13 Things to Cut in Half to Save Money

13 Things to Cut in Half to Save Money

When it comes to living a frugal life, one of the best ways you can save is to use less of the products that you do buy.

When you use less the product will last longer, which means you’ll have to buy refills and replacements less often.  Many of us use far too much of things without even realizing it.  Often we do this simply out of habit but if we’ll slow down to think about how much we’re using we can save so much!

The key is to remember is that there is no correct exact amount for these items.  You’ll have to experiment with each of these to figure out exactly how much is needed for you and your family.  Some of you may be able to reduce your usage by more than half while others aren’t able to even give up half.  These small savings may seem inconsequential but when combined together they can add up to some serious savings.

Here are 13 things you can cut in half to save money:

  • Paper-Towels/Napkins – Buy the perforated paper-towels that way you can only tear off what you need and none is wasted!  I love these!  Most of us barely use paper-towels or napkins before throwing them away.  If you’re not sick and you don’t have stains on them, why not reuse them?   I learned this trick from my grandpa.  He would always have a stack of napkins at his seat that he would reuse when my grandmother didn’t prepare the meal and give him another napkin.  Of course you could also use fabric napkins that you can throw in the wash and reuse instead!
  • Dryer Sheets – As soon as you buy the box, break out the scissors and cut your dryer sheet expenses by 50%! Or you could use each dryer sheets twice, this works just as well with less work! {Check out the other ways to save on laundry costs.}
  • Laundry Detergent/Fabric Softener – Danielle, from Family Centsibility, recommends cutting the recommended laundry detergent and fabric softener in half.  I agree with her!  Since I did this for my baby’s clothes and it got them just as clean, removing stains and all, I decided to try it on all of my laundry.  It works like a charm and I’ll never switch back to their recommended amounts!
  • Soap – You can reduce the amount of liquid soap you use by  50% or more without sacrificing clean hands.  All you really need is a tiny drop.  Trust me, the liquid soap manufacturers know this too.  You know what foaming soap is, right?  It’s nothing more than a small amount of liquid soap mixed with water.  You can make your own refill of foaming soap by mixing a tablespoon of liquid soap into a foaming soap dispenser, adding water, and shaking.  The foaming soap gets your hands just as clean as liquid soap which shows just how little of the liquid soap is really needed.
  • Sponges – Simply cut them in half before using them and only use one half at a time.  You’ll never miss the other half!  Plus, microwave them or run them through the dishwasher to disinfect them so you can use them longer. {Check out the other unusual items you can run through your dishwasher.}
  • Serving Size – Most everyone in our culture overeats on a daily basis.  There aren’t many people who wouldn’t benefit from smaller portions.  Not only will this save a lot of money but a lot of extra calories too.
  • Juice – Juice is yummy but it’s also an expensive habit if you’re not careful.  No one was meant to drink 30 strawberries or 12 apples at once.  100% juice is a lot stronger than you need to drink.  We usually water our juice down by half and while it took a while to get use to at first, because 100% is all we ever knew, we love it and are completely satisfied with it now.  If you start your children off with watered down juice they’ll never know any difference.
  • Printer Ink –  Printer ink costs an arm and a leg and this is especially true for colored ink.  While cutting your ink cartridge in half won’t help at all there are a few simple steps you can do to reduce the number of cartridges you buy. The first step is to change your printer settings so it only prints in monochrome.  You can simply change it back to color any time you need to print in color.  The next is to set it in draft mode for all your printing.  You can switch it back to the full mode when printing an important document.  These simple steps will help you save at least half of your ink!  {Check out how to save $20 a year by switching fonts.}
  • Dish-Washing Soap – It doesn’t take much dish-washing soap to make a sudsy sink.  Whether you put the dish-washing liquid in the water or directly on the sponge or dishes, you just need a handful of drops.  A few drops is just as effective as a huge squirt but will cost you a lot less over time.
  • Shaving Cream – A think layer of shaving cream is all you need.  A thick layer of shaving cream doesn’t make the shave any closer. If you want a closer shave, the best way to get this is to shave twice with thin layers of shaving cream.  Shaving twice with thin layers of shaving cream will give you a closer shave and you’ll still use half the amount of shaving cream than most people do.
  • Make Up – Contrary to what some may think little is actually more when it comes to make up.  It’s important to find the colors that are best for your complexion, face shape, and hair color.  It may take some time (and money) to find the best look for you but once you do you’ll save your self time, a lot of wasted product, and frustration.
  • Kool-Aid & Other Drink Mixes – Amy, from Savvy Saving Couple, recommends cutting the drink mixes in half for 50% less sweet drinks.  This is better for your figure and your wallet!  I like it!
  • SOS Pads – Laura, from Another Cent Saved, says that cutting SOS pads in half will not only make them last you twice as long but cutting them will also sharpen your scissors!

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8 Ways to Save Money on Kid’s Clothes

Clothes Money

As I’m shopping for new kids clothes I’m finding that it is both a fun yet painful experience.  Kids clothes are cute but not worth going in debt for!   In order to save money I have sat down and tried to think of several ways that you can still dress up your little prince/princess without breaking the bank.


