To wonder why anyone buys branded products?

(144 Posts)
superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 14:00:53

When they are so much more expensive?

Especially things like washing powder; Persil etc ; at least £4.00 for a bottle of fabric washing gel. Tescos own; £2.00 for a bottle of similar gel often with added conditioner. Does the job fine.

Admittedly some products have no equal like Marmite or Nutella and there are certain value products that don't cut it but it does strike me as odd that so many stick to brands that are so expensive and then moan about the price of shopping nowadays. It is possible to be savvy even in these difficult times. (Although I still baulk at the price of butter and cheese recently branded or not.)

AntsMarching Thu 11-Apr-13 14:02:54

I tried Sainsburys washing powder. The smell was vile. I only bought it once.

Laundry detergent isn't equal though. Nor is ketchup or loo roll.

Buying them for own-brand prices in Quality Save or similar is the way forward!

CajaDeLaMemoria Thu 11-Apr-13 14:05:08

I use branded stuff. Everything is branded...biscuits, washing powder, washing up liquid, crisps, everything.

I have no idea why, really. I suppose I know what I like, and I stick to it. My MIL uses a Tesco washing powder that smells vomit-y and makes me itch...she can't smell it and always says how it is exactly the same, but everyone else can smell it!

Sirzy Thu 11-Apr-13 14:05:45

Because they do the job better? I have tried shop own brand washing liquid and it was rubbish.

I stock up when its on offer though so never pay £4 for a normal size bottle its rarely more than £3 when its on offer 9i use ariel not persil though)

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:05:49

I used to think like you op very much so.

Recently I have been swayed back to 'names' they do work/taste better!

Plus, even though Birds Eye were involved in the horse meat thing, name brands are more traceable. probably totally wrong

BTW, you can but supermarket versions of marmite/nuttella smile

CloudsAndTrees Thu 11-Apr-13 14:06:36

Because they are generally better than own brand products. Not always, but usually, especially with food (depending on where you shop).

NoelHeadbands Thu 11-Apr-13 14:06:37

See I think unbranded hazelnut chocolate spread is as suitable as Nutella, so that blows your argument out of the water grin

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:07:22

I stock up if they are on sale.

sparechange Thu 11-Apr-13 14:09:06

I find lots of own-brand thing to be a false economy, especially cleaning things - dishwasher tablets, washing up liquid, laundry things
They never do the job quite as well, and I always feel like I end up using more either by putting more in in the first place, or re-doing wash loads

I don't quite understand the new-ish trend for branded potatoes and milk though. Is 'Yeo Valley' milk really any different or better to the own brand stuff? Must come out of the same cows!

livinginwonderland Thu 11-Apr-13 14:09:37

because generally they're better quality, last longer and taste nicer.

ShatnersBassoon Thu 11-Apr-13 14:12:48

People like familiarity, don't want to take a gamble and waste money on something they might not like, think the brand offers something that others don't, can easily afford to buy what they believe is 'the best' so don't think about budgeting...

There's no mystery to it.

lollilou Thu 11-Apr-13 14:13:34

I've never found a own brand pickle that is as nice as Branston.

Kyrptonite Thu 11-Apr-13 14:13:58

It's cheaper for me to spend more on vanish, persil etc than it is for me to replace stained pre-schooler clothes.

Also coca cola is the only coke that doesn't taste flat and minging.

Most things I'll buy own brand though.

dashoflime Thu 11-Apr-13 14:13:59

I'm with you OP, they are so, so much more expensive.

Even the own brand stuff is dear these days.

I can easily bring a weekly shop in at £70, on the value stuff and cooking from scratch. How anyone does the whole thing on mid market brands is beyond me, really it is.

defineme Thu 11-Apr-13 14:14:53

With food it's because things like beans or cereal have more sugar/salt/fat the bigger the brand so they taste nicer.
Washing powder is because a lot of people are sensitive to different brands so stick with one they trust.
I buy the most expensive free range organic meat/eggs and smartprice/value everything else. If I have heinz beans or kellogs cornflakes now they taste soo salty.
Wash powder has been more difficult-have settled on the own brand co op as ones that are cheap and don't make us itch.
Yeo valley milk is organic.

StephaniePowers Thu 11-Apr-13 14:14:58

Because my mother could have written the OP and I've been hearing the same broken record for years, yet have only once found a product to be ahead of its branded counterpart.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 14:15:42

I have no idea why anyone buys fabric conditioner - let alone whether it is sainsbury brand or another level brothers brand - what is the purpose of such glup, apart from locking sweat into clothing - yuk

smokinaces Thu 11-Apr-13 14:16:25

I buy 26p unbranded ketchup. But I cannot buy own branded conditioner or washing liquid. It's shite. I've tried. I also need branded hair stuff as the unbranded leaves it like straw and anything other than sanex in the shower makes me itch like hell and gives me thrush for a week. And dont even try to take my tetley tea or Pepsi max.

Crisps, snacks, milk, eggs, yogurts, frozen stuff, happy to do unbranded. The rest I buy branded but on offer.

KarmaBitch Thu 11-Apr-13 14:16:31

I don't buy everything brand but some things are a must - toilet roll for example. I can't be doing with the sandpaper 29p kind. I'm nice to my behind and buy good old Andrex.

Koyangwuti Thu 11-Apr-13 14:16:57

This totally depends on the individual name-brand product vs the individual generic product. With some of stuff I do not buy name-brand items. With other things I do. When I do make a decision to buy the cheaper one I do it when I know it is as good or better than the name-brand item.

Buying something that is cheaper, but tastes poor by comparison is not better value, it is just being cheap. I think it is ridiculous to assume that a brand with a great reputation cannot be any better than the cheaper items just because it is called the same thing. Sometimes name-brand is worth it.

