The family and I are enjoying time with family right now, but Tiffany over at Wife.Mother.Teacher. is here to share a bit of money-saving information with you. This is a great post to share with friends or family who aren't quite sure cloth is worth the "trouble"!
Have you ever tried convincing a friend how wonderful cloth diapering is, only to have them turn up their nose in disgust? It doesn’t matter how many times I tell friends about my love of fluff and all their fabulous features – the only argument I’ve ever made successfully is cost! Among the many great benefits of cloth diapering – saving money is by far the asset most families can relate to - so here goes:
My favorite cost $15 each. You need a stash of about 20-24 diapers. That's a total cost of $360 for 24 diapers. Compare that to Huggies - on Amazon they run $47.17 for 160 diapers. ($7.08 for 24 diapers.)
Let’s say the average child goes through perhaps 7-10 diapers per day, that means you're only washing diapers every 2-3 days. If your child potty trains at 2.5 years old, that's about 912 days. At 7 diapers a day, you'll go through 6,387 diapers before your child potty trains. That equals $1,882.96! (Just think what a person could do with $1,882.96 – debt snowball action anyone?)
Next, baby wipes! Twelve cloth wipes runs $5.95 on Amazon. That's a total of $11.90 on your washable wipes (or free if you use/make your own). Compared to disposable wipes which run you $10.97 for 600. If you use 1 wipe for every diaper change that's still $117 worth of wipes over the next 2.5 years.
But wait... they’ll want to know whether or not there is ‘special gear’ required for cloth diapering. (That’s what they heard on some new mom forum after all.) Yes, they'll need two wet bags for the nursery and two - three wet bags for when you're out and about (or daycare). That's a total cost of around $55. Add an extra $132-$232 a year in extra water and soap.
There are other great cloth diaper accessories you could consider - but they definitely aren't required. Our two favorites are the Bum Genius Diaper Sprayer and SprayPal Splatter Shield – these have been selling points for many of my disposable diaper friends. (The idea of cleaning poop out of a diaper just scares the bananas out of them! LOL)
So where does this leave us?
Cloth Diapers from birth to 2.5 years:
· Diapers = $360
· Wipes = $11.90
· Accessories = $55
· Soap = $32
· Water = $100
· GRAND TOTAL = $559
Disposable Diapers from birth to 2.5 years:
· Diapers = $1,882.96
· Wipes = $117
· Trash = ????
· Trash bags/Travel trash bags = ???
· GRAND TOTAL = $2,000 + ???
There's just one more thing to consider. The average American family has 2 children. That means you could diaper the second child for the low cost of $32 a year (our cost for soap on average). And when you're done with your diapers you can sell them. (Speaking of which... if you can purchase used diapers from the get go - you'll be saving even more money! We found quite a few used diapers online for about $5 each when we first started.)
At this point in the conversation, they'll usually at least admit that the idea of cloth isn't as scary as they had thought previously. (So far my record time for convincing someone to cloth diaper is less than 10 minutes at a baby shower.) There just isn't much argument against them when you break down the cost (plus all the other great benefits we've all come to know and love)!
Tiffany is the owner and author of Wife.Mother.Teacher. a blog about balancing family budgets and home management while being a modern, working mom. She enjoys writing about her family’s Total Money Makeover journey, meal planning and exciting adventures as a public school teacher. In her ‘free time’ she enjoys reading, visiting local kid friendly attractions and spending quality time with her friends and family.