43 common mistakes that you don't realize are costing you money every day

common mistakes that you don't realize are costing you money every day
Amazon
Impact

When it comes to making money mistakes, most of us have heard all about buying too many lattes or too much avocado toast, and are familiar with big-picture issues like student loans or credit card debt. What doesn’t make as many headlines, however, are the everyday mistakes you don’t realize are costing money, that many of us are guilty of making (myself included). These are the little things like burning extra energy in our homes, overlooking opportunities for reusable instead of single-use products, or not always extending the life of our products when possible.

It turns out, there are a number of things that many of us can fix around our home and small changes we can make around our regular, everyday routines that add up and save money in the long-term. Some of these you’ve heard of before — bringing versus buying your lunch or filling a water bottle before you leave the house, for example — but included with this list are products that will actually make them easy to do, as opposed to just thinking about it. And the best part? Not only are many of these ideas budget-friendly, they'll help you cut down on waste, too.

We only recommend products we love and that we think you will, too. We may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was written by our Commerce team.

01

A bento box so you don't have to buy your lunch when you're out

This bento box is available with two or three compartments, including a removable tray that you can use for portioning or for eating. It's made with stainless steel, making it durable and practical, and it's top rack dishwasher-safe, so it'll be easy to maintain for years to come.

02

This door draft stopper that'll keep the cold (or heat) out

Not only does this door draft stopper keeps your AC or heat inside your home, it also keeps the elements out of it. It comes in a pack of two, and there are four neutral colors to choose from so you can match your doorframes. Plus, it's easy to cut to size, and comes with adhesive backing to keep it in place.

03

These produce savers so your veggies stay fresh longer

When you store these produce savers with your fruits and veggies, they absorb ethelyne gas, slowing down the ripening process. Each package comes with eight packets that last up to 90 days each, along with two reusable apple containers, so you'll be set for roughly one year.

04

These silicone food storage bags so you don't have to buy plastic

These reusable food storage bags take the place of single-use plastic and other disposable containers, saving you money and preventing excess waste. Plus, they're leakproof and dishwasher-safe, and they're available in a range of colors and sizes so you can use them for meal prep, too.

05

A set of blackout curtains that cut down on energy use

A pair of blackout curtains is not only good for blocking sunlight from entering when you don't want it to, but they also give you an extra layer of insulation, saving you money on your energy bills. This set comes in more than 20 colors and in 10 sizes, fitting all kinds of windows.

06

These wool dryer balls that speed up the cycle

A set of reusable wool dryer balls circulates and softens laundry while it's tumbling, so in addition to replacing disposable dryer sheets and liquid laundry softeners, they can shorten dryer cycles and cut energy costs, too. Even better, they last for up to 1,000 loads of laundry.

07

An herb keeper so you don't have to throw away unused herbs

Available in small and large sizes, this herb keeper allows you to store herbs upright and in a healthy amount of water to keep them fresh for longer. The inner basket is removable, so you can get the portion you need without disturbing the rest. Some buyers even report their herbs last up to two weeks.

08

An airtight coffee canister that keeps your grounds fresh

This airtight canister comes with a scoop and has a hinged lid, so it's not only perfect for coffee, it also works well for flour, sugar, and other dry ingredients. The stainless steel container comes in 16- and 22-ounce sizes, and in five colors to suit most kitchen styles.

09

A cold brew coffee maker that saves you from buying expensive drinks

A cold brew maker is a great choice for iced coffee aficionados who like to have their fridge stocked. Made of BPA-free plastic, it's a durable pitcher with a fine mesh sleeve that you can fill with your favorite grounds. It comes in one or two quart sizes, and with your choice of black, white, or gray lid.

10

These avocado savers that keep your fruit from browning quickly

An alternative to plastic containers or wrap, these avocado savers are made to perfectly secure avocado halves and limit air exposure and oxidation. They're made with BPA-free plastic and the attached strap is rubber. To clean them, you can just pop them in the top rack of your dishwasher.

11

A clothes rack that dries laundry without power or damage

Whether you want to save energy or save your clothes from the wear and tear of a dryer, this drying rack can help. It offers 24 feet of coated steel drying line to hold clothes, and it folds down when it's not in use for easy storage.

12

These energy-efficient LED lights that use less electricity & last longer

Unlike outdated incandescent bulbs, these energy-efficient LED bulbs can last more than 7,000 hours. They're available in soft white, warm white, and daylight options, with wattage equivalencies from 40 to 100 watts. You can purchase them in packs of two up to 24, so you can replace a few bulbs or switch over your entire home.

