7 Things You Can Buy for Next to Nothing at the Drugstore

Woman shopping in drugstore hair care aisle.
nd3000 / Shutterstock.com

Sure, you want the great deals you’ve heard about at drugstores, but you just can’t spend time hunting for flyers and coupons.

No problem. If you have 60 seconds and a smartphone, you can find the best bargains at major chains like CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens. There are websites devoted to helping you do just that.

You also can find manufacturer coupons through Coupons.com, which is both a website and an app. And you can rack up cash back by using the Ibotta app — which offers cash rebates on purchases from the biggest of drugstore chains and others.

If you can carve out a bit more time to use coupons — not just look them up on the fly in the store — you’ll really save big. And if you sign up for the loyalty programs of the drugstores you frequent, you’ll land even more bargains.

It’s the combination of sale prices, coupons, store rewards and cash-back offers that enables Christie Hardcastle — owner of the drugstore deal websites Wild For Wags and Wild For CVS — to pay as little as zero dollars for drugstore purchases.

“I routinely walk out with things that cost me absolutely nothing,” she told Money Talks News.

Sound like too much work to squeeze into your busy life? Then focus on the following items, which are among the best bargains at drugstores.

1. Cereal

Teenage boy eating cereal.
Jan H Andersen / Shutterstock.com

Hardcastle said that any time you visit a drugstore, you’ll likely find cereal deals. Why? Because cereal is a relatively expensive product, offering low prices on it brings people into a store.

If you don’t want to mess with matching up sales, coupons and rewards offers to maximize your savings, but you live near an Aldi grocery store, just buy cereal there instead. It’s often cheaper there than it is at Costco or grocery stores.

2. Shampoo and conditioner

An African American woman washing her hair in the shower
dotshock / Shutterstock.com

If you’re like me, you always see shampoo and conditioner on sale at drugstores. Those are two more stock-up-and-save products.

Combine a sale price with a coupon, rewards offer or cash rebate, and you just may get shampoo and conditioner cheaper there than anywhere else.

Speaking of coupons, note that CVS, Rite Aid and Walgreens are among a handful of retailers that allow coupon stacking. That means you can use both a manufacturer coupon and a store coupon on the same item to boost your savings.

3. Sweetener

Sugar substitute tablets.
Tobik / Shutterstock.com

Another great item you can buy at the drugstore for bargain prices is sweetener, including the real thing and sugar substitutes.

4. Toothbrushes and toothpaste

Marko Aliaksandr / Shutterstock.com

“I actually can’t remember the last time that I paid for toothbrushes or toothpaste or floss,” Hardcastle told us.

Toothbrushes and toothpaste are constantly on sale — and, like other items on this list, even cheaper with coupons, cash-back offers and rewards offers. So, stock up when you find them cheap — or free — and you can avoid ever paying full price.

5. Dairy and eggs

Brown chicken eggs in a carton.
Kunchit prompheat / Shutterstock.com

Running out to just pick up milk and eggs? Swing by the drugstore, and you’ll likely save $1 on each product, Hardcastle said. Prices vary regionally, but you’ll almost always get a better deal on these products than you will at the grocery store.

For more items that you should avoid at the supermarket, check out “20 Things You Should Never Buy at the Grocery Store.”

6. Cosmetics

Asian woman applying lipstick
Dmitry A / Shutterstock.com

There are plenty of great cosmetics available at drugstores. Spend a little time online, and you’ll find plenty of great bargains, too.

Drugstore deal sites as well as more general deal sites like the Krazy Coupon Lady routinely find makeup for next to nothing. And Coupons.com regularly features coupons from brand names like CoverGirl and Maybelline — which are listed under the “Personal Care” category when available.

7. Drugstore-brand diapers

Smiling baby in diaper, lying on her back.
Alena Ozerova / Shutterstock.com

No coupons are necessary to score a deal on this item. Simply stock up whenever you see a buy one, get one free sale, which Hardcastle said happens every so often and is “an amazing deal.”

What’s your drugstore of choice and how do you find the best deals there? Share with us in comments below or on our Facebook page.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.