Brands and countries

Ever wonder how disposable baby diapers became the time-saving (and skin-protecting) convenience they are today? Here are some of the highlights:

  • Disposable diapers have been around for more than 70 years. If you were born after 1949, there’s a good chance you wore them as a baby. 

  • A disposable diaper is often the first thing many babies are dressed in after birth. The average baby uses ~4,600-4,800 disposable diapers in their first three years of life.1

  • Convenience, performance, and easy cleanup are the main reasons why parents all over the world—parents just like you—prefer disposable diapers instead of cloth diapers that sit around soiled until laundry day. 

Of course, the team at Bostik (which includes many parents) knows there are many reasons why you choose to use disposable diapers and stay loyal to brands you trust. Rest assured that, as the adhesive supplier to many leading diaper manufacturers worldwide, we make our adhesives with your baby’s best interests in mind. 


Meeting the evolving needs of consumers

Unlike the first disposable diapers, which were basically a stack of tissue paper with a belt, today’s diapers are designed to keep your baby comfortable, happy, and dry. Adhesives helped make that happen.


The use of adhesive strips in disposable hygiene products came in 1969.  This replaced the need for safety pins. Seeing how effective adhesives were at improving product performance, manufacturers started looking at other ways to use adhesives to make their disposable diapers even better.


In the 1970s, the first disposable diapers with elastic around the legs were introduced. The elastic improved fit and helped contents stay inside. Adhesives made that innovation possible by holding elastics in place.

Here’s an interesting fact: Diapers that allowed only 10% leakage were once considered “good.” Advancements in diaper designs and better absorption—both supported by adhesives—changed our minds in the 1980s.

Then the 1990s gave birth to even more user-friendly ways to fasten diapers. New stretchy sides created a more comfortable fit. And wetness indicators showed parents when it was time for a diaper change. Again, all thanks to adhesives.

In the years since, the market has explored new core configurations, such as the channel core, compound and pre-compound core, and others. These options, designed to improve absorbency and fit, also each rely on adhesives to make them work.

Today, adhesives are used to:

  • Prevent leaks by helping elastic waistbands and legs stay in place 
  • Create a snug fit by holding on the adjustable tabs
  • Keep the diaper from shifting, breaking or bunching up 
  • Indicate wetness so you can see when it’s changing time 

Overall, adhesives ensure you can rely on the quality and performance of every diaper, holding it all together and much more!


Adhesives and the disposable diapers of tomorrow 

Diaper designs have evolved over the years. So have adhesives. Plus, more improvements are coming your way.

Bostik’s smart adhesives are helping manufacturers look at ways to make their diapers thinner, softer, more absorbent, more sustainable, including the use of fewer and even natural materials!

We are also making new adhesives that keep the health of the planet in mind. In fact, several diapers that use our adhesives are being awarded eco-labels and more are being considered.

As the needs and requirements of industry associations, governments, and parents like you (and some of us at Bostik) continue to change, we will remain at the forefront of creating the right adhesives to keep our children—and their families—happy.


Want to learn more? Read Adhesives in Disposable Hygiene Products: What’s Being Used and Why.


1Swatee Deyaa, Mike Purdonaa, Taryn Kirschb, HansMartin Helbichb, Kenny Kerra, Lijuan Lia, Shaoying Zhoua, Exposure Factor considerations for safety evaluation of modern disposable diapers, (Regulatory Toxicology and Pharmacology, 2018), 1.
a The Procter & Gamble Company, Cincinnati, OH, USA
b Procter & Gamble Service GmDH, Schwalbach, Germany    

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