13

These tablets that help your washing machine work better & get your clothes cleaner

If your washing machine has seen better days, you may want to give these washing machine cleaning tablets a try. They're meant to dissolve during your machine's cleaning cycle, freshening up the drum and many of the internal parts of your machine. Plus, the manufacturer is climate-pledge friendly, so you can trust that the ingredients are safe for the environment.

14

A programmable thermostat that tracks your energy use

This touchscreen thermostat has features like a large, lighted display for easy reading and comprehension, and energy usage stats so you can keep track of what your household is consuming so you can make any necessary adjustments. Plus, it's easy to install, according to reviewers.

15

These smart outlets you can control anywhere from your phone

Whether you like to control your lights and appliances with your voice, with your phone, or with a schedule that you've pre-set, these smart outlets have you covered. They come in packs of one, two, or three, and according to buyers, they're easy to install and sync up with your devices.

16

These reusable bamboo kitchen towels that replace dozens of rolls of paper towels

These bamboo towels are packaged and perforated just like regular paper towels, except you can wash and reuse them dozens of times each. Plus, each towel measures 11 by 12 inches, giving you more surface to work with than most paper towels. One set is meant to take the place of 60 rolls of paper towels.

17

These makeup remover pads you can use again & again

If you cringe at the collection of cotton pads piling up in your trash, and the plastic wrap they come in, then consider switching to these reusable makeup remover pads. Made of bamboo cotton, each pad in this package of 20 can be washed and reused for years. Plus, when you're finally done, they're biodegradable.

18

A drain protector that prevents plumbing issues before they happen

The cost of calling in a plumber can be daunting, but you may be able to prevent it with a little foresight. This drain protector catches hair and other potential clog-causing items before they reach your pipes. It's easy to clean and wipe between uses, and it comes in five colors so you can choose one to blend in (or stand out).

19

These watering stakes that streamline your plant care (& keep them alive for longer)

These watering plant spikes save you from over- or under-watering your plants, and keep them watered even when you're away. They're just over 7 inches in length, and they're made with terra-cotta, so they're a subtle and simple addition to your planters. They can even be used both indoors and outdoors.

20

This rinse aid that helps your dishwasher run more efficiently

A dishwasher rinse keeps your dishwasher running smoothly and efficiently. Plus, if your home has hard water, it helps remove stains. The company is both climate-pledge friendly and EPA-certified, and the rinse is biodegradable. Citrus extracts are among the ingredients.

21

A water filter so you're not tempted to buy bottled water

Available with white, turquoise, and red lids, this 5-cup water filter pitcher from Brita doesn't take up too much room in your fridge, and still offers the same benefits as the larger versions. It's just under 10 inches tall, so it's lighter and easier to pour, too. An electronic indicator even reminds you when to change the filter.

22

This pet dish that limits spills & helps your pet drink slowly

This no-spill water bowl for pets has a floating disk insert and stabilizing rubber base to prevent slipping, so your floors stay safe, clean, and dry, even on your pet's thirstiest days. It works for both cats and dogs, and you can use it at home or during travels, too.

23

These reusable food wraps so you don't have to buy single-use plastic

These reusable food wraps are made with organic cotton, beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin, so you can make and take your favorite sandwich without thinking twice about how you're packaging it. Three wraps in different sizes come in each package, and multiple prints are available to choose from.

24

This meal planning notepad to help you avoid impulse buying at the grocery store

A meal planning notepad not only keeps you organized for the week, it helps you stick to your shopping list, too. This magnetic pad has 60 sheets, giving you more than a year's worth of meal-planning space. It comes in yellow, mint green, and pastel green.

25

A coupon organizer so you can keep track of discounts & deals

If you think of "coupon" as a verb, then this coupon organizer might be a game changer. It features 20 pages with a variety of transparent slots for coupons of differing shapes and sizes. Plus, larger pockets on each of the inside covers can hold mailers and other ads, so everything you need for errands and shopping is within reach.

26

These rug grippers that protect your floors & keep your rug stable

A rug pad gripper not only keeps your rug in place, it prevents bunching and roughed up floors. This choice does the trick without any adhesive, so it won't affect the integrity of your rug or your flooring. The thick texture even adds a layer of cushioning, so it's more comfortable to walk on. A wide range of shapes and sizes are available.

27

A set of glass food containers so you can meal plan & avoid waste

This 18-piece glass food storage set provides you with nine containers and coordinating lids in a range shapes and sizes that fit inside one another for easy storage whether it's for meal prep or just lunch. The glass is safe for a variety of uses, including the microwave, dishwasher, and oven. Plus, they're even leak-proof.

28

An insulated water bottle so you can bring beverages from home

If you need help remembering to hydrate, a sleek, insulated water bottle may do the trick. This stainless steel option comes with two lid choices, in five colors, and in sizes ranging from 18 ounces to 64 ounces. The best part? It can keep drinks cold or hot, so it doubles as a coffee tumbler, too.

