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Name Brands vs. Knockoffs: The diaper test

HOUSTON – Parents may debate whether their baby really needs a warmer for their wipes or a rocking chair for their nursery, but everyone agrees that every baby needs diapers. Prices vary greatly between name brands and store brands. 

Consumer expert Amy Davis continues our Name Brands versus Knock Offs series. This time, she's comparing diapers. The average baby will go through about 2,700 diapers in just the first year. That's about $500 worth. You could pay much less by buying budget brands and knowing how to shop. 

At just 7 weeks old, William Matthew Brann is keeping his parents very busy. 

"We would literally change him and he would start to cry and we'd look at the line and we'd be like,'Already?'" new mom Lindsey Brann said. 

The Branns said they're going through about 10 diapers a day.  

"We like to get bang for the buck, so we want to find a brand that we know is good, that is economical too," dad Craig told Davis. 

We sent them home with five brands of diapers and asked them to take notes about what they like and don't like about each one. 

The most expensive diapers in the test were Pamper Swaddlers that cost about 19 cents per diaper. Huggies Little Snugglers are 14 cents each and Luvs are 12 cents. 

The Branns also tested Target's Up and Up brand that are also 12 cents each and Walmart's Parents Choice for just 11 cents a diaper. 

"The Pampers and Huggies, I felt, were a little softer," Lindsey said.

But both mom and dad said the store brands did the job just as well. 

"I was pleasantly surprised with the Parent's Choice," Craig admitted. "They seemed to be pretty sturdy for me."  

The only diaper to fail their test was Luvs.

"He had a blowout," Lindsey said. "It had leaked on the side of the diaper." 

Luvs was also the only diaper in the test that didn't have the wet indicator that turns blue when the baby is wet.

The Branns' favorites, in order, were Huggies, Pampers, Target's Up & Up and Walmart's Parents Choice tied for third, and Luvs came in last place. 

No matter which brand your family chooses, you'll find the lowest price on diapers by buying on Amazon, only if you're an Amazon Prime member. If you are, join Amazon Family for free. Then set up your diapers under "subscribe and save" to have them shipped to you every month. You can save about 20 percent by taking these steps.

For example, Davis buys Luvs diapers through Amazon Family and "Subscribe and Save." Luvs normally cost 12 cents per diaper at Walmart. With all of the Amazon discounts, they are about 6 cents per diaper. If you don't have an Amazon Prime membership, diaper prices on Walmart.com are the same, or sometimes lower, than Amazon.