Friday, July 29, 2011

Ways To Save $$$ While Building Your Diaper Stash

 For some reason I cringe every time my husband Brian opens up our credit card statement.  He'll go down the line and list off all the diaper purchases that I've made for that month.  Cotton Babies?  Yep.  Diaper Junction?  Yep.  SweetBottoms Baby? Yep.  Fluff Envy?  Yep.  They were all me.  I know I'm saving money by going the cloth diaper route, but I'm also starting to wonder what I can do to save even more money.  In the beginning I had planned on buying everything new off of regular websites and I even created a spreadsheet noting down all the retail prices, fully expecting to pay those prices.  I had certain diapers I wanted and with each diaper type I had a certain color or print that I wanted it in.  Now I'm realizing that with a little compromise and patience I can find a lot of great deals, and who doesn't love to save money???

Here are some of the ways that I've found to save money with cloth diapering.  Some methods require more time than others.  Some require more patience than others till the opportunity comes up.  Some require more compromise than others on the exact product that you will get.  Some require a sacrifice of quality.  It's all up to you on what you are willing to do in order to save some money and get some cute fluff.  

This was my first effort at saving money without sacrificing time or quality, or compromising on the products I wanted.  Quickly you realize that there are a lot of sites that offer free shipping and there are a lot of sites that do not.  Some will give you free shipping no matter what you buy or how much you spend.  Others will offer free shipping if you surpass a certain dollar amount.  Then there are those companies that only offer free shipping as a special promotion for a limited time.  My favorite sites tend to be those that offer free shipping all the time no matter the dollar amount since I like to buy one or two items here and there.  The only tricky part to this is that at the same time I like to make purchases out of state to avoid the sales tax, so that eliminates a few companies for me unless they're having a great deal that makes it worth it.  Here are a few companies that offer free shipping.  My list keeps growing so always check my Resources page to get the most current list.

Abby's Lane - *Free Shipping*
Cotton Babies - *Free Shipping*
Diaper Junction - *Free Shipping on orders over $49*
Fluff Envy - *Free Shipping on orders over $35*
Kelly's Closet - *Free Shipping on orders over $49*
Mom's Milk Boutique - *Free Shipping on orders over $25
Nells Natural Baby - *Free Shipping on orders over $39*
Sew Crafty Baby - *Free Shipping*
Sweetbottoms Baby - *Free Shipping*

Another great way to save money is to look out for coupon codes and sales.  This requires a little more patience on your end to get the deal.  Some sites list these codes right on their sites.  Others you need to look a little harder for.  A great place to find coupon codes and sales is on Diaper Pin.  They always have an up to date list of companies that are having specials and what codes you need enter in order to get each deal.  Another great place to look for sales is on each company's Facebook page, Twitter page, blog, or newsletter.  These specials are sometimes way better than what you would find on their website or Diaper Pin, because they want to reward their followers.  You could also just Google "Coupon Codes for ...", but I don't always have a lot of luck with this method.  Sales and Coupons can happen at any time, but a sure bet time to look for specials is around any holiday.  I always scour every site around the holidays.  Here are a few specials that are going on right now.  I just took advantage of the Diaper Junction sale this weekend and I can't wait to find out what diaper they give me for free!

Diaper Junction - Free OS AIO w/ each order over $59 (Codes GIRLAIO or BOYAIO)
Kelly's Closet - Free OS diaper w/ each order over $59 (Code BARBQUE)
Fluffy Cheeks - 15% Off All Orders (Code MOVING15) 20% Off Orders over $100 (MOVING20)
Blueberry Diapers - 25% Off (Code BABYSTEALS811) or $10 off + Free Shipping on orders over $49 (Code 10OFF)

I LOVE "Deal A Day" sites!  They're actually quite addicting.  These are sites that feature one or a few great deals each day that last anywhere from one to three days usually.  On these sites you can get products 40-90% off of retail price.  I usually see them about 50-60%  off though.  There are a couple sacrifices with this method of saving money though.  You have to stalk these sites daily.  Each site has their own time they  post their deals and some deals sell out FAST!  Product choices are very limited.  Each product may have only one or two colors to choose from.  These sites also normally charge shipping.  You have to calculate your savings carefully because you might be able to save more going to a site with free shipping and a percent off coupon code.  Totsy actually gives you free shipping on your first order (*as long as you make it within 30 days of registering).  A lot of these sites also give you credit for your account when you get a friend to sign up and make a purchase.  I've already got $30 racked up on my Totsy and Zulily accounts.  Now I just need to wait for the perfect deal.  Here are a few of the Deal A Day sites.

