10 Generic Baby Brands Just as Good as Brand Names

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generic baby brands -- baby products comparison

Wondering if generic baby brands are as good as name brands?

Making sure your baby has the best care is the number one priority for most parents. Still, just because you don’t want to shell out extra cash for pretty packaging and clever marketing doesn’t make you a bad parent! There are generics for TONS of your favorite products, with many made by the same manufacturer as brand name products.

We’ve rounded up shopping tips when searching for generic alternatives for baby products along with some highly-rated options!

1. Diapers

generic baby brands — diapers

If you’re already a parent, you know the endless amount of diapers you go through on a daily basis. If you’re not yet a parent, buckle up. You obviously want a product that’ll do the job without breaking the bank!

Brand name: Huggies Diapers Size 2 186ct $38.99 ($0.22 per diaper)

Generic: up&up Diapers Size 2 222ct $21.99 ($0.13 per diaper)

Hip Tip: Really want to save money (along with the environment!) on diapers? Consider using cloth diapers to cut down on cost, reduce waste, and prevent chemical exposure to your baby that can come with disposable diapers.

2. Infant formula

generic baby brands — baby formula

Since this is something your baby consumes, it’s no wonder most parents fall back on reputable brand names for the highest quality. But did you know that all American-made formulas must pass the nutrient guidelines provided by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)? This means even the generic formulas contain the same high-quality ingredients as brand names.

One thing to be mindful of is added supplements as generic formulas may not contain them. DHA and ARA are found naturally in breast milk, which can help boost your baby’s development before they graduate to solid foods. Another great resource is your pediatrician! Consult with them to ask if they have a generic brand recommendation.

Brand Name: Gerber Good Start Gentle Formula 32oz. $33.48 ($1.05 per ounce)

Generic: Parent’s Choice Gentle Formula 33.2oz. $20.98 ($0.63 per ounce)

Hip Tip: Get up to $400 in FREE Enfamil gifts just by signing up here!

3. Baby wipes

generic baby brands — wipes

You’re probably going to go through copious amounts of wipes as well — but you don’t have to pay for the brand. A good rule of thumb when searching for generics is to look for labels stating they’re hypoallergenic and free of perfumes, dyes, and preservatives.

Brand Name: Pampers Sensitive Baby Wipes 576ct $14.59 ($0.03 per wipe)

Generic: Costco Kirkland Ultra Soft Baby Wipes 900ct $19.99 ($0.02 per wipe)

Generic: up&up Sensitive Baby Wipes 736ct $12.89 ($0.02 per wipe)

Hip Tip: Did you know Target offers a 1-year satisfaction or money-back guarantee on ALL of their exclusive-brand, private label items? If you are not satisfied for ANY reason, just bring back your receipt to a Target store to receive a full refund within one year of the item’s purchase date.

4. Diaper rash creams

generic baby brands — diaper rash creamWhat stands between you and your crying, diaper-rashed baby? Zinc oxide —it’s the primary ingredient in many diaper creams. The magic number is 10-15% zinc oxide to provide protection to your little one’s bum. Already dealing with a bit of diaper rash? Up the percentage (max strength formulas typically run around 40%)  to heal existing redness.

Brand name: Boudreaux’s Butt Paste Maximum Strength 4oz. $7.49 ($1.87 per ounce)

Generic: up&up Diaper Rash Ointment Maximum Strength 4oz. $2.49 ($0.62 per ounce)

Hip Tip: Score a FREE Baby Welcome Gift from Target, valued at $50!!

5. Diaper pail refills

generic baby brands — diaper pail refill liners

So. Many. Dirty. Diapers. If you have a diaper pail, you’ll run through liners in a snap. The only difference here is the odor-blocking quality of the bag. These two options have such similar positive reviews (and even pretty similar price points), so it’s a no-brainer to go with the generic option.

Brand name: Playtex Diaper Genie Pail refill 810ct $16.03 ($0.020 per liner)

Generic: ChoiceRefill Diaper Pail refill 1080ct $17.09 ($0.016 per liner)

6. Lotion

generic baby brands — baby lotions

Similar to wipes, you should check your generics to make sure they’re hypoallergenic and free of perfumes, dyes, and preservatives. A look at the ingredients list will help here as well. If the generic is essentially the same as far as the product makeup (and they look and feel the same), don’t worry about ditching the brand name option.

Brand name: Aveeno Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion 12oz $6.97 ($0.58 per ounce)

Generic: Parent’s Choice Baby Daily Moisturizing Lotion 12oz. $3.74 ($0.31 per ounce)

Hip Tip: Get a FREE Baby Welcome Box from Amazon! Here’s how

7. Everyday basics

generic baby brands — baby powder

It’s pretty easy to go with generics of common medicine cabinet items, like tissues, bandages, swabs, and baby powder, but you’ll want to look out for varying textures and smells and gauge their performance. When going with something at a lower cost, buy a small pack first before you jump into the bulk savings. After all, you want to know your baby responds well to the product.

