The MFA Price Book: Drugstore Items!


I get asked for this all the time and I am always reluctant to post.  Here is my disclaimer: your prices will really vary according to your situation.  For example, I prefer better quality hair care products so I will pay a little more.  If you have a large family, you might also need to pay a little more just to have an adequate quantity on hand.  Also I have access to CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens so I can choose from the best deals at each store every week. The prices indicated are for moderately priced drug store brands. I have found I can get better quality products for far less than I would pay for generic- so each of these prices is for a name brand item.

Toothpaste: Free-.25
Toothpaste is free after coupons at most drugstores with coupons almost every week. I prefer to pay 0 total for it and usually have 3 or 4 on hand, I have found that is plenty to get me through to the next sale.  I am a fan of Rembrandt and if I can get that for $1 or less I will buy it.

Floss: Free
These are also often free with coupons. I find floss a little harder to come by so I buy several when they are free.

Mouthwash: .99
I have found mouthwash free at the drugstores but I will pay up to .99 for a good brand.

Shampoo/Conditioner: Free- $3.00
You can also find deals for hair care products such as Herbal Essences, Garnier, Pantene and other drug store brands for free after coupons pretty regularly. I will pay up to $3 for a higher quality product like Nexxus but you should be able to get brands like John Freida for .99 or less.

Shaving Cream: .50 or less
These deals are also a little harder to come by, so I typically buy several when I can get cans for less than .50.

Razors: Free
I prefer to pay nothing for razors. Fusion razors in particular are free quite frequently at the drugstores- especially when the $4 coupons are out. I am particular about razors and prefer the better quality ones so I will spend $1 or so on higher quality disposables from time to time (like Bic Comfort 3).

Body Wash: Free- $1
I have a large supply of name brand body wash for free. I also like to try new products so I will spend up to .99 for products like Nivea.

Laundry Soap: $1.50/ 32 loads
This one I also find a little trickier to score but if you have double coupons at your grocery store it might be a little easier. I try to pay $1 for 32 loads of lower end laundry soap or $1.50 for better soaps such as All, Arm & Hammer, Gain etc.. That works out to basically .05 per load.

Toilet Paper: .25 per roll
This is a tough one to get. I try to pay only .25 per roll for a quality double roll of TP. I usually wind up trying to get the price of TP down by using store coupons (such as a $5/25 CVS coupon) since it is really difficult to get good deals.

Toothbrushes: Free- .99
Again I try to just get these free but I am pretty religious about changing our toothbrushes every 90 days so this one can be tricky too. I will pay up to .99 for a good quality toothbrush or a fun toothbrush that will make my toddler happier to brush her teeth.

Body Lotion: Free- $1
I also use a lot of body lotion and I will pay up to $1 for a better quality product (like Jergen’s or Vaseline).

Face Wash: Free- $1
This is also a harder deal to come across but fortunately these tend to last quite awhile. I have a large supply of products like Clean and Clear, St Ives etc.. that were all less than $1.

Moisturizer/ Sun Screen: Varies
I try to pay less than $2 for a good product and I tend to stock up when the price is great. For example, I bought 4 Aveeno sunscreen earlier this year for just a few dollars after rebate at Rite Aid. That will last for most of the year. I love to try good quality products so I will pay a few dollars for something really good.

Deodorant: Free
Again deodorant is often free at the drugstores so I pretty much pay nothing for it. It is another product that you don’t go through that quickly so I usually have 3-4 on hand for me and a few for my husband and that gets me through until a good sale.

Baby Products: Free-$1
These include detanglers, baby wash/shampoo, lotion etc.. I typically use Aveeno, Johnson and Johnson and Huggies and I frequently find deals with coupons making these products less than $1. For some reason these are the products that I have a ridiculous amount of because we go through this stuff like crazy.

Diapers: $4 Jumbo packs
If I can get a pack for less than $4 I will typically buy them. I usually only use Luvs, Pampers or Huggies and I don’t like to spend a lot to get that price. For example if Walgreens has Huggies for $10 and there is a $4 Register Reward and $2 coupon, I probably won’t go after the deal unless there are a lot of other items I want to buy that week. I don’t like spending a lot out of pocket and then dealing with a lot of register rewards etc.. I personally pay a little more for the convenience and I use for the most part. I have 2 in diapers and I don’t like chasing deals every single week to keep enough on hand.

Baby wipes: .99/tub
For those that got in on the amazing Target deal you probably paid far less than this. But before that deal I used to always buy when the price was less than .02 per wipe. (So 72 ct wipes would be $1.44)

Dish Soap: Free-.49
For some reason I have quite a few dish soaps that I got for free so right now I only buy when it is free. I can usually get Dawn Hand Renewal free at CVS every few weeks. Otherwise for a small dish soap, I think .49 or so is a good price.

Cosmetics: Varies
I have a ton of makeup from brands like L’Oreal, Revlon and Cover Girl that was all free with coupons or rebates. The drugstores have clearance sales all the time that can make for virtually free products if you have coupons. I also LOVE high quality products so I will spend a few dollars to get the higher end brands like Prescriptives.

