As a young mother on a budget, I often found myself wondering how on earth I was going to afford all the many, many things a baby needed without robbing Peter to pay Paul. Six years and three children later, I have found there are so many amazing resources for free baby stuff out there that many parents don’t know about. I’ve made it a personal mission to help share the resources I’ve found with as many families as I can. From baby coupons to completely free items, there’s something on this list for everyone!
1. FoodImage source: baby-recipes.com
Eat, sleep, poop: these are the three things babies are best at. When it comes to food, little humans go through a lot of it! Free baby samples are a lifesaver when it comes to feeding baby, especially when baby hits that first growth spurt and suddenly becomes a never-ending pool of hunger!
- Gerber. One of the most trusted and well-known brands of baby food, Gerber offers a Nutrition Kit for new moms from participating hospitals. Simply check the list of hospitals to see if yours is on it, print out the coupon in the link, and bring it with you to present to the nurse after delivery. This kit comes complete with free formula samples, a breastfeeding blanket, and a wealth of coupons.
- Enfamil. Family Beginnings from Enfamil is a wonderful program that offers nutrition advice, information about your baby’s growth and developments, and big savings for mom. The program offers free formula samples, coupons, and other small gifts sent to your home throughout your baby’s early years.
- Similac. Sign up for Similac Strong Moms and save hundreds of dollars. Their kit includes free samples of formula and coupons. The fashionable bag that comes along with these freebies make a handy diaper bag, too—it was my go-to day bag for all of my kids.
- Nature’s One. This is a company committed to providing the best formula and foods for your baby well into her toddler years,. You can try their product for free through the link provided. While the PediaVance ships for free, other sample products do require a minimal shipping fee. If your little one is lactose intolerant, there is a sample product for you—Baby’s Only Organic LactoRelief.
Breastfeeding is a wonderful bonding experience for mom and baby. I certainly enjoyed every moment of this special relationship with my babies while it lasted. As a new mom, there were things I didn’t know I would need for breastfeeding. Those costs added up quickly. Thankfully, there are many companies that give out free stuff for moms. Here are a few of my favorites. Please note that you may still need to pay for shipping fees.
- Free Nursing Pads. Way back when I was nursing my first baby, I realized I needed a way to keep from leaking in between feeds. Breast Pads became my favorite site for reliable pads, and they usually offer great savings! Until September 2017, nursing mothers in the US and Canada can use the code ENBABY to get a free order of nursing pads.
- Free Nursing Pillow. As your little one gets heavier, it gets more tiring to hold him while he is nursing. As a breastfeeding mother, nursing pillows were a saving grace. Use the code ENBABY to get a free nursing pillow! This promo only applies to nursing pillows under $40. Be fast though—the offer expires in September 2017!
- Free Nursing Cover. A great way to give mom and baby privacy while out and about, nursing covers often cost a pretty penny. With the code ENBABY, for a limited time, you can receive one up to $35 free of charge! Hurry and get one of these gorgeous, lightweight nursing covers while you still can!
- Free Breast Pump. In a world of two-income households, many breastfeeding mothers find themselves in need of expensive breast pumps when maternity leave is over. With decent pumps costing anywhere from $100 or more, mothers living on a budget often give up their breastfeeding relationship. Good news! The Affordable Care Act now requires insurance companies to cover lactation consultations and breast pump rentals without co-pays or deductibles. If you are a breastfeeding mother in need of a breast pump, please follow the linked guide to learn how to take advantage of this part of the Care Act.
3. DiapersImage source: walmartlivebetter.ca
As we all know, diapers are quite expensive. It’s also the expense that tends to last the longest of all baby items, with the average age of potty training being around two or three. Here are a few ways to help cut down on costs:
- Huggies. When you buy Huggies products, you’ll notice a code somewhere on the container. If you log onto their website and join their rewards program, you’ll be able to redeem that code for points towards coupons, diapers, and many other Huggies items. Registration for their Little Huggies program will also net you a free sample of their diapers, with one or two newborn sized diapers and a small pack of wipes.
- Honest Company. The Honest Company offers a trial package of their products for free when you join their program—just pay shipping. The bundle includes more than $100 worth of products if you select both the diapers and essentials bundles.There’s a catch: once your seven-day trial period is over, be sure to cancel your subscription or you will be auto-enrolled into their monthly program and billed accordingly.
- Pampers. When you create a Pampers account, you open the door to free samples, coupons, and offers from not only Pampers, but their partner companies. The sample usually includes one diaper and a small pack of wipes, but it may be larger depending on supplies and offers at the time of enrollment.
- Giving Diapers, Giving Hope. This is perhaps my favorite of the free diaper finds. This site provides lower income families with free cloth diapers. There is an application and approval process, but if your budget is truly tight, this is a wonderful program to look into. I used it myself with my first baby and found the diapers I was sent were in excellent shape and lasted well beyond my baby’s need for them.
4. Other EssentialsImage source: mommyandthecity.gr
Free food, diapers, and breastfeeding supplies all mean great savings, but we all know there is so much more needed for baby. Surely you can’t get things like a car seat, baby carriers, car seat covers, or other items for free? Surprisingly, you can get all sorts of free baby stuff. Here’s how:
- Car Seat. A car seat is probably the most important item to get before your baby is born. It also happens to be one of the most expensive. One of the best places to go for an affordable car seat is the Safe Kids Network. Follow the link provided and search for a local coalition. Many have reduced price or free car seats. The site can also refers you to a local community agency.
