Dollar Tree Do’s and Don’t’s. Step Away From The Junk, People

I love Dollar Tree.
It was invented for people like me, who spend way more than a dollar when they go in there.
I can easily spend 25 dollars per trip at this store when all I walked in there for was rubber bands and Tootsie Rolls.
But there are items in Dollar Tree that are not necessarily worth your precious dollar.
So I am here to help!
Here are some items that I think you need to avoid and some you should definitely add to your list the next time you pop into your local Dollar Tree.This is my opinion so please don’t email me telling me that you think I am a bad person because I don’t like the toxic plastic dollies.
It’s happened.
Maybe you like the dollies and to that I say, good for you.
ROCK ON WITH YOUR PLASTIC DOLLIES.

Crayons

Crayons

When you use these, they leave wax shavings all over the paper and they break very easily.
With kids who color hard and are not easy on anything in the house, these last maybe a day or two.
Spend the extra fifty cents and buy name brand.

 

 

Back away slowly from the crappy dollies.

Dolls

I am gonna get preachy.
Please stop buying these.
So they stop making these.
For four dollars more you can get a real Barbie doll at Target.
The legs fall off, the heads fall off and they are not even worth the dollar you spent on it.
Back away slowly from the crappy dollies.

 

Candles

Candles

PLEASE STOP BUYING THESE.
Oh and by the way, it doesn’t have a smell when you light it because, I think, it isn’t even a candle.
Those candles on the bottom shelf are fine though because they are faux candles.
They don’t have a smell.
Just like the “candles” above them.

 

Baby goods

Baby goods

I don’t know about you but the stuff you buy at discount stores takes a beating so I can’t imagine these items lasting more than one use.
Plus, nothing here is BPA free so stick with spending a little more.
They are only babies for a little while.
Shower gel

Shower gel

I love to save money but this is one I will spend a little more on.
Plus there are always coupons for brand names on this stuff, so go to the big box stores for this.

 

Toxic Carpet Powder

Toxic Carpet Powder

Stop using this.
Stat.
It is horrible for your carpets.
Someone once told me that it sinks to the bottom of the carpet and doesn’t even get vacuumed up.
And when they ripped up their carpet, there was an entire sub-floor full of this stuff.
Plus it makes your carpet feel gritty.
Burn a candle instead to get your house smelling nice.
BUT NOT THE CANDLES UP THERE. ^^^^
Sometimes food at Dollar Tree is a trap.

 

 Canned Goods

Sometimes food at Dollar Tree is a trap.
You think you are getting a deal but you are not.
Canned vegetables are A TRAP.
Canned vegetables at the grocery are never, EVER more than a dollar.
So you shouldn’t buy your canned veggies there.
Unless they are under 2/$1.00.
So pay close attention to prices.
Toilet Paper

Toilet Paper

This should be a no-brainer but we learned the hard way, literally, with this one.
Good toilet paper is worth the extra money.

 

Perfume/Cologne

Perfume/Cologne

I don’t even want to know what this perfume smells like.
Sex panther maybe.
Next.

If you are buying your readers at Dollar Tree, one could argue you don't need to read in the first place.

Glasses

If you are buying your readers at Dollar Tree, one could argue you don’t need to read in the first place.
Do they help?
Because how is it that I have to pay $300 to see and you only have to pay one dollar?
Explain that math to me.
Please.
No, I am totally seriously serious.
Explain that to me.
 

I am not a Dollar Tree hater
I love that store more than what is probably normal.
So here is my must have list for my favorite little dollar store.

 

Seasonal items

Seasonal items

If you need to fill an Easter basket or a Christmas stocking?
This is the place.

 

 have not bought a party plate, napkin or fork anywhere other than Dollar Tree in the past eight years-plus.

Party gear

I have not bought a party plate, napkin or fork anywhere other than Dollar Tree in the past eight years-plus.
It is my go-to place for parties.
The colors are great for kids but the white is perfect for adult parties.
I never go to the party store any more because why would you when everything here is a dollar each?

 

Spend your money on the gift, not the wrapping.
Wrapping goodies

Wrapping goodies

Tissue paper, ribbons, gift bags etc?
It’s ripped up in a matter of seconds.
Spend your money on the gift, not the wrapping.

 

This is the place to get all of your craft items and stock up for school projects.