I don’t have a formal price book I just have these prices in my head.  I have already posted meat stock up prices HERE and will work on a Grocery Store price book for next week.  Please leave a comment if there are specific products you are curious about and I will try to cover all of them!


  1. Lindsey says

    Thanks Charlene- This is really helpful and I love the print post option too. I use as well and love the convenience of their service. At checkout there is always a place to enter promo codes. Do you have any inside scoop on how to track those down (for established accts)?

    Also, what is your “buy price” for laundry detergent and natural/organic products? In particular: 7th generation and Method?


  2. Tammy says

    LOVE this idea for a post! I’ve actually emailed a few of my favorite bloggers and asked them for their advice on this very thing and everyone seems very hesitant to share their “stock up prices”. I realize that they vary greatly, but it is really helpful just to get a starting point. My mom has her own book and I’m constantly calling her for her “buy” prices for things. I guess that means that I should start working on my own spreadsheet, huh? Thanks again for sharing this invaluable list!!

  3. Karentina says

    Thanks Charlene! That is super helpful….and being in NorCal like you, the prices are very similiar so it’s easy to base a “great deal” off of those prices. You always have the greatest posts! MFA is my fave “go to” site for info and good stuff! :)

  4. josie says

    Thanks for the post. Do you ever see any good deals on bar bath soap? I haven’t seen any recently.

  5. Lisa says

    Thank you so much for this! I’ve only been using coupons for about six months so I’m still relatively new at this. I use your website almost daily. Love it!

  6. Becky says

    I’m starting to figure some of this out, but your guidance is greatly appreciated. Like someone already posted, I am curious about laundry detergent, and I would also like to know a good price point for toilet paper.

  7. admin says

    Oh goodness a spreadsheet gives me a headache. The great thing is that once you stock up- say you have 5 toothpaste than you honestly don’t have to think of it again for months and months. I think some bloggers are gun shy because we get criticized so thanks for the nice words!

  8. admin says

    You know I will add laundry soap to the list and I don’t usually buy natural soap. We have some Seventh Gen that I scored awhile back on clearance at Walgreens for $1.99 that I use for the baby otherwise I use All or Tide or whatever. I just saw Method on clearance at Target for $12.99 and I just about fainted. I would never pay $11 for 32 loads of laundry soap.

    For the promo codes- those are just little sad reminders to me everytime I shop :) They don’t issue many codes- there was one TOYS2009 for 10% off toys and usually I know about them because they come in the box when I order. Otherwise I just mail in my coupons and get the total up to $49 for each order. Last time I only ordered 2 packs of diapers because I needed a shopping cart cover. So I have been ordering a lot of other items from them that I price match and then add one or two packs of diapers on.

  9. Katie says

    This post was so helpful – thanks for sharing! I am pretty new to couponing but I have learned pretty quickly that “sale” prices can be hugely deceiving so it’s critical that I know what is truly a good deal and what is not. So different from a few months ago when I would just toss it in the cart if it was in the sales ad! I have been saving my receipts and slowing committing this stuff to memory but your list is super helpful. Thanks!!!

  10. Jillian says

    I know you were reluctant to post this, but thanks for doing so! Very helpful.

  11. Valerie says

    Thanks so much for this very useful information…I am never sure if this is the best price for any of these items!!!!THANKS

  12. Teresa says

    I too appreciate the post. I am only about 2 months into couponing and I’m learning, but it takes a while. I find that my prices here in the panhandle of Florida are often more comparable to the Cali prices you post than to other prices in FL or the Southeast. Therefore, your experience with what’s a “good deal” will be helpful to this newbie!

    Thanks again.

    Oh, what do you find to be a good price on paper towels?

  13. admin says

    I can’t really say because I virtually never buy them. I will get them for about .60 a roll or so from every so often- otherwise I have no idea what the prices are. We use dish towels 99% of the time.

  14. Charlene says

    I don’t buy paper towels that often- we use towels mostly. From what I see, less than $1 per roll for quality towels is a decent price. .75 or lower would be a good price.

  15. Denise says

    It is much more frugal to use towels. Thanks for the input…I wanted to make sure that $0.48/roll is decent (CVS this week w/$4 off $20). I am finally out after that wonderful Safeway deal WYB 2 with the $10 P&G catalina from several months ago. I wish that would come around again.

  16. Sandy says

    Thank you for your personal price book! It’s very useful! Just wondering if you still think the price is valid in your area and no adjustment needed since it is from last year? Why I am asking is because I would like to know how far I should get there for my personal price book. :)

  17. says

    I noticed you mention these as Drug Store deals. Are most of the prices including the Bonus Bucks. Or straight sale price + coupons. I understand the value of the Bucks but I’m not a fan of them.

  18. Karen says

    I love Nexxus shampoo & conditioner but can never find coupons for it. How do you get it for less than $3 per bottle? Help!

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