Courtney Omell | 

A Suds Showdown: Gain vs. Tide Detergent Prices

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When considering brand-name laundry detergent, it’s likely that two instantly come to mind: Tide and Gain. But who has the better value when we consider Gain vs. Tide? Let’s find out.

Some people opt for Tide because, according to reviewers, it gets the job done, and you can always count on it for removing stains. Gain, on the other hand, is known for its signature scent. The brand is also known for its affordability, making it a more budget-friendly option when compared to premium laundry detergents.

But in the Gain vs. Tide battle, which is the better deal? We did a few cost comparisons at popular stores to find out which detergent brand brings the most value. We also break down our calculations and consider coupons to help us find the ultimate savings on Tide and Gain. For more savings tips, text DEALS to 57299.

 

We calculate the value of Gain vs. Tide based on cost per load.

person pouring laundry detergent into cap

To offer a fair comparison, we looked at the cost per load. Since different retailers sell detergents in various volumes (like liquids and pacs), it’s best to look at the cost per load rather than the cost per ounce.

Our comparison features small liquid bottles, bulk-sized liquid bottles, and containers of detergent pacs. The volumes of these items vary by brand, which is why we wanted to calculate the cost per load. For example, Tide’s smaller bottles are 92 ounces and wash 64 loads. Gain’s smaller bottles are 88 ounces and wash 61 loads. Since the volumes are different, it’s easier to compute a cost-per-load price to see which is the better value. Here are the detergents we compared.

Liquid detergent:

Bulk liquid detergent:

Detergent pacs:

To calculate cost per load, you’ll just need to key in the detergent’s price on your calculator and divide that by the number of loads listed on the package. For example, Walmart has Tide 92-ounce liquid for $12.97, and the bottle says it washes 64 loads. So you would enter this into your calculator: $12.97 ÷ 64 = $0.20. This bottle of Tide detergent at Walmart is $0.20 per load.

Related: 21 Best Laundry Hacks of All Time

 

When comparing Gain vs. Tide prices, Gain is the more affordable option.

Gain’s everyday price is almost always lower than Tide’s. When looking at the cost per load at many big retailers, Gain often works out to around $0.15 per load. With coupons and rebates, we can even see it drop closer to $0.11 per load, while Tide is around $0.20 per load or higher. On average, we see around $0.05 less per load for Gain when compared to Tide. When you tally that up to around 100 loads per bottle, it’s about a $5 to $6 price difference, which adds up throughout the year. If you’re looking to save money on the average load of laundry, Gain is the way to go.

Gain HE Compatible Liquid
In-Store or ONLINE Deal
As low as$15.19
Mobile coupons needed
5% Off - Target RedCard Savings
Shipping: Free with RedCard or on orders of $35+
Pickup: Free
Gain Flings
In-Store or ONLINE Deal
As low as$26.12
Mobile coupons needed
5% Off - Target RedCard Savings
Shipping: Free with RedCard or on orders of $35+
Pickup: Free
 

However, coupons and rebates can make Tide as affordable as Gain.

While Gain’s prices with coupons are going to be hard to beat, we do sometimes see coupons and rebates for Tide that drop it to Gain’s everyday price point (without coupons). Since Gain has a pretty attractive price tag to begin with, the larger additional discounts are rarer than for its more expensive laundry counterpart, Tide. So every once in a while, you really can get Tide for around the same price as the everyday price of Gain.

Again, it’s always best to come back to cost per load. To do the math, you’ll include the coupon in the final price and then divide the final cost by the number of loads. You may often find that Tide’s final price is as low as Gain’s per-load price. When we factor in coupons and rebates, you can score Tide Pods or liquid for around $0.16 per load, which is right around the average per-load price for Gain. This is most often the case at Target (with Target Circle) or Amazon (using Subscribe & Save promotions).

 

Walgreens coupons and rebates can drop Tide to as low as $0.05 per load.

If you’re an experienced shopper, you know that you should never overlook Walgreens when it comes to deals on everyday essentials. By stacking Walgreens mobile coupons along with Register Rewards, you end up getting the same product for just pennies compared to shopping big-box stores without coupons.

 

Gain vs. Tide prices at a glance: Amazon, Target, and Walmart win.

tide versus gain laundry detergent cost per load comparison graphic

Let’s preface this by saying you can pretty much always find laundry detergent coupons, and for the most part, it’s a great idea to base where you shop on that. But for simplicity’s sake, let’s look at the average, everyday prices. Since these stores consistently have the lowest everyday prices, they’ll also likely have the lowest prices when you factor in coupons and rebates. But don’t forget to check Walgreens!

If you’re looking to save a little money with Gain detergent, aim for $0.13 per load.

Gain’s everyday price hovers around $0.15 per load. Make sure you’re spending that price or lower to ensure a good deal. We prefer to see around $0.13 per load for Gain at all of the big-box stores when you factor in any available coupons and rebates.

Tide fans should always try for under $0.20 per load.

Amazon deals need the Subscribe & Save discount to compete with Walmart or Target prices. But if you can find Tide on sale at Amazon and then apply the Subscribe & Save discount (or even better, a coupon), then you could end up with that coveted $0.16 per-load price. Without coupons, Walmart and Target consistently have the lowest per-load prices on Tide.

Related: 15 Secrets for Finding Walmart Hidden Clearance

 

If you have a Sam’s Club membership, buying in bulk will get you the lowest price per load.

If you do happen to have an annual Sam’s Club membership, you can get the lowest prices on both bulk liquid detergent and bulk detergent pacs. We don’t consider them the absolute best value because you do have to account for your yearly membership fees. That said, if you already have a membership and frequent Sam’s Club, the price per load is even lower than Walmart, Amazon, or Target.

Liquid Gain detergent is the best value at Sam’s Club and works out to $0.13 per load with no coupons. But Gain Flings actually work out to a higher price point than Tide at $0.20 per load.

Liquid Tide at Sam’s Club is $0.16 per load, which even beats most of the other retailers’ average coupon prices but is still $0.03 more than Gain per load. Tide Pods are a great value at Sam’s club and work out to $0.16 to $0.19 per load, depending on the sale. Currently, you can get the pods for $0.16, which is one of the lowest prices we’ve seen.

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