I cloth diapered my son for most of his babyhood. I tried to cloth diaper my second child, but because of circumstances in our apartment building and because she was sick so often (the poor baby had chicken pox at 3.5 months old!), cloth diapers just did not work for us then.

Now that two are in diapers, I decided to experiment in the month of August with using cloth diapers. Here are the results:

Average Usage
We never 100% cloth diapered. We still used paper diapers for naps, nighttime and outings away from the house. We averaged 8 paper and 13 cloth diapers a day.

When we paper diaper exclusively, we use an average of 18 diapers a day.

The Details
I have been trying to buy paper diapers when CVS has their buy one get one 50% off sale, so I will use that price as my average. Two boxes of diapers costs $23.98 during the sale and have a total of 104 diapers at a price of .23 cents each.

We only cloth diapered for 20 days in August because we were out of town on vacation for 10 days.

What was the cost for cloth?
I had to wash the cloth diapers an average of every three days at a cost of $2.oo ($2.00 for two wash cycles). I had to wash them 7 times this month, so the cost was $14.00.

I also used liners that cost $8.00 per 100. However, if these do not get soiled, I wash them with the diapers and reuse them. About 20 of these were soiled, so my cost was $1.60.

We also used 8 paper diapers a day at .23 each for a total of 1.84 a day, or $36.80.
Our grand total was $52.40.

What is the cost for paper?
If we use paper diapers exclusively, our cost per day is $4.14, or $82.80 over 20 days.

The Hourly Wage
Time wise, I spent 15 minutes treating and rinsing the cloth diapers per load and 15 minutes hanging them up to air dry. Over 20 days, that equals 3.5 hours. Since we saved $30.40 using cloth diapers, my hourly wage was $8.68.

The Results
It is true that cloth diapering costs us $30 less a month. However, my husband never did get onboard with cloth diapering; in fact after this experiment, he is even more resistant.

My nearly two year old daughter was less than pleased with the cloth diapers and much to my chagrin frequently undid her diaper cover and diaper. She does not do this with paper diapers. She also cried, “No” sometimes when I tried to cloth diaper her. As she is not used to cloth, I don’t think she liked the wet feel.

Bottom line, we are going back to paper for now. In the winter when we have less money, we may go back to cloth.

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