What’s not to love about the dollar store?
It’s like an adventure to see what all you can find for as cheap as possible, and sometimes it’s amazing what you can get for a buck. It really makes you think about how much more you’re paying elsewhere.
Sure, there are certain items you’re probably better off not buying at the dollar store, but there are also many items you absolutely should buy almost exclusively at dollar stores.
The best dollar store deals tend to be the ones where simplicity rules. Holiday decorations, coffee mugs, reading glasses - these are all things that typically get marked up at large retail stores due to design or other unnecessary complexities.
If you know what to look for, you can find some serious deals in dollar stores that can lead to some pretty significant savings.
So here are 9 items that almost always make more sense to buy at the dollar store.
Greeting cards are one of those things you know you’re going to need every year at the same time. So why not go ahead and stock up on greeting cards and save some money by buying them at the dollar store? After all, anytime you can get a box of 16 greeting cards for $1, you’re winning.
While craft stores and other big retail stores tend to hike up prices on holiday decorations, most dollar stores keep it simple and reasonable. The local Dollar General will typically dedicate an aisle or two to whichever holiday is approaching, and they’ve been known to have some decent, affordable last-minute decorations and gifts for holidays like Christmas.
The stuff they offer might not be of the absolute highest quality, but it gets the job done. And hey, it’s seasonal, so it’s not like it needs to last forever anyways.
When it comes to cleaning supplies, there’s no shame in picking up the dollar store brand to save some cash.
For example, Clorox Disinfectant Wipes can be found at Walmart at their normal price of $4.63, while DG’s Home Disinfectant Wipes are just $3.75. If you live in a household full of kids or pets, you know just how much that can add up each month.
Want to put more pictures on the wall or throughout the house, but not ready to drop a fortune on expensive picture frames? The dollar store might have just what you need.
For instance, a simple, black 11x14 picture frame at Walmart costs around $14, while a similar picture frame at Dollar General costs around $6. Of course, picture frames vary in style, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find better prices on picture frames at dollar stores.
You can even paint or decorate cheap picture frames from the dollar store and have them end up looking better than the more expensive ones at the craft store.
There’s no better place to gear up for a party than the dollar store. Streamers, party hats, balloons, plastic cups - most dollar stores stay stocked up on simple-but-good party items that will get you through the celebration without regretting how much you spent.
Think of it this way: Anything you plan on using for a very short amount of time and then throwing away is probably better off being purchased at the dollar store.
On some types of candy, dollar stores will be just as cheap as anywhere else. However, on more “specialty” candy like movie theater boxed candy, dollar stores tend to shine. You might also look to dollar stores like Dollar Tree for Halloween candy. You might be surprised by the deals you find.
For example, when you can grab an 18 count of Finding Dory lollipops for $1, you’re well on your way to becoming the Halloween hero of your street.
Believe it or not, many dollar stores sell books of all kinds. Whether you’re looking for a bestseller to start or you want to stockpile your child’s art closet with coloring books, the dollar store is the place to go.
Coloring books are great to buy at a dollar store because, let’s face it, most of it’s getting torn up anyways. Sure, there will be a piece or two that make it to the fridge, but paper is paper. Might as well save a buck, your child will never know.
Reading glasses are another item that can be bought for cheap. Store like Dollar Tree sell them for $1 a piece, while other stores can be as much as 2-3 times that much. And hey, the dollar store reading glasses aren’t too shabby either.
Drinking Glasses and Mugs
$1 ceramic coffee mugs should be enough to convince you that the dollar store is the place to pick up new mugs. The same goes for drinking glasses.
Ceramic and glass are ceramic and glass no matter where you buy them, so go for the dollar store mugs and drinking glasses to save money.
This guide was published on October 25, 2016, and last modified on October 25, 2016.