Goop set the internet ablaze on May 11 with a viral Instagram post about their newest product launch: The Diapér, a disposable baby diaper lined with virgin alpaca wool, fastened with amber gemstones and infused with the scent of jasmine and bergamot for a “revitalized baby.” The pack of 12 was priced at $120.
The post quickly sparked outrage. Amid the nationwide formula shortage, the pricey Diapér seemed particularly out of touch.
But apparently, inciting disbelief and disgust was exactly what the launch was meant to do. Just hours after the Diapér post, Goop founder and CEO Gwenyth Paltrow appeared in a video on the Goop page to explain the real story and outrage. “If treating diapers like a luxury makes you mad, so should taxing them like a luxury,” she said. “The Diapér is a fake product meant to draw attention to a real problem: Despite the absolute necessity of diapers, in 33 states, they aren’t treated like an essential item. They’re taxed as a luxury good. This leaves 1 in 3 families struggling to afford them.”
Paltrow goes on to explain that while eliminating the diaper tax won’t solve everything, it’s a start in helping families get at least another month’s supply. In fact, Goop priced the fictional Diapér at $120 because that is what the diaper tax could cost families annually. She called on people to partner with Goop and Baby2Baby to strike down the luxury tax on diapers, and to donate to the organization that provides children living in poverty with diapers, formula and other life-saving necessities.
Diapers are among the most critical must-have items for new parents, but, naturally, they’re far from a one-time purchase: The American Academy of Pediatrics estimates that babies go through about 3,000 disposable diapers in their first year of life, costing families about $1,000—and that’s not even factoring in wipes, diaper cream and other diapering products.
If you or a new mom you love cannot afford diapers, there is help. You can find a free diaper bank near you using the National Diaper Bank Network’s Member Bank locator. You can also take action to provide free diapers to women in your community by donating to Baby2Baby or by starting your own diaper drive here.