Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Money Saving Tuesday- cloth diapers

Some think I am crazy for using cloth diapers. Others expect that I am a tree hugger. I can assure you I am neither of those! I do care about the environment of course and while it factors into why I chose cloth diapers it was not my initial reason for choosing cloth diapers.

And yes some may agree that I am a teeny tiny bit crazy, and maybe I am, but again it is not the reason I chose cloth diapers.

I simply chose them at the time because they are cheaper!

After doing a lot of reading about them I realized how much better they are for the environment. I also realized how many chemicals are used when making disposable diapers (and I know they are safe but honeslty it is creepy how much pee those things can hold without feeling wet!) and I don't love the idea of having my kids sit in them day after day. I also thought of the convenience of never ever having to run out in the middle of the night because I had run out of diapers.

So I did a lot of research. And I talked to Jon. Surprisingly he was very easy to convince. He liked the idea of cheaper (with me leaving my job to stay at home expenses were a concern) and he also liked the idea of less to throw away. I think he also figured that since I would be at home I would take on most o the washing that might pile up. In the end the washing wasn't that bad (we did invest in a few extra diapers when I was tired of washing every other day!) and he helped a lot by throwing them in the wash before leaving for work so I could line dry them when I woke up. It became a team effort and really worked out well.

My friends and family were very skeptical at first. That might be the reason I didn't receive any that I registered for. However after seeing my use them for 4 years now they are used to me. My mom even changes cloth diapers (initially she bought disposables to have on hand when she was watching the kids) and sees how easy it is!

I chose the brand Kushies initially because of the price. I did not want prefolds (although they were the cheapest way to go), the idea of folding and pinning every time I diapered my newborn (and let's admit that is a LOT) was not appealing. I did research and found Kushies to be the only brand that a local store carried and in the idea of adding them to my registry I chose them. No one bought them for me in the end and Jon and I bought a stash of 25, at a start up cost of $250. Not cheap my any means as a start up. but when you realize these are pretty much the only diapers I used on Madeline for almost 18 months, that really isn't a bad price! I will say that some were worried that my water and electric bill would sky rocket. They honestly did not! I was doing more laundry overall since I had a newborn and we all know how many clothes they go through, added to the fact that everytime she spit up on me I needed a new outfit as well (Madeline never seemed to just spit up on my shoulder, it was always my entire outfit) so when my water and electric bill increased a little I can't pinpoint the exact reason.

I continue to cloth diaper my children. We do use disposable when we are traveling and on vacation. And I do use one disposable at night because my kids are super soakers at night and I HATE cleaning sheets in the morning! That super absorbant power of disposables that creeps me out? It is my savings grace at night. I am planning on looking into different brands of diapers for cloth at night for this baby, I just haven't done the research yet.

The brand I chose has two sizes. Of the intial purchase of 25 diapers we have replaced 15 of them. Madeline wore them for 18 months and Owen wore them for 12 months. This new baby will wear them for at lest 12 months. With the larger size Madeline wore them for 15 months and Owen has been wearing them for 12 months and is looking like he will wear them for at least another 6-10 months. So far I have spent a total of $600 (maybe $700 if I need to replace a few more diapers) to diaper three children for almost three years each. If I use disposable diapers every day, at 5 diapers a day (at least), I would pay about $328 a year per child. You can see the savings!

So if you are looking for a way to save some money, and do some good for the environment as well, cloth diapers are worth looking into. They aren't that scary I promise!

I was not paid to write this post and I received no compensation for it. I just like cloth diapers and the brand that I chose and wanted to share my experience.

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