Wednesday, August 17, 2011

How Long Does a Pocket Diaper Last?

Back 2008, we rounded out First Daughter's cloth diaper stash with seven 1G size large Knickernappies diapers. I'd already tried one and knew we'd like them, but I didn't know how long they would last.

It seems...three years and a bit. I am now finding the lining of these failing. Two fails and it gets tossed from the rotation. (These are not little fails; these are completely wet right in the middle fails when the insert itself is not very wet.) I decided to take a look back and see what kind of value we received with these diapers.

We had ten Knickernappies 1G diapers, purchased between May 2008 and January 2009, for a total cost of $126.50 (not including shipping because I always ordered enough to get free shipping), all from (You can't buy these diapers anymore because they've upgraded to the Custom Fit (sized) pocket diapers.)

I did a little calculation to estimate the number of times I washed cloth diapers each month (which varied from every second or third day, depending on how many babies I had in diapers at the time). The pocket diapers were our favorites. They've been in almost continuous use on First Daughter, then Second Daughter and now Second Son. They were always the first ones we used, so I know they were washed nearly every single time I washed cloth diapers.

On average, the large Knickernappies 1G pocket diapers cost less than $0.03 per use. Kansas Dad pointed out that cost does not include the cost of washing, which is true.  It also doesn't take into account the fact that about half of these diapers are still in our rotation and all of the inserts are still going strong. They look a little rough, but I've just put them into different pocket diapers. (I did have to add a hemp doubler to the LoopyDos or use a SuperDo because my children all needed the extra absorbancy.)

We have used these diapers well. They've been torn on storm shelters, contaminated with diaper cream and stripped by hand, and suffered my abuses as I learned how to wash and maintain cloth diapers. This post isn't an complete comparison of the economic benefits of cloth diapering over disposables. It's just a small comment on the longevity of cloth diapers. The upfront cost can be large, but over time they really are affordable.

We have four or five of the custom fit Knickernappies in the large size which I love just as much as the 1G ones. Second Son is wearing them quite comfortably now. I've also added two one-size Knickernappies diapers, one I bought used from Cloth Diaper Outlet and one I bought with some gift certificates just because I could not resist the adorable Ooga Booga print. I've been really pleased with the Knickernappies One Size Diaper so far, though I've only tried it on babies and toddlers in the 20 to 32 pound range. I wouldn't be surprised if they last longer than the first batch of diapers now that I've gotten better at taking care of them. Of course, to really test them out I'd have to have another baby, which is not a good reason to have a baby.

It's not, right?

This is a great diaper, Mom!

I would much rather grab the camera than pose for a picture.

Quick, take the picture! I'm about to head off for some adventures.
Those are some well-spent gift certificates, though I think I'm biased by the sweetness of the model.

If you're interested in trying some one size Knickernappies pocket diapers, you can find bright yellow ones at a special price right now at Cloth Diaper Outlet. We obviously think bright yellow is a great color for boys and girls.

I also have six medium 1G Knickernappies diapers (three pink and three blue) that just never worked as well for us as the large ones. If you'd like to try them, let me know. I think I could bear to part with them now that I have only one in cloth diapers and quite the stash.

I did not receive anything in exchange for this post. I purchased all these diapers myself (with Kansas Dad's blessing). I do receive a small referral if you follow a link to Cloth Diaper Outlet in this post and make a purchase.

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