Cutting Corners – or Really Not?

Today I was having an avid discussion with one of my girlfriends and although she is my age, she is already the mother of two, one boy and one girl. They are extremely cute and I love playing with them… and because she’s my age, sometimes when we go take her kids out, people will think WE are a couple as I’m usually holding one or sometimes even two of the kids at the same time. Although she is married to a slightly older man who is financially-capable, having two kids means you’re spending a lot of time cutting corners where possible… and by that, I mean specifically to save money. Because we work in the same organization and know how much she makes (or should I say, how little), I brought up how challenging it must be for her to raise two children, even if she has a husband to depend on since they still have a mortgage, car payments, utilities, etc. and two extra mouths to feed and worst thing – diapers!

As we were going down the aisles and picking stuff up, she was “lecturing” me on how to save money because I brought up that question of how she manages. She’s a big fan of “going generic” – where almost 80% of the stuff in her cart/basket wasn’t a large brand name. Finally we hit the diaper section and she picked up a pack of Pampers and that’s where I gave her the, “But I thought you don’t buy brand name”-look. Here we are buying generic of everything, things that are smaller price tags but then when it came to the most expensive thing, diapers, she decided to go for the one that costs a lot more in comparison to a no-name brand. Hell, the way I see it is that you use it to keep the baby from peeing/crapping all over the place that all is well. When I inquired, she said that there is a notable difference between generic diapers and brand-name and that she has tried cutting corners by using generic diapers but was a complete mess. We were at the end of the aisle, conveniently located on the back-shelf was the feminine hygiene section. Although her and I get along well, we have never exposed the more personal things about each other. She told me that she was planning to buy some pads and tampons as they were on-sale this week. She was red and her voice immediately lowered (normally she’s a very ‘loud’ girl) and told me if I wasn’t comfortable, I was welcome to check out the other aisles and meet her elsewhere. Of course being me, I couldn’t care less about being in the “girls” aisle – hell, I might spend more time there than girls do, LOL.

I could tell for her that she was a bit uncomfortable and that’s ok, after all, I think any girl shopping with a guy for the first time in this aisle would feel a bit weirded out. I noticed as she was picking up the packages, she really wanted to read them but felt embarrassed if she held it and stared at it for so long. I was still holding her daughter and didn’t want her to make a fuss by walking away from her mom, so I stayed put but picked up a package myself casually and began to read it (well, I wasn’t really reading it, but you know.. “pretend” read) to make her feel a bit more as ease. I think she sensed that I wasn’t the least embarrassed about it and slowly carried out some small talk. Finally to smash open the ice, I asked her whether she has considered she considered going generic with her pads. She paused for a second, thought… then said, “I’ve never actually tried them before.” Interestingly enough, although she has gone generic with so many things, one of the reoccurring costs in a girl’s life is her feminine hygiene products!

Since she does not know, nor needs to know about my interest in menstruation, I gave her some anecdotes from my ex’s and whatnot about what they thought about generic pads. She said although she never used one, one of her friends does and she looked at it and thought that the design was very mediocre. Although I can say that the ones I’ve found in the dollar-store have always been substandard, some of the ones from SDM, Rexall and Walmart do have a degree of standards to them. We discussed for about 10-15 minutes about whether or not using brand or generic pads were “worth their own weight in gold”. She decided to stick with her usual brand, but asked me to let her know if I got some positive feedback from my girls.

This week, SDM did have a sale on their Life Brand pads, so I decided to grab one just to see whether or not generics have changed since the last time I looked into them. Boy, was I ever surprized with the physical appearance of it and the adhesive certainly have changed to be stickier and the wings were actually wings, not just “tabs”. The pad itself also greatly resembled the appearance of Always, have the side-channels and center lock-in core. Of course I will need to experiment before I’m able to say whether the pad design is just as efficient as branded ones, but so far, I can definitely say I’m impressed! I took a couple of pictures just to show off the highlights of the pad…..

Life Brand Pad - Individually Wrapped Form

Life Brand Pad - Opened Up

Life Brand Pad - Opened Up with Wings Extended

Life Brand Pad - Bottom Adhesives

By appearance, the pad looks to have a rougher texture than Always, probably since it is not made to replicate the cottony top-sheet of Always, however, skin-to-skin contact does not feel rough as it might appear. The wings hold very well and do not easily fall off and helps prevent the pad from bunching too much. The pad thickness is roughly that of the Stayfree Maxi, so it is not unusually thick or uncomfortable. The pad-width seems to provide a wide degree of coverage. The only gripe I have about it so far is that once saturated, the pad doesn’t retain the wetness as much as it feels a bit wet, but hey, at the ridiculously low cost of a pack of generics, it is a worthwhile investment for use at home or during the lighter days where full-saturation is not as likely. Looks like I can get a few of my girls to test these out, let me know how it is and let my friend know what they all think! The title of this post is essentially highlighting whether or not generics is really about cutting corners or whether they can provide a peace-of-mind during menstruation at a reduced cost!

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About Prexus Swyftwynd

Probably not a good idea for you to know anything about me....

Posted on February 28, 2010, in Periodtastic, Personal and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. WAH! Those pads look better than the ones we have here… but it does look very rough. What do you think of them? Does the wrapper fall apart or wut? The center strip is ok? It looks like it is very loose and not sticky enough. The wings r very big O_o

    • But package was actually a bit stiff… they used this really hard plastic. However, it was very good, the “toughness” wasn’t a bad thing… I just don’t think they should waste so much on the package, LOL. The wrapper is stiff so it won’t fall apart… had problems opening it, lol.

      It is kind of rough but not terrible… it is hard to explain. It isn’t to the degree that it would be uncomfortable, but it’s definitely not like other pads with a soft cottony cover or anything. The wings are truly nice, not like the other ones where it’s not sticky enough and then it gets all messed up -_-” The wings are very big and it actually DOES absorb, which is different than the usual where it’s there “just for looks” 😀 lol.

      The centre strip I was impressed with because it is a small strip down the centre, but sticky enough to stay-put. I dunno about how well it’ll hold during activity though, have to find someone to ask, haha.

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