The Great Diaper Debate

The Great Diaper Debate

Cloth or Disposable Diapers

Which is the most Cost Effective for Your Baby?

By Debra L. Karplus

The Center for Disease Control ( estimates that nearly four million babies are born annually in the United States. You may be the parents expecting your first baby, or maybe your second or third. You already know that there are many baby accessories that are recommended, that you can do without. Diapers are not one of those items. There are absolutely no shortcuts when it comes to needing diapers, and garage sales and thrift and consignment shops cannot rescue you on this necessary baby supply. So how do you decide between cloth or disposable diapers for your newborn baby or growing toddler?

Cloth versus disposable?

According to, there is a substantial difference in cost between using cloth diapers at home and disposable. This web site estimates that cloth diapers for a newborn cost about nineteen dollars a month. There are many advantages to using cloth diapers besides price. You are putting less waste into the landfill, thus protecting the environment. Additionally, many parents report fewer problems with diaper rash when using cloth opposed to disposable diapers.

A disadvantage to cloth diapers is when your baby is not at home. If your family is travelling, cloth diapers are a big nuisance; after all, who wants to travel with a bunch of stinky used diapers? No one, of course! And if your little one is in day care or with a sitter, disposable diapers will be required regardless of your personal preference.

Reasons to use disposable diapers

Many parents choose to use disposable diapers exclusively because they seem more convenient, and you can buy a bigger size as your little one grows. At about seventy-two dollars monthly, you are paying for convenience. If you are like most families and are often on the go, disposable diapers are simply easier.
Using a diaper service may make sense for your family.

Estimated at about seventy-six dollars monthly, a diaper service offers the comfort of cloth diapers, with some of the convenience of disposable. As your little one grows, you simply order the next larger size. You can choose the number of diapers you expect to use and can conveniently schedule number of weekly drop-offs and pick-ups.

Many parents use ultimately use some combination of disposable and cloth diapers, possibly using a diaper service for some but not all of their diapering needs. The good news about this decision is that you can change it anytime you desire.

This article by Debra Karplus first appeared on Culver City Moms and was distributed by the Personal Finance Syndication Network.