Generic and Lesser Known vs Big Brand: Bargains to be Had?

A while back, I posted an article about finding bargains at flea markets and garage sales, showing how you can save a lot of money. However, there are some things you probably don’t want to buy at a garage sale. Like a hand soap refill in an unmarked container, toothbrushes not in a container, or food in unmarked containers.

There are things that are better to buy at a store, or at least, in the case of foods, from a farm or farmer’s market.  For those things you go to a store for, does this mean no bargains? Fortunately, no, though there is the caveat that the lesser known, store, or generic brand may really not be as good as a big name brand in some cases.

Many stores carry their own brand, generic brands, or lesser known brands in addition to the big name brands we all know. Oftentimes the generic, lesser known, and store brand products are cheaper. Many people do stick with the name brands, however, because of the perception that the name brand automatically means superior quality. Is this true? Sometimes no, sometimes yes. Oftentimes it just depends on the individual.

In my case, I’ve a few examples. I use liquid hand soap refills. I used to use the name brand aloe vera soap refill, a 56 ounce bottle. As of this writing, it was selling for $4.88. Then I saw a lesser known brand refill bottle, same size and ingredients, at the same store. Selling for $3.88, a dollar less! I decided to try the lesser known brand and lo and behold, it was just as good! So now I save a full dollar when I buy a new soap refill!

But sometimes, the lesser known, store, or generic brand really isn’t as good. At another store, I saw that the store brand of ice cream was much cheaper than the same size carton of the next cheapest brand, so I decided to try it. Big mistake! The ice cream was terrible, its texture could only be described as “alien”, and very disagreeable! I didn’t eat more than a spoonful and threw the rest out!

So, you can score bargains by going with other than a big name brand, but know that it won’t always work out. Fortunately, there are many brands and many stores, so while you may not get an extreme bargain, you can still find a good lesser known, store, or generic brand of almost anything if you look well enough, do your research, and talk to other consumers, too.

Good shopping and good luck! If you like what you’ve read, tell others about this site!

And thanks for reading! 🙂

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