I use them! Most of the samples I've received we have used. They help to make your budget stretch a little further. Some of the samples I've received have even been full size products which is a great surprise! Samples of toothpaste, shampoo, or soap I will save for vacations or camping trips and use them then. It saves us room when packing to only pack a small item vs. the regular size product we have at home. Samples of snacks I will use when we have a day of appointments or errand running. The kids love to snack on something that I usually don't have on hand. Magazine subscriptions are enjoyed here at home, then donated to our local thrift store for other's to enjoy. Feminine product samples are a great way to stretch our budget. When I was pregnant and nursing our 5th child (I nurse long term and do not usually get a period for 9-11 months after delivery. That makes over a year and a half without a period!) I stored up all the samples I received for feminine products. When my period did return, it was several long months before I needed to buy any feminine products!
I give them away. Sample products are a fun way to make a creative gift. You could make a themed gift basket using the samples received in the mail. If there is a homeless shelter or food pantry near you, I am sure they would accept these to give to needy families. Our local food pantry does. Other organizations might take them also!
I share them! If I find a sample on a product that I know some of my friends or family might use or enjoy, I'll let them know. We all enjoy stretching our budget, right?
There are several websites that I use to find out about freebies. The ones that I use the most are Freebies 4 Mom and Mom Advice/The Motherload. Heather at Freebies 4 Mom posts freebies as she finds them so check on her blog daily. Amy at Mom Advice has a post every Friday called Freebie Friday's. She posts all the freebies found during the week. (She also has a lot of useful information during the rest of the week, too!) I have also signed up at Procter and Gamble, and every once in a while I get lucky enough to get one of their freebie boxes which includes many different products. There are other websites out there as well, if you look it up on google, you're sure to find many others. These are just the two I stick with.
Another way to get free samples is to contact the company of an item you like. I need to do this more often, but I have a friend who routinely contacts complanies of products she uses or likes. She will sometimes get samples, but sometimes she will get high value coupons, or even a coupon for a free item! Full size free items!
Just a quick note about free samples. I love to get freebies in my mailbox, but I only request freebies that I will use, or can give to other's. It doesn't do me any good to get samples of dog food if I don't have a dog, or don't know of anyone else who would use it.
Start signing up for free samples, and soon you'll be excited to go out to your mailbox each day!