Friday, July 25, 2008

Walk The Walk

There you have it – just two of the many store brands I use. If I’m willing to put a store brand IN MY EYE, don’t you think you could try one, too?

Tip Of The Day: To All The Store Brands I’ve Loved Before; A Photo Essay. Proving once and for all that I practice what I preach, I do as I say, and I don’t take any wooden nickels. Or something. Moving on.

Tip For The Weekend: Honestly, I feel sorry for everyone in the blogosphere, because none of you will be spending time with The Cutest Boy On The Planet (otherwise known as my nephew, Piglet), and I will. It sucks to be you, but life is tough sometimes.
So my tip for you poor, unfortunate souls? Make due with some other adorable baby and snuggle the heck out of them. Ask permission from his/her parents first, though.

Further Elucidation Of My Cheap Deal: I’ve said it many many many times, to the point where you probably want to track me down in the vast northern wilderness where I live and beat me with a name brand product, USE THE STORE BRANDS. Name brands are fine, I guess, but store brands are just as good and much less expensive. Dare I say it? They’re CHEAP. And? FABULOUS.

For the uninitiated amongst you, store brands are the knock-off products on the store’s shelf labeled with the store’s name. Such as Cub Foods, Roundy’s, Target, and that wonky stuff that begins with an E from Wal-Mart. I’m totally blanking on the name right now.

Probably because I hate shopping at Wal-Mart. Seriously, CLEAN YOUR STORES. Is that so very hard?

Anyway, stores make their own version (usually the exact same product without the fancy name brand label) of just about everything. Packaged food, beauty supplies, health supplies, even spices:

Ah, Flavorite. My first store brand love.

They even make store brands of Rachel Ray’s favorite product:

And if you call it EVOO in my presence, I will THWAP YOU. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

Some folks claim that store products are inferior to name brands, and on occasion, they’re sort of right. For example, Target-brand Pantene is not quite as good as the real Pantene – it’s not as rich or as moisturizing as the real thing. However, Target’s version is also half the price as the over-priced Pantene and it works good enough.

Which is really the whole point – most store brands are as good as the real thing, and if they aren’t, they are GOOD ENOUGH. They do the job, they do it cheaply, and they don’t ask for anything from you. Except for maybe a little respect and understanding of their cheap ways.

And besides, makers of Pantene and all other mid-priced to expensive shampoos and conditioners? And soap? And laundry detergent? I’m not going to pay premium prices for something YOU RINSE OFF IN UNDER 1 MINUTE. Why would I want to watch my hard-earned cash circling the drain?

Here’s my challenge to you, my fearless readers. Pick just one new store brand and give it a try. Except for Target’s Thin Wheats – those are nasty, and you’ll simply have to buy the real thing. Fortunately Wheat Thins go on sale all the time. But I digress.

Try one new store brand and then send me an e-mail at I’ll post the best review in an upcoming episode of Cheap But Not Easy, and that winner will receive a $10 gift card to the coffee shop or fast food place or book store of their choice. Do we have a deal?


Anonymous said...

I'm posting FIRST. Just 'cause I can. And, I'll be looking around for a store label, because DUDE, I totally use those, and I don't even thing about them any more.

old blaine lady said...

I love Archer Farms corn and bean salsa. It is delicious. The other sauce I love is Archer Farms asiago cheese sauce that I use in chicken lasagna. It is a good change from regular red sauce.

Meg Tredinnick said...

Archer Farms Ice cream is pretty good too! And I buy the Cub brand sunflower seeds, cuz really how can you mess up a sunflower seed;)

Anonymous said...

I can't agree with you on the spices. Penzey's has better stuff. In fact, so much better, you use alot less and its probably cheaper overall. And even if its not, spice is truly an affordable luxury for everyone.

El Jefe

Tundrababe said...

Equate is the Wal-Mart brand, and I totally agree, I hate shopping there. The stores are too small for the amt. of people, and it's so loud. They need to use walkie talkies like Target and not a PA system.

The Equate contact solution made my eyes burn. My eye doctor said it's okay to use store brands, but stick with the same one (the ingredients are different from brand to brand, and they can break down the contacts or something).

Anonymous said...

Pancake mix! I have been a strict bisquick user for years until I found Great Value pancakes! You can get it at Wal-Mart which I also agree is a disgusting place to shop, but your options are limited in a small Mississippi town. Anyway, all you have to do is add water and poof you have light and fluffy yummy delicious pancakes! Unlike bisquick which you have to add eggs and milk, and it still doesn't turn out as well! This is great for a poor college student such as myself!

Down Comforter said...

OK, you've convinced me to try store brand contact lense solution - I'll take your word for it. For the most part, I have had very good luck with store brands & in this economy, we can all stand to save a few bucks.