May 12, 2011

Gently Used Diapers, What do you need to know?

There is actually a huge market for the buying, selling and trading of gently used cloth diapers.  The issue is that there are a lot of things you should consider before purchasing gently used diapers. 

Let's go over some things you should know but may not have considered.

  • Ask why the person is selling the diapers?  Assuming they're going to be honest.  Selling due to the wrong size is a good reason, but if they simply "didn't work for us" then you should probably dig a little deeper and ask why?  Did they leak?  Do the snaps come undone? 
  • What were they washed with?  You'll want to know what kind of detergent the previous owner used and whether or not it was cloth diaper friendly.
  • When did they buy the diapers and were they the only owner?  Often diapers will have changed hands more than once.  You may not know how old the diapers are or how they were cared for.  If you're curious you can always look at a person's recent posts (on a forum) and see if they recently obtained the diapers from another person or not.
  • Ask what brand/version of the diaper you are buying and if it was a "seconds".  Some brands went out of business and for good reason.  Some versions were discontinued due to flaws and may be diapers that you do not want to purchase. "Seconds" generally refer to diapers that were manufactured in some way with a flaw.  If they were a "Seconds" diaper then you'll want to know why.  You can also use the version to determine the age of a diaper.  If a new version came out then you can find out the date they stopped making the older version.  Often older diapers, if not stored properly, could have damaged elastic or other materials that will quickly deteriorate when you begin using them again.
  • Make sure you find out what shape the diaper is in.  Don't just take their word for it if they say it's stain-free.  Ask to see photos of the inside and outside of the diaper.  Many sellers are perfectly fine with providing you appropriate photos of the diapers they are selling.
  • Check the sellers feedback/rating.  Make sure that you're not going to be scammed by making sure the person has good feedback, at least a little bit of posting history, and that everything looks good and not suspicious.  There are plenty of scammers who use photos of diapers and pretend they are selling them when in fact they don't actually have them.
Finally, your best bet is to buy "Certified Pre-Owned" Diapers from a cloth diaper retailer.  Cloth Diaper Retailers know what good condition, functioning diapers look like and often they pre-wash/strip all diapers before they re-sell them.  Some even provide a limited warranty on their pre-owned diapers.

Cloth Diaper Outlet has a great Cloth Diaper Buyback Program and they also sell Gently Used, Excellent Condition diapers that you can buy with confidence.

Visit Cloth Diaper Outlet for more about their Reduce, Reuse, Reuse Diaper Program.


I have LOVED being able to buy and sell used cloth diapers. It's been a lifesaver, and so much more practical!