Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Cloth Diaper Figures

Originally posted to Livejournal on September 20, 2007.
**this originally had clickable links, but it was a pain to transfer them when I started this blog. So we'll all just have to copy and paste...**

Okay, this is primarily just for me. We've decided to use cloth diapers when we finally have kids, and I'm a total advance planner. Luckily one of the little boys in my daycare uses cloth diapers, so I'm getting experience and gathering ideas and tips. I'd like to say I'm getting experience before I'm sleep-deprived, But today is one of those days where I feel like I had someone waking me every 2 hours last night! Anyhoo, this is mostly a post to let me save links and information for later reference. A cyber-Post It, if you will.
For the purposes of this post, I will be estimating the number of diapers needed for a child. The babies currently in my care range between 11 and 16 months. They use a diaper in the morning, one before AM nap, one after, one before PM nap, and one after. Then usually one for those little surprises. So between 8 and 5:30, that's 6 diapers. Figure from 5:30 - midnight they use one when getting home, one after dinner, one before bed, and another dirty one. That's four more, for a total of 10. For kids over a year old. I'd figure at least two more a day for newborns and little ones, as they tend to go poop about a billion times a day! So let's go on the average of 10 diapers a day, knowing that this would be subject to change.
Knowing hubby and myself, we would buy diapers at Costco. We are cheap....I mean frugal! Using that great online resource, Google, I found a site that offers Pampers Dry Baby diapers. Let's go with size 3s, from 16-28 pounds, which is the size most of my kids are in now. Pampers has a box of 180 for $37.88 (on It may be more or less in stores. Kirkland diapers from Costco, size 3, are $34.89 for 200. That's .21/diaper for Pampers, and .17/diaper for Costco. Yeah, Costco it is.
Figure 10 per day, and that's $1.70, of course. Multiply by 30, and it's $51 per month. For 300 diapers. That last 500 years each in landfills, not to mention what that human waste does to the ground water. The average child is in diapers full-time until the age of 2 1/2, when they reduce their diaper use. Figure 30 months full-time in diapers. That's 9000 diapers in 2 1/ years. At .17 per diaper (as if the price won't go up!), that's $1530.00.
For the next six months, let's figure diaper consumtion goes down to 5 per day. That's 150 per month, and 900 for the six month period. 900 diapers at .17 per diaper is $153. So roughly $1683.00 spent on disposible diapers in a child's three year diaper-using career. Holy moly.
The diapers that my little blond friend wears are Fuzzi Bunz. They are what is called a pocket diaper, meaning there is a pocket in the back for an insert. You can double or triple the inserts for added absorbancy, but I've never needed more than one. Maybe at night I'd use two just to be safe. Fuzzi Bunz come in loads of sizes, but most children use the medium ones from about six months through the end of their diaper days. Only much, much bigger or tiny babies need the preemies, extra smalls, larges, or extra larges. So, I'll figure we'll need mediums for the majority of our figures. We'll get to newborns in a minute. 18 medium Fuzzi Bunz are $305.10. That's $18 per diaper, granted, but it is a one-time expense. I'd prefer to have a minimum of two days worth of diapers, so to that 18 pack I'd add a three pack for $53.85. Our orginial order of medium Fuzzi Bunz (provided we use would be $358.95. This particular site offers free shipping on orders over $25, so that wouldn't be an issue. This one-time expense is steep, but is still about a fourth or less of the expense of one-use diapers. We'd buy neutral colors so we can use them for subsequent kids, with the occasional pink or blue (or WVU-colored....) diaper thrown in for good measure.
For newborns, I see no reason to have a ton of diapers on-hand in a size that a baby might only wear for a month or two. The smalls are for babies 7-18 pounds, while the mediums start at 15 pounds. So the small size only really serves a purpose for babies 7-14 pounds. I was 8.6 when I was born, and my brother was 28 weeks. We grow em big. Brian was early, too, and only about 5 pounds and change. But his sisters were term, and at least one was nearly 10 pounds, if I'm not mistaken. And his father was a horse and breech. We're probably not having tiny kids. I see very, very little reason to have tons of diapers in this size, especially at $18 a piece.
Enter the Wal-Mart solution. Bear in mind that we rarely shop at Wal-mart, and generally hate their business practices. But, in looking for information on all this, I found some diapers at Kushies All In One Pocket Diapers for infants seem like a pretty good deal. 5 diapers are $38.74, which is $7.75 per diaper. Much better for about 20, which would be $154.96. That would do it for the beginning, at least, or we could add another pack. Still not a bad deal.
Okay, this has been long. But it's information I don't want to figure out later. I'll figure up information on reuseable baby wipes here in a minute....

1 comment:

agoodwitchtoo said...

Hey, I just found this and thought you might be interested in it. Yeah, I know I'm a little late but ya know how my internet tangents go...

Thought it might be an option since your mom isn't too keen on the idea :) You could grab a couple of these.

Love ya,
Candy Bum