29

29.These silicone spatulas that allow you to get every drop of your food & beauty products

These long, slim spatulas save you from ever throwing out jars or bottles with usable contents still inside them. The range of sizes and the food-safe silicone material make them ideal for everything from food to beauty products. The smooth silicone is easy to wash in between uses, too.

30

A bag resealer that keeps food fresher, longer

When chip clips aren't cutting it, a bag resealer might be your next upgrade. This gadget has a built-in cutter too, so you can close and open snacks and other packages with ease. It's battery-operated, heats up in just seconds, and is less than six inches long, so storage is a breeze, too.

31

These stackable storage containers that give you full view of their contents

This set of seven storage containers with airtight lids can be stacked together or stored separately, giving you plenty of options when it comes to organizing and keeping food fresh. Reusable chalkboard-style labels are included, too. The bins are transparent, and you have three choices for lids colors: white, gray, or black.

32

A magnetic stud finder tool that helps you find & mark wall studs

This easy-to-use, compact stud finder comes with two magnets that release and stay behind when they connect to a stud, helping you avoid extra marks and unnecessary holes in your walls, making DIY all the more possible. It's also designed with a divot so you can mark with a pencil if you prefer.

33

This toothpaste tube squeezer that lets you get every ounce

Available in bright colors and in animal designs, these toothpaste squeezers help you get to the bottom of your tubes without twisting and tugging. They come in a pack of four, and work with other products, too, so your favorite lotions, food pastes, and craft supplies can also be used to the last drop, too.

34

These cable protectors that extend the life of your cords

If you're tired of replacing frayed charging cords, these cable protectors can help. They come in a set of eight, and they're the perfect size for USB cords and other small cables. They're less than 1.5 inches long, and you apply them by simply twisting them around your cord of choice so they're easy to put on.

35

A collapsible coffee cup so you don't have to deal with extra clutter when you're done with your drink

Switching to a collapsible coffee cup makes it super easy to bring your drinks from home, and it means there's less clutter and bulk when you're done. Two sizes are available that, when expanded, can hold 12 or 16 ounces of liquid. There are nearly 20 colors and styles to choose from.

36

A double-edged razor you don't have to replace as often

Available in stylish rose gold and black, or in an all-chromium silver design, this double-edge safety razor comes with a sleek mirrored case and a set of blades. It's sturdier and heavier than disposable razors, and allows for an easy and classic shaving experience on faces or bodies.

37

A space-shaving shampoo & shaving bar in one

This plant-based shampoo and shave bar combines multiple products into one, and eliminates most of the packaging required, too. Choose from 12 colors and scents (including kiwi, unscented, and mint), and they're great for replacing bulky bottles at home or packing in a bag for travel. The manufacturer is climate-pledge friendly, too.

38

These reusable cotton swabs that cut down on waste & clutter

Each of these reusable ear swabs is meant to replace roughly 1,000 disposable ones (and save you from their packaging, too). It comes with a color-coordinated storage case, and there are six colors to choose from. You can easily clean it between uses with soap and water.

39

A tried & true electric toothbrush for better long-term habits

A rechargeable electric toothbrush is a quick upgrade from a traditional, manual toothbrush. This option from Oral-B includes a two-minute timer so you can hit recommended brushing times, along with a sensor that indicates if you're applying too much pressure. Plus, it's compatible with a variety of the brand's brush heads.

40

A set of resistance bands so you can exercise at home

Bring the gym home with these versatile resistance bands which can be used in a variety of ways. You can use a single band for 10 pounds of resistance, or use them together for up to 150 pounds. Each band is labeled, and they come with a carrying case and accessories including handles and ankle straps.

41

These silicone kitchen scrubbers that have the scent of peaches

They might look like sponges, and they might do the work of sponges, but these peach-scented silicone kitchen scrubbers don't absorb sink odors the same way. According to shoppers, they even keep their fresh smell after multiple uses. They come in a pack of three, and you can wash them in the dishwasher so you'll have months of use from each.

42

42.This tried-and-true laundry detergent that works well in cold water

"I've always thought washing clothes in cold water just didn't clean as well as warm. I was wrong Tide gets clothes as clean in cold water as warm which is saving me money," one customer wrote about this fan-favorite powder laundry detergent. It works with regular or high-efficiency washers, and promises to tackle stains that are up to a week old. Depending on the size of your washer, you can get up to 102 loads out of just one package.

43

An efficient shower head that saves you from wasting water

This chrome, water-efficient shower head has water output that promises to be 20% less than the industry standard, so you'll save water and money. It has a single setting, so you never have to fuss with adjustments mid-shower. Plus, installation is easy, and you can simply screw it to your fixture without any special tools.