Finding Cheap Cloth Diapers: Everything You Need to Know

Published by 
Jess Miller
Last updated: 
February 23, 2023

When my son was born, I was convinced I'd never have to worry about finding cheap cloth diapers no matter how much money they would save me. Washing dirty diapers? Gross! Right?

Then I saw just how stinking cute today's cloth diapers are, and I was hooked. Few things in this world are more adorable than a baby wearing a fuzzy cow-print diaper cover.

And that, my friends, is where my addiction began. From then on I took great pride in building up a stash of the best cloth diapers I could find. But cute isn't the only thing that matters to new moms.

Let's be honest, most of us live on a pretty tight budget these days. So how can you find cheap cloth diapers that are both adorable and easy to use? Here's what you need to know.

Saving Money with Cheap Cloth Diapers

Cloth diapers have many advantages. They are better for the environment and many babies experience less diaper rash with cloth diapers.

Without a doubt, reusable diapers are cheaper than the overall cost of even the cheapest disposable diapers -- in the long run, that is. It isn't uncommon for parents to experience a bit of sticker shock at first.

For being the thrifty option, the prices can seem plenty high when you first start shopping. But there are places to find cheap cloth diapers if you know where to look.

At some point, you may have to make a choice. What is more important to you? Price? Ease of use? Or that all-important fashion factor?

All of these things will influence the cost of the cloth diapers you choose to buy. So you need to take a moment to consider your priorities.

Also, remember that you don't have to use all one type of cloth diaper. You can mix and match to meet your needs, which may not always be the same. You can even decide to use disposable diapers from time to time.

Here's what you need to know about the different types of cloth diapers on the market today.

Baby Holding Finger

Cheap Cloth Diapers: Type Matters

The type of cloth diapers you ultimately decide to buy will have a direct impact on how much you can expect to pay.

In general, the more convenient the diaper is, the more it is likely to cost. Also, the more well-known a brand is, the better the chances are that it will have a higher price tag.

That shouldn't necessarily come as a surprise, after all, most things work that way. However, there are still ways to get cheap cloth diapers that are convenient, adorable, and name brand.

As mentioned above, you can also mix-and-match your diapers. For example, you could choose to use pre-folds with covers at home and all-in-ones or pocket inserts while you're out running errands around town.

And yes, you can even use disposable diapers when you're on vacation. By mixing types and brands, you can have a diaper stash that will meet your needs no matter what life throws your way.

Don't fall into the trap of thinking you have to buy a huge package of cheap cloth diapers in bulk to start your diaper stash off on the right foot.

If you do decide to go with a package option, go with a sampler that will let you try several different styles and brands.

Trust me, the cheap diapers you think look good on the computer screen may not work out quite the way you expect once you actually put them on your baby.

Recommended Read: How to Strip Cloth Diapers the Easy Way

All-in-one diapers

All-in-one cloth diapers are the easiest to use but they also tend to be the most expensive option.

With AIO cloth diaper, the cover and the absorbent insert are all one piece. There is no folding and no stuffing the insert into the cover. You can just slap it on your baby and go.

Essentially, all-in-ones work just like a disposable diaper except for the fact that you wash and reuse them. The downside to AIO diapers is that they take longer to wash because they are all one piece.

But if you are on the go a lot or have people caring for your baby that are hesitant to use cloth diapers, this option is the way to go. All-in-one cloth diapers are easy peasy.

Pocket insert diapers

Although pocket insert diapers aren't quite as simple as all-in-one options, they are still pretty easy to use. This style of diaper is exactly what it sounds like.

The diaper cover has a pocket on the inside. All you have to do is stick the absorbent insert into the pocket and your diaper is ready to go.

When looking for cheap cloth diapers, this style can give you the best of both worlds. Pocket insert diapers tend to cost less than all-in-ones but they don't require as much effort as pre-folds.

These diapers also take less time to clean than all-in-one diapers. That's because you take them apart and remove the absorbent insert before you toss them into the washing machine.

Laundry Drying on Clothesline

Pre-fold diapers

Pre-fold diapers are what most people think of when they hear the words "cloth diapers."

They consist of a large piece of cloth that you fold around the baby's bottom and then secure with pins or a Snappi, which is safer. But even these have come a long way over the years. In fact, the covers that go with pre-folds are some of the cutest on the market.

Pre-folds are the way to go if you are on a really tight budget and need to find cheap cloth diapers at the lowest price possible.

Best Ways to Find Cheap Cloth Diapers

At this point, you have learned a little more about the various styles of cloth diapers on the market. You have a good idea of what types of cloth diapers sound like they would work best for your lifestyle.

So, you're ready to start shopping. Right?

Well, it's possible that the prices still might be a little high for your budget. Even though you know they will save you money in the long run, it can still cost a pretty penny up-front.

Where can you go to find cheap cloth diapers? There are actually lots of ways you can find cloth diapers for significantly less than you'd pay on Amazon.

You may have to put in a little more work to track down the best deals. But the discounts you can find will make the extra legwork worth it in the end. Trust me.

Also, make sure to remember that you can mix and match, which will also save you money. You can start your diaper stash off with mostly pre-folds then add pocket inserts and all-in-ones later.

Once you know what brands are your favorite, you can build up your stash over time. So, where can you find the best deals on cheap cloth diapers? Let's take a look.

Sales, sales, sales

Most manufacturers offer sales and you definitely want to try to do your shopping during one of these promotional events. Keep an eye out for seasonal sales and special events.

Big-name brands like Nora's Nursery, Alvababy, and Blueberry can be pretty expensive. But shopping during their sales brings that cost down significantly.

There are also websites that sell cloth diapers from many different companies and they will host sales as well.

You can also find sampler packages on these sites that will save you money while letting you check out several different types of cloth diapers at one low price.

WAHM shops

Another great way to find cheap cloth diapers is to buy from shops run by work-at-home moms (WAHM). To find these shops, check for deals on sites like eBay and Etsy.

Buying from WAHMs that sew their own diapers can save you money. However, shopping at these small businesses has several other advantages.

In addition to lower prices, you also know that your money is directly helping another mom and her family.

WAHM shops make cheap diapers that are every bit as good as the big-name brands. Plus, the customer service from stores run my WAHMs is usually fantastic.

You can also get custom orders from these types of cloth diaper makers. Some of my favorite cloth diapers over the years have come from WAHMs.

Baby Painting


What? Auctions for cloth diapers? Absolutely!

Babies grow fast. Very fast. That can mean great deals for moms looking for cheap cloth diapers. Websites like Diaper Junction sell lightly used cloth diapers.

There are also entire message boards dedicated to helping moms sell their used cloth diapers.

In addition to just buying cheap cloth diapers, these boards also let moms connect and troubleshoot any issues that may arise.

Suddenly your diapers don't seem as absorbent as they should? Not sure how to strip your diapers? Have a sizing question? Cloth diaper message boards can help with all of it.

Another advantage of joining these boards is that when your baby outgrows his diapers, you can sell them and recoup some of the money you've spent. That way, you can afford to buy the next size up for your little one who isn't as little as he used to be.

Recommended Post: How Many Cloth Diapers Do I Need?

Time to Buy Cheap Cloth Diapers

Congratulations, you are now ready to venture forth and start buying your own cheap cloth diapers.

Be aware that cloth diapers can quickly become an obsession. After all, those fuzzy baby butts are just so darned cute! Once you start building your diaper stash it is all too easy to become completely addicted.

One quick thing to know when you start shopping for cheap cloth diapers? You should absolutely invest in a diaper sprayer. One of these nifty gadgets will save you time and money -- as well as your sanity. You'll thank me later. I promise.

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