I was picking up my bedroom the other morning and I opened the curtains to take advantage of the bright sunshine. Of course, that bright sunshine also made it clear that the doors were grimy. Over the past few years I have been working on reducing our paper consumption. Contrary to what commercials would have you believe, you don’t need paper towels for much at all.
Instead, I reached into my rag bag and pulled out a couple of cotton cloths and the cheap-o generic window cleaner. I have found that the cheap cleaner works as well as name brand, but the bottles typically fall apart after one or two refills. I’ve had the current spray bottle for nearly three years.
What is the point of this random story? Marketers exist to convince consumers there is a need. That they must have the better, easier, faster, “cheaper,” way to do things. All too often though the old ways were just as good, if not superior.
There are times where an investment in a tool will pay off. I believe in having a good vacuum, a sturdy mop, a decent broom, and a dustpan that isn’t going to end up in the landfill or recycling center the first time you drop it.
The next time you find yourself at the store and tempted by some convenience product, take a moment and ask yourself if you it is a real or perceived need. Do you already have something at home that could do the job just as well without buying something new. Disposable wipes and swipes, sponges and pads, they all cost something, they all go somewhere.
Are they really enough of a convenience to warrant the cost?