Thursday, April 19, 2012

5 Products Women Don't Need

It almost seems unfair, men make fun of women for shopping, all the while commercials are geared directly toward you. Perhaps even more unfair is the fact that many of the products "made for a woman" aren't even necessary or useful for a woman. Here are five "must haves" you can cross off of your list. 

1. Activia
The most recent commercial I've seen suggests that if you eat three Activia yogurts a day, your digestive system will begin to run normally again. What that means is, you won't be constipated or irregular if you eat three cups of this special yogurt a day. It has clearly been geared toward women as there are only women chatting with Jamie Lee Curtis in the commercials, smiling and shoving spoons into their mouths. There's just one problem. You don't need it. The USDA food chart shows that if you take in three servings of dairy a day, you will have met your daily requirement. You can drink three servings of milk or eat three cups of any other brand of yogurt and have the same results. 

2. Lysol Automatic Soap Dispenser
Have you ever seen mold growing on a bar of soap? How about on a liquid soap dispenser? That's because soap by definition is antibacterial. Sure, when you touch the soap, however it's dispensed, you put all of your germs on the soap. But then, you wash the germs away before drying them. Unless you need more soap than anticipated, you don't go back to the soap. The automatic soap dispenser is marketed by showing a woman panicked over the animated germs that are crawling all over her sink area. It's pretty. It's convenient. But you don't need it. 

3. Microdermabrasion
Once celebrities like Halle Berry, Jada Pinkett Smith and Jenifer Lopez claimed to use microdermabrasion to keep their skin smooth and glowing, every housewife in the country sought out less expensive ways to have the same treatments. Every company from Olay to Garnier offered some version of microdermabrasion. In recent months we have even see the return of the electric face scrubber. I still have my old one from 1993. It cost me $5. Now the same one costs $35. The fact is that using something as simple as baking soda with your usual face wash can generate the same effect without the need for a large floppy hat to protect your skin from the sun. If the electric face brushes are too pricey, try using a simple exfoliating sponge. 

4. Tide Stain Release
We've all been in the position at least once when we held our breath while removing a previously stained garment from the wash. We cross our fingers and hope that the tough stains came out...this time. Enter Tide Stain Release. It claims to boost the cleaning power of its regular detergent. The product does work. But you don't need it. The problem can be resolved much more cheaply by adding baking soda or Borax to your wash. You could resolve the problem for free by changing the settings on your washer. Believe it or not, it's the ratio of water and agitation to the size of the load of laundry that helps your clothes get cleaner. Ever overload a washer to same time or quarters? Notice that the laundry isn't as clean. If you set your washer load size to the next size up, your stains will come out easier. Pretreating and prompt washing will also help boost the stain removing power of your detergent. You can also switch detergents. 

5. Olay Age Defying Body Wash
Don't get me wrong. I LOVE this stuff. If it weren't for the overpowering perfume, I'd buy it again. The fact is that you can get the same effects with exfoliating gloves and body oil. It doesn't matter if it's baby oil or Avon Skin So Soft oil. Applying mineral oil while still in the shower allows the minerals and moisture to be locked in. It's moisture that keeps skin looking young.

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