Budgets Matter – Don’t Buy This at The Dollar Store

July 28, 2020


Budgets Matter – Don’t Buy This at The Dollar Store

Bargains are usually products that you don’t really need but are irresistibly priced.

That is a saying that could describe the dollar store as we now know them.

Dollar stores are designed to fool you into sacrificing product quality for the illusion of a bargain.

Most of the products sold at dollar stores are of poor quality.

They may be sold in repackaged, smaller-sized quantities to fool you into paying more relative to local retailers.

Over time, you will just be wasting a lot of money on inferior products. And possibly affecting your health for the cheap illusion of a bargain.

If you patronize dollar stores, avoid these products.


Alkaline batteries cost about $3 to $7 depending on quantity and brand name.

That could add up in the long run depending on what you use them for.

Remember, $1 and $2 batteries at the dollar store at not a bargain. They are sales bait, a way to get you to sacrifice quality for the illusion of savings.

For example, carbon-zinc batteries are the cheaper alternative to alkaline batteries sold in dollar stores.

Most batteries sold at the dollar store are carbon-zinc batteries. Carbon zinc batteries are vastly inferior in quality to alkaline batteries. They can leak or explode if damaged or punctured. Carbon zinc batteries are optimal for low-energy drain devices like clock radios or remote controls.

Most carbon-zinc batteries are sold in off-label brands, relative to alkaline batteries, like Panasonic or Sunbeam. They don’t provide as much energy as alkaline batteries.

You are just as likely to waste money buying carbon-zinc batteries since they are drained sooner than alkaline batteries.

Do yourself a favor and just invest in rechargeable alkaline batteries sold by Energizer, Duracell, and other noted brands.

Canned Food

Remember, you don’t go to the dollar store to buy gourmet-level, quality fresh food.

Most of the food sold in dollar stores is unhealthy, full of sodium or fat, or of incredibly low quality. (Please check the “sell by,” date.) Even if you find quality, brand-name canned food, they may be weeks, months, or even years off their freshness dates.

That can of beans or corned beef was wholesale sourced as cheaply as possible.

The canned food you find at the dollar store was probably refused for sale at the local supermarket.

Additionally, you will probably find superior quality versions much cheaper at your local supermarket.

To maximize profit, that dollar store canned food is probably 20 cents to 30 cents more expensive than the quality, non-sale canned food at the supermarket.

Incidentally, if you are shopping at The Dollar Store because you’re looking to save money, consider reading savedbythecent’s article on Dave Ramsey’s Rice and Beans budget. Its a solid read if you want to actually save money.

Shampoo, Hair, and Grooming Products

Listen, there are a lot of places where you can buy shampoo, conditioner, skin hydrating lotion, makeup, and other grooming products.

The dollar store should be the last place on your list.

The grooming products sold there may be, “travel size,” products that are marked up to maximize profits.

Worse, they are probably sourced by wholesalers unconcerned about quality or consumer welfare.

Many of these grooming products may not be allergy tested or contain chemicals that are rough and harsh on hair and skin. Cheap, off-brand, and low-quality grooming products are sold in dollar stores for a reason (not for your benefit).

You are better off comparison shopping for your grooming products at the supermarket.

Products of Value

All is not doom and gloom, however. Here are a few products you should buy for the sake of bargain at the dollar store:

  • Notebooks, stationery, assorted writing supplies for school
  • Plastic storage containers
  • Greeting cards
  • Drinking glasses and mugs
  • Party supplies

In the long run, you are better off paying for quality products at trusted retail outlets.

The bargains you find at the dollar store may not be worth it.

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