They Put The "Gal" In "Frugal": 19 Penny-Pinching Moms

Ever heard the saying, “money doesn’t grow on trees”? Well, it's true. Money definitely doesn’t grow on trees. That’s why there are moms who go above and beyond the call of duty to save as much of it as they can. But the women below aren't just the average frugal mom. I’m talking about serious penny-pinching, as frugal as one can get, ultimate cheapskate-type moms. These are moms who can’t pass up any type of sale, even if they don’t need the product. Whether it involves rewashing disposable plastic cups in the dishwasher, taking their kids to a pet store instead of the zoo to look at the animals to save on the price of admission, or simply adding water to the liquid soap bottles in order to make them last longer, sometimes moms take being cheap to a whole other level. If readers know a mom who is as thrifty as these next moms are (because let’s face it, kids can be expensive) then these pictures will definitely bring back all too familiar memories. Readers will never be able to look at a basket of hotel shampoo and conditioners the same way ever again. So without much further ado, here are 20 moms who have reached peak cheapskate status.

20 Disposable Cups


If ever there was a picture definition for “cheap moms”, this next picture would undoubtedly be it. That’s because nothing screams “cheapskate” quite like putting disposable plastic cups in the dishwasher. And it’s not like it’s not safe to put disposable plastic cups in the dishwasher… Oh, wait, sorry about that. It turns out that it actually is not safe to put disposable plastic cups in the dishwasher. Good luck trying to tell that to a mom. If it works, it works.

19 The PetSmart Zoo

Just when I thought that washing disposable cups in a dishwasher was cheap, I learn about this next one… I must say that this is pretty darn brilliant. Think about it for a second. Is seeing a bird in PetSmart really that different from seeing a bird at a zoo? It’s cheaper to see it here, it’s more convenient, and you can actually pet the animals at PetSmart. Don’t ask me how I know that last part. My hat goes off to this mom.

18 Movie Snacks

Sneaking snacks into a movie theater? You know what? This isn’t even cheap, this is just plain smart! The prices for popcorn, soda, and snacks at a movie theater are insane! How much is a large popcorn and a large soda? Like a hundred bucks? Sure, you may laugh at that until you realize that that is the actual price. Then your laughter turns to tears. This frugal mom went the smart route and bought her snacks before going to the movie theater.

17 World’s Tallest Receipt


You may think that you are cheap, but have you ever been “my receipt from CVS is taller than my child is” cheap? I didn’t think so. I guess my first question would be how? How does a receipt become as long as the person who it belongs to? That just doesn’t even seem possible. Don’t get me wrong, I love my coupons, but I don’t want to print out a book when I’m only purchasing one or two items.

16 Butter Containers

If you’re a mother and you have Country Crock butter containers and you don’t reuse them for leftovers, did you ever really buy them? Isn’t that the whole point of the Country Crock butter container? I’m a little bit confused here. Do moms actually buy Country Crock butter for the butter or to use the containers? This whole time, I thought moms only bought them so that they could use the containers. At least this mom knows what it’s all about.

15 Soap + Water

Here’s a quick quiz for all of the moms out there. What’s the one item that you add to any product to make it last longer? Give up? The answer is water. You can add water to anything to make it last longer. Want you hand soap to last longer? Add water. Want your orange juice to last longer? Add water. Want to make your chicken last longer? Well, maybe adding water doesn’t work for everything, but you get my point.

14 Wrapping Paper

What’s the point of using so much wrapping paper if someone is just going to rip it up to get to their gift? Hey, I’ve got a great idea! Why not just take all of that used wrapping paper and save it so that you can use it again for next year? As much as I would like to take credit for this, I can’t. This next mom gets all of the credit for that one. Remember folks, always recycle!


12 Washable Plastic Baggies

It’s not often that I see something that causes me to be at a loss for words, but this next one does just that. I’ve seen cheap, I’ve seen really cheap, and now, I’ve seen this. I don’t think that I have ever seen a more appropriate thing for a cheap mom to do because washing and reusing plastic baggies is about as frugal as one can get. Nevertheless, I feel like more time and work goes into cleaning and drying these than just using new ones because after all, time is money.

