Saturday, February 18, 2012

Cloth Choices: Sized Diapers

Why would you ever buy sized diapers when you have the option to buy one sized and save money? 

This is one of the most popular questions asked among parents who haven't cloth diapered yet.

Personally, I love my one size diapers. Fortunately for us, we didn't need newborn diapers because the one size Fuzzibunz fit my 9lbs. 7oz. daughter from birth. Most people who plan to use one size diapers do need to get newborn sizes for their 0-3 month old depending on the size of their child. More often than not, these are the two sizes of diapers people buy. 

Why would you want to buy sized diapers? 
Sized Fuzzibunz from left to right: xsmall, small, medium and large

First, like anything that is washed multiple times a week and used for a long period of time, it will wear out. Fabrics aren't meant to last forever and will show signs of wear and tear eventually. If you wore the same shirt twice a week for a year, it would most likely become holey and have some seams unraveling. When you use sized diapers, they are worn for fewer months than a one size diaper; therefore, they last longer.

Secondly, if you plan to cloth diaper more than one child, sized might be the better way to go. If you are diapering two children at the same time and they are different sizes, it may be easier to used size so you can easily spot the appropriate diapers for each child. When using a one size diaper, you would have to adjust the rise or the elastic to get the right fit each time for each child.

A third reason to buy sized would be to get a better, trimmer fit for your child. Any diaper that is one size will be larger than a newborn or small and are usually the size of a medium or large diaper when fully unsnapped or at the loosest elastic setting. When you snap down or tighten the elastic, the diaper will be bulkier than a sized diaper because of the extra material the diaper contains. 

If you start diapering when your baby is older and you don't plan to have any more children, you won't need as many sizes and it would probably be more cost effective to buy a sized diaper. This all depends on your child's age and size when you dive into the world of cloth diapering. 
Sized Fuzzibunz-xsmall on top, small, medium and large.

Why you might prefer to buy one size diapers

Overall, the cost of sized diapers will be higher because you will need more diapers overall in comparison to the one size. Here is a chart I made to show the cost. The number of diapers you need in each size will depend on how often you wash and change your baby. Since baby pees more often at a younger age, they will need to be changed more often and you'll need more diapers. 

Size Amount Cost Total
Newborn 30 $11.82* $354.60
Small 22 $14.66** $322.52
Medium 18 $14.99*** $269.82
Large 12 $15.33**** $183.96


One Size 28 $19.95 $558.60

Difference between sized and OS: $572.30

* This average was calculated with these diapers: Fuzzibunz XS, Grovia NB, NB Rumparooz Cover and 3 prefolds.

**This average was calculated with these diapers: Fuzzibunz Small, Swaddlebees Simplex S, Applecheeks Envelope cover and 3 prefolds
***This average was calculated with these diapers: Fuzzibunz Medium, Swaddlebees Simplex M, Applecheeks Envelope cover and 3 prefolds
****This average was calculated with these diapers: Fuzzibunz Large, Swaddlebees Simplex L, Applecheeks Envelope cover and 3 prefolds

This is my recommendation for the number of diapers at each age level. Some people will want more while others won't need as many. 

My motto is: The larger your stash, the longer they last! Plus when you are done with your diapers, you can always sell them to earn back a bit of your investment.

Some notable articles:

Little for Now has additional pros/cons for sized vs. one size diapers.

What do you prefer: sized or one size diapers? 

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