I am now on my third child and to say that I am done with diapers is an understatement! My first two were in daycare, so I used disposables with them. I decided to stay at home after my third child and have been using cloth. They both have their pros and cons but I have been able to find ways to save money on both.
Here are some of my tips to save money on diapers and wipes.
This guest post is from Ashley. She is a stay-at-home mom of 3 little kiddos and blogs at Budgets Made Easy.
Calculate the cost per item
In order to save money on diapers and wipes, you need to determine how much each diaper and wipe is costing you.
I would always calculate how much each diaper and wipe cost to determine the better value. I was paying $0.19 per diaper and $0.02 per wipe. I also could not use certain brands because my daughter was allergic and/or I just didn’t like them.
This cost was the lowest I was generally able to find. The cost will depend on the brand and where you purchase them.
You can even make a spreadsheet and track the prices to find the best deal. Then when you find a sale or coupons, you know that it really is a good deal.
Amazon Subscribe & Save
I used to use the subscribe and save program and they were the cheapest for me at the time. I have since decided that I was wasting money because I was buying things I didn’t need just to get to the 5 items for shipping every month. Plus I got rid of my Prime membership because of the cost and impulse shopping.
However, If you have a Prime membership and need 5 items a month, it may be the best deal for you. Amazon Subscribe and Save with Amazon Prime saves you 20% on diapers and wipes.
Even with the price of the Prime membership it was still cheaper at the time and more convenient that any local store for me. They even usually have coupons you can click and it will take it off of the first order. Prices change, so make sure that you are getting the cheapest diapers.
Amazon usually has a 30 day free trial for Prime and discounted rates for Prime for students or those with an EBT card and sometimes it goes on sale once a year.
Depending on where you live, you may or may not have a warehouse or bulk store available. I have Sam’s Club, BJ’s Warehouse, and Costco close to where I live. They all have their pros and cons.
This is a great place to save money on diapers and wipes since you know that you will have to use a lot each month. You might as well stock up and save money when you know you will need them.
Some of the stores even take coupons which is a huge plus. BJ’s Warehouse will take their own coupons and a manufacturer coupon on the same item. They almost always have diaper coupons and you can print manufacturer coupons off Coupons.com.
Check out drug stores
A lot of times drugstores like CVS and Walgreens will have great sales on smaller quantities of diapers and wipes. If you have coupons, you can use more of them and save even more.
So, even though usually buying a smaller quantity costs more, when you add in the sale and coupons, you could get a better deal than buying in bulk.
This is why it is so important to figure out the cost per unit.
Using coupons is an obvious choice when trying to save money. If you can find a great deal and have coupons, it’s even better. Shop around and figure out who has the cheapest diapers and wipes that you use and check on their coupon policy.
You can get coupons online, at Coupons.com, or in the newspaper. You can even contact the manufacturer and tell them how much you like their product and they may send you coupons.
A lot of diaper manufacturers reward you by being loyal to their brand. They have rewards by entering codes on their websites and will send you cash back rewards.
This is typically for the name brand diapers so unless you just have a preference for that brand, it probably won’t be cheaper even with the rebate. However, I always loved Pampers wipes and they were typically the cheapest. The diapers on the other hand are pricey.
So, like I keep saying, know the price per unit to find the best deal.
There is an initial cost that seems more than disposable but over time, it will save money. The average cost per child for cloth diapers is around $700 where disposables are around $2700. That’s a big savings!
You do not need to spend much as an initial investment either. I decided to cloth diaper with my third child and only spent $150 on my stash. I decided that I did not want to spend more than $5 per diaper and I was able to find some great new ones on sale for less than that. I got 24 diapers that will go from newborn to potty trained.
My baby also has not had any issues with diaper rash. I do use disposables at night and in the car.
I do this for a couple of reasons:
- They are not as absorbent, so at night, he was waking up 2-3 times a night because he was wet.
- In the car, the cloth diaper is too bulky and it wasn’t safe in the car seat. So, I do buy a box of diapers every other month or so depending on how much running around we do.
Now you will spend more money on electricity and water, but not that much more. I wash every 3rd day but if you have a bigger stash, you could go longer.
Ask For Them As Gifts
I had a friend that didn’t have to buy diapers for 7 months after her baby was born because she got them all as gifts. I know that as a first time mom, you want everything pretty and every gadget. But we know after the first one, we don’t need all that stuff.
Just ask for diapers instead of a bunch of stuff you will probably never use. I can’t tell you how many outfits I gave away that still had the tags even though they went through 2 kids.
So, whether it’s your first child or second or third, ask everyone to give you diapers and wipes. You can even have a diaper party instead of a baby shower.
When it comes time for Christmas and their 1st birthday, ask for diapers and wipes as gifts. Trust me a 1yr old isn’t going to know the difference between that or a toy.
Stay in smaller sizes longer
Do not move up in size sooner than you have to. The bigger the size of diaper, the more expensive they are and the less you get in the box.
Once the diaper starts leaking though, move up a size. Your sanity is worth a few dollars!
Choose your brand wisely
Some people will tell you to just buy store brands, but I will not. I tried the store brands and had some horrible experiences. I will not recommend that unless you have tried them and like them.
I had diapers that literally fell apart more than once all over my house.
Picking up all that tiny soaked filling is not worth saving a few dollars for me.
However, try cheaper brands and find what you like. Research the manufacturers and see which brands are made by the more expensive brand. For example, Pampers makes Luvs. Luvs are my favorite by far but some people like other brands.
Figure out the price per unit for diapers and wipes. Keep a list somewhere it’s convenient and look for sales to beat that price.
Use coupons, stock up, and ask for diapers as gifts. If you are brave, use cloth, even if it’s only part of the time. You will still save some money. It’s not as scary as it sounds:).
These are a few things you can do to save money on diapers and wipes.
What have you done to save money on diapers and wipes?
Let us know in the comments below!