Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Top 10 Series: the top 10 household products I buy

Inspired by recent discussion at Money Saving Mom.com about the top items that people should buy or should not buy, I am running a series in April and May about the top 10 things I purchase or don't purchase regularly.

Some of the points are actual physical items; other points are a bit more broad. In many cases, the reason I purchase a specific item is because we have a brand preference - and we choose to save money elsewhere in the budget so we can afford that specific item!

In April, I will share the top 10 things I purchase in four different categories: food, household products, health and beauty products and other miscellaneous products around the home.

These lists will be based on my opinions and my purchasing habits. Each individual and family will have different priorities for how money is spent. If your priorities are different, that's okay!

Here are the top 10 household products that I purchase, in no specific order:

1. Shout laundry stain remover - I use Shout like it's going out of style! No other stain remover that I have tried even comes close to Shout, so I'm sticking with it. I am usually able to pick it up on sale, but if it's not on sale, I will still purchase it.

2. Two-ply toilet paper - This is something on which my husband and I are both firm! I do not buy the "scratchy" kinds of toilet paper. I aim for about $0.20 per regular-size roll (or less) and can usually purchase toilet paper for that price. Generally, I buy the store brand at Target.

3. Tissues - Because I have severe allergies (for my entire life), tissues are an essential part of my life. Some store brands are okay, but not all. During the height of my allergies, it's not unusual for me to go through half a box of tissues in one day!

4. Dawn dish soap - Nothing cleans my dishes as well as Dawn! What I especially have trouble with is degreasing - nothing cuts through the grease besides Dawn.

5. Microfiber rags - I have switched to using microfiber rags for much of my cleaning. They aren't expensive, but they work so well (and are so much less wasteful)!

6. Dishwasher detergent pacs or tabs - Over the years, I have found that dishwasher detergent packs or tabs consistently clean my dishes the best. Liquid and powder detergents never seem to get the job done. I watch for sales in order to pay around $0.10-$0.15 per load. I usually only run our dishwasher about once a week; I do some dishes by hand each night.

7. Dobie scrubbers - We have high-quality stainless steel pots and pans, which makes these Dobie scrubbers a requirement. They aren't expensive, either - but they are necessary!

8. Vacuum sealing plastic rolls - We received a Food Saver vacuum sealing machine about 16 months ago as a gift and I love it! I usually buy the plastic rolls on Amazon; they are pricey (I use gift cards that I get through Swagbucks, though!), but we buy meat in bulk, so vacuum-sealing makes sense for us.

9. Plastic bags - I keep a nice stash of freezer bags and sandwich-size bags on hand. We find these to be very necessary in our home! As a side note, the Aldi-brand or Target-brand bags work just as well as name brand.

10. Paper napkins - I'd go for cloth napkins at every meal, but my husband isn't so keen on that idea. I buy 250 paper napkins for $1.50 at Aldi and that package lasts us months. In general, we aren't messy people, so we're not using multiple napkins per day anyways.


  1. This is facinating list and idea!! It made me start to figure out what we get so I am going to have to post my list tomorrow!!! We always use Tide laundry detergent and Dawn. I am trying to move to cloth napkins but only half sucessful. Something to think about :) Thanks for the thought provoking post!!

    1. Glad you liked it, Alison! I love how everyone is so different - I love reading other people's lists. Send me a link to your post or come back and leave it here in the comments. :)


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