By the same logic it makes sense to try the cheaper things too, as often times the difference in price is not about quality, but more about the reality that advertising costs money and as the end-user you pay for everything about that product including the marketing of it. Store-brand items don't engage in the same kind of competitive marketing and there is less overhead in their production.

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:18:04

It depends on the product. Some branded products are better than any available own brands, some not. You just have to get to know what you're purchasing.


PS - and stay alert. Manufacturers change specifications so that you can buy something one week which is fine and the next week they've changed the taste, size, whatever - for the worse.

smokinaces Thu 11-Apr-13 14:18:13

Ivykaty I have tried not using fabric conditioner, but ds1 gets scratchy and they just, well smell odd. The comfort seems to keep it smelling nicer and softer. Maybe when i can dry outside I will try again. I use very little though.

ShatnersBassoon Thu 11-Apr-13 14:18:33

Fabric conditioner makes fabrics feel softer and perfumes them. It's like hair conditioner for laundry. Nothing confusing about it.

Badvoc Thu 11-Apr-13 14:19:57

The only branded stuff I buy is Heinz baked beans. Ds1 will only eat those..have tried em all!
I buy own brand co op stuff mostly.
Their non bio washing gel is fab.

I have tried many washing-up liquids. Now I always buy Fairy - nothing lasts as long or gets rid of grease as well. If it's on offer, I get a couple of bottles, at it lasts forever.

littlemissnormal Thu 11-Apr-13 14:21:38

I always try unbranded but am yet to find a digestive biscuit as good as McVities!

EuroShaggleton Thu 11-Apr-13 14:22:27

Fabric conditioner also makes the ironing easier.

hedgefund Thu 11-Apr-13 14:22:45

buy branded stuff in cheapo savers types stores, they're cheaper in there!

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:24:20

That is a good tip hedge smile

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:25:19

But watch the sizes, hedgefund - and the sell bys. There's sometimes a reason they're on sale cheaper there.

(I'm not phobic about sell bys by the way, but some things do go a little off if they're stored too long.)

Lifesagame Thu 11-Apr-13 14:25:50

littlemissnormal - try the ones from Lidl. My DH had no idea he wasn't eating mcvities until I told him!

ArtemisKelda Thu 11-Apr-13 14:27:01

Depends on the product. Own brand beans and ketchup are fine, cornflakes must be Kelloggs and tomato soup can only be Heinz. Quite happy with own brand washing powder too but wouldn't use the smart price one.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 14:27:02

whats ironing?

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:27:53

A person after my own heart, ivykaty!


cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:28:43


Try Sainsbury's own brand tomato. Great - and much cheaper.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 14:29:18

Hair conditioner smooths the the outer layer of the hair shaft (there are three layers in each hair and the outer layer is like scales on a fish) so that all the scales lie flat and then the hair looks glossy as light reflects from it.

How is this similar to washing conditioner?

Alwayscheerful Thu 11-Apr-13 14:30:59

Fabric conditioner is an unncessary purchase, a little white vinegar in the dispenser drawer will keep towels soft and fresh smelling and they will stay whiter for longer.

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:32:30

A lot of the cheaper ketchup contains Glucose-fructose. This is known as HFCS in the US.

Its very bad for us.

TumbleWeeds Thu 11-Apr-13 14:33:38

Agree depends on the product and your own taste.
I love Sainsbury cheap tomato chutney. I buy the cheapest loo roll from Lidl as well quite a few other of their 'own brand' products such as washing powder or dishwasher tablets.
Some might not be working as well but when it is more than half the price, I am happy with that.

Others just work. Nutella is a good example.

The issue is when you assume that branded stuff will be better quality. It quite often isn't.

defineme Thu 11-Apr-13 14:34:32

Just read the labels of food items-some brands do have identical ingredients to value, some have higher proportions of more expensive ingredients and often more sugar/fat which obviously makes the biscuits taste nicer.
I think buying brands blindly because you're too scared to buy anything else is wasteful, but if you've tried the alternative and prefer the brand (and can afford it) then obviously stick with what you prefer.
I honestly thought I couldn't drink anything but diet coke, I did a blind taste test and hated pepsi, but turns out I quite like asda own brand cola-classy me grin
Hair is also tricky-my hair is the driest of the dry and cheap conditioners can't touch it( I buy the 3 for price of 2 offers in Boots but still expensive), if anyone knows of cheap conditioners that will help my dreadful dry/frizzy hair please let me know.

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:35:21

Oh yes, Feminine. Check ingredients as well. You may well find that own brand have less of the 'expensive' ingredients and make up for it with eg more sugar.

Everyone's individual call whether that matters to them of course.

crashdoll Thu 11-Apr-13 14:36:36

There is no pickle like Branston pickle and there are no baked beans like Heinz baked beans. Anyone who says otherwise is automatically going on my laminated shitlist.

AmazingBouncingYoni Thu 11-Apr-13 14:37:08

I buy branded because I want to.

It's my money.


AmazingBouncingYoni Thu 11-Apr-13 14:37:57

There is also no pickled onion like a garner's pickled onion (unless it's one of my dad's homemade of course...)