Baby Earth GaGa Deals - A new deal every hour.  This is a timing game so it's kind of a rush.
Baby Half Off
Baby Steals
Diaper Junction - Daily Diaper Deal (Located at Top Right Corner of Page)
Eco Baby Buys
Green Baby Bargains
Hippo Bargains
Mama Bargains
Totsy - Use the Coupon Code: VIPMOM for $15 off your order of $60 or more

You can find giveaways everywhere for just about anything.  I didn't do that many giveaways in the beginning, but now I do them all the time.  You can find them on blogs or you can Google them.  There are websites out there that just list millions of giveaways and you can search for what products you're wanting.  Sometimes I just Google a diaper I want and the word "Giveaway".  Chances are someone is giving one away right now.  I still have yet to win one, but I know if I enter enough I'm bound to win one or two ... right???  They do take a bit of time if you try and enter as many times as you can.  Don't forget to check out my Giveaways.  I'll try and have one at least once a month.  Here are some great blogs to check out for Diaper Giveaways, but there are millions more.

Adventures In Fluff - That's a Given Of Course! - She also does a list of giveaways on other sites as well on Fridays
Cloth Diaper Blog
Kelly Wels Blog
The Cloth Diaper Report - Also does a list of giveaways on other sites as well on Fridays
The Cloth Diaper Whisperer - A giveaway every Friday!

Package deals are a great way to save money if you want a few (or a lot) of the same diaper.  You get them for less money this way and in some cases you also get a free gift for ordering in bulk.  I've received a free diaper cover for ordering my Kissaluvs fitted diapers in bulk on Thanks Mama.  They have tons of Package deals.  Just Google the diaper brand or style you're looking for along with "Package Deal".  Most online stores will have them.

I'll admit that the thought of seconds was a little scary to me at first.  Seconds are essentually products that the manufacturer can not sell for full retail value because there is some cosmetic flaw to the product.  With cloth diapers it's usually uneven seams, a dirt mark on the fabric, or some other defect that should not affect the performance of the diaper.  In most cases you can't even tell what the defect is.  I did receive one diaper that I was unsatisfied with from Cotton Babies, but they quickly remedied the problem by sending me out a new seconds diaper and paying to ship the other one back.  Also note that pocket diapers that are seconds don't usually come with the inserts.  Factor this in to your money savings before you decide to buy.  The trick to gettinging seconds is to check websites often for them.  Usually these diapers go up fast and are sold really fast.  In some cases you can sign up for their newsletter so that you hear about the sales as soon as they go up.  Here are a few links where you can find cloth diaper seconds.

Cotton Babies - Bumgenius Discontinued and Seconds
Thirsties Outlet - Thirsties Seconds
The Cloth Diaper Outlet Store - Seconds, Discontinued, Overstocks, & Gently Used
Baby Eco Mart
FuzziBunz Seconds Factory - Fuzzibunz Seconds
Cloth Diaper Clearance - Seconds, Discontinued, & Overstock
Tiny Tush - Tiny Tush Discontinued and Seconds
Green Mountain Diapers - Seconds and Sales
Heiny King - Seconds and Like New
Kissaluvs - Kissaluvs Seconds are mixed in with their regular store
AppleCheeks - AppleCheeks Seconds
Gen-Y - Gen-Y Seconds

I've only been a tester for one diaper company and that's RearZ.  I just received the diaper and can't wait to test it out on our little guy this fall.  Being a tester just means that after you've received the diaper and used it for a reasonable amount of time (about 2 weeks), then you fill out a questionnaire describing how the product worked for you.  I found out about the RearZ testers slot on their Facebook Page, but you can also Google "Cloth Diaper Testers".  I've found a lot come up that way as well.  Don't be afraid to contact a company to ask if they need testers too.  Some might send you the diaper for free.  Others might charge shipping.  Others yet might charge a nominal fee plus shipping to test their diaper, but it's still usually a great deal.  You never know.  You might just find the next best diaper before it hits the shelves.

