Watch for these Dollar Store Hits and Misses

Image of dinnerware on shelves.

I am a fan of dollar stores. For one, you never have to search for the price on anything – there’s no mystery. The other thing is that buyer’s remorse is rare because you know what you’re getting for a buck.

Well, most of the time you know what you’re getting. Sometimes, you want to avoid their items. Certain things are actually cheaper at other stores while safety and quality are another issue.

Since it’s one of those places you run into for one thing but come out with ten, we’ve listed ten things that are good buys at the dollar store, and a few that aren’t. By no means is this list exhaustive, as dollar stores are teeming with awesomeness.

Grab It:

Special Occasion – Hands down, some of the best deals can be found in the party section or the seasonal aisle. Greeting cards, gift bags, tableware, balloons, and decorations are all fun to shop for in the dollar store.

Cleaning Supplies – Awesome brand cleaner has a bit of a cult following so don’t be fooled into thinking big names are better. And you can’t beat $1 for dish soap, all-purpose cleaners, carpet foam, sponges, or scrub brushes either.

Organizers – Plastic storage containers, bins, and baskets of all sizes are here for the taking. Perfect for organizing any room in the house, dorm, or office!

Office Supplies – How many times have you needed to grab a trifold poster board at the last minute? They’ve got ‘em. Though big box stores offer dirt cheap school supplies during certain times of the year, you’ll also find markers, pens, paper clips, or folders here in a pinch.

Crafty Decorative Things – Pick up a lovely glass vase, craft kits for the kids, or arts and crafts supplies for your next project.

Green Thumb Delights – Flower pots aren’t cheap but they are that the dollar store. If you hit up a good one, you can find ceramic and terracotta pots in addition to a nice wall of gardening fun like gloves, trowels, and trellises.

Discount Bath and Beauty Goods – We’ll admit that some of finds in this section might be sketchy. But some hauls could bring you name-brand cosmetics like Maybelline, and recognizable brands of shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste, or soap.

Candy – Giant packs of candy that is! Hershey’s Kisses, Snickers, Jolly Ranchers. Great for smuggling into the movies (you know you do it).

Food Storage – Food containers, sandwich bags, or foil pans – with or without frills – can be grabbed for a fraction of what they’d cost anywhere else.

Skip It:

Pet Food – Some of the off brands may not have undergone food quality checks for safety. From experience, messy tummy issues could be a result.

Ear Buds/Headphones – Just no. Ear buds are one of those things you probably want to splurge on.

Batteries – You end up spending more to replace batteries with short life spans. Buy elsewhere.

Vitamins – It’s best to cough up some extra change to ensure quality ingredients are used for these.

Soda – Packaging is often smaller, so you may not be getting the most for your money. Your grocery store probably has better deals.

And here are some more duds to look out for:

Well stocked dollar stores usually have a bigger selection of name brand goods that you can load up and save money on. Another plus is that they take coupons! Get your dollar purchase discounted even further by using manufacturer’s coupons.

There are plenty more great items at the dollar store, so tell us what you love to get there. Are you a fan of their dinnerware? How about their refrigerated food items? Share with us in the comments!