15 Things you should NEVER Buy from the Dollar Tree (2023)

Not everything from the Dollar Tree is a good deal. There are some things you should never buy from the Dollar Tree because you can get them at a better price somewhere else. Other items may not the best quality, even for the small price tag.

But, there are some great things that I bought from the Dollar Tree that have literally lasted me for years and I still use them today.

While there are plenty of Dollar Tree products that get me excited, like their makeup and nail polish section (psst! sometimes you can find national brands!), some things are just not worth it and should be avoided.

15 Things you should NEVER Buy from the Dollar Tree (1)

Those items are just not worth the purchase, even if it is just one dollar. And since most of us shop at the dollar tree to stay on budget, it’s a good idea to know what’s worth your money.

I’m here to tell you what they are, so when you walk out of the dollar store next time, you only walk out with real deals, and not get duped on items that you could have purchased a better price or had better quality elsewhere.

Let’s Dive In- Here Are 15 Things You Should Never Buy From the Dollar tree

Hair Products

While their hair products may have a similar look andname totheir national name brand counterparts, they’re far from the samequalityof ingredients.

Many of them are made with harmful chemicals and the cheap quality won’t help out your hair in any way.

Stick with coupons at the drugstore and often times you can get great products for almost the same price as the dollar store.

The trick is to wait until there’s a sale on an item you have a coupon for. Double-deal!

Cleaning Products

I’ve never found a good deal on their cleaning products. Sure, they sometimes carry brands like tide and bounce, and sometimes you’ll find Clorox wipes, but the per unit price is so much higher than if you bought the same product (but a bigger size) atTarget, for example.

The per unit price is super important when looking for a good deal because it tells you how much product you’re really paying for.

If I buy 1 oz. tide for a dollar at the Dollar Tree, but could have purchased 60 oz. tide for $10, then basic math says I’m not getting a great deal at the dollar store.

The 60 oz. product comes out to 6 oz per dollar whereas the dollar tree charged me $1 for only 1 oz. Doing the math will help you see if you’re really getting a good


I know people who get their produce from the dollar store and although it seems like a great price,most of the time it isn’t.

Aside from the fact that you get a very small portion of food that’s not fit for a family of 4 (in my case), again, the per unit price plays a huge role.

If you buy a 1 lb. bag of carrots for $1 at the dollar store, you may be sad to hear you could have gotten a 5 lb. bag of carrots from an international grocery store for $0.69 most weeks. Doing your homework pays off.


The Dollar Tree candles smell so good in the store, don’t they?

But, you get none of that great smell when you actually light the candle. I’ve been disappointed with the purchase of their candles more than once.

When I was a young newlywed and we were just starting out, the Dollar Tree was my go-to store for home-related shopping, and I’ve always loved candles, so naturally I tried them out.

The candles had absolutely no scent, which totally defeated the purpose.

You’re better off trying a discount store like Ross or even Big Lots for good candles that smell wonderful at around $3-$5 and their size is comparable to theYankeeorBath and Body Workscandles. You won’t even feel the difference, except in your wallet.


This is another per unit trick from the dollar store. They offer name brands like Tylenol, but they give you a5 count for a dollar.

You can get the generic brand of acetaminophen (what Tylenol is made of) at Costco for under $10 and you get two huge bottles each holding 500 pills. The math says it all.

Even if you don’t shop at the warehouse stores, you can get it cheaper at the drugstores when they have a sale.

I’ve purchased great deals on medicine from CVS when they have a sale, they’re offering a store coupon, and I combine that with a manufacturer coupon.

Even if you don’t have the triple-threat to save big, you can still save enough money to make it a good deal by shopping their ads.

Pot Holders

This is more of a safety thing, you’re getting what you pay for here, maybe even less in this case. Their pot holders are so thin, you might as well hold the hot handle or tray with a paper towel.

I hope the come out with new ones to try, but the ones they currently have burned me, literally.

These are a for sure no-no, okay? Okay.

Plastic Kitchen Cooking Supplies

They’re cheaply made and they don’t work very well. Stick with their Betty Crocker silicone line (which is limited) or get your kitchen tools from Big Lots or Walmart.