Craft items for kids

If your kids are like mine, this stuff is gone in a matter of days.
And I hate spending a lot of money on this.
Michael’s sells the box of foam stickers for eight bucks.
Save your money because it’s just going to end up on the bottom of your shoes, on the bed, on the walls, on the floors……
This is the place to get all of your craft items and stock up for school projects.
I home school every summer to avoid the summer slide, so Dollar Tree is amazing for me to give rewards and for keeping my daughter motivated.

School Items

They also have great play school items for kids as well.
Great for those would be teachers of yours or for you homeschooling parents out there.
I home school every summer to avoid the summer slide, so Dollar Tree is amazing for me to give rewards and for keeping my daughter motivated.
Sometimes Dollar Tree gets in brand name items.

Brand Names

Sometimes Dollar Tree gets in brand name items.
This is an example of a good deal because at big box stores, items like these are upwards of $1.50.
Dollar Tree takes coupons as well so this makes your dollar go even further, so keep your eyes out for these.

 

Nail polish and makeup

Nail polish and makeup

 I don’t recommend the eye makeup because eyes are sensitive and my daughter had a reaction to the eye makeup from here before but everyone is different.
I recommend doing a test before you use the makeup on sensitive areas.
They also carry brand name makeup at random Dollar Tree’s so check your local store.

Blush, lip gloss, nail polish, emery boards, nail polish remover make great goody bag gifts for tweens!

Check out my tween party idea below using Dollar Tree makeup items.

It was a huge hit and so inexpensive too.

 

Travel items

 

But do be careful because sometimes you can find travel size items at Target for under a dollar.

Travel items

But do be careful because sometimes you can find travel size items at Target for under a dollar.
So shop wisely.
Candy is okay but again be careful on price.

Candy

Candy is okay but again be careful on price.
Just be aware of prices when shopping.
The Mamba candy above is usually in the dollar spot at Target, so this is spot on.
But some of the bags of candy are very small and you can sometimes find it cheaper at stores such as Walgreen’s so be a savvy shopper.

 

Water

Water

We get it here when we needed it for preschool parties/snack; soccer snack etc..
But for regular bottled water, it is cheaper to buy it at the bigger stores for the amount/size you get.

 

 I always buy this at Dollar Tree.

 

Hair goods

Hair goods

Especially for little girls.
Because my daughters leave these everywhere but in their hair.
In the couch, on the bus, in their backpacks.
Why spend a lot of money on this ?
And it is a lot of money at Target and other bigger stores.
 I always buy this at Dollar Tree.
Antibacterial pumps

Antibacterial pumps

One for the car, one at our sinks.
It is cheaper here than at the bigger stores.
So we stock up.

 

Party bowls, plates etc.

Party bowls, plates etc.

Buy this here and skip the party store.
If you use these once or break one, who really cares?
But I have been known to reuse these a few times, so definitely worth the dollar.
Helium balloons

 

Helium balloons

They are a steal at Dollar Tree.
They have a pretty good selection and you pay half of what you would pay at the party store.
Housewares

Housewares

When we run out of a ladle or needed an extra spoon for a church fundraiser, this was the place we went.
If you need something in a pinch, this is the perfect place to run in.
I can’t say how long something might last but sometimes it isn’t about the quality but just to have something in a time of need.
Greeting cards

Greeting cards

I mean, two for a dollar?
Granted some of them aren’t as say, fancy as the other name brand that will remain nameless but honestly it doesn’t bother me.
I go here all the time for cards especially for kids birthdays.
Especially for kids who can’t read.
DID I SAY THAT OUT LOUD??
WHAT?
They just throw them in the trash anyway.
Oh they do and you know it.
 Don't get mad at me if you drop 50 bucks at the dollar store next weekend.
Don’t get mad at me if you drop 50 bucks at the dollar store next weekend.
And seriously, answer the reading glasses question for me.

Head over HERE to check out all my fun Dollar Tree projects. 
This post contains affiliate links.  

36 thoughts on “Dollar Tree Do’s and Don’t’s. Step Away From The Junk, People

  1. Julia Klimek

    Hey there! Good to know stuff. I love DT too, but would NEVER buy kids toys (junk) either. I love that you can get mugs, glass beads, contact paper, dish towels, etc… But I always take a good look at it first before I buy. If for nothing else – DT is best for wrapping paper/gift bags – saves a TON over the years.

  2. Marianne

    I have a hard time with dollar stores. The weird smells give me migraines. In fact, I think I need some Excedrin now…

    Great tips if I was willing to brave it!

