Skip name brands and always buy these generic products to save you money.
Want to know a little secret about me???? I use to be such a brand snob….it’s true! I was proud of the fact that I “only bought name brand.” For some strange reason I thought that made me important, special, cool (not proud of this!). Fortunately, I have learned and matured and I don’t think this way anymore! I now know that brands mean nothing. It’s true that some name brands are better….but some generic products are just good. I actually prefer a few generic to the name brand. If you are wanting to save some money I recommend you switch to more generic products and less name brand. Here are a few of the products I recommend you always buy generic.
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Medicine is one item I use to always buy name brand. I truly thought if I didn’t buy the box that said “Tylenol” it wouldn’t work the same.
It was mind blowing when my brother, who was going through medical school at the time, showed me that the ingredients on the name brand and generic pain reliever was the exact same. I was paying double for the exact same thing! I have never bought name brand medication since.
Start buying all of your medicine, both prescription and over the counter, generic. You can feel confident buying the off brand because the FDA requires all medications to meet their strict standards.
One of the more expensive items at the grocery store is cereal, especially if you are buying it regularly. Skip the name brand and buy generic instead. This one simple change will make a huge difference in your grocery budget.
We love the big Malt O Meal bags of cereal. Our favorites are: generic lucky charms, fruit loops, honey bunches of oats, and frosted mini wheats. Try a few until you find the ones you like best.
3. Bottled Water
The cheapest way to get water is to buy a reusable water bottle and fill it up frequently with tap water. Tap water is free, and you can’t get cheaper than free!
If you need or want to use a plastic water bottle buy the store brand as opposed to name brand. Water is water and it’s not worth paying extra for!
Similar to medication, sunscreen is monitored by the FDA. This means that the same ingredients protecting your skin in a name brand sunscreen will also be in a generic sunscreen.
The name brand sunscreens might charge a little extra for scent, but if that’s not important to you I suggest buying an off brand bottle instead.
The quality of your spices depends more on the freshness rather than the brand. When buying spices always check the sale by date and ignore the brand name. You can a very fresh generic brand spice for a lot cheaper price.
6. Toilet Paper/Paper Towels
Name brand paper goods, such as toilet paper and paper towels are expensive. Fortunately, the off brand paper products are much cheaper and work just as good! Walmarts store brand is my go to for the best price and most reliabel toilet paper and paper towels.
7. Baking Supplies
Save yourself some cash and buy all of your baking supplies generic. Off brand Corn meal, baking mixes, sugar, baking powder, etc. all taste and work just as well as the more expensive name brand.
The only exception I make is with yeast. I always buy my yeast name brand because it does seem to make a difference.
8. Cleaning Products
Any one else out there as obsessed as I am with the Magic Eraser (it’s no joke a moms best friend!). I use to pay a lot of money for this wonderful cleaning pad….and then I discovered I can buy the exact same thing for so much less, the only difference was their wasn’t a fancy name attached to the package. Just search melamine pads on Amazon and you’ll find tons of affordable products that work as good as the original Magic Eraser.
Most other cleaning products are the exact same way. You don’t need a fancy name brand product to clean your house.
Better yet! Save even more money and make your own cleaning products! Here are 5 of my favorite homemade cleaning recipes.
9. Snack Foods
Buying snack foods at the grocery store is a quick way to spend a lot of money. Make it easier on your budget by buying the generic brands.
Most snack foods will have delicious generic options. My kids actually prefer Walmarts store brand Ritz crackers. We also buy off brand granola bars, cookies, and frozen pizzas.
Try a few different store brands until you find the right snacks for you.
10. Frozen Fruits and Vegetables
Buy your frozen fruits and vegetable generic and you won’t tell a difference in taste or quality. We usually use these frozen produce for cooking and smoothies and it tastes just like name brand.
11. Canned Food
Your canned goods, including fruits, vegetables, beans, etc, will all taste the same no matter what the label is on them. For the healthiest option look at the ingredients and try to pick a can low in sodium.
Personally I do like name brand soups though!
Our family can go through a bottle of ketchup way to fast! Fortunately, we always buy generic condiments, so we aren’t spending a fortune! Try buying all of your condiments store brand, including mayo, ketchup, mustard, soy sauce, etc.
13. Aluminum Foil
Another great product to always buy generic is aluminum foil. This can be really expensive if you are buying brand name. For most uses the generic aluminum foil will work just as good!
14. Pre-Packaged Salads
I am a huge fan of pre-packaged salads. Truthfully, I just won’t eat salad unless it’s already all cut up and made for me (real talk folks).
The Dole salads are delicious, but expensive, so I always buy my salads generic. I was surprised to find that I actually like Walmarts store brand salads even BETTER than the name brand! Go figure!
15. Food Storage Baggies
It’s no secret that the cheapest way to store food is by storing them in reusable containers. However, sometimes we just want to use a Ziplock bag! Right?!?
There is truly no difference between Ziplock and the generic food storage bags. It doesn’t matter what name is on the box, all bags will store your food the exact same. Save money and buy generic!
Switching which brand you buy at the store is one of the easiest way to save money on groceries and other household items. This simple change will add up in helping your budget.
Remember, not all brands (generic or name brand) are created equally. Try a few different products, experiment with the brands until you find what you like. Just never be a brand snob like I was!