Monday, August 03, 2009

Samples are your best friend – especially when you’re a new mom

In this week’s baby bargainista column, Rebecca Atkinson shares advice on using free samples to learn which products are best for your baby.

As a first-time parent you can do a lot of research and you can ask other parents what types of products they recommend, but one thing you learn pretty quickly is that every child is different. What works or worked for one parent or child may not work for you or yours.

We thought we were being smart, doing research on certain items and then going out and buying things. That worked for many baby necessities but doesn’t work so well for things like diapers. With so many brands out there we didn’t know what to choose – so we didn’t at first.

Having been to the Baby Time Show previously and having an aunt who works for a paediatrican, we were lucky enough to have received several diaper samples to get us started.

We quickly learned no two diapers are really that alike – strangely enough – not when it comes to how they fit on our daughter’s bottom. After going through several samples, we found one brand that worked best for her (right now). Considering the number of diapers you go through in a day with a newborn (8-15) and their cost, finding the right diaper is important before you decide to stock up on them when there are sales.

While we’re not currently using formula, the same principle would apply if we were. I am using bottles however for expressing breast milk and ease of convenience (Dad can feed too), and again, we were able to make some decisions on which bottles to purchase based on several sample ones we had received and tried with MJ. It really helped us learn what we liked to work with, as well figure out what good for the little gaffer (which ones did she take more air in with, spit up and so on).

We’re now going back through our baby show bags – that we’d thankfully kept – one more time to see what other goodies we have that we should try before going out to buy.

Lessons Learned
1. Stock up – Go to events like the Baby Show and/or sign up for special offers and samples online.

2. Ask your Doctor/paediatrician (or hospital) for samples – don’t be shy, they usually have cupboards full of them.
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  1. Stores like khiels and l'occitane will give you samples as well. This is great for testing products on baby's oh so sensitive skin!

  2. Thanks for the tip Michelle! Maybe we need to do a post listing a bunch of free samples for new moms and where to get them. Thoughts?

    Thanks HB.


  3. Great tip Michelle indeed!

    Eden, I think you're on to something here.

  4. cara reynolds1:41 pm

    I like the idea of samples for bottles and diapers but as a mom of 3 who formula fed the advice about trying out different samples of formula is dangerous and against what pediatricians recommend for babies. I like this blog and the baby features but caution anyone reading to make sure to consult with a doctor before taking advice about nutrition or medical issues!

  5. Hi Cara,

    Thanks for your comment. It's a great reminder to woman that they should check with their baby's doctor before making decisions about which formula is appropriate - not all babies or formulas are alike - health should always be first and for most.



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