  3. Karmen

    Amen! So agree with you about everything but you didn't mention the fake florals. I shop this area a lot for crafting projects (like the red roses for a heart wreath for Valentine's Day and the pink flowers for add-ons for Derby Hats for a women's luncheon.)

  4. thepaintedapron.com

    Thanks for the great tips! I am NOT a fan of the dollar store, it just feels creepy to me! I see all over pinterest and blogland people raving about their great DT purchases, so now at least I know what to look for and what to stay away from!
    Jenna

  5. Just Jen

    Awesome tips! I've never really been in to the Dollar Store by my house, but now I totally have to go – armed with your list of course!

  6. Reduce, Reuse, Renewed

    The dolls there are crap. My 4 year old picked out some mermaids and when we took them out of the package they didn't have a full head of hair…completely BALD in the middle! Ugliest mermaids ever!
    DT is GREAT for a candy run, though!

  7. Angela @ Cottage Magpie

    I know it's popular to be in love with Dollar Tree, but we've had SO many things break the same day — sometimes they're already broken in the store! I've kind of quit going. Although it is great for party supplies. ~Angela~

  8. Mama

    Tin foil is okay for us to purchase at DT. I buy it and it does the job. If u need it thicker just fold it in half. It is thin but for us it works for a buck.

  9. Kari

    The playdoh is just as good as the real stuff. And it's cheaper per ounce.

    Playdoh has 5 oz cans while the DT ones are 4 oz. Difference is, Playdoh makes their cans much bigger, but plenty of air inside.

    16 oz of DT dough is $1 while 20 oz of Playdoh is $3. You do the match

    I was hesitant at first, but in a blind squeeze test, you can't tell the difference.

  10. Kari

    The playdoh at my Walmart is only 2 bucks for a set of four so it is a better deal by me.
    But I am with you because my youngest leaves hers out so I am constantly replacing it.
    So DT is a better bet for me.
    Or I make it myself.
    I have a great homemade recipe if you are interested.

  11. Kari

    Okay, I've spent DAYS at that place! Some GREAT buys are: pens, if you evaluate. I don't mean kiddie markers (which shouldn't be sold anywhere), but the good,sometimes name-brand, ball point and office highlighting pens. I've had great luck with them working,.even fancy-looking metallic ones or gel. The sticky-notes, clips, white erasers, and other office things are often a huge buy. If you worry that pens may be dry, they often let me try one out, but I tell them I'm buying the big pack if they work and they usually do fine. The art items are another amazing thing;sometimes. I taught my child to make jewelry from the DT jewelry kit (it had all the beads & findings needed). But no, I don't mean the big crappy plastic beads. The things he made sold well at a craft fair. They also used to sell scrap book stuff just like the craft stores! Sometimes quality items are pulled, so I buy several. And oh, the mylar balloons my son got me for Mother's Day lasted 4 weeks before he let them go… cutting the strings at least -sigh- And I forgot scissors!! I've seen the same brands sold elsewhere for 12.99 and up…but I digress…

  12. Kari

    do not buy the glass drinking glasses. I just poured some iced tea in one, and I picked it up to drink and it broke in half. I did not drop it, I just touched it. Ridiculous

  13. Wanda May

    I don't recommend the LA's Totally Awesome Oxy cleaning powder. I can't imagine what this stuff is. It looks like it was swept off the dirty floor of a laundry soap factory. Yikes!

  14. Wanda May

    What I have bought a lot of and really like are their drinking glasses. They are very sturdy and have cute retro designs on them like colorful fruits or bright flowers! Reminds me of some 70's designs we had.

  15. Leanna

    I totally agree with your assessments. I enjoy the dollar store but if your not cautious you can come out with 20 dollars worth of junk.

    Thanks for the heads up. A dollar is still a dollar, don’t throw it away on junk.

  16. M.

    About the glasses–they are READING glasses, meaning that they are put on when one’s eyesight needs a bit of help to read. If one is far-sighted, I don’t think these glasses would be of much help. But for a near-sighted person, such as me, when I wear my contacts to be able to see things at a distance, the close up things (reading!) are blurry. Believe me, the $1 glasses are SOOOOO worth it! I have a pair in every room so I don’t have to LOOK for my glasses (close up– I need glasses to see where they are! 😀). For me, they are soooooo worth it.

    1. Kari Post author

      Well, I am so glad they help you! Unfortunately, I have to wear bi-focals and I can’t even get a contact prescription. 🙁 But it makes me happy that they help you. 🙂

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