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Posted on 15 Jul 2020

What are the everyday household items that are worth spending the extra money on?

Feel free to list brand names or where you usually get them at a decent price (if possible)! Thanks!


11 answers

Discussion (11)

Hi anonymous,

Great question! I consider myself a pretty frugal guy, so whatever's cheapest works for me and that's usually the house-brand stuff (I'm not picky, that way).

BUT there are some things which I think are worth spending the extra money on, and it doesn't mean that it has to be the really expensive or premium stuff:

1) Mama Lemon Dishwashing Liquid

I've tried UIC, Joy, and Biograde (which looks like some kind of industrial cleaner and costs less than $5 for a 3L giant container).

Source: NTUC FairPrice

But really. Mama Lemon is the only brand which I feel, really cleans my dishes right. Everything else feels kinda watered down.

I'll always get the original one which comes in a yellow bottle or packet (aka 'Natural Lemon').

Source: NTUC FairPrice

I have a refillable bottle which I got from Muji and use that to hold my Mama Lemon. So I'll just get the refill which costs $1.50 for 600ml (if you did the math, the Biograde one would be about $2.50 cheaper for the same quantity).

Sometimes they even do a 2-pack promo. So that's when I'll stock up. 2) Energizer Batteries

Cheap batteries (like the $2 ones which you can get at Daiso) are okay for toys.

But if you're talking about stuff like the TV remote, smoke detectors, flashlights, doorbell and digital door lock. The stuff which you count on to NOT fail at the inopportune times...

I'll always reach for a pack of Energizer batteries.

Source: NTUC FairPrice

I do NOT intend to be locked out of my home when some cheap batteries which I got for $2 die on me and I can't operate my digital lock.

3) Maling Premium Luncheon Meat

On the rare occasions when I do need to get luncheon meat, for like a potato and luncheon meat fryup with tomato sauce.

I'll get a can of Maling (costs about $3 to $3.50, depending on where you get it from).

Source: NTUC FairPrice

Taste-wise. It's undoubtedly the best luncheon meat you can get. Everything else which I've tried just tastes... off.

I mean, it's already reconstituted pork. I really don't need any other weird fillers, flavours or mystery meat added.

Also, Maling is like a nice mid-range price. Not as cheap as $2 (looking at you Mili Pork Luncheon Meat, which looks ALMOST like Maling so be careful when picking). And not ridiculously overpriced like Spam (north of $6).


Now, without getting into specific brands, here are some items which I personally believe are the best ever (and they're not always expensive too):

1) Old-School Stainless Steel Can Opener

It's the type which you can get at the neighbourhood shop (which sells all kinds of odds and ends like brooms, spoons, drills, and door handles) or the wet market.

The kind that looks like this:

They cost something like $1 each and work on pretty much any kind of can in existence. You just use physics and your strength, and you'll open it.

Trust me.

The plier-type ones which are "heavy-duty" and have "multi-functions" will break down after like 5 uses.

Source: Lazada

And they aren't cheap either...

2) 3-Ply Toilet Paper

Not too long ago, I've tried figuring out if expensive toilet paper is worth it.

And have come to the conclusion that a 2-ply toilet paper should really be the minimum...

However, my wife insists that we get 3-ply. If I try to get anything lower than that, she'll complain and say that it "feels like sandpaper".

So we usually get something like this:

Source: NTUC FairPrice

That's a 20 roll pack of 3-ply that you can usually find in NTUC or Giant at the "purchase with purchase" section. Just look around the next time you get into your local supermarket. It's usually near the checkout aisles or near the entrance.

You'll usually have to spend like $40 or something to be able to purchase it at a discount. And since we usually consolidate our weekly grocery runs, I'll always make sure to check if there's any 3-ply toilet paper available on offer.

3) Bath Towels

Get those which are 100% pure cotton. Don't mess around with the microfibre stuff (think: the green SAF towels) which doesn't dry well.

They're comfortable, absorb well, and won't turn to rags after 3 washes.

I'll usually spend a little more on them because I take a shower every day, so I might as well get something that feels nice and will last for a while because I'll be washing them like 4 or 5 times a week.​​​





Level 3. Freshie

Posted on 21 Jul 2020

Making good use of the space you have at home by using storage organisers can be a god send! That way you can keep track of what you have, and may be less likely to buy more stuff if you know it will cause clutter. I'd also recommend getting houseplants to brighten up your home.


Frankie Rappaport

Frankie Rappaport

21 Jul 2020

Yes, maybe Singapore's signature orchid?


Mingli Lin

Mingli Lin

Level 5. Wonderkid

Posted on 03 Aug 2020

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