No two ways around it, diapers and wipes over time burns a hole in your pocket. You spend a lot of money for something that ends up in the garbage hours, minutes or if your unlucky, seconds after being worn. You may be far less concerned about saving for your kids education than you are about finding thrifty ways to pay for all those diapers (see statistics below).
First off, here are some facts about diaper use and why you are a pro at it by now:
- 1-3 months old uses around 7 diapers a day for 92 days = 644 diapers
- 4-5 month old uses around 6 diapers a day for 60 days = 360 diapers
- 6-12 month old uses around 5 diapers a day for 182 days = 910 diapers
- 12-24 month old uses around 4 diapers a day for 365 days = 1,460 diapers
- 24 +months (the average girl is potty trained around 2-3 years and average boy is around 3-4 years, so we will only calculate up to 3 years) uses around 3 diapers a day for 365 days = 1,095 diapers
The grand total of diapering your child for 3 years is a whopping: 4,469 diapers!
Follow these 10 easy rules on how to save money on diapers and wipes.
1. Use Coupons. By far the easiest and most efficient way to save money on diapers and wipes. There are always coupons available for at least $1.00 off Huggies, Pampers and most all popular brands. You can find the diaper and wipes coupons on this page and general baby coupons on this page.
2. Be Slow to Switch Sizes. The bigger the diaper, the less diapers there are per package and so therefore the more expensive it gets.
3. Make Smaller Diapers Go the Distance. Your child can stay in smaller diapers longer if you are careful on how you put the diaper on. If your child’s tendency is to leak out the top of the diaper, then pull the diaper a little in the front. Is your kid having constant explosions out of the back? Pull the diaper up in the back.
4. Watch Package Sizes. Not all packages contain the same amount of product. For instance, some Pampers products come in 72 ct. packages while others come in 64 ct. packages. Both products cost the same amount but by purchasing the larger count you get more diapers or wipes per package, reducing your total cost.
5. Stockpile. Buy diapers and wipes when they are on sale, even if you don’t need them right away. You are almost guaranteed to spend more if you buy only when you need them. Plan accordingly, buy larger sizes if your kids will be switching sizes soon.
6. Be Willing to Switch Brands. To maximize your savings, you are going to have to be willing to buy whatever brand of diapers is on sale. Some weeks Pampers are the cheapest, while other week it’s Kirkland. Be willing to try brands other than the one you typically use.
7. Buy in Bulk. Besides couponing, the best way to save is to buy in bulk. Places like Amazon and Diapers.com are great options to purchase boxes of diapers and wipes at decent prices. Amazon has a program called Amazon Mom (works for Dad’s too) that gives you 20% savings and free 2-day shipping on most of their diapers and wipes plus. Costco also has some great deals in buying bulk.
8. Consider a full-time or part-time cloth diapering. Yes, there is an initial investment in cloth diapers. Depending on the type and brand, you can spend anywhere from $5-$12 per diaper on average, this includes the cost of the cloth diaper, the cover and pins. We personally use a brand with snaps (highly recommended) and diaper changes are a breeze. Use this link to calculate the total cost of cloth diapering vs disposable. I will say that from a dad’s perspective, this isn’t as gross as I originally thought.
9. Register with Diaper Companies. Most of the popular disposable diaper companies offer membership programs. To join the program, you provide your contact information along with the names and ages of your children (for marketing purposes). In exchange, they will send their members free samples, coupons, and other goodies. Links to some popular brands programs are linked below.
10. Make sure the box isn’t too big. In the early months of your child’s life, they are likely growing like a week and you may not be able to finish an entire giant box. If you think that you are close to a size change, buy a smaller diaper package.