When a new baby is brought home (or the new baby is on the way), the budget can quickly blow out of proportion with baby purchases.

The hip-pocket pain can be eased with some smart choices and less reliance on disposable products.  

Families are throwing thousands of dollars away by using disposable nappies, single use wipes and onesies that are outgrown in weeks.  Most people don’t know but there are lots of alternatives.

Repeatedly buying disposable nappies, wipes and breast pads becomes really expensive and it’s also bad for the environment. The re-usable market has come a long way recently too. 

Many new parents think cloth nappies are the old fashioned style that require folding, pins and plastic pants. Modern cloth nappies are shaped like disposables and close with snaps or velcro. Technology, materials and innovation have come a long way and they are easily washed, dried and very breathable. The new materials don’t require any soaking or special wash routines, just wash like your clothes. 

Here are some tips to help you save thousands of dollars (and the environment):  

Modern cloth nappies 

pack of 24 cloth nappies costs around $700, it’s expensive upfront, but if you compare it to the ongoing costs of disposable nappies, which cost close to $4000 from birth until toilet training, you’re better off spending more upfront. 

Modern cloth nappies are made from bamboo, cotton, hemp or microfibre which makes them super absorbentThere are many types, colours and prints available, so you can easily find something to suit your family’s style.  

Re-usable wipes 

For a small upfront cost, you can save an extra $300. Usually made from bamboo or cotton, there are so many funky prints to choose from. You will need less wipes per change and just pop them in to wash with your nappies.  

Onesie extenders 

Babies also grow so quickly – particularly out of those newborn onesies. By adding 9cm extenders to your onesies you can get an extra two sizes out of them and save at least $200. Use them to get some extra wear out of your favourite onesies.  

Reusable nursing pads 

Made from bamboo, cotton or microfibre, these are a more comfortable solution, save money and produce less waste. You can choose a funky print to suit your style, or opt for a plain colour to keep these hidden under white t-shirts 

Disposable products are only relatively new on the market but they seem to have become the norm for most parents. By making these small changes you will save money as well as the environment.

Have you tried to replace any disposable products in your baby care routine? Share with us below.

Image source Shutterstock.

  • I didn’t do any of these suggestions.


  • Great tips.
    I would add buying second hand clothing and ask around for hand me downs in your circle of friends. I didn’t buy any onesies, singlets, or clothing items the first year. All were given hand me downs.


  • I wanted to do the non-disposable nappies, but in the end, ease won.


  • I did use the old fashioned nappies as I didn’t want to be disposing waste all the time. A bit more work, but boy it saved me a lot of money. One could also suggest these be bought for your baby shower as a gift to reduce your costs even further.


  • The modern “cloth” nappies aren’t that easy to get clean. The outer part has a “pocket” inside that you slip the absorbant fabric into. The inner side of the pocket gets the initial urine and most of the faeces which often leaves stains that don’t always disappear because the outside of the outer part feels like a type of synthetic and you can’t soak it in special soaker or hot water. The abosorbant fabric is hard to get dry unless you toss it in the dryer which isn’t actually recommended. One Mum I know found she needed more inserts than she did the other part because of the difference in drying times, Before the introduction of wipes some Mums used facewashers which they soaked in nappy soaker and kept them stored in a separate place to those used in a bath. As sterile as they may be the stains don’t always come out.

    • I can understand your concerns hearing this story from one mum. Modern washing machines are very well equiped to clean nappies very effectively. My nappies dry in the sun in a couple of hours and never need to go in the dryer. The sun is very good at removing stains the same as if you had food stains on your clothing. The pocket nappies are also only one style that is available, a lot of the absorbent boosters just snap into the covers or they are all in one so no assembly required. Many mums still use cloth wipes instead of disposable and just wash them with their nappies. They are much better for bubs skin because there are no chemicals involved.


  • All great tips,we all need to save money! Thanks.


  • I used cloth nappies (the old fashioned type) for three years. I only used disposables when we went out on long trips, so I didn’t buy many packets at all. It was a lot more work, but I didn’t feel right using too many disposables.


  • I never used cloth nappies, but I wish I did. I spent so much money on nappies. My daughter stopped using nappies at 3 years and 7 months old. :-(


  • You can find some great prints on modern cloth nappies too!


  • Gee, I wish I had known about onesie extenders!


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