Costco Diapers vs Pampers Diapers: Discover the Right Brand for Your Baby

Kirkland diapers vs Pampers diapers: How does Costco’s store brand compare to one of the best known diaper brands? Since babies go through over 1500 diapers just in their first year, you need information to choose the best diaper for your child. 

This guide illustrates the differences and similarities between Pampers and Costco’s diapers

In summary

  • Both brands are extremely absorbent, high quality, and durable 
  • Pampers contoured shape fits snugly against your baby’s body. And the waistband goes higher up your baby’s back, containing some leaks out the back. The outside of Pampers are softer than Kirkland.
  • Kirkland diapers have much stretchier elastic on the waist and legs. This holds messes in better for any baby, of any size. They also do not contain fragrance or lotion, unlike Pampers. 

Up next: Check out my comparison pictures and testing for Kirkland diapers vs Pampers diapers, for size, fit, absorbency, and more! 

kirkland diapers vs pampers diaper review

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Costco’s Kirkland Signature Supreme Diapers vs Pampers Swaddlers

Costco calls their store brand diapers Kirkland Signature Supreme. Since that’s an awfully long name, I’ll refer to them as “Kirkland diapers.” Pampers manufactures many types of diapers. Most parents buy Pampers Swaddlers for infants and Pampers Cruisers for babies who are crawling. I’ll be referring to Pampers Swaddlers for this post, but Pampers Cruisers are pretty similar.

Are Kirkland diapers any good? 

Absolutely! They are very absorbent, have great elastic to hold in messes, and have great features that many store-brand diapers lack, like wetness indicators and size-up indicators.

Which diaper has the best absorbency? Pampers

So I did the nerdiest thing possible and poured water into both brands of diapers. When it comes to absorbency for Kirkland vs Pampers diapers, both are AMAZING! I could not believe that both size 4 diapers I used for the test held FOUR CUPS. That’s about two Solo cups full of water! Or nearly a liter!

But the Pampers diaper could hold more! I kept pouring in water and Pampers soaked up FIVE CUPS! That’s about 30% more than Kirkland. 

Both diapers held the water in and it didn’t leak out, even when I picked the diapers up and moved them around to take pictures.

It is important to note that you’ll probably change your baby long before they pee that much! It’s not like Kirkland has poor absorbency! 

Which diaper is best at preventing blowouts? 

In my book, this is the most important debate in the showdown between Pampers vs Kirkland! 

Young babies (less than 3-4 months), and especially those who are breastfed tend to have pretty liquidy poop. Meaning it can leak out of the diaper. And onto your baby, their clothes, sheets, you…

Kirkland diapers stop blowouts with their sturdy elastic waistbands and leg cuffs! Plus, sizes 1 and 2 have a pocket to catch blowouts!

pampers vs kirkland waistband
Left: Kirkland. Right: Pampers. Just look at that amazing elastic on the back of the Kirkland diaper. First, it will keep the diaper on your baby. And second, it will keep any explosive contents in the diaper!

Pampers aren’t bad at preventing blowouts. Their tall waistband helps and is certainly better than many store- brand diapers. But as you can see in the picture above, they don’t have any elastic.

Related Post: I compare Pampers Swaddlers and Baby Dry here!

Which diaper fits best? Depends on your baby

Pampers diapers are contoured to fit snugly to your baby. Use the diaper tabs to adjust the fit. For example, if you fasten them tighter, the diaper will be snugger against your baby’s waist and legs. Or if you roll the top of the diaper down a little and then fasten it, it will tighten the diaper even more. But overall, they fit “average size” babies best.

However, if you put Pampers and Kirkland diapers side by side, you will see that Kirkland diapers have much more elastic. Kirkland’s elastic waistband and diaper cuffs stretch to fit small or large babies, with fat or skinny legs. The downside: Kirkland diapers bunch up between your baby’s legs. This does give more room for containing poop!

diaper elasticity
diaper Top: Kirkland. Bottom: Pampers. Check out how the Kirkland elastic holds the diaper together- it will help it stay on your baby better!

For me, Kirkland diapers were the best fit when my daughter was less than 6 months old. She has always been large for her age, and with Pampers, I had trouble getting a good fit for both her pudgy legs and her plump belly. Kirkland’s elastic worked out perfectly in this case!

Related post: Compare Target and Costco’s diapers in my post here!

