One of the best decisions we have made at FYM was to create our own diaper stockpiles. Just over two years ago Emily had a New Year’s Resolution to become an extreme couponer. At the time she had left her job, taken a pay cut for a new one and she and Mike had just purchased their first house. So you can imagine that every penny counted. While there are some mommy and daddy essentials that some people say Moms have an excess of, diapers is certainly not one of them!
As a DIY fanatic, Emily always got her creative juices flowing for her pregnant friends and family. She wasn’t sure she would be able to have children, so buying diapers seemed a little far fetched, but picking up a package here and there when a good deal was out there seemed reasonable. Diapers always make a great gift for new moms and those DIY diaper creations were too cute to resist! Thanks to Pinterest, she not only found some adorable ideas, but that there were ways to purchase diapers without spending an arm and a leg. Her best strategy was to pick a price per diaper (and wipe) that fit the budget and stick to it, even if it meant taking a trip to another store to find a deal.
She knew from her sister, other mommy friends, and online reviews that Pampers Swaddlers seemed be the fan favorite. Although they are the most expensive, they have the best tried and true reviews of any diaper she’s seen, plus they have an awesome rewards system (read about it here)!
So how does one create a diaper stockpile? Well, Emily is here to tell you how!
When we first found out we were expecting I had about 4 packs of diapers and 6 packs of wipes in my stockpile. Clearly, I had to really kick it into high gear. However, not knowing exactly how many of each size we would need or no way of knowing how big our baby would be I was hesitant to really stock up. Thanks to some research (Pinterest saves the day again!) I found some moms out there that had a solution to my problem. They recommended the following breakdown for the first year:
2-3 packs of newborn size
840 size 1
570 size 2
1512 size 3 and 4
Holy moly! That is a lot of diapers!!! So here’s my first piece of advice for you:
Find a place to store all the diapers and wipes!
My original plan was to aim to only pay 12 cents per diaper. Assuming you change 8 diapers a day that’s about $1 per day. However, it is slightly harder to achieve for Pampers so I accepted up to 16 cents per diaper if need be. Something to keep in mind is that as the size of the diaper goes up, there are less in each pack, making your price per diaper go up. Based on the size, type, and brand an acceptable price is anywhere between 13 and 31 cents per diaper. There’s a great article here for more information on stock up prices. As for wipes, I always aim to get them for free, but will accept a price of 1 cent per wipe.
This leads me to my second piece of advice:
Decide what you’re comfortable paying and stick to it.
Now comes the hard part- shopping the deals. I have a couple tried and true times when I will buy diapers and here are my must grab scenarios.
Cash Back Offers:
Target has by far the highest price on diapers. They frequently (at least once a month) run gift card deals with the big boxes. A big box of about 100 diapers will run you about $25, but I won’t buy them without coupons. You can usually find coupons for $3 off each box and I suggest stacking it with the Target Cartwheel app if available. Target usually has 5% off diapers and wipes. Most of the time when you buy two boxes you’ll get a $20 gift card. Which means you’re really paying for the price of one, cutting your price per diaper to about 11 cents. Sometimes they run the deal without the gift card offer but will offer a free box of wipes (containing 9 packs that usually retails for $15) and you can usually use a coupon for the wipes. Just recently Sherrie scored a great deal on diapers at Target rolling the gift card offers. That means earning a gift card in one transaction and then using that gift card in the following transaction to save even more!
Another place you wouldn’t think to purchase diapers is at Rite Aid. They have my favorite cash back deals. Occasionally they will have deal where you will get a certain number of points back for spending a certain threshold of money. The points later convert to cash to be used on future purchases. If you saved up your points and stack them with sales and coupons you can really save big! This may be a good time to get the bigger sizes so you can avoid paying a higher price per diaper. Case and point? Last week I got 4 packs of size 4 Pampers for only $2.40! Although it wasn’t that many diapers (only 108) it came to about 2 cents per diaper! Unheard of pricing! So my third piece of advice is:
Take advantage of the deals at different stores. It’s worth the drive!
So let’s say you buy one too many of certain size? Every baby grows at different pace and perhaps the suggestions above were slightly off. Now you have leftover boxes of one size as you move up to the next. Not to worry, you can always return or exchange unopened packages for a different size. Even if you don’t have receipt, most stores will still allow you to swap them out. So my last piece of advice:
Wait to open the boxes in case you need to exchange them.
As we approached the end of my pregnancy my husband kept telling me we don’t need more diapers! He was sort of right, but now I will focus on snagging up the deals for the bigger sizes. Couponing can get to be a little addicting so when you get you to a good place with your stockpile, try to remember to only coupon if there’s a really great deal.
Something you may want to do that I am doing is keeping a spreadsheet to track usage and see if my size guesses were accurate. I have an app to keep track of Madeline’s diaper changes (among other things- look for a post on that to come soon!). This data can be easily exported into the spreadsheet. My calculations show that I should have enough in my stockpile to last us 9-12 months. The best past is that it cost me less than $200 total. I’d say that’s pretty good! What do you think?
Did you prepare a stockpile or are you preparing one for your little ones arrival like we did? Tweet or Instagram us your diaper stash using hashtag: #diaperstashfym
We’d love to see how you’re doing!