Why I Loved Renting Newborn Cloth Diapers

Guest post by Amy!

When I found out I was pregnant with my second child, I decided I wanted to cloth diaper. My daughter was 2.5 and still wearing diapers. I was sick and tired of paying for disposables and didn’t like how much I had spent on diapers just to throw them away. I began to look at my options for cloth diapering a newborn:

Prefolds: I did not want to use prefolds because they looked hard! I also figured it would be hard to convince my husband to use them. Plus, I would probably hurt myself using a Snappi or pins.

One-size diapers: Even though I figured I would have another big baby (my first was 9lbs 2oz), I wasn’t sure if OS diapers would fit in the beginning. I didn’t want to take that risk.

Newborn diapers: I figured these would be the best size-wise but I did not want to drop a lot of money on diapers to only use them for a few months.

Disposables: I really wanted to use cloth from the beginning because my main goal was to save money and it’s kind of hard to save money buying disposable diapers all the time. By my calculations, you would need around 1,000 disposable diapers to diaper a newborn baby for 12 weeks (12 diapers per day = 84 diapers a week; 84 x 12 weeks = 1,008). That’s a lot of diapers!

Then someone told me I could rent newborn cloth diapers. Brilliant! I rented mine from Sweetbottoms Baby, which is a local store for me but you can rent the diapers from anywhere in the country and they’ll ship them to you.  It is $215 for two dozen diapers but when you return the diapers, you get an $100 store credit, which you obviously use to buy more diapers. $115 is a great deal for 3 months worth of diapers! Sure, shopping sales and using coupons could probably get you 1,000 disposable diapers for around the same amount of money, but then that’s just 1,000 more diapers in the landfill.

My rental was all Swaddlebees Organic newborn fitted diapers, but some of the rentals also include Clover Organic newborn fitteds. I picked the diapers up a few days before my due date, washed them, and then had them set up and ready to use when we came home from the hospital:

I was a little apprehensive about using fitteds since they require a cover which is one extra step, but I shouldn’t have worried at all! Changing his diapers was easy-peasy. I did have to buy covers and I figured that I would sell them after I returned the diaper rental. Well, I ended up buying some fitteds because I liked them so much!

I was right and my son was indeed a big baby (11lbs 1oz at birth!). The newborn diapers did still fit him when my rental term was up, but they would not have fit for much longer. I really think I made a good decision renting newborn diapers instead of buying two dozen diapers that I would only be able to use for three or four months.

Here is my chunky baby at one month, wearing one of the Swaddlebees fitteds and a weehuggers cover:

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22 Responses to “Why I Loved Renting Newborn Cloth Diapers”

  1. amy corinne Says:

    Judi, just like everyone says, 12 diapers per day seems to be average for newborns. I wasn’t exaggerating anything in order to win over people, just using the information I received from asking others.


  2. Bianca Says:

    We were given a gift certificate for a cloth diaper service. This worked great because we had bought primarily OS dipes and baby was waaaaaay too small! we folded the prefolds into thirds and used them as an insert in g-pouches, which worked perfectly. Eve after one month she was too small so I bought 3 dozen preemie prefolds. I wish we would have had an option for a rental service, but now I have those prefolds for the next babies, and extra burp rags for tts meantime :)


  3. Autumn Beck Says:

    Judi, I’m a lazy diaper changer but in the newborn stage I’m forced to change the diaper every feeding (usually every hour and a half- 2 hours). 12 is an average and from feedback I have received over the years this seems to be accurate. An average of 12 obviously means there are many in your same situation ;)


    • Anna Says:

      I think it’s also important to consider the fact that 12 diaper changes in “a day” is really a 24-hour period. I think sometimes people hear 12 diapers a day and think from wake-up to sleep….but really it’s that 24 hours…. Just chiming in my two sense…. :)


  4. Majaliwa Bass Says:

    Great post and CUTE BABY! As an FYI for other moms reading this article, Autumn has another great post about companies that offer rentals. Pooters is one of them and has great rental options (e.g. a contour rental for $99, and a variety rental for $215).

    LINK TO AUTUMN’S BLOG POST: http://allaboutclothdiapers.com/a-directory-of-newborn-cloth-diaper-rental-programs/

    LINK TO POOTERS RENTAL PACKAGES: http://www.pootersdiapers.com/diaper-types/rental-packages.html


  5. lisa Says:

    I think my son was only changed 8-10 times a day, except for the days when we had the “oopsies”, as someone else said. We also did a newborn rental which we loved. It was $280 up front, but I got about $200 back in store credit because my big boy (9 lbs, 1 oz) only wore the newborn dipes for 6 weeks. I did a rental that had flexibility, that didn’t lock you into a set amount of time, because I figured he wouldn’t wear them the “normal” three months that most rental programs require. He was our first, and so in hindsight, maybe I should have invested and purchased, but being new to CD, I didn’t want to buy a kind that I would end up not liking. Renting gave me the chance to try fitteds, prefolds, pockets and all-in-ones. I realized through the rental that we’re a pockets kind of family, so for that reason alone, it was worth it.


