Do You Save Money Using Cloth Diapers in 2023?
Using cloth diapers can be more cost-effective in terms of both purchasing and washing compared to disposable diapers for one child. While cloth diapers have a higher initial cost, you can start seeing savings within the first year. It's comforting for parents to find economical alternatives as daily expenses rise. Below, we've calculated potential savings from choosing cloth diapers. Keep in mind that even by swapping out a few diapers per day or introducing potty training earlier, you can save money.
What's the Cost of Using Cloth Diapers?
We've calculated the cost based on a recommended full-time cloth diaper purchase of 8 diaper covers with 24 pairs of inserts. This includes expenses for water, electricity, and laundry detergent for washing the diapers every three days.
- 1st year: Highest cost due to diaper purchase, totaling 4,122 SEK
- 2nd year: 706 SEK, only laundry costs
- 3rd year: 706 SEK
For three years of use, the total cost is 5,535 SEK per child. If you choose to use a dryer, an additional cost of 1,432 SEK/year applies.
To address whether cloth diapers are more economical than disposable ones, we assume an average price of 3 SEK per disposable diaper. If you pay for garbage collection, an additional cost of around 1,000 SEK/year is added.
- 1st year: 6,570 SEK
- 2nd year: 6,570 SEK
- 3rd year: 6,570 SEK
For three years of disposable diaper use, the cost amounts to 19,710 SEK per child.
Many disposable diapers can be purchased in bulk or with discounts, but you would need to find diapers priced below 0.9 SEK per diaper to make them more economical than cloth diapers.
Another way to cut costs during diaper changes is to use cloth wipes. These can be easily washed together with the cloth diapers or family underwear. Use a mesh bag with large holes for pre-wash storage; this allows you to conveniently toss the entire bag into the machine while keeping the cloth wipes contained.
*Calculations are based on average prices in Sweden 2022 and 6 diaper changes per day.