Switching to reusable products saves money in the long run, so we had Casey Slide, a frugal living contributor for the Money Crashers personal finance site, conduct a cost analysis to show just how much you can save. As promised, we've thrown our last disposable items into the ring! Check out Round 1, Round 2 and Round 3.
1. One-Time Use Batteries vs. Rechargeable Batteries
"If you have ever shopped at Toys "R" Us, you probably needed to buy batteries too. Never in my life have I needed as many batteries as I need now that I have a child - it seems like almost every toy needs them! It pained me to continually buy more disposable batteries, and eventually I made the switch to reusables."
2. Disposable Feminine Hygiene Products vs. Reusable Feminine Hygiene Products
"When you think about all of the disposable items that you regularly buy, don't forget about feminine hygiene products. The thought of reusable feminine hygiene products may seem repulsive to some, but if you trust your washing machine, you should have no fear about using these products, especially if you have used cloth diapers. Making the switch to reusable feminine hygiene products saves you a lot of money. Many women also find that the products are more comfortable than disposables."
- Cost of Disposable Feminine Hygiene Products per Year: $89.88 (One box of pads for $7.49 per month, for 12 months)
- Cost of Reusable Feminine Hygiene Products: $63.99 (One set of Lunapads Pads & Pantyliners Intro Kit. The cost of water to wash the pads is negligible)
- Total Savings: $25.89 (the first year), $89.88 (each additional year)
- Break-Even Point: Approximately 8 1/2 months
"A family of four making these changes can save up to $1,419.32 each year for five years, for a total savings of $7,096.60! After five years, you may have to replace many of these reusable products. Even though you have to replace some of the items over time, you will still save thousands by switching to reusable products. For even greater savings, you can find many additional products on reuseit that can replace other disposable items that you regularly purchase for your family. Have you made the switch to reusable products? Has it saved you a significant amount of money?"