5 Items You Should Buy Generic

When consumers are faced with two similar products, they often assume that the more expensive item is of better quality. Of course, this is not always the case. As a consumer, it is ultimately your choice to decide on which brand better suits your needs or preferences. However, you may be interested to know that certain items are often best purchased as a generic brand. Here are a number of products you may want to consider purchasing generic:

1) OTC medication

Most people choose to spend more money on branded over-the-counter (OTC) medication. After all, it’s your health you’re dealing with, right? What consumers aren’t aware of is that the Food and Drug Administration requires generic medicine to contain the same ingredients as branded ones. Generic drugs work just as quickly, are just as effective, and are a whole lot cheaper.

2) Cereal

Purchasing generic cereal can save you anywhere from 25 to 50% or more off regular price. When compared to its branded counterpart, generic cereal looks the same and tastes very similar. It also often comes in a bigger package for less money. In some cases, branded and generic cereals are actually made by the same manufacturers, just with different packaging.

If your young ones insist on the branded cereal, then you may want to consider purchasing the branded version the first time, and then replacing it with the generic stuff inside the branded box the next time around!

3) Pantry staples

Pantry staples such as sugar, salt, flour and spices are generally all the same. These items follow the same standards for ingredients, production and storage mandated by the FDA, and it is highly unlikely that generic and branded pantry staples differ greatly from each other.

4) Batteries

Brand name batteries like Energizer and Duracell often advertise that they are longer lasting than other batteries. Although this may be true, the cost generally isn’t worth it. Generic batteries such as Thunderbolt Magnum may hold less power but they cost significantly less money.  We go through so many that we often buy batteries in bulk on eBay or Amazon.

5) Bleach

The price of bleach varies greatly between name brands and generic, and these days there are even lots of fragrance choices that are typically the same price but come in smaller bottles.  You’re diluting your bleach so much in the washer or bucket that it really doesn’t matter what brand or scent you’re using so why pay extra?  You can even buy concentrated bleach tablets and add your own water for a fraction of the cost!

These are some items you may want to start buying generic. Keep in mind that they’re just as good as their branded counterparts, but will save you a whole lot more money in the long run.

Earlier this week I wrote about 5 Items You Should Never Buy Generic and there was quite a bit of discussion – some agreed and some didn’t.  How do you feel about generics?


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  1. I purchase alot of generic/store brand items, and I don’t find any difference except for the price. I use store brand ibuprofen all the time for my RA joint pain, and it works beautifully. However, I’m not so thrilled with most store brand cereals.. they taste different to me.

  2. Great tips! We currently buy generic bulk items as well like rice, oats, beans, and more!

  3. good to know. thanks for sharing

  4. Thanks for all this great info!!

  5. I buy quite a bit of generic stuff. The 2 things I absolutely can not buy generic are toilet paper and Miracle Whip.
    So with those I try to catch deals and buy in bulk because it’s cheaper. It’s not strange to see a huge gallon tub of Miracle Whip in my fridge.

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