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t ake a moment to close your eyes and picture a cloth diaper. What comes to mind? Do you see plastic pants and safety pins? Giant towels wrapped around a baby’s bottom? I’d like to introduce you to the modern cloth diaper. Though there are many different styles of cloth diapers on the market today, from pre-fold and covers to all-in-one and one-size pocket diapers, they all have a few things in common. *No pins! Diapers today use aplix (velcro) or snaps to secure the diaper on your child. *A soft fabric inner. This is the part that touches your baby’s skin. Many manufacturers offer organic or natural fiber options with varying levels of absorbency. *A waterproof outer. This is what prevents cloth diapers from leaking. It may be in the form of a diaper cover (over prefold or fitted) or a layer of PUL sewn into the diaper itself (for pocket or all-in-one style diapers). *A wide variety of colors and prints. You can have diapers in almost every color of the rainbow, and even with some prints, like Dr Seuss, robots, kangaroos, and more. Even storage has come a long way since we were kids. Wet bags and pail liners keep smells contained until laundry day comes. According to my husband, cloth diapers are just as easy to use as disposable diapers. To me, that is the highest recommendation I can give – if he thinks they’re easy to use, anyone can use them! Jen Jamar is a busy mom and natural parenting advocate. Her site Life With Levi features articles on cloth diapers, breastfeeding, and attachment parenting. Her latest project, Alpha Wife Adventures, is about adjusting to life as a working mom with a stay-at-home husband. When not online, Jen’s son, husband, and three dogs keep her life full of laughter and love. multiplicity disposables vs. cloth: how much can you by jen jamar really save? By combining deals and coupons, you can usually keep spending to about 19 cents/ diaper. I don't use disposables often so I'm going to stick with the expense of $0.19/ diaper for this cost analysis. An average baby goes through 9-11 changes per day through the first year, so $0.19/diaper x 11 diapers/day = $2.09 per day. Not bad, right? Let's add up that cost for a year now: $2.09/day x 7 days/week x 52 weeks/year = $760.76. Oh, and don't forget – this is only the calculation for ONE child. Alright, so we have $760.76 per year. To make our numbers easy, let's just say the average time in diapers per child is 2 years. $760.76/year x 2 years = $1,521.52 for one child. Multiply that number again depending on how many kids you have. Adds up quickly, doesn't it? So how much can you save by using cloth diapers? They come in all price ranges, and having tried over 30 different brands, I'm going to ask you to trust me on some of these assumptions. Low end: $9/diaper x 20 diapers/child, from birth – age 2 = Savings of $1300+ per child. High end: $30/diaper x 30 diapers/child, from birth – age 2 = Savings of $600+ per child. The minimum number of cloth diapers I recommend per child is 20, as it gives you enough to get through without washing every day. Even if you subtract an extra $5/ month increase to your utilities bill and some expenses like a wet bag ($15), pail liner ($10), and diaper sprayer ($25), you still come out ahead. And that doesn't even factor in the resale value of cloth diapers (there's a huge market for used cloth diapers!). You can even mix disposable and cloth diapers as you build up your stash. If you ever try cloth diapers, you'll be amazed at how easy it is and how much money you'll save. the must-have magazine for all moms of multiples 57

Multiplicity Magazine - Spring 2012 Issue

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