Switching to cloth diapers can suddenly feel overwhelming especially if you’ve been using disposables all along. Don’t get stressed. The transition is not as hard as most parents assume.
With a better understanding of what to do and expect, you should be able to find a cloth diapering solution that works best for you.
One important thing you need to understand is that cloth diapers need two components. Number one is absorbency in order to soak up urine and two, moisture resistance to prevent urine from wetting the outer clothing.
Once you understand these two components, it should be easy to make the switch.
How to Budget for Cloth Diapers
Switching from disposables to cloth diapers is going to save you thousands of dollars over the two-three years of your little one’s diapering phase. Plus you don’t even need a lot of money to get started.
The first rule of thumb is never to buy all the diapers your baby will need right from birth until they reach the potty training stage. You’re going to spend a lot more money doing this. Instead, simply purchase what you need at the current stage of your baby. If you’re currently purchasing disposables, use the money you spend on disposables to purchase some basic cloth diapers. A good idea is to get about 12 prefolds and 2 waterproof covers for a start. These should cost you at least $50 or half if you’re going to buy used cloth diapers.
After about 2-3 weeks of using the prefolds, use the money you were planning to purchase disposables with and buy another prefolds dozen and two more waterproof covers. It’s as simple as that. There is nothing complicated about switching to cloth diapers or cloth diapering on a budget. From here, keep adding more cloth diapers to your stash. You should have more than enough to push you through while saving a great deal of money. In fact, ditching disposable diapers for cloth diapers will help you save from $50-$100 every single month. You can use part of that money to add more diapers or stock your diapering supplies.
If you’re on a really tight budget, consider getting a couple of waterproof covers first. You can even save money by using clothing items like fleece pants or polyester fleece pants as diaper covers. Some parents even decide not to use diaper covers while in the house to allow for better breathability. And since small babies are changed often and aren’t mobile, you can simply wrap a blanket over the diaper as a diaper cover substitute.
Good Absorbency is the Easiest Part
If there is one thing you’ll never have to worry about after making the switch is absorbency. You can use any clothing item in the house as long as it’s absorbent. These are in plenty. We are talking about using folded t-shirts, cotton socks, washcloth, small towel, or any other cotton-made item you can find in the house. Alternatively, you can get the microfiber towels found in the auto department. They have excellent absorbency. You can also find some high-quality cotton diapers in the same section. They are usually cheaper and are way more effective compared to the poly-filled ones in the baby supplies section.