15 Things you should NEVER Buy from the Dollar Tree (2)

Kids Toys

Unless you’re getting the name brand ones (and then you need to check the unit price) you should stay away from the toy aisle.

Their toys don’t last more than one or two play sessions and are so cheaply made that you’re pretty much buying a disposable toy. Yourmoney is going straight in the trash.

Stock up on toys when they hit rock bottom prices at Target or Walmart. You’ll get a much better deal for a better quality toy.


Have you ever looked closely at the sign they have posted up? I’ll paraphrase it for you, basically it warns consumers that their lotions and body sprays may contain chemicals that cause cancer.

Yeah, let’s not buy any of those. That’s not even a money thing as much as it is a safety thing. Why do they even sell such items?

Frozen Food Items

I love buying their name brand chips and chocolate, but you’ll never catch me buying their frozen food. I saw once that they had a 4oz. steak for a dollar.

While that may seem like a good deal, a lot of times that 4 oz include bone and fat. By the time you get to the meat, you’re not getting a great deal.

Also, if you buy enough steak to add to 1 lb., the price would be $4/lb. You can buy decent meat when on sale for about the same price or sometimes less than that and get it straight from the butcher at your local grocery store.

Cat Food/Dog Food

You can get a better per unit price at Costco or even the grocery store with coupons. I’d skip this at the dollar store, you can get more for your money somewhere else.

Hair Dye

Let’s just sayyou’regetting what you pay for: under performing hair dye that won’t even give you the desired color even on day 1. Skip it, skip it now…just keep on walking girl.


Okay so they might work, but they don’t last nearly as long as the more expensive ones. I’d stick to buying it on sale and if you have coupons while they’re on sale, you’ll come out with a decent deal.

Flip Flops

The quality isn’t worth the buck. I once had to buy them because my flip flops ripped on the go. I ended the night with sores and blisters. Don’t buy them for anyone you love.

Old Navy usually has a crazy sale on flip flops at least twice a year , and they end up costing around $4. The extra comfort is worth the extra few bucks. And they’ll at least last for a season or two.

Canned Food

This really gets to me. There isn’t a week that goes by that I don’t find great deals on canned food- with no coupons needed, I might add.

They come out to about 2 cans for $1 at grocery stores and sometimes you find them even cheaper. The canned food at the Dollar Tree will always be overpriced compared to the regular grocery store.

If you’re like me, you’re a deal seeker. And the dollar store is such a great place to find some awesome deals, as long as your know what to watch out for.

What items do you avoid from the Dollar Tree? Comment below!


15 Things you should NEVER Buy from the Dollar Tree? ›

Let's Dive In- Here Are 15 Things You Should Never Buy From the Dollar tree
  • Hair Products. ...
  • Cleaning Products. ...
  • Produce. ...
  • Candles. ...
  • Medicine. ...
  • Pot Holders. ...
  • Kids Toys. ...
  • Frozen Food Items.

What are the 10 things not to buy at the dollar store? ›

11 Things Never to Buy from the Dollar Store
  • Knives. 1/12. Good chef's knives don't come cheap, so you might be tempted to pick up a blade or two at the dollar store. ...
  • Plastic Kitchen Utensils. 2/12. ...
  • Medicine and Vitamins. 3/12. ...
  • Pet Food. 4/12. ...
  • Makeup. 5/12. ...
  • Sunscreen. 6/12. ...
  • Toys. 7/12. ...
  • Batteries. 8/12.

Is Dollar Tree toxic? ›

Dollar Tree was found to have some of the most products with toxic chemicals. The researchers tested a total of 87 products from Dollar Tree stores alone in the U.S. and Canada and found that 60 percent of the items contained at least one chemical of concern.

What dollar store is everything actually a dollar? ›

Mighty Dollar is a true dollar store. The homepage of the retailer's website proclaims “Everything's $1.00.” So if you want the freedom of shopping while knowing that every item will add just $1 to your sales ticket, this is the place to go.

