Read Full Article here… lifehacker.com

Photo: Brett Hondow (Shutterstock) Shopping for stuff can be fun, but capitalism’s allowance for a proliferation of brands also makes it quite stressful. Our stores and online platforms are stuffed with brands—no matter what it is you want to buy, there are literally hundreds of brands out there to choose from. Some you’ve heard of, some seem obviously sketchy, and some are mysteries, but in most product categories there’s what you would consider a “premium” brand. These are well-known products from an established company that presumably offers top-notch quality when compared to other offerings. But premium brands tend to establish themselves through marketing more than actual performance. Generic or “store brands” started off as the sad, cheaper alternatives, but have actually glowed up quite a bit in recent years. Those store brands are big money, and grocery chains are investing heavily in them. Of course, just because a “generic” brand might be as good as a premium brand on a basic ingredients level doesn’t necessarily mean buying premium is always a waste of time and while many over-the-counter or even prescription medications are essentially the same as the premium brands, they do often use lower-quality fillers and binders that can have an effect on your experience with them—and that experience is sometimes worth money. There are, however, some products that are literally the same no matter how much money you spend on them or how fancy the branding is. For these products, paying extra for a premium brand is […]