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19 Must-Have Items That Will End Up Saving You Money

Spend your money wisely by investing in pieces that will cut your spending in the long run.

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Crock-Pot 6-Quart Programmable Cook & Carry Slow Cooker with Digital Timer, Stainless Steel, SCCPVL610-SVia


It is almost five times more expensive to order delivery from a restaurant than it is to cook at home, according to Forbes. A slow cooker can help make affordable home cooking more manageable. Not only can you prepare big meals in bulk with this product, but you’ll also save money on your energy bill and make tough but cheap cuts of meat tender and tasty, according to According to, you can even use a Crock-Pot to make items you would normally buy pre-made, such as soups and broths, for cheap. Here are the money habits of people who are great at saving money.

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2 / 19
ECOlunchbox Three-in-One Stainless Steel Food Container SetVia

Stainless steel food container set

Ditch the plastic wrap, tin foil, and brown paper bags for lunch with this stainless-steel bento box. Bringing lunch to school or work is an excellent money-saver on its own, but reusing a lunch box makes it even more cost-effective. According to, packing reusable, waste-free school lunches could save families as much as $417 per child every school year on average.

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3 / 19
refresh2go 20oz Chill Double Wall Filtered Water Bottle, Purple (11030-PL-M)Via

Filtered water bottle

Not only are plastic water bottles in landfills bad for the environment, but 2013 research found that bottled water is about 300 times the cost of tap water per gallon, reports. That’s why a filtered reusable water bottle is such a good investment.

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4 / 19
Kindle E-reader - White, 6" Glare-Free Touchscreen Display, Wi-Fi, Built-In Audible - Includes Special OffersVia


If you can do without paper books, an e-reader such as a Kindle could be a good investment for avid readers. According to, you’ll make back the money after buying about 14 non-fiction best-sellers. Then, after factoring in the cost of the device and the average cost of e-books, you can save about $5 each time you buy a digital copy instead of the print version. These are 14 items that are a waste of money in brand-new condition.

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5 / 19
AmazonBasics AA High-Capacity Rechargeable Batteries (8-Pack) Pre-charged - Packaging May VaryVia

Rechargeable batteries

Rechargeable batteries really are cost-effective. Families that regularly use batteries can save as much as $77.44 per year using rechargeable ones. That’s not something to stick your nose up at if you constantly find yourself at the pharmacy buying AAA batteries. These are 13 shopping tricks you’ll wish you knew all along.

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6 / 19
AMIR Solar Powered String Lights, 100 LED Copper Wire Lights, Starry String Lights, Indoor/ Outdoor Waterproof Solar Decoration Lights for Gardens, Home, Dancing, Party Decorative Ornaments (Warm White)Via

Solar-powered lights

For people who want to skip extension cords and batteries altogether, products like these LED solar-powered fairy string lights are a smart move. No more buying replacement batteries!

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7 / 19
Roku Streaming Stick | Portable, Power-Packed Player with Voice Remote with TV Power and VolumeVia

Roku device

Cable TV is almost a thing of the past. With smart TV technologies and affordable devices like the Roku, people are ditching traditional viewing options. The Roku is a portable streaming stick that connects you to everything from Netflix to Hulu on your regular TV so you can give up your cable plan for good.

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8 / 19
Home Intuition 3-Feet Draft Stopper Cloth Seal Weather Stop, BeigeVia

Draft stopper

A draft stopper might not be an exciting purchase, but it will save you money in the long run by keeping air in and out of your home. The long snake-like device ensures that the money you spend on energy heating or cooling your home doesn’t escape through the cracks—literally.

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iLifeTech Hands Free Toothpaste Dispenser Automatic Toothpaste Squeezer and Holder Set (5 Brush Holder), WhiteVia

Toothpaste dispenser

Put every last drop of toothpaste to work with this eco-friendly dispenser. In addition to portioning out your toothpaste, the organizer keeps your brushes clean and organized.

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10 / 19
[Newest version] Wine Saver Vacuum Pump Preserver from AKSESROYAL with 4 Valve Air Bottle StoppersVia

Wine preserver

Keep your open bottle of wine fresher for longer with a wine preserver. The vacuum pump protects the drink from bacteria and oxygen, so wine stays fresh for about 14 to 15 days after it’s open. Don’t miss 9 tricks to cut back on food waste and save money.

