Marissa is the writer of "ThePracticalMommy" and owner of Mommy Knows What's Best. She's a former teacher and a stay-at-home mom to four.
Baby Formula Cost
Baby formula can be an expensive monthly cost. Depending on the brand and money-saving attempts, you could spend roughly $50-$300 a month from buying formula.
For example, one 40 oz. container of Up&Up Infant powdered formula can be around $20-$23. For two refill packs of Enfamil's infant formula (35 oz. each), you could spend $30-$35.
To save money, use coupons or register with the companies for money-saving checks. You can also get some free samples from your Ob/Gyn, the hospital, or your pediatrician.
My First Encounter with Baby Formula: Enfamil and Targets Up&Up
I was resolute in wanting to breastfeed my son. I did not want to use formula at all. After his birth, however, I found out some difficult truths: Mother Nature didn’t design me properly to breastfeed nor would she allow me to make enough breast milk for my son despite my insistence and diligence. I was able to breastfeed him for about three months, using a nipple shield and supplementing with formula.
At first, due to my naivety in motherhood, I insisted on only brand name, premixed formula. We used Enfamil, the same as the hospital had given me to supplement when I was having difficulties. I thought that there was no way the powdered kind was good enough for my baby, nor was any store brand.
After a while of expensive formula buying, I finally agreed to buy the powdered kind since it was cheaper, but it still had to be Enfamil. It wasn’t until after my sister-in-law told us about her use of the Target Up&Up brand and how much she liked it that I decided to give it a shot.
When compared, the Target Up&Up brand had nutritionally and content-wise almost everything exactly as the Enfamil brand did but it was nearly half the cost. My only concerns with the Up & Up were that it didn’t mix as easily as the Enfamil and it also had a yellowish tint to it. My son, however, drank it with no problems and didn’t experience intolerance, all for which I was hoping. I continued to buy the Up&Up brand until he began drinking regular milk.
My Second Encounter with Formula: Enfamil and Target's Up&Up
When I was pregnant with my daughter, I once again decided to try breastfeeding, knowing from doing research that sometimes women do better with breastfeeding the second time around. When she arrived three weeks early, neither she nor my body was exactly ready for the challenge. I tried my best, pumping when I could to increase my supply, but nothing worked for us. She was fully on formula by six weeks old.
I started using the hospital-supplied pre-mixed Enfamil with my daughter, and then switched to the powdered Enfamil when we were able to go home. She had no problems with that switch, but when I tried to slowly switch her to the Up & Up brand to save us some money, I noticed that she became gassier and fussier after she drank it. I’m not sure why it happened, since both the Up & Up brand and Enfamil are still very comparable in nutrition and content. Since then, I started using the Enfamil Premium Infant formula with her, saving where I can with manufacturer coupons and sales at the local stores.
After a few months, I tried Target's Up & Up brand again. This time around, she had not one problem and never gave me any problems about taking her bottle. That formula became the brand we used from that point forward.
My Conclusion of Using Formula with My Children
As with all things baby, I know that every child is different. Perhaps the reason my son had an easier time with the Up & Up brand is that he was a little older when we switched. For whatever reason, however, my daughter was just not able to drink the Up & Up brand in her early months, but I don’t think it is due to the product or the fact that it is store brand. Her little digestive system just may not have been ready for a change at that time. She now has no problems with it and buying it compared to the Enfamil brand has saved us so much money.
Read More From Wehavekids
Any Thoughts on Baby Formula?
Do you have experience with store brand or name brand formulas? Thanks for reading!
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Rebecca on March 18, 2020:
I am the “whatever baby will eat and thrive” kind of mom. Whether that be breastmilk, formula, generic or name brand. I did notice that certain formulas would make my kids gassy. I have three kids and Every. Single. One. Was different. What worked like a charm with one child, made another gassy and constipated. With my third I was most frugal but he just had to have the similac purple can at first (I don’t even remember the name
Pharma684 on October 15, 2014:
Very nice site!
Marissa (author) from United States on May 30, 2011:
Sharkfuel, I'm so glad you find my tips and advice to be helpful. I like sharing with moms out there what I have learned and continue to learn since other moms, including my own, gave me the opportunity to learn from them. Thank you for reading! :)
SharkFuel on May 30, 2011:
Thanks a lot, ThePracticalMommy, for sharing your parenting experience with us. As far as I see from your hubs, profile and comments you are a highly skilled mother, so I will definitely take into consideration all your parenting tips and advices. Thanks a lot for all your great hubs!
Marissa (author) from United States on May 20, 2011:
JamaGenee, thanks for reading and commenting! I'm glad your grandson turned out to be a good eater. My son is the same way. :)
Joanna McKenna from Central Oklahoma on May 19, 2011:
It's my understanding that the benefits of breast milk over formula drop dramatically after the first week. That's when the mother's body stops producing colostrum...or something like that. (There, do you feel better now?)
As for which formula is best, even within a brand a baby may do fine on one type but not on another. We found this out the hard way with my grandson. He had to have the variety that contained iron or one of us would be up all night walking, bouncing, and rocking him to (hopefully) dislodge the painful gas that resulted. Now he eats anything that doesn't eat him first. Go figure.
Marissa (author) from United States on May 16, 2011:
Thanks, Bri Gee, for reading and your comment! It was important to me to at least try breastfeeding with both of my babies, but it just wasn't meant to be for the long haul... Thanks for reading! :)
Bri Gee on May 15, 2011:
Thanks ThePracticalMommy, cool hub. At least you breastfed your son for about 3 months, give yourself a pat on the back. Maybe it was meant for you to breastfeed him for just those 3 months. What matters is, you made the attempt, some mommies don't. :)
Marissa (author) from United States on May 07, 2011:
You're right; a happy mummy does equal a happy child. Thanks so much for reading and commenting! :)
Maggie.L from UK on May 06, 2011:
I'm with you totally about it being absolutely fine to decide not to breastfeed and like you say, sometimes it just doesn't go to plan even if you want to breastfeed. My first child wasn't gaining weight as I wasn't producing enough milk so had to go on to formula. Things went better second time around and I've been fortunate in being able to breastfeed my second and third child. What's important is that you make the decision that is best for you as at the end of the day a happy mummy equals a happy child and that's what counts.
Marissa (author) from United States on May 05, 2011:
My babies, too, are turning out healthy and happy. :)Thanks for reading and commenting, chuckandus6, and Happy Mother's Day to you as well!
Nichol marie from The Country-Side on May 05, 2011:
I have formula fed all of my children and they are very healthy and happy and I think that I have come to the conclusion that most formulas are created equal. ? Cute Babies too by the way Happy Moms Day