A few weeks ago I reviewed the Diaper Genie II Elite as part of my participation in the Mom Central Diaper Pail Test Drive program. This is part 2, and we're going to meet the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail by Munchkin.
Like I said in the first post, I'm a newbie to diaper pails. I always thought a garbage can would work (and it had, for about 20 months!). After trying out the Diaper Genie II Elite for a week, my opinion was starting to be swayed. Now that I've also tried out the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail by Munchkin for a week (plus an additional week), I have to say that I fully understand why so many people recommend diaper disposal systems.
I changed up week 2 of the Diaper Pail test drive by putting the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail in Haiden and Piper's bedroom. When I first started these reviews, I had thought we changed most diapers in our living room. After thinking about it, I realized we also changed quite a few diapers upstairs, either on our bed or in the bathroom at bathtime, especially on the weekdays when I worked. My first thought was that this diaper pail was relatively small. It was definitely smaller than the garbage can I had originally put in their room to contain the dirty diapers. There was no assembly required, all I had to do was pop the bag into the pail, snap it in place and get started. You also have to peel a sticker off the baking soda capsule attached to the inside of the lid so it can start dispensing real backing soda into the diaper pail. After both of those things were done, we were ready to start filling it with diapers.
The Arm & Hammer diaper pail is not hands free: you have to push a lever on the top and pull the lid up to put the dirty diaper inside. The closing motion of the lid automatically shakes some baking soda into the pail, helping to control odors. There's also an extra odor-controlling measure on the inside of the pail. The closing of the lid also moves a circular panel to block the hole at the top of the diaper pail. Because of that, there's a second barrier to keep odors inside the pail when the lid is closed.
The actual disposal of the dirty diapers is really easy! The refill bag has a ring around the top that snaps into the pail to keep it secure when it's in use. When the bag is full, the ring unsnaps from the pail and the entire bag is removed through a door in the side of the pail. Then the ring folds in half and snaps together to seal the bag up.
Here's what I've ended up liking about the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail by Munchkin:
- It's compact. with an advertised capacity of 25 dirty diapers, it take several days to fill this up, even with two little ones in diapers. Granted, not every diaper goes into this pail, but I don't change diapers in a single dedicated place.
- The self-sealing bags. These are really nice. Last night I emptied one bag and put in a fresh one. I sealed the first bag up and put it at the top of the stairs until I was ready to bring it down. If the bag hadn't sealed in the odors, there's no way I would have done that!
- The easy emptying process. Pulling out one bag and popping in another is as easy as it gets!
I do have a few suggestions for improvements in this diaper pail:
- It's not hands-free. I don't think you appreciate this until you're holding a really dirty diaper and a squirmy baby! I'd love to see a foot pedal to pop it open when both hands are occupied.
- Waste less plastic bags. I don't think I'll ever be satisfied in this area. When I took the full bag out of the diaper pail, there was definitely room for 5 or 6 more diapers in the bag, but they wouldn't fit in the pail. I hate that the bag isn't really filled to capacity when the pail can't hold anymore diapers.
- The cost of refills. Again, this is a a baby bargain website, and I have a hard time with the idea of buying a refill pack of 10 bags for $6.99. The bags are modified trash bags, and that's a hefty price tag when you total it up over time.
Diaper Genie II Elite Vs Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail by Munchkin: Final Thoughts
When all is said and done, I still don't believe a diaper pail is a necessity, but I can see how it can definitely find a place in the “Nice to Have” category! Both contained odors much better than a regular garbage can with a lid and required less time and maintenance than a garbage can. They also both had different pros and cons. Since they performed so similarly, I think the biggest difference between the two is the exterior design. The Diaper Genie II Elite was definitely made with style in mind, while the Arm & Hammer Diaper Pail was made for function. If performance is the question, I'm going to be diplomatic and call it a draw. I think both work quite well and do the job they're made to do.
I am a member of the Mom Central community and I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central, provided by Diaper Genie, and received a free Diaper Genie diaper pail and a free Munchkin Arm & Hammer diaper pail to facilitate my review.