How Many Diapers Does A Baby Use In The First Year?

My days as a mom of kids in diapers is drawing to a close. Even with each achievement (a pee-pee in the potty) I grow wistful of those days of diapers. It is a surprising feeling over a chore that is so time consuming, a wee bit gross and very expensive. Nonetheless, it means my babies are growing up. But the big questions is, how many diapers does a baby use in the first year?

Diapers Stack

I have learned a lot about diapers — how to save on them, how many you need, etc. – in my nearly 5 years of diapering. (That’s two and half with my oldest and nearly two and half with my youngest.) One of the most important things I have learned is not to over pay for diapers, and not to overstock on small sizes. Because both are costly mistakes.

Download the Pampers App to earn free gifts.

Since an emergency trip to the store for diapers in the middle of the night is not much fun (and guarantees you will pay the highest price), I highly recommend moms start stocking up on diapers before the baby’s arrival. That way you can always be on the look out for the best price, and not worry about running out at the wrong time.

As part of the Playtex Mom Trust, I am going to give you the answer to the most important question when it comes to stockpiling diapers.

How Many Diapers Does A Baby Need?

How Many Diapers Does A Baby Use In The First Year

With my second, I had a better handle on how many diapers we would need. But I was curious exactly how many. So for her entire first year, I made note of each new pack of diapers we opened. Yes, each pack. Bare in mind I was a mom with a newborn, so it is quite possible I missed a pack. But for the most part, I think I got them all. 

Most experts will tell you that a baby will go through between 2,500 – 3,000 diapers in their first year. And my baby was no exception, she used 2,830 diapers in her first year.

My Daughter’s First Year Diapers Breakdown:

Newborn – 214 diapers
Size 1 – 746 diapers
Size 1-2 – 322 diapers
Size 2 – 384 diapers
Size 3 – 1164 diapers

For a limited time download the Pampers Rewards App, sign in and get 100 free points to start earning free gifts for baby. Then enter code XSURVEY20PT2017 for 20 more points.

Baby Diapers First Year Stockpile

Where To Buy Cheap Diapers

The number of diapers in each size will vary greatly from baby to baby. And I will be the first to admit that I am guilty of using too small diapers until they have been used up. My baby girl was 8.4 pounds at birth, she could have skipped newborn all together, but we were gifted six packs and I wasn’t about to let them go to waste.

Note to all well-meaning gift givers, don’t give size newborn diapers. Most moms only need 2-3 of these max, and most babies are ok starting in size 1. The exception, of course, are premies. 

Also many moms skip the size 1/2 diapers all together, but at the time they were significantly cheaper than size 2 so I went with it. If you don’t use size 1-2, consider those size 2s.

As to how much you should spend on each diaper, that depends on how you plan to shop. I am going to throw out a surprising fact, get ready… Fact – you will spend more money on diapers at places like Costco buying in bulk then buying small packs at drugstores with coupons and sales or Amazon with the Amazon Family discount.

It’s true. I promise.

Buying with sales and coupons my price point for size 1 diapers is $.08 – $.12 per diaper. If you buy in bulk at Costco, it will be more like $.19 per diaper for the same name-brand size 1 diaper. 

If you want to buy bigger packages, the way to do it is shop Amazon (plus free delivery!). When diapers on Amazon go on sale you can also get the $.10 range on big packs, and that is the time to stock up!

The best thing about Amazon is obviously that the diapers arrived at your doorstep. Forget about running out for diapers, you can even subscribe to diapers to make sure they always come when you need them. And when you sign up for Amazon Family, you save an additional 20% on the already low prices. 

Get a 30-day free trial of Amazon Family

Tip – When you sign up for an Amazon Baby Registry and complete the requirements (which include being an Amazon Family member) you will get a free registry gift

Word to the wise, the bigger the diaper — the more expensive it is. By the time you get to a size 5, you can expect to pay $.22 per diaper for a good deal. Again, the key is to start early and watch sales.

Don’t forget to download the Pampers Rewards App, sign in and get 100 free points to start earning free gifts for baby. Then enter code XSURVEY20PT2017 for 20 more points.

**Please note, my prices are based on buying Pampers and Huggies. 

Stack of Diapers

My #1 Diapering Tip

I’ll leave you with my number one diapering tip that comes with a warning.

Flaps out!

The crinkly ruffles around the edges of diapers are important. Very important. When diapering your babe, run your fingers along the little edges after putting on the diaper to make sure all of those little flaps are out. If they accidentally get tucked into the elastic, you have all of the makings of a mess.

You see when those little flaps get caught between your babe and the elastic, it is just enough to “break the seal” and that is all you need for a leaky diaper. Of course, a leaky diaper can happen any time. But if the flaps are tucked in, you are just asking for trouble. 

My hubby and I learned that lesson the hard way, and it took us a few smelly friendly reminders to finally get it. Always remember — flaps out!

How to get Free Stuff for Baby! 

How To Get Free Stuff For Baby

Free Stuff for Every Diaper

15 thoughts on “How Many Diapers Does A Baby Use In The First Year?”

  1. Kudos to you for keeping track and helping out new Moms–great idea!!! it’s amazing how many they use in a year!! WOW—it will really help people budget and use coupons more wisely too

  2. I tried keeping track of my diaper usage because I thought it would be helpful to share, but sadly around size 3 I lost track.

    Here is what I have: (My daughter was born 7lbs 6oz)
    NB – 188
    Size 1 – 393
    Size 2 – 480
    Size 3 – 165+ (a couple big boxes probably close to 400-600)

    I will say that my daughter is now 6 months and is in size 4 diapers, and I have a friend whose daughter is almost 9 months and in size 5 diapers. Not sure how some people keep them in smaller sizes, because the smaller the diaper the less it holds. I found that whenever my daughters diaper would start leaking from big poos or pees, going to the next size up worked best. You just have to pull the diaper up a little farther and make the straps tighter. I never went by the suggested weight on the package.

  3. Thank you for this guide. Typically parents — especially first time and new parents — don’t take into consideration the number of diapers used in a year. Without this kind of guide to serve as reference, I’ll also not bother counting or taking account of this. This should help in managing my budget and expenses for the whole year…

  4. My son was born 6lbs 14oz and we used over 2600 diapers.

    Newborn 336
    Size 1 – 664
    size 2 – 308
    Size 3 – 357
    Size 4 – 980

    We had to move him up to size 4 before he hit the weight because he had chunky thighs and the diapers were cutting his legs :(.

  5. Hi Jen, thanks for sharing your numbers with us. One thing I like about this is that it enables me to be accountable and makes it easy to see the components where expenses are going. Usually, I’ll just make mental note but maybe writing the details down might help. Also, aside from earning free gifts, what should be expected from the Pampers App? Thanks

  6. Kudos to you for keeping track and helping out new Moms–great idea!!! it’s amazing how many they use in a year!! WOW—it will really help people budget and use coupons more wisely too


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