Bargain-hunting is a hobby and necessity of mine. I live on a single income, and although I support only myself and two dogs, I still have a monthly mortgage payment and car payment to deal with. Like most Americans, I also pay for cell phone service, cable television, Internet access, and basic utilities. Expenses definitely add up, so shopping at dollar stores is a must. I mainly go to two major chains in Southern California: Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only Stores. Below are my favorite bath and beauty products from those two chain dollar stores. In order to make the list, a product needs to be something that I have purchased at least three times, and it also must be something that I plan to purchase again in the future.
Colgate Toothpaste In a Squeeze Bottle: This is a product available at Dollar Tree for $1, yet costs $3.89 at Walgreens. I buy at least five of these 4.6-ounce bottles whenever I need to stock up on toothpaste. With the large variety of toothpastes at Dollar Tree, and many packages exceeding 4.6 ounces, I choose this particular item because I loathe toothpaste tube problems! I dislike the mess, losing the caps, and squeezing from the bottom up. I love the cleanliness that these toothpaste bottles provide. I also like that it is an item is made by a trustworthy toothpaste maker.
Salon Selectives Hair Products: This product is also available at Dollar Tree for $1 per bottle (shampoo, conditioner, or hairspray). A 12-ounce bottle of shampoo from online retailer Discount Cosmetic Outlet costs $4.99, while the 14-ounce bottle from Dollar Tree is about one-fifth of that. Salon Selectives has been around for decades, so it is a brand that I can trust. It also smells fresh and cleans my hair well. The hairspray keeps its hold, as promised. It may not be for everyone, but I am not picky when it comes to hair products, so I am happy to use this brand.
Venezia Soapworks Pure Vegetable Soap: I usually purchase this product at 99 Cents Only Stores. They are always in stock at my local 99 Cents Only Store, although I have also seen them at Dollar Tree occasionally. A California company called Shugar Soapworks makes this soap, which is made of pure vegetable oil, meaning no animal fat is used in the process. My favorite scents are the Lemon Verbena and the Rose. Two other scents that I have seen at the 99 Cents Only Stores are Honey Almond and Cucumber Melon. Listed on Amazon by Venezia Soapworks at $10.99 for 2 bars, this is definitely a steal at the dollar store.
Plackers Gentle Slide Dental Flossers: This 35-pack of dental flossers is a great buy from Dollar Tree. I suffer from Tempomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ or TMJD), which does not allow my jaw to open fully. It can be a hassle to floss my molars because TMJ makes it difficult to reach the back of my mouth. With Plackers Dental Flossers, flossing has become a simpler task. I prefer the kind with the Gentle Slide technology for even easier flossing. There are packages of Plackers Dental Flossers available at Target or Walmart at a better value than the ones from Dollar Tree, but neither carry the Gentle Slide type.
Suave Kids Detangling Spray: The Suave brand of detangling spray is available in a variety of scents at 99 Cents Only Stores. I particularly like the apple and the orange scents. These are available at Target for $1.89 per bottle. Although this product is marketed toward children, I do use it on my adult hair. I use it not for detangling, but for making my hair smell fresh on days that I skip washing (I wash my hair every other day). It makes my hair smell great without weighing it down.
April Foaming Acne Scrub: This is a face wash that is available at Dollar Tree, and it has been my go-to for two years. This 4.2-ounce bottle contains a grapefruit-scented scrub with 2 percent salicylic acid listed as its active ingredient. The scrub is gentle enough for daily use on my normal-to-oily skin. A similar popular brand is sold at Drugstore.com for $6.39 for a 4.2-ounce bottle.
Claw Hair Clips: I buy these in packs of three at either Dollar Tree or 99 Cents Only Stores. I have no brand loyalty when it comes to hair clips because they are all made with plastic and small pieces of metal, and I only have them for a short while before I break or lose them. A set of three claw clips runs about $2 at Walmart, depending on the style of clip.
Facial Tissue: I almost exclusively buy tissue boxes at dollar stores. I have purchased them at $1 per box at both Dollar Tree and 99 Cents Only Stores. I like my tissue boxes to match the decor of my home, so I only buy ones that are gray, yellow, or turquoise. Luckily, Kleenex, Scotties, and Puffs each make boxes in these colors! I am not picky when it comes to tissues. As long as they are 2-ply, and are soft enough to not hurt my nose during cold season, then I don’t mind buying them.
For more money-saving tips, read my article “Dollar Store Finds: Household Cleaning and Laundry Products.”