Do you use disposable diapers? Do you buy your disposable diapers in bulk?

A lot of people mention that they don’t really need to save money by using cloth diapers because they always buy their Pampers in bulk, their Huggies in bulk, or their Luvs in bulk. Unless you are deadset against disposable diapering because you think it’s gross (even though I already explained why disposable diapers are actually grosser in a previous blog) or you don’t have access to a washing machine, the fact that people buy their diapers in bulk is even less of an argument against cloth diapering.

The number one reason why people who have considered cloth pass on it is the initial investment. I have three issues with that:

  1. You could buy one cloth diaper a week throughout your third trimester and have a full set of diapers. One cloth diaper a week is less than you would be spending each week on disposables once the baby arrives.
  2. If you can afford to buy bulk disposables and plan your budget that way, why couldn’t you plan your budget to accommodate cloth diapers. A set of even the most coveted cloth diapers is about $275.
  3. If you have a baby shower, you could either register for cloth diapers, or you could return all your bulk sacks of Pampers, Huggies and Luvs to Wal-mart or Target and buy yourself a set of really nice cloth diapers. If you choose a good All-In-One like Bamboo Baby or FuzziBunz, you’ll be set on diapers for the next three years (and then the three years of diapering any future children as well, unless of course, you choose to sell your diapers when you’re done and get most of your money back.)

You see, even with the cheapest package of the flimsiest, crappiest bulk disposable diapers from an outlet store like Costco, you’re still going to end up paying about $50 a month.

*****calculator clicking*****


Ouch. That’s over a thousand bucks if you manage to potty train your baby within two years.


Do you still think you can’t budget for that $275?


  1. Jen Iwanchun

    I love this post… I am always telling my friends that dont use cloth diapers that it is cheaper they cant get over the initial investment… I say buy them over a period of time or save over time and buy your whole stash. I have one friend that cant believe that I have spent $15-$20 on one diaper but I have used that diaper so many times and all my diapers will still be around for the next baby while all the ones she had used will be sitting in a land fill NOT breaking down… some people dont look at big picture

  2. Dawn you echoed my sentiment exactly!

    We did a cloth diaper trial for the cost of a week’s worth of disposables. Then in the 3 weeks we used the cloth we didn’t have to buy disposables and pocketed that money to pay for our initial cloth stash. It was perfect for us.

    I only spent $150 on my first set of cloth and I’ve had them for almost a year. I remember the week that my investment paid for itself. Then I let myself buy more cloth. 😉

  3. Tana Zoller

    I TRY to tell people this! Only some have listened. I have “converted” 5 people (1 quit on me though!) to cloth diapering & they ALL love it. I love it. I’m actually obsessed. 🙂

    Thanks for using my Serafina’s picture in this blog! It’s one of my FAVORITE ones!

  4. Trisha Wieber

    I love what you had to say. Unfortunately I recently came across a very nice mom online who said with some awesome Amazon coupons she disposable diapered for like $10/month. So she wasn’t very interested in trying cloth for her twins that were 6 months old. Although she did say she might try it out on a future child.

    • Dawn Papple

      Well, even at $10 a month you could do cloth free for the last year of diapering with the super good diapers, or last two years for free with traditional covers. And either way, each subsequent child would be free, because they just keep lasting.

  5. Bethany D.

    While cloth is good, the numbers don’t always work out quite as nicely as all that. $275 for a full stash of “the most coveted” diapers? That’s barely a dozen premium diapers, which means laundry every single night, especially with a newborn. It cost about $450 for our 2 dozen BumGenius 3.0s, which gave us enough that we didn’t have to do laundry every single stinking day. Then add in the cost of the special laundry detergent too. Oh, and we still had to buy a month’s worth of disposable newborn diapers because our daughter was too small to fit the “one-size” BGs. And that month of disposies actually only cost $28 since I used coupons & sales to snatch name-brand disposies up at super cheap prices. I’m still committed to cloth and it’s still cheaper than going all-disposable, but it was definitely a significant upfront investment with not quite such dramatic returns.

    • Dawn Papple

      I diapered my babies with 12. I didn’t get really into having more until my daughter got a bit bigger and FuzziBunz got some gorgeous girl colors that I didn’t have. I spent $225 on my set, of course, they were $17.95 then, and now they’re a couple bucks more.

      And I never used special detergent until recently, just for the fun of it. So that’s two and a half children using the wisk which is $4 for a huge jug. Also, you barely need ANY detergent if you use a regular detergent. And we always would dry inside. I factored into the cost the average that it takes to actually wash them, which is almost nothing. I’m not exaggerating.

      Plus, MOST people do not buy the cheapest, flimsiest disposables with coupons in bulk either, and THAT is what I was comparing it to. So keep that in mind, I was being VERY generous in going “cheap” on the sposies. Though the fact remains, if costco and the coupons aren’t there when you run out during a sickness, you’re going to pay a TON more for a regular pack of sposies.

      Also, if people put a bit of thought into it, they can register for cloth like I said OR they could return the sposies for cash at wal-mart. I’ve known lots of women who have done that. They could also, just buy one a week while pregnant.

      And if you want to mention the coupons thing regarding sposies, it works both ways. There are more giveaways online for free cloth than I know what to do with. There’s also sales all the time. So, the coupons and deals thing can be applied to cloth as well.

      I genuinely thought about these things while making this blog and went REALLY fair towards the sposies side, just so that I could be extra fair and play the devil’s advocate.

  6. Heather

    Good points made here, the best one for me is that you can make money back after you USE cloth diapers. No matter how cheap you get your disposables you can’t ever get your money back on them!

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