There are plenty of moms out there thanking the powers that be for disposable diapers. Raising children, disposable diapers can definitely make things easier; but they can also get expensive. By some statistics a family with one child in diapers can spend around $50 a week at a minimum keeping their little heathen in clean drawers while others purchasing more expensive brands can spend even more. Eventually, the bill adds up.
Normally, the cycle goes something like this. You have a baby and get a ton of high quality disposable diapers at your baby shower that last your baby for a month or so. Then they start growing out of them more quickly than ever and you eventually find that your stock has dwindled. You go to the store so excited about purchasing diapers to begin with you don’t even blink at the cost of them and everything from how they smell (clean of course) to how they look in your shopping cart makes you feel giddy inside. A few days later you are back, and a few days after that you are back again and soon before your baby even finishes their last pack of diapers they no longer fit and you are back again. You get the point, it gets old and expensive!
Around the 4 -5 month mark your baby has probably settled into a nice size 4 where they will stay for a while and you begin realizing that there are cheaper brands. Store brand diapers, the diaper depot up the street and coupons galore. You try it all and cross your fingers that your baby doesn’t end up with a diaper rash. You find without a doubt that there is an abundant difference in name brand versus store brand disposable diapers that encompasses more than the price. Many of the store brand diapers leave a gel like residue on your baby’s bottom after an initial wetting and many brands leak like crazy. Got a stinky one and you can have a real mess on your hands. The next thing to do is use the cheaper brands during the day and save the really good and absorbent ones for at night to save a little cash.
The problem is that no one can really recommend one brand of diaper over another one to another mom. The reason is simple, babies come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and certain diapers, and especially if they have sticky tape-like fasteners just don’t fit the chunkier babies. As soon as the diaper is wet it’s like the tape just falls apart and next thing you know your baby has a diaper falling to your knees. If a diaper doesn’t fit just right it can also leave red marks on your baby’s hips or upper legs. While brand A may work wonderfully for your neighbor, it won’t necessarily work for you and you have to do a little trial and error which can end up costing and wasting money in the meantime.
One option is to write to companies and ask for a free sample to keep from buying a whole big pack that may not work. The bigger name brands are normally eager to please new customers and along with your samples will send you some pretty valuable coupons. Another way to save money on disposable diapers is to shop around and look for sales. Grocery stores are not always the cheapest. Although, many grocery stores in the United States offer baby discount cards that allow you to save certain percentages on baby needs throughout the store. If you have multiples, a simple proof of birth can give you a full heaping of incredible coupons from companies like Huggies and Pampers. Additionally, they may even send you some free diapers along the way.
Another viable option for saving money on diapers it to shop discount grocery stores, or salvage grocery stores. A pack of diapers that is ripped open by one of those mothers who has to put her hands on the diaper first – then picks up a brand new pack to take home (ugh) rather than utilize her ripped open package cant be sold in stores and is sold to salvage grocery companies. It is easy and often that you will find brand name diapers at half the price if a ripped packaging doesn’t offend you. The trick is to buy them up as quickly as you see them because they won’t last long! If you find a ripped package in your favorite grocery store ask a manager if they can offer a discount as well (but please don’t rip up packages just to get a break). When you find discount diapers, buy a size up too especially if it is a fit and brand you are fond of.
Unfortunately, some (not all) of the store brands really are invaluable buys. If you have to change more often, eventually you end up spending the same amount of cash. If your baby gets a rash it isn’t worth saving a few bucks a week. A quick check in a local grocery store confirmed that for a package of size 4 diapers the price discrepancy between the cheapest ones on the shelf and the name brand diapers was $4.83 for the same amount of diapers. When you shop, look at the labels on the shelf and you will see exactly what you are paying per diaper. If its just a few cents per diaper – going with the better known versions may be better in the long run especially if they fit better, don’t leak, absorb more and save you frustration.
The older your baby gets the more pressure that will be put on your choice of disposable diapers. Your bigger baby will have bigger urinations and larger loads when they are muddy. The diapers won’t last as long. If you aren’t close to potty training, some mom logic would tell you to stick with what works, saves the car seat from getting wet and saves you from washing the sheets every day. BUT….as you look forward to potty training, realize that those uncomfortable, less absorbent diapers that don’t immediately absorb every dollop of pee can actually help you. One of the difficulties with potty training is that disposable diapers are made so well, your child may not feel them selves use the bathroom and has a hard time associating their urge to go with going. Remember, the sooner you potty train the faster you can stick all that cash into the malady of other things your toddler will need! Remember, the name in and of itself “disposable diapers” indicates that they aren’t supposed to be around your house forever!