Here are a few suggestions I came up with but please, let me know if you have anything to add to this list!

ThredUp: Kids Clothing SwapThredUp

This is an online website that helps parents swap kids clothes.  ThredUp has extensive list of available boxes that you can buy.  They have a review system similar to eBay that allows users to be able to find popular swappers.  Many of the boxes I looked at included a picture along with detailed description of what was included (brands, sizes, etc.).


ThredUp.com also allows a listing of toys that fit in a USPS box so this may be a good way to look for children books or small toys.


Currently, ThredUp.com has a promotion going where you can get 2 months free of PRO membership when you use coupon code “mysavings”.  While ThredUp is free to use, the PRO membership does cost extra.  The PRO membership feature allows you to view detailed pictures of the items as well as a few other personalized features that are still being developed.


When I signed up a few days ago they gave me a $5 credit to use on my first box purchased.  I used the coupon code and the link above and I got an extra $5.  I’m not sure how long this extra bonus will last so if you are considering ThredUp you may want to go and sign up now.

Children’s Consignment SalesConsignment Mommies

I have had my fair share of exploring children’s consignment sales recently…and let me tell you, I scored big!  I think that consignment shopping is great way to shop for gently used clothing for yourself or your kids.  If you love to search and hunt for a great bargain then this will be right up your alley.  I’ve noticed that children’s consignment sales come twice a year, once in Winter and once in Spring.  So check local bulletin boards and church signs for consignment sales in your area.  You can also check ConsignmentMommies.com for consignments that have been posted in your area.


My only warning with consignment sales is to check and double check each garment for stains or holes before you leave.  The policy is usually unstained, like new items but some moms don’t listen or perhaps don’t notice and a few stains appear throughout the racks.


This is also a great place to score used pack n plays, books, toys, high chairs, etc.

Zulily: Daily Deals for Moms, Babies, & Kids


Zulily is a daily deals site for mom and the kids.  It’s a free membership site where each day, you will be able to buy great products from brand you love at 50-90% off.  That’s right, 90% off!  I think this is a great place to buy fancy baby shower gifts at a fraction of the cost.

Once you are a member you can invite others and if they join you get $15 per person!

One of my favorite things about Zulily is that they have mom’s clothes too (even maternity clothes!).



Yard SalesYard Sale

Try not to turn up your nose at yard sales, they often have great items for amazing prices.  Baby furniture, books, toys, and decor are also usually for sale for peanuts.  This is the ideal place for play clothes here.  You may be able to find t-shirts or shorts for a dime or a quarter that have a lot of life left in them.





Totsy has been in the back of my mind for a while but I’ve recently checked it out for myself to see what all the excitement was about.  Totsy is a site that hosts flash sales – that is a sale that lasts a limited number of hours (usually 72 hours for Totsy) and where you can score an amazing 40-90% off retail on higher end goods that might otherwise be outside your price range.  This is great for companies who need to sell of their extra inventory, for Totsy who runs the company, and for the moms and dads who shop and score fantastic deals.


Totsy claims to be 100% and for every sale they make they plant a tree.  How nice is that?


Totsy has a great referral program, for every friend that you refer who makes a purchase you get $15.  For disclosure, my referral link is included above so if you sign up and make a purchase I will get $15 credit in my account.  Win-win!

Buy Quality ClothesQuality

Buying sturdy clothes will only save money if you get a good deal on those long-lasting clothes.  Be ready to shop ahead for next year, check out my post The Best Time to Buy Everything for a few more details.  Shop the clearance racks and become familiar with your favorite store’s sale patterns.  If you have your eye on something that isn’t on sale watch and wait approximately 6 weeks from when you first spotted it and come back on a Thursday for the best chance of hitting the clearance rack first.  Weekend sales usually start Thursday afternoons.


If you buy clothes online be sure to never, ever, ever shop without a coupon code or without shopping through a cash back site like Ebates.  Many online retailers often have good sales and clearances with a wider selection than a local store.

Care For The Clothes You HaveClothes pins


When you take care of the clothes you have you give them a longer life and a larger value.  Go back to the old-fashioned idea of play clothes and dress clothes.  At our house we often wear jeans a couple of times before they get washed.  Another way to care for clothes is to treat stains right away so they don’t have time to set it.  If you have a long sleeve t-shirt that gets stained beyond repair just layer a short sleeve t-shirt over top.

Trade with Friends or FamilyClothing Swap


This is probably the most obvious way to save money – don’t spend any!  If you have friends or family that are willing to pass on to you their hand-me-downs, graciously accept!   Do the same for them if they have another child that could benefit from some other clothes you have.  This is also a great way to encourage a new mom and get rid of clothes you just have sitting in storage.  My sister-in-law gave me some of her maternity clothes (2 big bags!) and I am very grateful not to have to buy too much else.

5 Ways That Being Eco-Friendly Around the House Can Save You Money *Guest Post*


Being eco-friendly is not just about recycling and toting around reusable grocery bags though these are great, easy ways to be more green. Helping the environment can actually help your wallet as well. With these green actions and adjustments around the house, you can effectively lower your electricity and water bills as well as save on other general expenses.

