Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self. Cyril Connolly (1903 - 1974)


Baby Gear: How to Beg, Borrow and Save

When my kids were babies, they received cute little things from people. Too many clothes. Trust me, moms need diapers and wipes and butt cream. Please give money for more diapers and wipes at all times. Less clothes. Trust me on this! 

Get some tips below on how to navigate financially with Baby Gear: How to Beg, Borrow and Save 

According to data collected by the USDA, the average middle-income, two-parent family spends $12,290 to $14,320 annually on their child. In addition to housing, health care and clothing, there's no question baby gear contributes largely to that annual expense during the early years. Carriers, car seats, cribs and strollers can all add up to a big expense for first-time parents.

Happily, experienced parents know a thing or two about saving on everything from baby formula to car seats. Before you max out your credit cards in preparation for your bundle of joy, consider these tips to save on all the gear you need.
From Family and Friends
If you have friends or family with little ones, ask if you can have some of the baby gear they've grown out of. If you ask nicely enough you might score some gear for free or at a minimal cost.

From Retail Stores
It's a given to create a baby registry, however don't be afraid to add all your items to that list. Some stores like Target and Babies 'R Us will give you a coupon to use on the remaining items off your registry before your due date.

Babies grow quickly, which means that they are also growing out of gear like car seats and strollers at an astounding rate. Instead of purchasing new items for each stage, look for groups of moms in your town who are willing to swap items with each other.

Test Drive
Ask your friends and family if you can borrow gear for a set amount of time. You may even want to ask to borrow an item for a trial run before you purchase an expensive piece of gear.

Find Freebies
There are ways to get baby items that almost feel like stealing because you can get them for free! Find a list of free baby items like formula, nursing covers and car seat canopies at Ask your pediatrician for as many free formula samples as they can spare. You'll learn that sometimes, the sample size of certain products is really all you need. For example, the free Lansinoh's sample I received from my hospital was all I used while I was nursing.

Request Hospital Giveaways
During your hospital stay ask your nurses what you can take home with you. Grab as many diapers as you can, ask for a humidifier, a nasal aspirator and maybe even a blanket! You can take these items home with you at no additional cost.

Participate in the Trade-In Event
Participate in Babies 'R Us Great Trade-In Event through Feb 10. If you don't have gear to trade in, it might be worth it to pick up an older car seat or stroller off of Craigslist to trade in for 25-percent off a new item.

Go Gender Neutral
If you plan on having more children, you may have to look at the baby gear you do purchase as an investment! Don't buy gender specific items, but rather purchase gender neutral items so that you can use your gear with future children regardless of their sex. 

Maisie Knowles is a working mother of two with three-year's experience writing on parenting issues and business ownership. She co-founded Kinoli Inc. with her husband in 2005 and divides her time between managing the company and taking care of her two young girls. For more information, visit
For all media inquiries, please contact Maisie Knowles at 970-672-7572 or email

Colette is a busy mom of 2 kids focusing solely on being a mom. She hails from the Caribbean and now balances the full life of being a SAHM and dabbling in odd jobs to help around the home. She enjoys sharing her memories, hopes, food, travel, entertainment, and product experiences on her blog. Please read my disclosure 
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  1. we were so lucky that many of our friends went in together and bought our bigger items we needed... that being said, when Broxton was born, I literally had 2 packs of diapers (not even the big one either!) but it worked out, since marc was adamant on one brand and I ended up liking another so much more

  2. This is a great list, getting ready for baby can be expensive, and I bet these tips are going to help a lot of folks. I'm forwarding it to my daughter-in-law.

  3. We buymost of the things for the little ones at thrift stores. The only thing is with car seats and such you need to look for a recall before you purchase.

  4. Getting hand me downs is such a super helpful way to cut costs!

  5. I love this post. Thank you. More ways to save is always a plus.

  6. I was lucky and got most of my stuff from my brother and sister in law - our sons were 18 months apart so it worked out perfectly. I also went to a lot of consignment stores. It's definately doable to save money on baby items if you search the right places.

  7. My kids are grown out of this stuff now but I loved giving hand me downs to others. It is like xmas each time you do it

  8. Great tips! I like swapping and love consignment sales or thrift shops.

  9. I love Beg, Borrow and Save! Neutral gender would be a great way for people to swap clothes and not have to buy for those stages where the baby is hardly in them for more than a second. Great post. Really enjoyed it!

  10. GREAT tips! My sisters are so lucky! They are getting all my kids handme downs!

  11. Great tips, thanks!

    Nearly everything I buy or otherwise received for my babies was used, I scoured my local classifieds and thrift stores like crazy looking for the best prices. There are a lot of generous people out there that don't need the money from reselling their items that will just give them away for free, especially when you have a good reason for not being able to afford to buy them.

  12. These are some great tips to SAVE!

  13. I can see how you can spend $12,000 a year on your baby....but as I look back I realized that we spent waaaaay less than that, like a lot less!! We bought the essentials: car seat (required), stroller frame, and diapers & essentials. We got a lot of clothes from my baby shower. Got the crib from my MIL....but we didn't spent anywhere close to $2,000. We never bought a dresser or a changing I guess people can also just get what they need and will use in years to come, like a crib that turns into a toddler bed which wil last you for around 5-6 years! I guess you just have to be savvy.

  14. My nephew was born last November, these are great tips!


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  15. Indeed. Borrowing, and suggesting items to be gifted rock. There are some things we just didn't have a need for!

  16. These are wonderful tips. I wish I had these 19 years ago.

  17. Great tips! Since we had a large family, we purchased solid items for the oldest male and female child... passed down as the others came along.

  18. Going gender neutral is the best suggestion. It is so fun to get pink and blue, but the babies are in things for such a small amount of time that it is better to re-use it with more children! jenny at dapperhouse


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