You were all set to cloth diaper your baby until you found out that your friends across town spent well over $5 per diaper and more than $10 per cover to stock up on diapers for their little one. It didn't take you long to do the math and to figure out that you'd need a small fortune to get started with cloth diapering. Well, don't give up yet! I sure didn't spend that much on cloth diapers and you don't have to either! Read on to get some tips about cloth diapering the frugal way.
Cloth Diaper Freebies
Everyone loves a freebie and since expectant parents get lots of them, be sure to let your friends and family know while you are pregnant or prior to adopting your baby, that you're planning to cloth diaper. Let them know that you'll be happy to receive gift certificates to be redeemed at the local diaper service, baby supply store, or through a baby catalog where cloth diaper supplies are readily available. This will make gift selecting a cinch for those attending baby showers in your honor. Grandparents, in particular are often thrilled to purchase cloth diapers for their grandchildren. Best of all, you'll be able to start stocking up on cloth diapers without spending your own money up front.
Back to the Basics
Cloth diapers have come a long way since the olden' days. They're available with cute prints, matching covers, adjustable snaps, sewn on covers, and more. But if you're looking for a bargain, these fancy diapers are out of the question. The prices for fancy cloth diapering products can be dear---well over $10 per diaper or cover. Traditional prefolds, however usually cost no more than $2 - $3 per diaper and pinless covers can be as low as $5 each. Pull-on covers are even lower. So scratch the idea of buying those fancy diapers and just stick with the basic sturdy white prefold ones. Your baby will still stay dry and you'll still have money left over for other expenses.
Buy Gently Used
Using second hand cloth diapering products is another way to save big. Do you know a friend or family member who is finished using their baby's cloth diapering things? Why not ask if they'll give or sell them to you? Is there a local consignment shop in your neighborhood? If so, by all means drop by to see if they have any cloth diapers for sale. Gently used diapering products will almost certainly be cheaper than brand new ones. And if you prefer the fancy diapers, you may find them at a huge discount! Don't forget to check for diaper pails while you're there. And be sure to thoroughly check each and every diaper and cover for wear. Only purchase those that are still thick and in good condition. Some parents auction their gently used diapers on Ebay, so if you're an online shopper you may want to check into that. One word of caution, some parents get carried away with auctions and wind up spending far more on diapers than they budget for. So be careful!
And Don't Forget
Other ways to save money on cloth diapering include:
- Hang drying your diapers outside (weather permitting).
- Reusing cloth diapers and covers on other babies.
- Purchasing diapers from diaper services (especially upon cancellation of service).
- Having more than one baby in cloth diapers while using a diaper service. Most diaper services give a nice discount to these families, so it pays to mention this when new babies come along.
Remember, the initial investment in cloth diapering products may not be as costly as you think. So, if your family is a frugal one, just use some creative planning to save big while stocking up on your baby's cloth diaper layette.
© Copyright 2001 Stacy Jones Tolentino/ Homefront Publishing
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