A friend of mine recently made a comment in passing about some of the things I do to keep the cost of running a family down. I started pondering the things we do around here to keep costs down, like buying in bulk or finding the store that has the best prices and wanted to share them. As with most families, your model will vary, but these are things that have worked for us.
I will start with the bathroom and how we save money on toiletries and other bathroom items.
- Shampoo: A while ago we wanted to get away from harsher chemicals in our soaps and shampoos but still use a product that got us clean, so after some searching, we found Cal-BenÂ shampoos and after one use, we were sold. It’s been two years since we started using it and it still works the same as it did on day one. We also use that soap in our foaming soap dispensers, mixed with water Â and use it as a body wash as well. I’d say a gallon which costs $36.00 lasts us about a year.
- Face-soap: A few years ago I started using Vitacost (which by the way has a nice referral program) to order the soap for our face, since Joshua has a preference for a certain kind and this was the cheapest place. I have since found them to be a good source for vitamins and vinegar (that’s another post).
- Toothpaste: I also turn to Vitacost for toothpaste and I order the Jason Powersmile. I was looking for something that was fluoride-free and this fits the bill. It is also sugar free and it is lacking what ever chemical that makes food taste horrible if you brush you teeth then try to eat something or drink citrus. Also, since we made the switch to it, I no longer wake up feeling like “I need to brush my teeth NOW!”. Â I order this in bulk and usually have 2 boxes in the linen cabinet.
- Razors: Well, you can go cheap on these, you can spend a lot of money, or you could just forgo shaving all together. Well, we were in the second camp, spending money but making them last a long long time, even it meant someone had knicks on his face. Joshua did a lot of research on the subject and found Dorco. We’ve been using razors from there for a few months now and they are holding up very well.
- Cleaners: I use vinegar for most of my cleaning in the bathroom, it really works well on smells that creep in when you have seven people using the same one. Once a week I also clean my toilet with a standard toilet bowl cleaner to keep the rust (we have hard water) away.
- Toilet paper (because we all need it and I’m not ready to go to family cloth yet): I have found that Bounty Basics works just fine around here, I buy it in the big packages about once a quarter.