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 14:38:31

Feminine - I agree that HFCS is bad for us and avoid buying products that contain this sugar substitute - but don't always find that price, brand or own brand makes any difference to whether it is in the product and sometimes even the same brand will have different flavours and one will contain HFCS and the other doesn't

for example Deurr's jams and marmalade

FreudiansSlipper Thu 11-Apr-13 14:38:32

depends on product but washing powder, dishwasher tablets, pasta, herbs/spices, tea and coffee I always buy branded

I have stopped using fabric conditioner too as it does lock in smells and leaves clothes often feeling like they need to be washed again

TheYamiOfYawn Thu 11-Apr-13 14:39:45

I mostly shop at Aldi, so no branding at all. I got some Fairy Platinum washing up liquid a while ago, and it was lots better, but I'm not sure if it was better enough to justify the price difference. Looking through my cupboards, the stuff I am picky about is Patak's lime pickle, Marmite, Pukka herbal tea and Lurpak butter. I also strongly prefer Waitrose own brand sardine piccanti and frozen roast veg.

FreudiansSlipper Thu 11-Apr-13 14:39:58

and no other chocolate spread is like Nutella. actually most of what I buy is branded but I buy what is on special offer

TheRealFellatio Thu 11-Apr-13 14:40:03

I have flirted with non-branded stuff over the years, but with the exception of a handful of items I find that my tried and tested favourite brands are vastly superior in quality and/or flavour.

I will give own brands a try but I NEVER buy 'value' versions of things - especially foods. They are always very poor quality compared to the more expensive stuff.

Withalittlesparkle Thu 11-Apr-13 14:40:41

the best own brand cola is absolutely Lidl, any of the other own brand version are minging!!

We buy a mixture of branded and non branded, but price does get taken in to consideration.

AND as already mentioned most stores do an own brand version of nutella.... but the branded version is still the nicest!!

Still18atheart Thu 11-Apr-13 14:40:56

I buy branded coffee because Tesco own brand is horrid
I also buy Always sanitarytowels instead of own brand because I get a type nappy rash with them. (Sorry if TMI! blush)

BornToFolk Thu 11-Apr-13 14:41:49

I buy mostly unbranded everything but I recently bought a bottle of Fairy washing up liquid from Savers and the difference between that and the usual Tesco/Asda own is remarkable. It smells nicer, cleans better and I only need a little squeeze so it'll last longer.
From now on I am only getting Fairy (when on offer or from Savers!) as I think it'll save me money in the long run.

Some branded things just are better, I can understand why some people stick to them (I probably would if I could afford it!)

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:42:48

ivy Ribena contains it now sad

I also avoid artificial sweetener now seems to dominate most cordial.

We could choose not buy it at all, but for us that is not practical.

countrykitten Thu 11-Apr-13 14:43:53

People are victims of multi-million pound marketing campaigns. Simple. We tend to believe the hype and then shop like sheep.

Disappointed that people on here seem to shun supermarket brand cleaning products and toiletries - their animal testing regulations are MUCH better that Proctor & Gamble and the other massive companies.

I buy persil because its the only detergent that doesn't irritate DHs eczema, I also buy sensitive skin fabric softener so the fabrics feel better on his skin.

Kellogs cornflakes are the only cornflakes worth eating, the rest of the cereal I buy is dependent on the offers at the time.

Salad cream has to be Heinz, so has tomato ketchup and soup.

Tea bags have to be Yorkshire tea.

Other things I buy are dependent on the offers. I often shop in our Asian supermarket were things like soy sauce, chilli sauces, herbs and spices are a lot lot cheaper and are often of better quality. They also do fantastic deals on veg and rice.

So I might spend a little more on buying branded but I also save a lot on the shop by not buying everything from the same store.

Feminine Thu 11-Apr-13 14:45:22

Something I've noticed is that Morrisons 'better than half price...' actually are a good saving for branded products.

if its possible stock up when its on an offer like that, I think its a proper saving that way!

another one that only uses fairy liquid lasts for ages, and i only like hellmans mayo as well, but i stock up when they are offer. Things like tins, pasta rice, cereal i always but the cheapest.

TheRealFellatio Thu 11-Apr-13 14:50:23

People are not always victims of marketing campaigns you know. Sometimes some of us are intelligent enough to work out that a product is cheaper because it looks cheaper, tastes cheaper, uses less of the main ingredients and more of the cheap chemical fillers and thickeners. Not always, but often.

ItYoniTakesAMinuteGirl Thu 11-Apr-13 14:50:51

On things like washing up liquid, we tried OB vs Fairy for example & found the own brand was a false economy. However, Aldi washing up liquid is as good as Fairy & cheaper (Which? agrees BTW...). The same for laundry detergents - the Aldi ones are recommended by Good Housekeeping mag & do a better job that other own brands. However, sometimes cheaper ones can cause skin reactions so you have to experiment until you find one that works.

As for other foods, it depends on the brand.

cantspel Thu 11-Apr-13 14:52:10

But the products you buy in lidl are branded. Cein and the like are just european brands so not so familiar on the high street.
They are half the price of the like of Dove but do the job just as well. Infract their deo and anti dandruff shampoo are really good and at 79p each you are saving nearly around £4 on the purchase.

LucilleBluth Thu 11-Apr-13 14:52:23

It also depends on which supermarket. Sainsbury's own brand is better than Asda's own brand for example.

Nearly everything in my house is mixture of Sainsbury's own brand or big brand names depending on what's on offer. I do tend go to Asda for toilet rolls and cupboard stuff and also because they have a bigger range, but their own brand stuff is shite ;)

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 14:52:38

I actually went the other way with washing up liquid - and now use the own brand because it's not quite so thick as the Fairy. I was fed up with gobs of undiluted liquid on plates/ brushes/hands etc.

Hellman's mayo is a must though. I've tried LIDL's and ALDI's and I don't care what the ads say - they're yucky.

