My sweet blogging friend, Jill from Family of the Cloth (creative name!), was so kind to write a guest post about how to save money while cloth diapering. Yes, many moms do it ;)
Jill has many great giveaways on her blog so don’t forget to hop on over there.
Cloth Diapering to Save Money?
Budget restraints are a common reason why many mamas turn towards cloth diapers. When you consider the fact that the average baby goes through 6,000 diapers during the first two years of life (citation: http://www.realdiaperassociation.org/diaperfacts.php), with average costs hovering around $1,600/year for disposable diapers, cloth diapers become an attractive option. And while you really can save money by using cloth diapers, it’s easy to get carried away with the latest, greatest cloth diapering system, cute prints, and numerous accessories.
Here are a few tips to help you keep your costs down:
- Don’t Blow Your Budget on One Type of Diaper
– If you’re new to cloth diapering, don’t buy a full stash of one type of diaper. Just because a diaper receives positive reviews, you never know how it is going to perform and fit on your baby. Do your research, and try out several styles and systems before deciding on a whole stash. You might also want to consider ordering a cloth diaper trial kit from a site like Jillian’s Drawers, which allows you to try out a variety of popular diapers for a low cost.
- Don’t Overindulge
– Find a system or type of diaper that works for you, and try to stick to it. I love trying new diapers as much as the next person, but I usually wait to read reviews before shelling out the money on the latest new system. Even after trying the new diapers, I usually tend to go back to my tried and true diapers.
– Try not to get wrapped up in cute prints and colors.
- Buy and Sell Used
– Consider selling outgrown diapers or diapers that didn’t work for you on sites like Diaperswappers, Spots, etc. You can often recoup some of the initial costs this way. If you’re not planning on reusing the diaper on another baby, or if the diaper just didn’t work for you, consider selling it.
– On the same note, consider buying your diapers on FSOT (for sale or trade). The idea of used diapers used to gross me out a little bit, but there are many barely used diapers listed. Plus, used diapers can be disinfected, cleaned, and repaired. There are many great deals on FSOT if you keep an eye out.
– You can also check with e-tailers such as Jillian’s Drawers, Nicki’s Diapers, and Kelly’s Closet who offer gently used diapers at a discount.
- Keep it Simple
– Simplify your wash routine. It’s easy to get carried away with special additives, extra rinses, and numerous cycles in the dryer. Try to simplify your routine, and consider hanging your diapers to dry (either on a clothesline outside, or inside on a rack).
– Consider using more inexpensive diapering systems, such as prefolds and covers. The Cotton Babies Econobum and Flip systems are also economical. Be sure to try one or two before buying an entire stash!
– Use cloth wipes. Consider making your own from scrap material, or buy cheap packages of baby washcloths. Cloth wipes are easy to use, and will reduce the amount of money needed for disposable wipes. You can wet the wipes ahead of time and keep them in a warmer, or wet them as needed.
- Become a Fan
– “Like” the Facebook pages of your favorite cloth diaper manufacturers and retailers. Follow them on twitter, as well. Make sure to sign up for their newsletters. Many companies offer giveaways and coupon codes to fans. Many major retailers offer exclusive sales to fans, or give them first chance at seconds sales.
– Shop seconds sales! Many retailers like Cotton Babies offer brand new diapers at a discounted price because of minor imperfections, most of which have no effect on the usability of the diaper (be sure to read the fine print!).
– Follow baby discount sites like Babysteals, Baby Half Off, and Green Baby Bargains. These sites often feature cloth diapers at discounted prices. You usually have to be quick to score one, but the savings are worth it. Be sure to like these sites on Facebook, too, as they often post clues ahead of time alerting fans that “fluff” is coming.
- Enter Giveaways and Contests
– In addition to the Facebook sites, many etailers and mommy bloggers offer giveaways of diapers. Follow your favorite cloth diaper blogs. You can also search the hashtag #clothdiapers on twitter for links to giveaways.