Gathering Facts: How Much Do Ethical Diapers Cost?


Gathering Facts: How Much Do Ethical Diapers Cost?

When families are researching cloth diapers, most of them are looking to save money. Saving money is a huge perk to using cloth diapers! You might think saving the most money requires hunting down sales, shopping bargain stores or joining a co-op to get the best diaper deal. Unfortunately, buying inexpensive, unethical diapers can often lead to spending more money in the long run as well as to several other drawbacks. Don't worry! You can still use quality cloth diapers without breaking the bank. What is an "ethical diaper?" CleanDiapers.org tells us that clean or ethical diapers are:

  • Supported with a warranty and personal service
  • Sturdy with long-lasting value
  • Safe for your baby, tested & proven
  • Sustainable for your community and for the earth

In 2013 the Real Diaper Association researched and created a Cloth Diaper Co-op Report to give consumers a better understanding of how their cloth diaper purchases could effect not only their bank accounts and their babies' health, but also the cloth diaper industry as a whole. Not all diapers are created equal. Some knock off diapers are made in factories where workers are not paid a living wage. These unethical diapers can be made with lower quality or un-tested fabrics and components that could pose a health risk to your baby. If you have a problem with a low-quality knock-off diaper, who will help you? Purchasing poorly made diapers, in an attempt to save money, can result in a diaper that doesn't work well or needs to be replaced quickly. Will you wind up spending more money to replace those diapers or will you get frustrated and give up on using cloth diapers all together? The Real Diaper Association doesn't want to see you go through that. We can help.

Ethical Cloth Diaper Solutions

  • Find a cloth diaper retailer near you. This could mean an online retailer or a brick and mortar store. All of these business owners want to build a relationship with you. They want to be your local resource. Purchase your cloth diapers through a local small business and reach out to them with questions. Many of them have classes on different parenting related topics.
  • Check out 5 Tips for Cloth Diapering on a Budget, a tip sheet from Real Diaper Association, for many ideas on how to cloth diaper ethically on a tight budget.
  • If you purchase through a Co-Op, make sure it's legalRead the Real Diaper Association's Recommendations to Cloth Diaper Co-op Participants.

Cloth diapering done simply will save you money. I've recently had two of my local Real Diaper Circle members tell me how much money they were saving by using cloth diapers, and it warmed my heart to know that the decision to use cloth diapers has helped them to be able to afford other basic needs

Stephanie said:

"(I) Just had a Mom say she spends $200 every 8 weeks on [disposable] diapers for one baby. That would be $400 for twins. And my identical girls... they are 18 weeks today. So, that means we would have spent $900 on diapers since birth. We have spent a TOTAL of $114 on cloth diapers so far. We are using clotheez sized prefolds and thirsties duo wrap covers (we used Pooters newborn covers). So we have saved $786 by using cloth so far and the girls are only 4 months old."

Jen said:

"We have saved a lot of money by using cloth diapers. We received many second-hand cloth diapers as gifts and our water bill only increased by $2 when we started washing diapers in our standard top loading washing machine!"

I hope this helps those of you just getting started!

If you already use cloth, how much did it cost you to get started? Post an answer below or via social media including the hashtags #SchoolOfCloth #clothdiapercost

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