LoveWine Thu 11-Apr-13 15:01:23

The branded food items in particular are generally of better quality. I used to work for Heinz and in one of their factory, they produced the Heinz brand mayo and the Sainsbury's brand mayo (yes the big well known companies also produce what they call the private label products - i.e. store brands). In this case, the recipes for the two products were completely different and so were the ingredients. The ingredients for the Sainsbury's mayo were of much lower quality and as I said the recipe was different. And this is just one example. Having worked for a food company and seeing first hand the difference between a branded and a non-branded food item, I now rarely buy store least when it comes to food.

Badvoc Thu 11-Apr-13 15:05:29

Oh no.
Aldi mayo is far nicer than hellmans, and I never thought that was possible.
Also their ketchup.
Their choc is also lovely.
The only thing I won't buy from places like aldi/lidl is meat.

LoveWine Thu 11-Apr-13 15:08:15

Badvoc taste is a personal thing and I agree that some items might taste better, but I was just appalled to see the low quality of the ingredients. I guess that's how you achieve the lower price.

Coconutty Thu 11-Apr-13 15:09:39

I only ever buy branded products, don't even know why just always have. When I've been to someone's house or had OB at work etc I can definitely taste the difference. They don't (usually) taste awful, just different and I prefer the ones I buy.

I use loads of fabric conditioner too, I love the smell of it.

LaQueen Thu 11-Apr-13 15:09:52

From time to time I do try non-branded products, as have a friend who swears by XYZ being just as good as the real stuff.

It's very, very rare that she's right, though. I buy it...try it...and invariably think ewwwww, not nearly as nice.

But, then I'm very, very anal particular about things, with really high friend is much more laid back, and very meh when it comes to having snowy white washing etc.

I discovered Home Bargins a few years back - where I can go and stock up on all my fave, branded cleaning/laundry products for a fraction of the price in Sainsburys.

I don't think I've ever managed to spend more than £14 in there, yet?

Lenor - £1 a bottle
Macleans Whitening Toothpaste - 89p
Cif - £1 a bottle
Mr Muscle Shower Spary - £1.69 for the really big bottle
Big bag of Fairy Dishwasher tablets £3

It's fantastic smile

Badvoc Thu 11-Apr-13 15:15:53

Love wine....true.
But ime aldi isn't poorer quality ingredients, it's just European branded stuff! smile
Most of Aldis cleaning stuff is GH approved and I have to say - as someone who is pretty particular about cleaning anal - that they are excellent.

MyNameIsAnAnagram Thu 11-Apr-13 15:15:54

You don't need fabric softener, but if you don't use it you have to reduce the amount of washing powder you use to about half what they recommend on the box. If you use what they say on the box it makes the clothes all stiff so you need fabric softener. vicious circle.

cozietoesie Thu 11-Apr-13 15:16:36


Nothing, but nothing dry survives Palmer's Cocoa Butter products so google for their hair conditioner. It doesn't look especially cheap on the surface but if it's anything like the rest of the range it will last for ever.


(Sorry for thread hijack, OP)

Dahlen Thu 11-Apr-13 15:19:29

Some branded products are identical to supermarket own versions and in some cases are even supplied by the same manufacturer, changing only the packaging. Other products are simply inferior. It's only possible to tell which is which through trial and error. My shopping is a mixture of budget range stuff, mid-range stuff and branded stuff.

Badvoc Thu 11-Apr-13 15:22:47

Dahlen...I have always thought that!
ESP when you get those "nice"tins of biscuits at Xmas from m and s or wherever and then you see the exact same biscuits in the co op!!

Khaleese Thu 11-Apr-13 15:24:12

My dh was a brand snob, swore blind he could tell the difference.

I taste tested him on lots of things...twinings tea, ketchup, weetabix...all subbed with aldi own.

He failed all of the tests. Unless you are doing a blind test you will never know if it is different. This is why aldi £3.49 wine ( torro loco) won awards. No wine tester would have decared it a winner, it was a blind test.

That's the power of marketing.

DontSHOUTTTTTT Thu 11-Apr-13 15:25:35

It just depends.....

I give non brands a good trial then make my decision based on what I find. I am not short of money but I still don't like to pay over the odds simply for a logo.

My favourite non brand product is Tescos 99p shampoo (big bottle) . I prefer it to the expensive brands.

That said, I mostly buy branded goods confused

wonkylegs Thu 11-Apr-13 15:27:40

Because sometimes I prefer them (helmanns Mayo, Kelloggs cornflakes)
Because sometimes they are on offer and cheaper
And with washing powder because so far Persil non bio is the only one that DH hasn't had an allergic reaction to.
Lots of reasons really

nemno Thu 11-Apr-13 15:32:09

My stuff is probably 50/50 OB and branded. Apart from emergencies I only buy branded stuff when it is very reduced (and hugely bulk buy to last till next time it is on offer). The difference in full price branded to OB pricewise is astonishing. And for mayo it must be OB M and S smile

woozlebear Thu 11-Apr-13 15:32:40

The only branded stuff I buy is when there's no equivalent (Ecover cleaning products, Clipper coffee). Pretty much everything else I buy own brand apart from a few things where there's simply no equal (Lurpak butter, Hienz mayo, Colman's mustard). For some things own brand is better as well as cheaper - it only ever seems to be own brand loo roll / kitchen roll / tissues that's recyled.

Bananasinfadedpjs Thu 11-Apr-13 15:36:03

Often people are habituated to the taste of branded things, so they think that's how things "should" taste.

Stuff like baked beans, ketchup, coca cola, pickle, crisps, toothpaste, chocolate, sweets, biscuits, squash. It's not about tasting "better", more about tasting absolutely familiar - and having the same texture too.

Different brands do often -(although not always, sometimes the same place is supplying a big brand and a supermarket, and the only difference is the packaging )- taste different, and you'd have to keep buying something that you perhaps felt tasted inferior, or "wrong" for a while, until you got used to that taste.

