leaves the plant.
That’s a lot of information about wipes. Maybe more than you ever cared to know. But aren’t you glad a brand like Huggies cares this much? I sure am.
After our science lesson and virtual plant tour, we talked more about Huggies commitment to families. We learned about how the diapers are produced, and about the give back efforts of the brand. Did you know that Kimberly Clark has been making diapers since 1968 and wipes since 1992? We covered a big style development from Huggies with the 2104 launch of the Clutch ‘n’ Clean Wipes. And the brand never stops innovating—from looking to provide incredible values, to making designs that reflect a modern aesthetic to producing diapers that keep the tiniest babies in the NICU snuggled in dry and soft mini diapers--Huggies cares. (p.s. below is a shot of the NICU diaper--look how mini they are!)
Huggies has a partnership with NICU nurses (if you ever get the chance to touch the special wipes developed for the NICU, do it! They are soft as a cloud) to develop products for the most vulnerable babies. And they also work with AWHONN on annual diaper drives. This year alone Huggies will donate more than 20 million diapers to diaper banks across the US. To help raise awareness for this need, we’ll be doing more programs to highlight Huggies Every Little Bottom Campaign in 2016.
If you’re still with me at this point, let me stress two things. There are a myriad of large and small ways Huggies is giving back to families and at Huggies safety is paramount.
I’m a proud member of the Huggies Parent Council. The council members receive a stipend for working on brand advocacy. Huggies did not request to read a draft of this post, nor was any of if scripted. All opinions are my own.