How Many Cloth Diapers Do You Need For Baby?

You've decided to use cloth rather than disposables but now you're wondering how many cloth diapers do you need for baby? In this post tell you.

How Many Cloth Diapers Do You Need For Baby?
By Ellen Fetters •  Updated: 18/12/19 •  3 min read

So you’ve decided to use cloth rather than disposables but now you’re wondering how many cloth diapers do you need for baby?

Don’t worry, in this post we’re going to break down how you can figure this out so you’re never caught short.

Let’s go!

how many cloth diapers do you need for baby? Let's find out

How To Figure out How Many Cloth Diapers You Need

The first thing you need to know is that there’s no right answer but the below should give you a pretty accurate guestimate.

Ultimatley you’ll know better than us if baby is a heavy wetter who needs changing more often or if they struggle to go.

Regardless, there are so many benefits to cloth diapers that it makes sense to give them a try.

Step 1. How old is Baby?

The first thing to consider is the age of your child, the table below provides a useful starting point:


So if you plan on putting your newborn baby into a reusable diaper then you’ll need more than you would for an 18 month old.

Step 2. How often do you do laundry?

It stands to reason but the more cloth diapers you have, the less you’ll have to do the laundry.

While it’s recommended washing a cloth diaper every 2-3 days, in our experience you’r doing to want to wash the cloth diaper every day.

Step 3. Double The Daily Diaper Requirement

Okay so based on the above you should now have a figure in your head of roughtly how many diapers you are going to need.

Next, take your estimated days wear and double it.

This will be the number that most parents need to buy for their babies.

Don’t Forget To Plan For Emergencies

If we know one thing about babues it’s that failing to prepare is preparing to fail.

To be extra safe for when those little emergencies do happen many parents will add two or three more cloth diapers to their stash.

Many parents will also leave a few spares at grandparents houses or other places where babies are likely to spend time.

For me this was easy, once my newborn stopped needing 10 a day and only needed 6 or 7 I’d leave the extra 3 at my parents houses making it less of a hassle to do a diaper change there.

There’s No Magic Number

As we said right at the top, there’s no magic number.

Knowing how many you need comes with experience and knowing your baby and how many changes they need each day.

One thing we do love about a cloth diaper is how they can be used by addiditonal babies that may come along.

The Bottom Line

So there you have it. Hopefully now you’ve got a better understanding of how many cloth diapers you need for baby.

While cloth diapers can be a minefield at first and there is an upfront cost for diaper covers, inserts and the diapers themselves ultimatley they are more affordable and personally speaking all of my babies have loved being in them.



Ellen Fetters

Ellen Fetters, is a former Children's and Young People's Nursing Practice with an BSc from the University of Sunderland. After completing her SCPHN - HV she then worked as a Health Visitor within the local community.

In 2017 Ellen left nursing to launch Parenting Click, an online parenting resource aimed at creating happier families through better parenting.

She lives with her husband, beautiful baby girl, and two darling dogs. She spends her free time writing, running and learning how to become a better parent.