I like to try different things, especially with stuff like washing powder, I like a change of scent every now and then. But sometimes you crave something particular, and you know that a specific brand will have the taste you are after. I don't drink coca cola very often, for example, but when I do, it has to be the branded stuff, nothing else will do!

MigGril Thu 11-Apr-13 15:37:15

I buy a mix, but only as we like some branded products more then supermarket own.

I used to work for one of the very big companies who make a lot of these brands. And was told a couple of things when working there that had left me totally non brand loyal.
1. Regarding cleaning and personal hygiene products, our job is to sell the public as much H2O (water) as possible.
2. When they bring out any new product, say your washing powder says new and improved on the box, they have then sold the previous formula to companies who make generic supermarket own brands. So they can still make some money out of it.

So you are gently still buying a formulation that was a brand not that long ago.

I buy a lot of own brand items from Aldi, but things are non-negotiable in the Golden household, DH will only buy Andrex 'puppies on a roll' loo roll and only have heinz ketchup, he also prefers (but will eat others if he must) Warburtons farmhouse bread.

I find Aldi's Almat washing gel brilliant (the one that comes in a rounded bottle with green lid), the softener is great too, as is the magnum washing up liquid, their version of jaffa cakes, frozen veg and frozen desserts. The baked beans are not bad either and DD eats them quite happily, even DH and I are now used to them and I find the heinz beans very sugary now!

I also buy the big bottle of the Aldo light olive oil, so much cheaper than the same amount of bertolli etc.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 16:48:13

actually coffee I do like dowe egbert, I will buy any coffee that is on offer, but there isn't an own brand usually for decade filter coffee. So I keep coming back to dowe egberts and it is on offer in tesco atm

nemno Thu 11-Apr-13 16:52:33

Ivykaty44. Try the Sainsburys OB coffee, my mum liked the Original ready ground but I go for the espresso beans but there are various others. Fantastic value and I like the beans better than the usual Lavazza etc

we buy a mixture n actually buy whatever is cheapest n know is ok like value beans n ketchup n yogurts but meat has to be British n outdoor reared or free range where possible. its about shopping within your means. i like to cook from scratch so basic range stuff is fine. we live right by an aldi so use that alot.

LadyFlumpalot Thu 11-Apr-13 17:01:56

Tried the Tesco own brand shampoo and it made my head itch so badly I went to get checked for lice! 1 wash with branded later and it wasn't itchy anymore.

I try to buy Tesco own for everything else, Tesco value for most things as I have a weekly shop budget of £35.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Apr-13 17:04:22

nemno - it must be decafe and I struggle to find it in own brand - I use sainsbury, tesco and lidl grin no loyalty from me!

sparechange Thu 11-Apr-13 17:16:01

"their animal testing regulations are MUCH better that Proctor & Gamble and the other massive companies."

Sorry to be a massive cynic, but do you have any proof for this? I was under the impression that all animal testing regulations were controlled at an EU level, and that all ingredients in household products (ie not pharma) haven't used live animals tests for years if not decades

Happy to stand corrected if you can point me in the direction of something concrete, but that is a very bold claim to make otherwise

Andro Thu 11-Apr-13 17:26:22

Own brand laundry detergent/soap/conditioner/shampoo/etc cost me more in antihistamines to treat the ensuing skin reaction than I would save buying them...I buy the brand and skip the allergy.

I buy what I like and what I don't react to, but I look for quality over names.

cantspel Thu 11-Apr-13 17:36:07

the other week i bought a bag of carrots in morrisons.
The saver carrots were 40p a big bag and tasted no different to the sainsburys carrots i bought the week before for a £1 for a smaller bag.
I dont feel the need to pay for for my food to come in a prettier bag

countrykitten Thu 11-Apr-13 18:09:58

sparechange no bold claims here just the truth

countrykitten Thu 11-Apr-13 18:16:34

I can't do links on here but your idea that live animal testing is not used by P&G is way wide of the mark. Not sure why you thought live animal testing had not been used in years/decades?

A tiny little bit of google research will show you what goes on at P&G and also give you an idea of the supermarkets' policies.

But tbh most people don't give a flying fuck.

Iwantmybed Thu 11-Apr-13 18:25:03

Because we've been brainwashed by direct marketing since we were born to believe each brand is more amazing than any other despite having the same ingredients. confused

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 18:34:04

I definately dont get people who spend a fortune on loo roll...I mean really? I buy cheap stuff and it is just as soft as many others...apart from Andrex really..I really don't need silk to wipe my bum with!

If money was no object I would shove whatever in my basket but I am always looking for the cheapest offer. What I save on branded products I spend on other things!

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 18:37:44

I must admit I do use branded shampoo.

freddiefrog Thu 11-Apr-13 18:40:57

We have a mix of brand, own brand and value

Thinkgs like baked beans, ketchup, loo roll, washing powder/dishwasher tablets are branded because we prefer them and we usually buy it in bulk from cash and carry so it's usually cheaper than supermarket own brands

countrykitten Thu 11-Apr-13 19:00:40

Meanwhile, there is no law whatsoever to stop animal testing for household cleaning products

From PETA's website today.

They have tightened up on cosmetics testing hugely but now people need to push for the same to happen with household products. Much of this testing happens abroad financed by these huge companies.

No thread hijack intended but I do think people should think about this stuff when they buy their beloved brands.

popebenedictsp45 Thu 11-Apr-13 19:10:28

I know where I'm from (not the UK) the unbranded stuff is often the SAME as the branded stuff - same factory, same recipe. I don't know how this works, but there must be examples where this is the case in the UK.