1. Turn off the lights when you leave the room. Electricity bills are typically one of the highest bills a household gets each month. Turning off the lights when you leave the room as well as turning off any appliances and electronics that are not in use are easy ways to help you conserve energy. Electricity generation is also a big source of pollution because many energy companies still rely on burning coal to provide energy for homes and businesses. By actively making sure that you are not wasting any electricity, you will simultaneously cut down on the amount of pollution created as well as cut down on your electricity bill.

2. Make the switch to CFL bulbs. It is true that CFL bulbs, also known as compact fluorescent lamp bulbs, are more expensive than regular incandescent light bulbs. However, when you factor in how much money you save in the long run with CFL bulbs, you will see that these more eco-friendly bulbs actually pay for themselves with the savings you will incur. CFL bulbs typically last up to 15 times longer than a traditional incandescent bulb, and they also have the capability of putting out the same amount of light as a traditional bulb but while using half the energy. In fact, one CFL bulb can save buyers more than $30 in energy costs in its lifetime. If you replace all of the lights in the house with CFL bulbs and make it a habit to turn off the lights when not in use, you could save hundreds of dollars in electricity costs annually.

3.  Only do laundry when there is a full load. You may be tempted to throw your favorite shirt into the wash by itself when you accidentally get some unsightly stains on it, but consider spot-cleaning it and waiting until you are ready to toss an entire load of laundry into the machine before washing it. A washing machine and dryer use up tremendous amounts of energy, so it is more eco-friendly to maximize the use of these machines by only turning them on when there is a full load to wash. When you do fewer loads of laundry, you will cut down on your water and electricity bills as well as your carbon footprint.

4. Make the switch to low-flow and aerating faucets. Just like the CFL bulbs, the initial purchase cost of a low-flow and aerating faucet would be offset by the savings you would incur with use. These faucet heads pump air into the water coming out of the faucet so that you would still experience plenty of water pressure, but with less water usage. When you consider that a single five-minute shower can use up approximately 40 gallons of water, it is easy to see why using less water for day-to-day activities is crucial. By using low-flow and aerating faucets and showerheads, you can help conserve water as well as reduce your water bill.

5. Replace paper napkins with cloth ones and disposable dishes and silverware with reusable ones. It can be tempting to use paper plates and plastic disposable forks and spoons if you hate doing the dishes, but all of that garbage getting tossed out at the end of each meal is bad for the environment. Paper napkins are ill-advised as well for the same reason. When you switch to cloth napkins and reusable dinnerware, you dramatically reduce the amount of garbage you will produce. Though initially purchasing a good dinner set and napkins would be more expensive than purchasing disposable items, you will also never need to buy these items again, unlike the constant need to refill and replace disposable ones. Coupled with fewer washing machine loads and a low-flow faucet, cleaning your reusable items will also still be environmentally friendly.

This guest post was contributed by Angelita Williams, who writes on the topics of online courses.  She welcomes your comments at her email Id: angelita.williams7 @gmail.com.

Are eco-friendly or just want to save money?  Do you agree with Angelita’s list or do you have a few suggestions to add to it?  I would love to hear your opinions!

5 Ways to Save on Household Items

5 Ways to Save on Household Products


A big thanks goes to Elizabeth Cutten for this post!


Save Money

Whenever you go out and grocery shop, you’re going to find that you’re probably always purchasing household items such as paper towel, toilet paper, and more. While we can’t really get away from it, items like this really eat away at our budget.


Since I’m an advocate of saving money, I wanted to give you some tips that I use when I want to save some money on household items. You’re going to find that when you’re creative, you can save a ton of cash. Trust me, it does add up over the years!


Hit up the dollar store: There’s a good chance that there is a dollar store in your area. If you don’t shop here, it’s time that you do right now. They have about every cleaner imaginable, as well as toilet paper, paper towel, and more. The best thing about it is that everything will only cost you a dollar!


Create your own products: Did you know that you can create your own cleaner, as well as laundry detergent? Find some great organic recipes online to find out how you can create a cleaner, as well as detergent.


Use coupons: Yes, I know it sounds obvious but you can save so much with coupons when you print them online, as well as get them from your Sunday paper. Another great way to get coupons is by registering on your favorite cleaner’s website. Bookmark sites like EmbracingBeauty.com that can help you spot coupons.


Learn the tricks: There are some cool tricks that you can use that many people don’t know about. For instance, you can fill your detergent bottle back up with water when it gets about half empty. Since the bottle is mainly concentrate, you will find that it will work just as well. Another cool one is cutting your fabric sheets in half.


Buy in bulk: If you have a CostCo or any other membership like that, you’re going to find that you can take advantage of bulk purchases. Things such as diapers, paper towels, cleaner and more are all worth purchasing in bulk. Just make sure that you know what you’re paying per item to see if you’re getting the best deal.


As long as you’re creative, you follow a few tips mentioned above, and you have the motivation to save, you’re going to find that anything is possible. Try out the tips above and see how much you can save on your next shopping trip!


This post was written by Elizabeth Cutten. She’s a contributor for FindSecuredCards, a getting out of debt/secured credit card site helping those fight off the debt that they have, as well as get cost saving strategies.