I've always been a bit of a brand snob. But the last few years, I've really tried to keep an open mind about generic items. I try a few things here and there. Some not so good choices, some you cannot even tell it's generic. What really got me reconsidering my brand loyalty was when the salmonella peanut butter scare happened a few years ago. Peter Pan (my personal favorite) was recalled from the same plant as the Wal-Mart brand. It made me realize that many times it's just a matter of appealing mass marketing. I was paying dollars more per jar of PB than I needed to. Since then, I'm more willing to at least try generics once in awhile.
Here are a few products that I've tried lately and my thoughts on them:
Target Brand Eye Make-up Remover: I am a Clinique girl. My mom was growing up and I think it's just one of those things that stuck with me. One of the things I really love in their product line is their Take The Day Off Makeup Remover. Velvety soft, non-greasy, cleans in just three or four sweeps. Works great on waterproof mascara and stubborn lipstick. I've happily spent $17.50 a bottle on this stuff. So I begrudgingly tried the Up & Up brand of Eye Make-up Remover and was VERY surprised! I seriously, literally could not tell the difference. Considering the Up & Up brand is only about $3.50, I'm actually going to make a change. It's also got me wondering what else in their skin-care line is worth trying.
Target Brand Dishwashing Detergent Gel: Cascade lemon-scent gel is another one of those products that has my name loyalty. No more. The Up & Up brand is really no different. I see no streaks, smells great, and cleans thoroughly. Sorry Cascade!
Target Brand Toilet Paper: I'm not a fan. I considered starting this with a funny one-liner about how it's "crap", but I'll refrain. I've always been a Cottonelle girl and this huge pack of Up & Up Toilet Paper I purchased last week reminds me why. Cottonelle is soft, the double-ply is matched up, and it's soft. Hee. Up & Up TP is neither of those things. I hate scratchy TP! And when the sheets don't match up and I tear off a half sheet of one side of the ply, it's annoying to me. Maybe I'm just picky, but the $1 or so more for my name brand TP is worth it. This is the last time I make this purchase.
Target Brand Paper Towels: I love me some Viva Papertowels! They seriously feel like little washcloths to me. So it was with a begrudging heart that I tried the Target Brand Paper Towels. They aren't nearly as soft, but they do come in select-a-size and are pretty absorbent. I will purchase these when the budget's tight for the week. But if I have the extra dollar or so, I will probably splurge on my Viva.
Target (Market Place) brand Steam-in-a-bag foods: I've tried asparagus, broccoli, and white rice. At $1.99 a bag, these are a real winner in my opinion! For those nights you need a good hot meal fast, this is the perfect answer. A few days ago, I had a whole chicken cooking in the crockpot, steamed a bag of rice, another bag of asparagus and we had a great meal in under 10 minutes of coming home. Seriously. Just doesn't get better than that on a time and money budget! These are a regular occurrence on my grocery list nowadays.
I have a few other items I'm trying out, but still not sure where I stand on them, so I'll write about those at a later time.
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