- Baby Carrier. My baby carrier is my best friend. It has proved a wonderful resource on outings with my little ones, especially during those first few months. With it, I can travel without the hassle and bulk of a stroller. It also helped me keep my baby close to me and away from unwanted germs. Use the code ENBABY in the Seven Slings site to avail of a free baby carrier.
- Car Seat Cover. When your baby is still small enough for the newborn car seats, you may find yourself shooing away well-meaning folks who lean just a little too close. With a car seat cover, these well-wishers are less likely to disturb your bundle of joy. Use the code ENBABY to get yours!
- Surprise Package of Goodies. When you join Amazon Prime and create a Baby Registry, you’ll become eligible for a Welcome Box valued at $35. The only catch is that you must either buy a $10 item or wait for someone to purchase something off your registry before the Welcome Box will be shipped to you. Once that is done, click the Claim Now button to add the Welcome Box to your cart. The box changes monthly, so the contents are truly a surprise, but Amazon claims it contains items for both parents and baby.
5. Other Baby ItemsImage source: designaglow.com
Little things can make a huge difference in the early days of parenting. New parents are eager to record those precious firsts. Add to that anything that keeps baby distracted while Mom takes the quickest shower of her life. Here are some great freebies for the little things in life:
- Shutterfly. The earliest days of my kids’ lives are a blur in my memory. Thank goodness I have so many photos to remember them by! By signing up for a Shutterfly account, I got 50 free 4×6 photos, a photo magnet, and a free set of address labels (which was handy, because by the time my oldest slept through the night, I was so tired, I couldn’t remember our address!). Shutterfly also offers free, unlimited storage for as long as you keep your membership. If you’re anything like me, you’ll need that storage!
- Baby Art. It’s no secret that baby’s love to look at things. We’re also told again and again that looking at simple black and white pictures in their earliest days is helpful to their development. For the artistically challenged among us, that statement by our children’s doctors may be met with a wide-eyed, slightly horrified stare, but fear not! Baby Artsy has you covered with beautiful, free printable art for your baby to enjoy to her little heart’s content.
- Books. Some of my most treasured childhood memories are of sitting on my mother’s lap while she read to me. It’s a tradition I kept alive with my own children. We lived about an hour from the nearest town with a library, so I was quite thankful to learn about Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library. This amazing program will send your child a free book every month until he is five years old. Just check the site to see if your area is eligible. If not, check out this list of free Kindle books for little ones! Or just check it out anyways—books are awesome.
- Entertainment. There are days when you’re just too tired to mom anymore, when the baby has been up teething all night and you need just ten minutes of peace and quiet. Why not play that timeless children’s favorite, Sesame Street? It is a great educational program that keeps your little one quiet and content while you freshen up and grab a cup of coffee. (Hopefully not the same one you tried to drink yesterday.) Amazon is offering free downloads of some of the show’s seasons for a limited time, so download away and go get that cup of coffee—you deserve it, Mom!
- Baby Greeting. “The President sent me a card when I was born!” Don’t you kind of wish you could say that? With this little-known request form, your little one can make this boast! Just follow the link to the White House Presidential Greetings Request page and fill out the form to submit your request. For baby, you’ll have to wait until after delivery, but it must be done before little one’s first birthday. Be sure to save the envelope, as that is the only part where your child’s name will be.
- Baby Book. I love looking back at my children’s memory books and reliving their milestones: first words, first tooth, first steps. C’mon Get Crafty offers a beautiful, free printable baby journal for you to capture all your baby’s firsts and special memories as they happen.
6. Free Stuff for MomsImage source: scarymommy.com
Free baby stuff is fantastic, but what about stuff for Mom? Our bodies go through a lot of changes during pregnancy, and many companies recognize this. Before baby comes—or maybe even after, if you can swing a sitter and pull yourself away from the cutie—treat yourself with these great deals just for Mom:
- Bath and Body Works. Admittedly, this one takes a little work. To qualify, fill out the information and then take about ten minutes to answer a survey. Then sit back, relax, and wait for a gift card that lets you pamper yourself with your favorite scents.
- Snacks. Growing another human requires extra food, and healthy food is best for mom and baby. Sign up for Graze and get your first four-pack sampler snack box delivered straight to your door. Just pay $1 for shipping to receive this $12 value. The delicious snacks include crackers, granola bars, and dried fruits.
- Starbucks. Sign up for a Target Baby Registry and receive a bag full of goodies at the Target Customer Service Desk. Inside this little bag, you will find the mother of all coupons: a buy-one-get-one free to Starbucks. When my youngest was born, this little coupon was my saving grace after a sleepless night with a newborn and a sick toddler.
- Pregnancy Journal. This amazing time in a mother’s life goes by in the blink of an eye. Pregnancy journals allow expectant mothers to chronicle each day of their pregnancy—the emotions, happenings, learning experiences, and thoughts that will come to mean so much.
Did you enjoy this list? I hope you found it helpful! As a young mother on a budget, I learned quickly how much a dollar saved can mean. It’s a joy to pass on the knowledge and savings I’ve acquired over the years to other new moms. Share your thoughts in the comments—are there any savings you have come across not listed here? Any that you didn’t know about and were happy to see? Don’t forget to share the list with your friends and family!