I don't see the point in fabric conditioner either. Waste of money.

MechanicalTheatre Thu 11-Apr-13 19:22:29

Country kitten, didn't know that, thanks for the heads up smile

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 19:37:00

Heinz beans are probably the best beans ever but when I can save 40p I will.
Unbranded products I love:
Lidls bran flakes are 45p or so and taste good.
Lidls muesli has won awards and is delicious; better than Tescos even.
Lidls Greek yoghurt is delicious.
I swear by Tescos clothes washing gel. But as I havn't bought branded well ever due to extortionate prices I have nothing to compare it to. I refuse to spend £4.00-8.00 on a bottle of gunk.
Tescos lemon washing up liquid is fine and about 56p.
always go for unbranded butter, pizza, cereals etc.
Prefer Pataks mango chutney but will buy lidls etc.

Spot the Lidls fan!

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 19:37:20

ving said that; they do brands cheaper too.

mam29 Thu 11-Apr-13 19:38:00

I agree in part we downshifted from brands to own brands.
then down to their value range.

some value stuff is awful

things spring to mind value cereal grim.
kids dont mind value ketchup they cant tell difference.
value beans and value tomatoes-lilds /aldis own better and only few pennies more.

we use lilds formil powder think its won a a which award and its great easily as good as branded.
Also fan of lidls nappies.

value wipes are ok

I never buy value meat-sainsburys basics fish ok.

I do try to buy branded butter on offer.
prefer supermarket sqauash as double concentrate.

prefer branded crips.

Only drink coca cola.

aldis magnum washing up liquid as good as fairy

aldis copies the look of brands so loomk same as well know brands some are ok.

aldis london company soup as nice as covent garden.

aldis/lilds fresh meat all british and red tractor get free range chicken for 4.99.

The special k red berries not as nice- the waitrose version better as is m&s one .

Oh doesnt like the champion aldi oven chips I think they as good as mcain.

The muller corners are ok however they normally same price as muller corners when on offer.

often buy cathedral city as on offer we do like mature cheese.

buy milk from lilds/farmfoods as tastes same as other brands.

bread unless its premuim supermarket we warbertons fans but try to buy reduced or on offer.

Gone off cadburys since kraft took over they ruined it.

we dont buy many brands these days.

we prepared to give other stuff a go and if dont like we dont buy again.

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 19:38:07


babyfirefly1980 Thu 11-Apr-13 19:53:59

I have to have branded washing powder...nothing comes close to it IMHO.

I will also say I like Coca Cola and not own brand coke, but apart from that I don't really buy branded.

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Apr-13 22:32:55

I do agree that Coca Cola is the only way to go. Nothing else will do but I only drink it about once a year anyway.
I just can't bring myself to spend £8.00 on clothes washing gel when £2.00 gel from Tescos gets my clothes clean (and smells faintly of lavender!) I know Bold or whatever will be better but is DAYLIGHT ROBBERY!

miemohrs Thu 11-Apr-13 22:40:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Loshad Thu 11-Apr-13 23:00:16

Sometimes the items are identical. when i was writing up my PhD I worked the twilight shift for foxes biscuits in Batley (oh happy days, not). The same biscuits were packaged as Foxes, M and S and various supermarkets eg sainsburys. They were literally one and the same biscuit, different days, different boxes hmm.

defineme Thu 11-Apr-13 23:01:38

cozietoesie I use palmers on my feet and elbows-had no idea they did conditioner-thank you smile

sashh Fri 12-Apr-13 04:24:18

Some branded products are identical to supermarket own versions and in some cases are even supplied by the same manufacturer, changing only the packaging.

That's what I was about to say.

Tesco, ASDA etc do not have factories that produce anything, they buy from other producers in their own packaging.

Don't give the game away about foxes, it has been an open secret in Yorkshire for decades.

Do you get the huge bags of broken biscuits too?

<happy memories from childhood>

Feminine Fri 12-Apr-13 07:58:02

Just thought...

There are no petis pois peas as good as Birds Eye. grin

In a league of their own!

ivanapoo Fri 12-Apr-13 08:38:22

YANBU with a few exceptions. Sainsburys fresh soup, taste the mark up difference pizzas and big cartons of yoghurt are lovely.

I love Tiptree ketchup, Marmite and fever tree tonic - nothing like them in own brand.

Have you noticed though that it's getting harder to buy brands? Tesco no longer sells Covent Garden soup for example, just their very similar looking own cartons... They see which branded products are selling well and then produce their own and delist the brand at no risk to themselves. Cheeky as hell.

Supermarkets, YABU!

Stinkyminkymoo Fri 12-Apr-13 09:07:08

YAB sort of U as some cheaper own brand stuff isn't as good and the disappointment in my eyes is too great to bear.

However, why people but say 3 white onions in a net thing for 2.40 when 3 of the same onions loose are 1.30 (for example) is totally beyond me.

crocodilesmiles Fri 12-Apr-13 12:06:30

Lifesagame I tried Lidl's chocolate digestives yesterday (all in the name of research, obviously!) and they taste really nice.

Thanks for the tip smile x

Loshad Fri 12-Apr-13 12:11:51

mmn, broken biscuits grin

I heard a report today on the radio saying that some vast number of people (like 30% or so) had accidentally bought own brand with copycat labelling and been disappointed or angry when they got home.

Leaving aside the idiocy of not checking the label if you care that much, that's a lot of people.

AssamAndDarjeeling Fri 12-Apr-13 13:28:41

Cleaning products and toiletries I buy the ones with an animal-friendly label on, and any Eco-friendly ranges. Same with fairtrade and free range stuff.