Brand name: Johnson’s Baby Powder with Aloe and Vitamin E 22 oz. $4.99 ($0.22 per ounce)

Generic: up&up Baby Powder with Aloe and Vitamin E 22 oz. $2.29 ($0.10 per ounce)

Hip Tip: Check your local Dollar Tree for an even cheaper generic of pure cornstarch baby powder!

8. Baby detergent

generic baby brands — baby detergent

You want your baby to feel as cozy as possible in their onesies, so settling for a cheaper detergent could be a little unsettling. If you follow the same label rule of thumb (hypoallergenic and no skin irritating ingredients) you should be in the clear to go with the generic. That said, if your little one’s skin does end up reacting negatively to the lower-priced option, you’ll definitely want to switch to another brand.

Brand name: Dreft Baby Detergent 100 oz. $15.97 ($0.16 per ounce)

Generic: Purex for Baby Detergent 75 oz. $3.97 ($0.06 per ounce)

9. Over-the-counter medicine

generic baby brands — over the counter baby medicine

When considering generics for baby pain relievers and the like, the active ingredient will more than likely stay the same between products. However, you will see differences in the inactive contents which are usually the ingredients that improve the taste of the medicine. That said, many parents disguise the medicine in other foods to help deliver the benefits, making the taste less of a concern.

As they get older and start taking cough or cold soothing medicine (which have an unpleasant taste even for adults!) try starting out with a generic. If the taste prevents them from taking the medicine, you may want to switch to brand names with more kid-friendly flavors.

Brand name: Tylenol Infant’s Acetaminophen Drops 2 oz. $8.49 ($0.71 per 5ml dose)

Generic: up&up Infant’s Acetaminophen Drops 2 oz. $3.94 ($0.33 per 5ml dose)

10. Bath products

generic baby brands — baby wash

Just because the bottle has exciting packaging or their favorite character doesn’t mean you should spend more money on it. Generic bathing products and water will get your little one just as clean as the well-marketed brands. You will, however, want to scan the ingredients list to make sure there aren’t too many additives. When it comes to these products, less is more.

Brand name: Johnson’s Head-to-Toe Baby Wash 28oz. $5.99 ($0.21 per ounce)

Generic: up&up Baby Hair and Body Wash 15 oz. $2.37 ($0.16 per ounce)

Hip Tip: Be sure to check out Hip2Save’s Baby Deals page on Facebook to get the best prices on your favorite baby products!

Keep in mind that all babies are different, so the best products are the ones they’ll actually enjoy! Also, as always, never hesitate to check with your pediatrician about what is safe, healthy, and recommended for your baby.

Written by Emily for Hip2Save. Emily lives in Buffalo, NY where she spends her time drinking lots of coffee, scouring the internet for deals, and tackling DIY projects. She’s a big believer in self-care and living the fullest life possible, all while saving money of course.

Join The Discussion

Comments 43

  1. Rad

    I used up & up diapers n wipes n they r better than huggies n as good as pampers n yes cheaper , didn’t know about up & up Tylenol n rash cream n parents choice moisturizer , I m adding this post to my favorites . Thanks Hip2Save

    • Emily (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Yay! So glad to hear the up & up products work great for your family 😁!

    • silverfanatic

      Target’s Up and Up Brand is my favorite for EVERYTHING. LOL. Seriously though, with our first child the name brand diapers would leak more than the Up and Up ones.

    • sara

      used up and up diapers with my first and Huggies with my second. Huggies is better in my opinion. they disperse the pee more evenly, and for this reason I do not have to change diapers nearly as often due to one big saggy area like with up & ups. just my personal opinion!

      • Heather

        We love Up & Up wipes, but Up & Up diapers did not work out for us.

    • Weber14

      Agreed! We LOVE the up & up diapers, they never leaked like the huggies did! We’ll be potty training soon and definitely buying the up & up training pants.

  2. MrsBK

    I love the Aldi brand diaper rash cream, works even better than pricey Balmex and Desitin.

  3. CarolR

    In my opinion you will need to experiment. Some generics are great and others aren’t. Even with the listed ingredients the same there could be a difference in quality and also the concentration. I’ve used generic shampoo or dish detergent in the past where everything seemed to be identical to the name brand but when I used the actual product I found that it had been watered down so that you needed to use around twice as much, which meant that it wasn’t any cheaper than the name brand but actually cost more per use and I found it inferior. Some items aren’t generic but are just relabeled and are identical. For example canned fruit, applesauce, vegetables. My parents took a tour of an applesauce plant 50 years ago in Winchester, VA where the same applesauce was being put in cans with more than 10 different manufacturer labels on them.