    • Jacque Says:

      Lisa, which rental provider did you go with?


      • Lisa Says:

        Hi Jacque, I used One Lucky Mama. The Mama that runs it is Julie and she was super wonderful to work with. Though it was an online order for me because I’m not located near her store, she was really helpful and personal and she helped me numerous times. I only have good things to say about my rental experience.


  6. Bernice M Says:

    Great post Amy. Thanks for sharing.

    re:. “I don?t know that using a number that high is going to be effective at convincing people that cloth would save them money.”

    Sorry Judi but 12- 15 changes is not at all an exaggeration. My husband and I easily did at least a dozen changes daily with our breastfed daughter. Further, pretty much every baby website asserts the same information for new moms so I don’t think most would be shocked at reading such a number. Honestly, I’ve never read anything less than 10-12 changes daily.

    Cute baby, Amy!!


  7. Gwen Says:

    This is totally off topic but… 11 lbs. 1 oz! I have to know, did you have your son naturally? We had our first at home, she was 10 lbs. 8 oz., we’re pregnant with our second and I was kind of hoping this one will be smaller… I’ve never talked with anyone personally that has had a baby larger than mine naturally and am looking for some encouragement just in case this little ninja is larger than big sister. :-)


    • Autumn Beck Says:

      A great friend of mine had an 11+ lb baby at home.


      • Gwen Says:

        Thanks Autumn! I know it can be done but so few women in my area have natural births much less home births so sometimes I feel kinda alone. Thanks for the encouragement!


        • Majaliwa Bass Says:

          Gwen, I had a homebirth with my 2nd after a c-section with my first. It definitely can be done but I do recommend taking a class or something to help prepare you with the “tools” you’ll need to do it. I read up on breathing and calming exercises and took prenatal yoga up until 12 hours before going into labor. Also, I recommend checking out the movie “The Business of Being Born”. It’s a great documentary by Ricki Lake on homebirths that I think can give you some more encouragement.


    • amy corinne Says:

      Gwen, I ended up having a c-section but I know other women that have had similarly big babies naturally in the hospital or at home. You can do it!


  8. MicheMegan Says:

    Thanks for the post… the 12 or so diaper changes didnt scare me off of cloth diapers at all. we use disposables with my first who was ebf and he needed to be changed that much bc he seemed to always be pooping! I dont think that 12-15 diapers is an exaggeration but just shows how different each child is… in frequency, fit, and feedings, etc.


  9. Jamie Says:

    I am cloth diapering my child after using disposables on my first two. Today we had an all day outing so I took disposables with me. Personally I thought a days worth of cloth was too much to lug around. Anyway, I packed 12 diapers, used 3 before we left & changed him before bed. I was surprised that I went through 16 diapers today. I feel confident saying normally ir’s probably 10-12, however I had a 16 diaper day today.


  10. tarin Says:

    My son goes through 12 to 15 diapers a day and he’s 4 months old, but he nurses every 1 and a half to 2 hours. Some babies only nurse every 3 to 4 hours which is why they may need less changes Judy. Some moms leave a diaper on for more than one pee and others change as soon as its wet. You also have to filter in the “oopsie” diapers, the ones that get wet or soiled while you’re in the process of changing baby. My first was formula fed and only went through 9 diapers a day as he only fed every 4 hours. My youngest is ebf.


  11. judi Says:

    I don’t know how anyone goes through 12 diaper changes a day. I’ve never changed any of my babies that many times, even as newborns. I’ve had newborns in cloth and in disposables. Maybe I’m a bad mom but I’ve never had a newborn get a diaper rash, in disposables or in cloth. I don’t know that using a number that high is going to be effective at convincing people that cloth would save them money.


    • judi Says:

      Btw, I hope I don’t come across as judgmental! I just may not be as diligent as I should be. I’m just thinking that if among my 7 children, none of them were changed that often then others might be experiencing the same thing. Perhaps they might see the 12 changes a day number as someone who feels super strongly about cloth exaggerating the cost savings to win over people. As a fan of cloth I want to win new fans with just the facts. ;)


      • Gabriela Says:

        Judi, i have 2 children and my children have always pooped alot. As newborns, almost every diaper change was a stinky. I also did go through about 10-12 diapers in a 24 hr period. Everyones babies are different.


  12. Sam Says:

    Your baby is soo cute!


  13. Rebecca Says:

    We also used a newborn diaper rental & LOVED it!!! Our little man was pretty small when he came home from the NICU because he was a preemie so we actually extended our rental & used them for about 5 months. We used Nells Natural Baby newborn rental which came with Kissaluvs fitteds and Thirsties covers. Will absolutely do something like this again in the future if we have more children!


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