These are prefect diapers, only they are in a discontinued color/print or style.  I have some discontinued RearZ diapers that I think will work out great!  You can find links to a lot of discontinued diapers above along with "Seconds".

Last, but certainly not least is that you can get a lot of your stash used.  This was another area where I was a little hesitant... and my husband was a LOT hesitant.  Don't get me wrong.  I've shopped at thrift stores many times (not sure if my husband has).  It's just that this is my little baby and I want something new to put on his bum.  I've since then changed my thinking though and will be looking for great used diaper deals as well.  Most of the time the diapers are still in great condition and work just as well as a brand new diaper.  One extra perk of a used diaper ... You don't have to prep them!!!!  The thought of that is awesome.  Especially when it comes to prefolds or natural fiber diapers that you have to wash a million times.  Before buying check to see if you're getting the inserts.  If not then you need to factor that into your cost savings to see if it's really a deal or not.  There are lots of places you can get used diapers.  Here are just a few.

Craigslist - Not Diaper Exclusive
eBay - Not Diaper Exclusive
Freecycle - Not Diaper Exclusive
Diaper Swappers
Spots Corner
Diaper Junction - Under "Preowned Diapers"
The Cloth Diaper Outlet Store - Seconds, Discontinued, Overstocks, & Gently Used
Kelly's Closet - Look under the "On Sale" heading
Jillian's Drawers

I hope all of this information helps you out on your search for great ways to save money with cloth diapering.  I know I have and will continue to use of lot of these methods and I already see the dollars melting off of my cloth diaper spreadsheet that I've made up.  It makes me happy every time I can enter a number that is less than retail.  Oh, yes!  Just another happy moment in my Adventures In Fluff.

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  1. Excellent tips! Shared with some fellow fluffy moms :)

  2. A great listing of all the ways to get fluff for cheap! It's awesome that you're now OK with the idea of buying used. You can really snag some good deals that way! I'm pretty sure that 90% of my stash was purchased used. :)

  3. I wish I knew a lot of the ways to save in the beginning. I'm addicted to finding new ways to save now.

  4. Jillian's Drawers:

    Is currently my favorite place to by gently used diapers. I don't think I saw it on your list. Her "fair" quality diapers have been used for "3 weeks or less" and have minimal staining. Of 20ish diapers I ordered, only two needed some time in the sun. They're basically just pre-prepped diapers for half the price. Alternatively you can buy "excellent" condition, which are guaranteed not to have any stains.

  5. Thanks for the tip Our Little Beehive! I'll add it to my list! Thanks. : )

  6. Thanks for this post. I wish I knew a lot of these things when I started shopping!

  7. You're the best, I swear!! thanks for all this

  8. I've built an eclectic stash of pockets, AIO's, fitteds and prefolds that lasts 3 days before washing and cost less than $250!
    Between review/giveaways, sales, free shipping stores (my personal favorite is the most local to me: Cotton Babies) and upcycling our old tshirts and other clothing items, we've diapered our 2 children for next to nothing!

    If you're considering upcycling, consider wool! Your local Good Will (or other consignment shop) has a huge selection of wool sweaters for next to nothing!

    And I've spent less than $25 on ALL of our wipes & wipe solution as well. (Also using goodwill and the local dollar store!)

    Facebook is also a great way to find small companies or SAHM businesses who want testers, which usually cost only shipping or at most, shipping and cloth at cost!

  9. Mrs. Smitty - I'm definitely going to try out some wool. I've already got a sweater that I got at Goodwill waiting for me to use. Next up on my list is Fleece then I'll try the wool.


Thanks so much for taking the time to show your support with a comment! I LOVE reading all of them and will try and answer any questions that you might have. :)