Once you start couponing, you’ll learn that you’ve spent years paying for items that you could’ve had for free! Here are some of the top items you can usually get for free with coupons:

1. Trial sizes

When coupons do not exclude trial/travel size items, you can usually get them free! Look for the section in your store that has small bins or baskets with trial-sized versions of products priced around $1.00. If your coupon value exceeds the price of the item, the cashier will usually need to adjust the price of the coupon down to meet the product's cost.

2. Oral Care

Toothpaste and toothbrushes are free just about every month at the national drugstores (CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens), usually via rewards and coupons. Floss is often free when $1.00/1 coupons come out, as is Nivea lip balm when a sale is paired with a $3.00/2 coupon. Gum and mints are frequently super cheap or free too.

3. Glucose meters

Often free after rewards or rebates. If you don’t need one, these are great for donating to nursing homes. Keep a lookout for coupons to pair with the sale to make it a moneymaker.

4. Printer paper

Several times a year, office supply stores like Staples offer free-after-rebate reams of printer paper. As a plus, these rebates are usually done online so there’s no need to mail in UPCs or receipts. Pens are also a good example (such as the Bic $1.00/1 coupon that gets you a free package at Walmart), as are greeting cards.

5. Personal care

Watch for feminine pads and liners, nail files, mini first aid kits and single use heat wraps. In the winter, look for free-after-rewards cold medicine. Watch for allergy medicine in the spring.

6. Samples

Not only are these free, they often come with a coupon to use on your next purchase. Favorites include shampoo/conditioner, single serve food (granola bars, cereal, crackers, gum), feminine products, lotion, laundry detergent/fabric softener, artificial sweeteners and perfume/cologne.

Are You Paying for These Commonly Free Items?