The rest of anything I'm fine with!

ouryve Fri 12-Apr-13 13:35:07

It depends on the product. Proctor and Gamble is on my don't approve list, but I've ended up converting to Fairy Washing up liquid because a bottle lasts me 3 times longer than anything else and to Ariel for when I need a biological detergent - used to use the M&S one, but they've changed it and it foams up too much for my washer, now. I always buy the stuff on offer, so it ends up pretty cheap, anyhow.

I like Heinz beans and ketchup more than any other (all other ketchups seem to be full of thickeners)

There's plenty of things where I'll happily buy a supermarket own brand (eg mayo ), a value brand or, shock horror, something unbranded from a market or independent shop.

CouthySaysEatChoccyEggs Fri 12-Apr-13 13:36:00

I buy branded washing powder for two reasons - one vecause many if us have allergies, and the one I use seems to be the only one that doesn't set anyone's allergies off, and two because I only ever buy it, in bulk, when it is on half price offer or in the reduced section, making it cheaper that the supermarket brands!

ParadiseChick Fri 12-Apr-13 13:40:09

Heinz beans, Heinz ketchup, green giant corn and Robinsons diluting are the only brands I buy!

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Fri 12-Apr-13 14:05:21

Nothing compares to GHDs... I will never change.

However, Aldi/Lidl ketchup, beans, most kitchen cupboard foodstuffs in fact. Also fruit and veg - very much better and fresher.

Lidl's Mazarin tarts that the ladies on Chat were talking about didn't do it for me - but the lemon cakes, OMG!

M&S sweet and sluty popcorn... pointless food of the gods.

Washing powder - I buy whatever smell I like whoever makes it, all much of a muchness to me. My nose decides...

Lemon sole lightly dusted with pepper/herbs - Aldi EVERYTIME, Sainsbury's version is oilier and Lidl's isn't so nice tasting.

Off to read about the fab finds everyone else has made on this thread...

mummytime Fri 12-Apr-13 14:21:35

I would never buy washing liquid with fabric conditioner. We avoid fabric conditioner as it irritates two of my kids Eczema, although they can use Ariel with no problem. A nurse friend comments that she can always tell people who use Bold before she's even seen them by the smell.

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Fri 12-Apr-13 14:22:15

In this house, we have made a permanent switch away from Heinz ketchup, Hellmans mayo and Fairy washing-up liquid to the Aldi versions, because we prefer them.

Then there are Aldi things we like so much, we can't even remember if we ever bought anyone else's version!

About the only thing I have never managed to switch from is branded washing liquid. I've tried, but the results just haven't been as good/don't smell right.

Fargo86 Fri 12-Apr-13 14:25:09

Own brands are the same stuff as the branded product. They are made in the same factory! The only difference is the label and the fact youre paying for advertising.

ouryve Fri 12-Apr-13 14:27:03

I've never tried sweet and slutty popcorn :D

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Fri 12-Apr-13 14:32:04

Oops... I really DID write that! shock

It's very nice, I wish it didn't come in packets of six though... blush

chrome100 Fri 12-Apr-13 14:36:39

I can't think of anything I buy that is branded. I just buy shop's own. it's all the same <shrug>

Feminine Fri 12-Apr-13 15:21:54

fargo I just don't believe that is the case in all products.

I can certainly taste a difference.

I've tried own brand etc...on most things.

As I'm not fussy , I don't mind eating anything...but the difference exists!

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Fri 12-Apr-13 15:26:23

I don't believe it either, Feminine, there is most definitely a taste difference and nothing at all to do with the packaging. If it were a blind test, even if I couldn't tell which was the branded and which was the other, I could certainly distinguish between the taste and have a distinct preference.

An example - M&S walnut cake tastes nothing like Sainsbury's walnut cake, which tastes nothing like Aldi's walnut cake. For me, for that cake - only M&S is worth the calories.

Feminine Fri 12-Apr-13 15:39:02

You like your walnut cake then lying grin

I'm now tempted to try it also!

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Fri 12-Apr-13 15:41:29

I steer well clear of it, Feminine - or at least I whizz past the M&S version and never pick it up... I really DO love it far too much! grin

See you in the cake aisle... don't say I didn't warn you! wink

mrstowers Fri 12-Apr-13 15:41:31

I worked in the food industry for over 10 years. Our product (biscuits) was produced for all of the supermarkets and many, many other brands also. Hand on heart I can tell you that Sainsburys custard creams are identical to Happy Shopper custard creams apart from the price! Regardless of the customer and the packaging all of the biscuits that we produced were identical in the recipe. Marketing is a very powerful tool!

Feminine Fri 12-Apr-13 15:59:26

mrstowers smile

Are you saying they use exactly the same ingredients?

Custard creams are notoriously difficult to differentiate between I suspect?

I might try a taste test.

Baked beans are not created equal, not ketchup either...or mayonnaise!

Or disgusting cup-a -soup! to be fair.

Feminine Fri 12-Apr-13 15:59:55

lying I'll see you there wink

deleted203 Fri 12-Apr-13 16:09:50

Depends on what it is, TBH.

Mayonnaise has to be Hellmanns. Nothing else tastes as good.
Ketchup - Heinz
I like Lurpak far better than any other butter.
Pepsi or Coke - can't stand Spar/Virgin/American cola. They are vile.

But, yeah...if I'm buying chopped tinned tomatoes to go in something then value will do me as well as expensive brand.