Pampers vs Kirkland Diaper Ingredients

Pampers Diaper Ingredients

Courtesy of Pampers website (source)

  • All Pampers products are free of:
    • Bisphenol A, dioxins, disperse dyes, elemental chlorine, ethanol/ alcohol, latex (natural rubber), lead and mercury in printed inks, organotins, parabens, pesticide residues, phenol, polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
  • Top sheet and inner liner: made of nonwoven polypropylene to help transport urine and feces into the diaper core
  • Inside the diaper: 
    • Super Absorbent Polymer (SAP) polyacrylate polymer. This safe, non-toxic polymer absorbs and locks away liquid to keep your baby dry. Fluff pulp fibers derived from wood help absorb liquid
    • Polyester absorbs and contains urine and feces
    • Nonwoven polypropylene separates layers of the diaper core
    • Thermoplastic polymers used for adhesive keep diaper materials in place. They are inside the diaper, not near baby’s skin
    • The first layer inside the diaper is made from polyethylene to keep the diaper contents inside
  • The outside of the diaper: is made of polypropylene to give it a soft feel
  • Leg cuffs and stretchy waistband: Spandex, polyethylene, and nonwoven polypropylene fabric, free from natural rubber latex ensure proper diaper fit and prevent leakage
  • Colors: The pigments used in Pampers are safe and give the diaper fun designs to indicate the components of the diaper
  • Lotion: The topsheet of the diaper contains petrolatum, stearyl alcohol, and aloe barbadensis leaf extract to maintain healthy skin
  • Scent: Pampers adds a fragrance in small amounts underneath the absorbent materials away from your baby’s skin

Kirkland Diaper Ingredients

The Kirkland diaper box simply states:

Free of fragrance, lotion, natural rubber latex, and elemental chlorine. Plant- based liner and waistband (at least 23% by weight).

Costco lists the ingredients on their website (source)

For babies with sensitive skin, or parents who don’t like the fragrance of Pampers, choose Kirkland! 

Who has the best diaper tabs? Tie

Costco diapers vs pampers diaper tabs
Left: Kirkland. Right: Pampers

Pampers have durable, stiff, yellow plastic diaper tabs that will hold up to any baby messing around with them, or any parent refastening diapers. 

Kirkland diaper tabs are softer and wider, meaning they have more strength to hold the diaper on.

Who has the best diaper pattern and design?

  • Both diapers have size-up indicators. These little lines or areas show when your baby is ready to go up a diaper size.
  • And both Kirkland and Pampers have wetness indicators. This yellow line will turn blue when the diaper is wet. And they are super useful for parents with very young babies who need their diapers changed frequently. 
diaper design comparison
Left: Kirkland. Right: Pampers

Pampers are softer

  • As for the feel of the outside of the diapers, Pampers are extremely soft and feel like fabric. Kirkland’s are soft, but feel more plastic-y to me.

Kirkland diapers are better looking!

  • Typically, Pampers diapers have a fairly plain design with a few colors at the top of the diaper and that’s it.
  • But Kirkland diapers have prettier designs covering more of the diaper, which is why I give them the win this time!

Are Kirkland diapers the same as Pampers? 

Kirkland diapers are not the same as Pampers. Kirkland have more elastic and a stretchier waistband, and do not contain fragrance or lotion. Pampers have a less bulky fit and absorb more. 

Does Costco sell Pampers diapers?

Costco sells Kirkland and Huggies diapers. They do not sell Pampers diapers due to an exclusive agreement with Kimberly Clark, the company that manufactures Huggies. 

Related post: Discover the reason for this agreement, along with the differences between Kirkland and Huggies in my post here!

Where are Kirkland diapers made? Where are Pampers made?

Kimberly Clark manufactures Kirkland Supreme diapers in the United States. Procter & Gamble also manufactures Pampers Diapers in the United States.


So which diaper is right for your baby? If you are still undecided in the Kirkland diapers vs Pampers diapers battle:

Choose Pampers if:

  • Your baby is average-size
  • You prefer scented diapers
  • Diaper blowouts are not an issue (you may be formula feeding or have a baby older than 3 months)

Choose Kirkland if:

  • Your baby is larger or smaller than average
  • Your baby has really pudgy or skinny legs
  • You prefer diapers without fragrance or lotion
  • Diaper blowouts might be an issue (you may be breastfeeding or have a baby under 3 months old)

And if you still aren’t sure? Buy a box of each and test for yourself!

Did I miss anything while comparing Kirkland vs Pampers diapers? Please let me know in the comments!

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