11 Hotel Shampoo & Conditioner

What, you aren’t as fiscally responsible as this next mom? Do you not have a bin at home that is specifically for shampoo and conditioner that you have collected from all of the hotels that you’ve stayed at? What’s the point of staying at a hotel if you’re not going to come back with a bunch of free towels, little bars of soap, and tiny bottles of shampoo and conditioner? If you don’t do this the next time you go to a hotel, then I don’t know what to say anymore.

10 Butter Container Bowls

Remember earlier how the one mom was using the Country Crock butter container for her leftovers? Well, it seems that butter containers aren’t just for leftovers. In fact, you can use them for pretty much every meal when you use them as a bowl. This definitely takes being a cheapskate to a whole new level. And just remember, I’m using the word cheapskate with love. And speaking of love, I absolutely love what this mom decided to do with this butter container. When it comes to being cheap, you just have to ask yourself, does it work? In this case, yes it does.

9 2X Halloween Costume. 

Ah, it’s the old same Halloween costume as last year method. I must say that I’m surprised that this idea isn’t used more often. Think about it. It’s not like your kid at that age is going to realize that they are wearing the same Halloween costume as last year. Plus, you get to save money by not buying those overpriced children’s costumes. That sounds like a win-win if you ask me. Now if we can only figure out a way to make that costume last three years…

8 Watermark

Speaking of ridiculously overpriced items, let’s talk about these school pictures for a second. Do you really need twenty 8x10s and forty 3x5 pictures of your kid? You know what your kid looks like. Plus, I’m sure you can find even better pictures of your kids on your camera roll. So why not save a couple bucks like this next mom did and just keep the preview pictures of your kid’s school picture? Did they really think that a simple watermark was going to stop a cheap mom?

7 Free Ride

If having your child sit on a ride without paying for it to go up and down is wrong, then this mom doesn’t want to be right. This is the definition of having your cake and eating it, too. This kid is having fun without the mom having to spend any money. And that sounds like a win-win if you ask me. It’s not like you can blame this mom for not paying for the ride. Who even has quarters on them anyway?

6 Coupons

When you’re a mom, coupons are life. That’s just the way it is. And for this next mom, she appears to have life all figured out. Just look at those coupons. $1.50 off of Pampers? Are you kidding me? And look at how many they have of them. Either this mom works for Pampers or they know something all moms don’t. And I don’t think that she works for them, so this woman needs to explain herself. Then again, if I was in her position, I wouldn’t either.

5 Halloween/Easter Candy

Question: What is the difference between Halloween candy and Easter candy? Ha! It was a trick question. There isn’t one. That’s what makes this next mom the cheap evil genius that she is. If you have leftover Halloween candy, why not use that for your Easter eggs? Why buy all new candy if you still have some leftover? It’s not like the candy went bad, and to kids, candy is candy. I’m just hoping that this candy was from the last Halloween and not from a few Halloweens ago.

4 Free Samples

Why pay the full price for something when you can just get a free sample of it instead? Doesn’t that make the most financial sense? If you’re like our next mom, then yes, yes it does make the most financial sense. I’m going to let you all in on a little secret. What’s in the free samples is exactly the same as what’s in the actual product. Therefore, the free sample is just as good as the actual product, but the best part is that it’s FREE!

3 Kid’s Menu

If you aren’t taking full advantage of the kid’s menu at a restaurant, then what exactly are you even doing? This is peak cheap mom and it is the absolute best! Give me some chicken fingers and fries at half the price and I’m a happy camper. And no one will ever question you about this because you have your kids with you. They don’t know that it’s for you. And frankly, it’s none of their business. Let’s get some chicken fingers all around!

2 Water Bottle Sale

If there is one thing that a mom can’t resist, it’s a bargain. And as you can see by the number of water bottles in this next picture, there was a pretty good sale on them. In fact, the sale was so incredible that this mom decided to buy more water than most people can drink in one lifetime. You know you’ve bought too much of something when you start having to find creative ways to hide it and store it in your house.

1 Be My Valentine

Who says you have to buy your kids’ valentine’s day cards? Seriously. Why buy it when good old mom can just make it herself? That’s like cheapskate mom 101. Don’t buy it, make it yourself. And if that means spending hours cutting construction paper, filling them out, and gluing little hearts? So be it. And this mom will gladly do that if it means not having to give her hard earned money to the evil Hallmark corporation. Because let’s face it, holidays were invented by greeting card companies.

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