Where does the Dollar Tree get their products? ›

Once seen as dumping grounds for liquidated and off-brand merchandise, today's dollar stores often buy their inventory from major manufacturers such as Procter & Gamble, Hanes, Unilever, Coca-Cola, Energizer, Crayola and General Mills.

Is dollar store food safe to eat? ›

Watch This Before You Buy Snacks At The Dollar Store - YouTube

Why are Dollar Tree items so cheap? ›

Dollar stores are able to keep their prices so low, in part, because they sell so many private-label products. Private-label products are made and sold exclusively for these stores, so they can be bought and sold for less.

What dollar store had rodents? ›

The F.D.A. said in February that more than 1,100 dead rodents were found inside the distribution center in West Memphis, Ark., after it was fumigated. As a subscriber, you have 10 gift articles to give each month.

Is makeup from the dollar store safe? ›

Dollar store makeup products may contain cheaper ingredients that can irritate your skin—an Ecology Center report found a carcinogen in a dollar-store eyeshadow—and you'll have to pay close attention to make sure the products aren't expired, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Are toys from Dollar Tree Safe? ›

Dollar-store toys are not only poorly made — they may be safety hazards. Several toys from these chains have been recalled in the past: a toy gun that posed a choking hazard, a remote control tank that could overheat, and a dart gun that caused the deaths of two children.

What is the biggest Dollar Tree? ›

Today I take you around the World's Largest Dollar Tree located in Burlington, North Carolina.

What can 1 dollar buy US? ›

12 Things You Can Still Buy for a Dollar
  • Holiday decor and party favors. bbernard / Shutterstock.com. ...
  • E-books for Amazon Kindle. antoniodiaz / Shutterstock.com. ...
  • Scratch-off lottery ticket. ...
  • Four movies from Disney Movie Club. ...
  • Dorm or first-apartment essentials. ...
  • Sample stickers. ...
  • Coin purses. ...
  • Baby paraphernalia.
Feb 22, 2022

Which is better Dollar General or Dollar Tree? ›

The verdict: Dollar General was leaps and bounds ahead of Dollar Tree in terms of the shopping experience and quality of products.

What day of the week does Dollar Tree restock? ›

Most Dollar Tree stores only restock their shelves completely on one day of the week. Many Dollar Tree stores prefer to choose Monday as their restocking day. This allows them to check out the items that have been sold during the weekends, which tend to be some of the busiest shopping days for Dollar Tree stores.

Is Dollar Tree owned by China? ›

Dollar Tree is an American multi-price-point chain of discount variety stores. Headquartered in Chesapeake, Virginia, it is a Fortune 500 company and operates 15,115 stores throughout the 48 contiguous U.S. states and Canada.

Is everything at Dollar Tree actually a dollar? ›

That's right—despite the name, not all dollar stores sell every item in the store for just a dollar or less. Dollar Tree is an actual dollar store (for the most part). The company recently announced it will sell items in certain locations for more than its typical $1 price.

Are Dollar General Products Safe? ›

A February report found that the majority of the 164 products researchers tested from Family Dollar, Dollar General, the Dollar Tree, and 99 Cents Only contained at least one hazardous chemical linked to serious health impacts.

Is dollar store plastic safe? ›

Plastic food containers

Although they're considered a bargain at dollar stores, and they're super convenient in terms of organizing your kitchen, plastic food containers may contain pthalates, which cause reproductive problems in lab animals and are found in high levels, especially in women, in the U.S. population.

What should I not buy at Dollarama? ›

Dollar stores — discount retailers that sell inexpensive household items — might seem like an ideal place to find bargains. But although many items cost just a dollar, not every product is a steal.
  • Electronics. ...
  • Plastic cooking utensils. ...
  • Canned goods. ...
  • Toys. ...
  • Tools. ...
  • Knives. ...
  • Batteries. ...
  • Back-to-school supplies.
Jul 21, 2016

How does Dollar Tree sell everything for a dollar? ›

They get volume discounts. Both Dollar Tree and Dollar General are huge companies that purchase large amounts of inventory at a time. That's one way they're able to sell everything so cheaply — the more they order at one time, the less they have to pay for each individual item.

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