  4. Erica

    Infant and children’s Tylenol are both 160mg/5ml, They are the exact same product. Always buy the children’s, its way cheaper! The only thing is the chidren’s doesn’t come with a dropper. Also, the box may not have the proper dosing on it, so ask your doctor what the correct dose is based on your child’s age/weight.

    • silverfanatic

      You and I were thinking/typing the same thing at the same time! Saved so much money with that.

    • Dee

      Our pediatrician told us the same thing. But he also warned us to go with the Tylenol brand and not generic. There’s something about the Tylenol formula that the generic doesn’t have.

      • Deb

        That is untrue. The active ingredient, acetaminophen, is the same by law. Generics may have different “fillers” in them, but generic acetaminophen works the same as Tylenol.

  5. Dee

    I love Dollar Tree’s pure corn starch. And I prefer Purex’s baby laundry detergent over Dreft.

    • Dee

      Also Walmart’s Parent’s Choice wipes are awesome! Thick like Huggies but at a bargain price.

      • v

        I personally preferred the Up & Up brand from Target for wipes and diapers vs. Parent’s Choice from Walmart. I felt both the diapers and wipes were softer from Target.

  6. silverfanatic

    As far as the pain medicine goes, our pediatrician told us that the “infant” Tylenol is the same as the kids Tylenol because they are both 160mg per 5ml and that the company makes money just by parents assuming that they need the infant one. Sure enough, it’s a big price gap. We always bought the kid version but made sure that we followed the dosage recommended at our regular doctor appointments based on child size/weight.

    • Renee

      Very true our pediatrician told me to buy kids liquid. You get so much more then infant bottle

  7. silverfanatic

    Also, you don’t necessarily need a “baby” laundry detergent. Anything “Free and Clear” of dyes, perfumes, etc. works good on the Sensitive Skin. We try to stock up on the ALL brand.

  8. jacks

    Thanks for the heads up on those diaper pail liners! I usually buy the Nursery Fresh brand from Walmart ($4.99 each refill) but the ones you listed are even cheaper with Amazon S&S option! 😄 Also I totally second ya on the Purex baby detergent…I found that with my 2nd baby a few years ago and have saved SO much $$ 😱 It works just as well for a fraction of the price and has great stain removal power, too!

    • Dragonfly121204

      My sister likes the Up and Up brand liners too. She said she buys them over the name brand because they are great and much cheaper.

    • Katrina

      I never really used the diaper genie someone handed down to us. It didn’t seem to work as well as just tying the diapers up in old plastic bags, and throwing them in the regular trash. 🤷‍♀️ maybe I was doing something wrong or the design has improved since mine were little.

  9. Jackie

    Yes, agree with all of those! I particularly like the Up & Up diaper rash cream. I’ve used it for 4 years now after my sister-in-law recommended it. I just recently switched from Munchkin diaper pail refills to Up & Up, as well and they function just as well as the pricey Munchkin brand.

  10. Sarah

    The up and up diaper cream is horrible. Spend a few more dollars for the name brand.

    • Whitney

      I’ve tried both. Name brand is smother, but I’ve found they both work equally well.

  11. OU_rxgirl

    Just a friendly reminder from a pharmacist…
    There is a reference to baby aspirin above, which is the name commonly used for 81mg (low dose) aspirin. This dose is often recommended for adults for heart protection. Aspirin should NOT be used in babies/children because of the risk for developing Reye’s Syndrome, which can be fatal. Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are safe at recommended doses by your pediatrician and/or pharmacist. 😉

    • Emily (Hip2Save Sidekick)

      Hi there! Thank you for the heads up! We had a slight typo in referring to the pain medicine as baby aspirin since both the up&up and Tylenol options are actually aspirin free. We’ve updated the text to reflect that 😊.

  12. Monica

    I’ve found diaper rash cream at dollar tree and 99 cent only stores with higher amount of zinc oxide for just a dollar even better than store brands. It’s worked just fine for my son.

  13. sherria.nunley@ymail.com

    Love Up&Up diapers and powder as well as the Kirkland wipes. Up&Up aloe powder smells better than any others I’ve smelled, their diapers are comparable to Pampers, and Kirkland wipes have such a good quality it makes no sense buying name brand

  14. OU_rxgirl


  15. Whitney

    I made my own cloth wipes. They’re larger and thicker than disposable. Just collect them in a plastic container and throw them in the washer with the rest of the nanny clothes, wash on hot. Still going strong with the same set of about 30 after 2 years. Never have to worry about running out and having to go to the store. I only have disposables in the diaper bag for when we’re out. I think I may have gone through 3 packs in 2 years.