Tortington Fri 12-Apr-13 16:16:12

for coloured washes - own brand is fine

for whites - you want some branded shit - or it's a false econony becuase you wash it, dry it and <bites down on own fist> don't realise there is a stain on it until you have 3/4 ironed it which is when you punch the cat in the tits.

there is a different taste to heinz beans and own brand - but i prefer own brand

i prefer heinz ketchup - but i dont use it that often, so i do buy own brand and just remember that when you tip it up, 5mm of liquid comes out before the actual sauce.

tinned toms - who cares all the same

cereal - there is a difference. no one who knows better can possibly eat own brand cornflakes. they are disgusting.

cheap bread breaks when you fold it. you can't therefore make a decent chip butty.

Fillyjonk75 Fri 12-Apr-13 16:21:28

Most cereal is disgusting anyway and I don't eat it. The kids can't tell any difference between Bran Flakes and Weetabix and the Sainsbury's version though so I buy the cheaper on.

I buy very few branded things. Ten to fifteen years ago unbranded goods really did used to be rubbish but nowadays there is no discernible difference for most things. The only branded things I buy are where there is no cheaper alternative.

Fillyjonk75 Fri 12-Apr-13 16:24:36

The only branded washing stuff I buy is Napisan. I use Sainsbury's or Waitrose own brand washing powder, a spoonful of Napisan and a bit of (unbranded) conditioner in a decent washing machine and it works really well at 40C for everything.

gabsid Fri 12-Apr-13 16:40:19

I shop at Lidl, Tesco and Asda. I don't buy own brand washing powder but wait until a branded one is on offer. Loo paper XXL offer from Lidl I find is good value, Birds Eye chicken pie and beef pie from Lidl. Own brand cornflakes, rice crispies and weetabix are fine for us.

We just try the cheaper versions and keep what we like.

gabsid Fri 12-Apr-13 16:42:35

With tinned tomatoes I find the branded at 1/2 price much better value than the own brand as you get more tomatoe and less water.

mrstowers Fri 12-Apr-13 16:55:09

Feminine yes exactly the same ingredients. Production would be 24/7 on the custard creams in particular. There would just be reel changes of the different film for the packaging. Not just custard creams either, ginger nuts etc. We used to laugh at people who would only buy a certain brand. Part of my job was actually carrying out taste tests.

Fillyjonk75 Fri 12-Apr-13 16:56:00

Actually I do spend more money on tinned tomatoes as I find the Cirio ones far better. But I always will spend more if something is actually worth it, especially with food.

unlucky83 Fri 12-Apr-13 17:03:37

Look out for special offers in supermarkets...when they are competing with each other they often price match on brands which can cause them to be less than own labels- eg a while ago birds eye ready meals (not lasagne ....thankfully) were cheaper than Tescos own label...
Also watch for smaller pack sizes of brands in cheap shops...
I mainly buy own label but eg I only buy Heniz ketchup tried Tescos and wasn't keen ...intend to try the Aldi one though...
I have noticed that own label wheat biscuits aren't as dense as 'weetabix' - they must weigh less per biscuit. Was going to switch back to weetabix until I realised that DD will have still have 2 for breakfast - so it would be a false economy! (If she decides she needs 3 I'll get Weetabix)

Cleaning products I buy Ecover - have tried others like BioD but eg their dishwashing powder was rubbish. I always buy these in bulk - used to be from Health food shops but now am part of a food Co-op - get things from same place as lots of the health food shops at the price they pay.
Only sad thing is sometimes getting small packets from Tescos can work out at same price or less so no way health food shops can compete...
I used to get Lidls cheap recycled toilet roll (DD2 has a habit of making 'toys' balls etc out of loo roll -DD1 just uses loads!) but they don't do it anymore - bought in bulk (60 rolls) through Co-op but then tescos started selling Nouvelle on special offer worked out less per roll! (and we don't get through less because it is thicker etc -just have come close to blocking the loo more times!)

unlucky83 Fri 12-Apr-13 17:06:49

Also - Tesco keep having Lurpak on special offer - 2 for £2 - cheaper than the value butter (only problem is I feel guilty using Lurpak for baking!)
Stock up on it and keep in freezer...

gabsid Sat 13-Apr-13 09:14:08

I have to look out for Lurpak offers! Quite a few things I will only buy when they are on offer, e.g. yoghurts. We like the Mueller corners, but I will only buy them if they are £1.80 per 6 or less. 2 weeks ago I bought them from Asda, 2 for £3! Cheapest I have seen. Otherwise I will just buy the joghurt on offer, if none is I well get own brand.

I recently discovered the 12.5kg bags of local potatoes at Co-op for £3.75. The shop assistant said that it wasn't an offer but they are just not always out in the shop. I am not sure if that is just a local thing.

Have to have a look for the 60 rolls of loo paper at the Co-op, but I find that a roll is not a roll. I always squeeze them to see how substantial they are.

I recently looked around the £ shops and discovered the branded products there. Many packet sizes are smaller but for shampoo, baked beans ...?? it may work out better? I haven't shoped there yet.

mrstowers - the custard creams and other stuff, would it be the same for the branded and the same shop's own brand too? I find that very interesting, although I don't buy custard creams.

unlucky83 Sat 13-Apr-13 10:32:30

gabsid - sorry for not being clearer - the loo rolls were through the food Co-op I'm part of ...not the normal Co-op...they are a good make though Ecoleaf -and substantial...
I didn't set up the food co-op but basically there are a group of us who place an order every 3 months from a wholesale supplier to health shops etc -we get it ordered by one person, delivered to one address , need to spend (I think it is) £200 between us and pay on delivery...but eg when 10kg bags of Ecover washing powder were £39 from healthfood shops (which was the RRP) I was paying £29...
It is a bit like going to Cash & carry ...if you buy in bulk and pay cash you can get a day pass at some of them as an individual - but for lots of things big supermarkets are as cheap if not cheaper ...

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