The Best and Worst Items to Buy Store Brand


By Alexander Price

I’ve always thought why buy name brand when you can buy store brand? After all store brand is made by the same companies but is much cheaper, on average. I came across an awesome article that has the top 5 best and worst things to buy generic. Some of the ones you shouldn’t buy are quite interesting!

  Best Things to Buy Generic

1. Cereal. Eating a bowl of cereal each morning is a quick and cheap way to make sure you and the kids get breakfast before dashing out the door. For every brand name of cereal out there — Cheerios, Raisin Bran, Corn Flakes, Apple Jacks and so on — there seems to always be a generic version right next to it on the shelf with an almost identical name. And it’s not just the name that’s nearly identical; the product itself normally is, too. So why bother spending more just to get the name brand?

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Take Corn Flakes, for example. The brand name version is Kellogg’s Corn Flakes cereal and it will run you $2.98 for an 18-ounce box at Walmart. Go for Great Value’s Corn Flakes cereal instead, and you’ll only spend $1.98 for the same-sized box. There isn’t much difference in taste, and some people even prefer the generic brand. Depending on how much cereal your household goes through in a month, this small change could add up to serious savings.

  Diapers. When it comes to babies, all parents want what’s best. It certainly makes sense to buy the brand name of baby food and other baby products, but not everything we buy for our babies is worth the brand-name price. Because babies go through so many diapers each day — not to mention each month — the generic brand will do just fine and save you a pretty penny.

If you buy the 88 pack of Huggies Little Snugglers, you’ll be shelling out $24.99. Choose the Target generic brand instead, called up & up, and you can get 144 diapers for $28.99. When you break down the price by individual diaper, that’s about 28 cents a diaper versus about 20 cents a diaper. You’d save almost a dime each time you change your baby’s diaper.

  Medications. Many of us take medications, and many of us spend much more money on those medications than we should. As Business Insider points out, brand-name and generic drugs are both well-formulated, effective and have to go through the same rigorous tests for approval. But the difference in pricing is often staggering.

Take aspirin and ibuprofen, for example. At Walgreens, you can buy a bottle of Advil with 100 tablets (200 milligrams) for $9.99. Its store brand bottle of 100 tablets (also 200 milligrams), however, only costs $7.29. That’s a savings of $2.70.

  Worst Things to Buy Generic

  Trash Bags. While it might be okay to buy the generic brand of some cleaning and kitchen products, skimming when buying trash bags can end up costing you.

A box of Glad Tall Kitchen Quick-Tie Trash Bags costs $11.99 for 106 bags at Target, slightly more than the up & up brand, which goes for $10.79 for 110 trash bags. You’ll save more than $1 on each package by buying up & up, but you don’t want to sacrifice quality when you’re talking about keeping smelly trash contained. The Glad trash bags have gripping drawstrings and are more heavy duty; the up & up bags are flexible, but they have less-reliable flap ties.

  Major Electronics. While you can save some serious bucks when choosing the cheap version over the brand name for big electronics, you won’t be getting the bang you want. The extra money spent on brand-name TVs and other electronics is worth it, considering these items typically come with much better customer service and support than the cheaper options.

So, although a 40-inch Insignia TV at Best Buy would be nearly $190 cheaper than the Samsung one ($279.99 vs. $469), you’ll be regretting your money-saving decision when you have to deal with the less-reliable customer service as soon as something goes wrong.

Make sure to see the full list! Buy generic whenever you can, especially on food. However the important or complicated items (electronics) I’d suggest buying from quality name brands.

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About the author


I'm here to help change the way people are taught about finances. I have created a place where I look for the best information possible that I believe will significantly benefit my readers. I want this to be beneficial for everyone! Lets change the world together!

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