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11 / 19
iPartsPlusMore 4 Pack Reusable K Cups For Keurig 2.0 & 1.0 Brewers Universal Fit Refillable Single Cup Coffee Filters Stainless Steel Mesh FilterVia

Reusable K-Cup pods

At-home coffeemakers are an excellent way to cut back on beverage waste from your usual Starbucks run—and using reusable coffee pods helps cut back on the cost and waste even more. Just fill each pod with your favorite coffee, using that in place of the disposable ones. Here are 11 more disposable items that are wasting your money.

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Dr. Bronner's Pure Liquid Castile Soap - Peppermint 32ozVia

Castile soap

Dr. Bronner’s castile soap is a stellar all-purpose cleaner, which means you can streamline your cleaning budget by using just one product. It can be a face and body wash, laundry detergent, dishwashing liquid, hand soap, and more. Bonus: The soap is natural, organic, and vegan, and the packaging is from recycled materials.

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13 / 19
WD-40 490098 Multi-Use Lubricant Product with Big-Blast Spray 18 oz (Pack of 1)Via


This product has almost too many uses to count. Overall, it’s a great product to have in a pinch and could save you money in the long term by extending the life of your favorite products. You can eliminate stains and scuff marks, remove a tight ring, prevent snow buildup on windows, and remove decals, among countless fixes with this one can. For less than $7 per bottle, it’s worth keeping on hand.

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14 / 19
Belkin 6-Outlet Conserve Surge Protector with 6-Foot Cord and Timer, CNS08-T-06Via

Surge protector

The automatic timer makes this protector a foolproof way to save. According to, simply turning off your stereo for the work day will save more than 149.4 watts per day, which can add up to more than $8 per year—and that’s just one gadget. This automatic version makes it even easier to keep your electronics from sucking up power. Here are 11 more genius ways to save on every household bill.

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S & T Always Off Makeup Remover Cloths, 3 Count - Colors May Vary Via

Makeup remover cloths

Swap makeup wipes for these reusable microfiber makeup remover cloths. They’re gentle, durable, and machine washable, so you can keep using them, unlike one-and-done disposable wipes.

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iPhone X Screen Protector, Maxboost (Clear, 3 Packs) iPhone X Tempered Glass Screen Protectors [3D Touch] 0.25mm Screen Protector Glass for Apple iPhoneX 2017 work with most case 99% Touch AccurateVia

Phone screen case

This glass phone protector has near-perfect Amazon reviews. The smooth protector has a lifetime warranty and keeps out sweat, oil, and residue. iPhone screen repairs can cost as much as $175, according to, making this $9 case a steal.

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Lutron Maestro Sensor switch, 2A, No Neutral Required, Single-Pole, MS-OPS2-GR, GrayVia

Motion sensor light switch

People who always remind others to shut the lights off when they leave a room will love this money and energy-saving motion sensor light switch. It turns the lights on and off for you, and it can detect minor motion, like typing at a desk, making sure the lights won’t accidentally turn off. You can even program it to recognize daylight so it won’t turn on while enough natural light is in the room. Plus, you won’t have to keep reminding other people to shut the lights off when they leave a room.

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AmazonBasics Foldable Drying Rack - WhiteVia

Drying rack

Air drying your clothes could help you save $200 per year on electric or natural gas bills, reports. Using a drying rack also helps prevent any wear or tear that dryers might have on your clothes. This one is foldable, so it won’t take up too much space either.

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Aqua Globes AG011706 Glass Plant Watering Bulbs, 2-PackVia

Water bulb

Automatic watering globes can keep house plants and patio plants hydrated for up to two weeks. They are perfect for anyone who forgets to regularly water plants and keeps replacing dried ones with new victims. These hand-blown stained glass spheres have pretty good Amazon reviews to boot. Next, check out these 50 insider secrets for saving money at all of your favorite stores.

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Reader’s Digest editors, who aim to highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we may get a small share of revenue from our partners, such as Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We welcome your feedback. Have something you think we should know about? Email us at [email protected]

Emily DiNuzzo
Emily DiNuzzo is an associate editor at The Healthy and a former assistant staff writer at Reader's Digest. Her work has appeared online at the Food Network and Well + Good and in print at Westchester Magazine, and more. When she's not writing about food and health with a cuppa by her side, you can find her lifting heavy things at the gym, listening to murder mystery podcasts, and liking one too many astrology memes.