When a baby is on the way, it’s easy to go a little crazy with the spending! Especially for us, when you’ve waited so long for the arrival of a little one, you want to purchase everything in every color and every size! (Evidence shown to the left!) Couple that with the fact that there are a MILLION products that the industry would make you believe you NEED to be a good parent and/or keep your baby alive, it’s easy to go broke before your baby even arrives. In a future post, I’ll address my must-have products, but today I want to share how we make the most of our dollars when purchasing baby supplies.
When it comes to diapers, I have a VERY strong brand allegiance to Pampers. I’ve tried Babies R Us store brand as well as Huggies and ended up donating the majority of the boxes because they weren’t working for us. You might think this means I end up spending a fortune on a “more expensive” brand, but with these easy tips, you will save TONS!!
UPDATE 2017 – I now LOVE Target Brand diapers! They are perfect for my little man on the run! And much less pricey!
- Tip 1: Always have a coupon for every bag/box. You can get coupons for Pampers from the monthly PGsaver in the Sunday paper as well as print them on coupons.com. Coupons typically run about $1.50 per bag/box
- Tip 2: Keep in mind bigger is not always better. The bigger boxes are not necessarily bulk priced to save you tons. On top of that, when you apply a coupon on a $9 bag vs. a $45 box, your coupon saves you much more per diaper.
- Tip 3: Wait for a sale! Diapers go on cyclical sales. Because they don’t expire, stock up on current and one-up future sizes. If your baby grows out of the current size and you still have a few boxes remaining, take them back to the store and exchange for one-up size.
Following these savings tips and you will save big $! My best example of saving came from Target when they had a buy two $24.99 boxes, get a $15 gift card. I have no shame so I purchased two boxes at a time and applied $15 gift card to each following two boxes. I also had a $1.50 coupon for each box. AND because I have a Target credit card, I got 5% off my purchase. This took a $49.98 for two box purchase down to $30.38 for two boxes. That is almost a $20 savings on two boxes!!!!!! On a price per diaper basis (size 3’s), I paid about $0.17/diaper vs. the normal retail of $0.28 or about 40% savings!
While I may have a strong brand allegiance when it comes to diapers, my little one has a strong allegiance to Ready to Feed Similac. If you are just now venturing into the world of baby formula, Ready to Feed is the pre-mixed liquid, not powder or, the adult equivalent of Starbucks vs. brew at home coffee. Let me tell you, this stuff will break the bank! But with the few tips below, you’ll definitely take the edge off!
- Tip 1: Sign up for Similac Strong Moms. I have gotten probably $75 in free products and $100 in vendor checks sent to my house from Similac. The vendor checks typically come in $5 increments and you can use as many as you have, 1-per item purchased. I’ve had my mom and mother-in-law sign up as well to triple our savings!
- Tip 2: Hunt for coupons. Coupons for formula are few and far between. I have occasionally found ones on coupons.com and also for upload to Kroger digital card. When you find one, don’t let it expire!
- Tip 3: Surprisingly, purchase formula at Babies R Us. Babies R Us will often run sales on their Ready to Feed for buy two boxes, get $8-10 off. Very infrequently, they will also have a buy one, get one half off sale where you can still get the $8-10 off! WATCH FOR THESE SALES!! When they happen — STOCK UP (checking expiration dates!). To add to your savings, always use your Babies R Us rewards card. They have one of the best rewards programs. I frequently receive $5, 10, or 15 ‘rewards bucks’ in my email to be spent like gift cards.
They’re so tiny, they’re so cute, but they can be oh so expensive! Especially when you consider most outfits will only get a few ‘wears’ before your baby is into a bigger size, baby clothes will take a toll on your pocketbook. See below for how we’ve managed to keep our little one stylish for a steal!
Tip 1: Buy less than you think you need. Contrary to the majority of my Instagram posts, most days my son doesn’t wear a full ‘outfit’. When he was a newborn, he spent most days in sleepers and now that it is getting hot out, he typically wears just a onesie. You do not need 25 size 0-3 month sets of overalls. And, let’s be honest, when you’re at home by yourself, no one wants to be dealing with the off and on of baby pants while making a million diaper changes.
- Tip 2: Shop resale. My favorite place to find name-brand, high quality, gently used clothing is Once Upon a Child. I often find clothing that still has the tags on it!! (A lot of people don’t follow my first tip! haha) Most items run for about $3 to $4, when they would retail $10 to $20. This is also where I find my favorite designer brands for less — Macy’s will charge you $35 for a Ralph Lauren outfit, Marshall’s – $16, Once Upon a Child – $8-10!!
- Tip 3: Use bibs. You need less outfits per day if your babe constantly wears a bib. At the end of the day I’m surprised my little one isn’t dehydrated with how much he drools. At his rate, we’d go through probably 7-8 outfits a day — NO EXAGGERATION! By always having a bib on him, we keep his clothes cleaner and require fewer outfits per day.
- Tip 4: Splurge on the special outfits. When it comes to a special event or a holiday, this is where I splurge. I’m not ashamed to admit I spent $40 on Easter bunny smocked overalls that were definitely only worn once. But, he looked completely adorable and those first Easter pictures will be something I treasure forever. Totally worth it.
4) baby food
If you follow my blog or Instagram accounts, you know I’m HUGE into making my own food. Here is my only tip — Just do it. When a jar of baby food runs you about $1 and you can buy a 32 oz jar of applesauce for $3, it shouldn’t take much more convincing. If you’re thinking it takes too much time, here are 5 no-prep needed foods you can serve in seconds…
- Scrambled Eggs
- Avocado cubes
- Sliced Banana
- Cheese cubes
If you are looking to venture into making your own purees, check out my running post — Recipes for Baby Food Purees
I hope you found these tips helpful! And, in case you missed it, here is post one of this series…my tips & tricks to save on your groceries!