  16. Laura

    I used up & up diapers a couple of years ago and they were terrible – they had just changed the formula and the insides leaked every time. I’m hoping they’ve changed since then! I returned the boxes I had bought at the time and I only use Pampers now. I think it’s a matter of trial and error when it comes to diapers. For me it’s worth paying a little more to have a diaper that fits my baby well, doesn’t leak, and doesn’t give her a rash.

  17. Scruffybean718

    We use all things generic brand in our house (3 kids under 4). LOVE Up&Up diapers and wipes and pull-ups (training pants). Thank you for the heads up on the diaper pail refills. I had been buying the Up&Up ones but these are even cheaper!

  18. 50ShadesofLipstick

    NOPE to the Up & Up brand diapers. They used to be great like, 5 years ago…but in the last couple of years Target changed the design/manufacturing which has made the lining inside much thinner inside and the stretchy part that goes around the thigh area to be looser and thinner as well- which has led to leaks! I bought one box but ended up returning it after using just a few diapers. Pampers all the way, even though I shop sales and use gift cards to buy them. And with anything medicated, I buy the real thing…the quality of diaper rash cream that’s generic vs. brand name doesn’t compare IMO

  19. Jackie

    I would agree with everything on the list except the baby formula. There is no generic equivalent for Gerber Good Start. There are generics for Enfamil Gentlease and Similac but that is not an equivalent for the Gerber Good start line. Yes the FDA has stringent requirements for nutritional content and all baby formulas must meet those but there are key differences in the formulas that make some infants tolerate one formula but not another. My granddaughter suffered from intense gastrointestinal issues. We tried every formula under the sun. Gerber was the only formula that worked for her and again there is no generic for Gerber. What is pictured is a generic for Enfamil not a generic for Gerber. Gerber was worth every penny and was the only thing that stopped the tummy pain and projectile vomiting.

    • Tjs77tsa

      Walmart has generic Gerber good start gentle. it’s called parents choice tender infant formula.

  20. chelsie

    I will us up&up diaper cream/a&d with no problem. On the other hand I hate target and ruler wipes they are so thin and would leave my hand and my sons skin sticky. pampers wipes only if I have them stocked up or can get them on a great sale price. Also use pampers, luvs, and parents choice diapers. mostly pampers, luvs when both for us or on a great sale and when target clearance out the bags. and parents choice when I got the holiday printed ones on clearance not as great kinda thin compared to pampers or luvs but work good for daycare and during the day try not to use them overnight. also used the store brand Tylenol my nurse also told us kids were the same and to get the store brand and didn’t have any problem with it. we have never used baby power heard it isn’t even good to use on babies. we have got so much Johnson on sale with targets gift card deals before the baby came and from the shower that 2 years later I still have not had to buy anything but different types of eczema lotion. have only had to buy more stain spray but would like to know where I can find that other baby detergent I live by the draft as me and my son have a lot of allergies that I like to keep under control. you can also save money by not having a diaper only trash can. we just take the trash out every day or every other and poop diapers always do in store plastic bags outside right then.

  21. Motomom

    I’d love to offer my feedback on the store brand tylenol or Motrin vs the actual brand itself!! My older son has a very overreactive immune system, and gets hives from store brand medications and my younger son does not. My older son has been tested for allergies with dyes, food, environmental , etc… but there is something in it that irritates his body. I agree it can b a great deal, however for me I HAVE to stick with name brands.

  22. Melissa Rice

    The active ingredient and required ingredients may be the same for generic and reputed brands, but sometimes differences in quality comes from the non-active ingredients, that are not required to be regulated by law. As a specific example, I substituted my regular banana boat sunscreen for up and up sunscreen, thinking they are both the same. The up and up sunscreen peeled the coating of my phone protector, ( I had some in my palm and touched the phone). That’s one of the major reasons why I avoid store brands.
    Same for dishwashing liquid, Dawn/ Palmolive definitely better than up and up and so many other personal care items.

  23. Beth

    HATE Up & Up diapers. They were okay when my daughter was a newborn, but after about 4 months they were terrible. Definitely don’t stock up until you try them. If you follow H2S you can get Huggies for 13¢, too, and not deal with your kid leaking out of them every other diaper!

    • Beth

      That being said, we used cosco formula and LOVED it.

  24. Kris

    I have to disagree with Huggies are like the target brand !! They are not same goes for target nite time diapers huggies beats them as well unless u don’t mind ur baby waking up wet in the morning !! Will stick with luvs an pampers an huggies!!

  25. Laura M

    Up&Up diapers are actually cheaper per diaper if you buy the small packs instead of the large box! Weird but true!

  26. Sara

    Purex isn’t a generic laundry detergent. It’s just cheaper.

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