'Scrunchy' Moms Have Turned Their Parenting Style Into the Latest TikTok Trend

This balanced approach to parenting is a mix of 'silky' and 'crunchy' living and shows we're all just doing the best we can.

Mom sitting behind toddler who is messy from eating a chocolate bar.

Carlo A/Getty Images

Keeping up with labels for parenting styles can sometimes feel more exhausting than actually raising a human. There's sittervisingMontessori, and gentle parenting. And let's not forget crunchy parenting (cloth diapers, wooden toys made from non-toxic, sustainable materials) and silky parenting (disposable diapers, sleep training, epidural during birth). Now, social media is adding another one to the mix: "scrunchy."

The word is a hybrid of "crunchy" and "silky" styles. And, as the name implies, scrunchy parents are all about balance.

"Have you heard of 'crunchy" or "silky' moms?" wrote Hilary Rose Bodiford, a Texas mama to a baby named Bear, on Instagram in September. "Well, I'm right in the middle as a proud 'scrunchy' mom who will pay $20 for a vegan leather bib, but I also definitely don't use cloth diapers."

What do scrunchy moms buy at the toy store?

"We love nice wooden toys but will for sure buy the fun plastic light-up ones as well," Bodiford continued. To prove it, Bodiford posted a clip of some Lovevery Montessori-inspired wooden toys and a few plastic ones side by side. It appears Bodiford decided to feed her child human milk and formula in glass and plastic bottles. Bodiford feels plastic ones are better when the family is on the go.

Another mom, who goes by @millennialmidwesternmom, divulged in a TikTok video that she cloth diapers, breastfeeds, and puts her baby to sleep in a crib.

"Normal parenting? Craaaazy. Not a big fan of cloth diapers, but that's my own personal prerogative," said one of the more than 400 commenters.

In another TikTok video, Jessica Katz showed off her "scrunchy mom" home, which includes a compost bin, cloth diapers, vegan cookbooks, wooden and plastic toys, and a modern medicine shelf.

Alright, listen. I can see the comments on this article already: "Why does everything need a label?" And you know what: You're not wrong. Sometimes, these labels can feel divisive or overgeneralized. If falling into a "camp" (crunchy, scrunchy, silky, gentle, whatever) makes you feel less alone or helps you get advice that fits your lifestyle and values, great. But ultimately, most parents are doing their best and may be—consciously or not—borrowing from several different "styles" to meet their children's unique needs. What's important is that you:

  • Are meeting your child's physical, mental, and emotional health needs.
  • Love your child and show them in a way that fills their cup.
  • Don't hurt your child.
  • Aren't hurting anyone else.
  • Feel informed and supported in your choices.

Remember: You don't need to fit into a certain box, and someone else's choices to bed-share or breast/chestfeed don't invalidate yours to follow a strict sleep schedule or formula feed.

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