Oh My, How Our Spending Habits Have Changed. From Toilet Paper to Teeth Whitener

A year ago, people couldn’t find toilet paper, hand sanitizer, or baking flour.

Fast forward one year, and now people are having trouble finding deodorant, teeth whitener, and condoms.

Welcome to the post-COVID-19 world of retail.

As pandemic restrictions are being lifted around the U.S., people are looking to buy products that will help them put their best foot forward as they re-enter society.

In addition to the products noted above, sales of perfume, nail polish, swimsuits, sunscreen, tuxedos, luggage, and alarm clocks are climbing fast, according to companies that make these products and large retailers.

Despite the increase in the sales of such products, it is not approaching the huge spike in sales seen at the start of the pandemic for cleaning products. Store shelves were empty for weeks of such products; there seems to be no such problem this year, with retailers seemingly having enough stock of personal hygiene and grooming products.

Clothing and travel products, such as luggage, also seem to be doing a brisk business. Target reported a 60% increase in apparel sales compared to last year.

In comparison, according to data from NielsenIQ., U.S. sales of paper and plastic products, which includes items such as toilet paper, fell 18.3% in the four weeks up to May 1 compared with the same period last year. Baking supplies fell 35.6%.

Part of the change in consumer spending habits can be explained by the pent-up demand for products that people possibly saw less of a need for, given they weren’t our socializing and traveling. In addition, many Americans may be flush with cash, thanks in part to the pandemic relief checks as well as cost savings from working at home and not going out.

So once again, we have to admire the resilience of the American consumer and their love of shopping. They certainly have a positive effect on our economy.

But I’m not sure what it says about us that sales of deodorant and mouthwash have increased significantly in recent months.

Shouldn’t such products be used no matter what your work or social life looks like?

Had people just given up taking care of themselves during the pandemic?

Anyway, I hope that if there are Americans who feel a little wealthier than they did last year, they also spend some of that money supporting organizations like DonorsChoose and Feeding America. The causes and the people they support could use such contributions now more than ever…




104 thoughts on “Oh My, How Our Spending Habits Have Changed. From Toilet Paper to Teeth Whitener

  1. Hot tubs also are in short supply. We just bought one, and had to buy the floor model. Otherwise we would have had to wait 6-12 months. That would have left me feeling boiled, without any of the benefits.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. but you don’t know which employees may have been using that floor model after work, or what they may have been using it for. I would recommend a big bottle of bleach before you use it the first time…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Well, don’t knock yourselves out, or any bathroom walls, just yet. Make sure you can get one within a reasonable amount of time.

        Meanwhile, you can always buy a garden hose sprayer, then attach a garden hose to your shower, and spray each other down with highly pressurized jets of hot water.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. If you have been working alone from home instead of at a crowded office or if you were out of work, I could see some people using less mouthwash and deodorant and save a few bucks at the same time. I’m not saying it was me who caused the dip in sales but rather I am speaking on behalf of a friend of mine who gets lazy about personal hygiene. He has some other great qualities, though.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I thought of oral hygiene as the great silver lining of the pandemic. With the advent of masks, it served to curtail any exposure from the malodorous offender, while removing their excuse that they did not know they suffered from dragon’s breath. After more than a year f smelling our own breath, if it has led to a few wore people buying mouthwash, then this is a good thing.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. I think it’s a good trend that people are back to taking care of themselves, and a sign that they are getting ready to get back into the world again, after time spent in their caves. yes, to the donations, too, now that people have more cash at the ready, it couldn’t be a better time to begin, if not doing so already.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Tuxedos and luggage! Where are these people going? The idea of travel has me worried. Especially if it is international travel because many countries aren’t out if the pandemic woods yet.


  6. My $.02 – If I’m not going anywhere, I don’t use deodorant. I think my last deodorant stick lasted about 6 months. I’m one of the guilty ones ruining our economy.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The world of car and especially truck manufacturing has been dealing with a shortage of computer-based chips. Perhaps Amazon has a few hiding at a distribution center somewhere.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Yep, my husband didn’t have the reason or motivation to shower every day like he used to bc he never left the house! πŸ€ͺπŸ€·β€β™€οΈ But yes, not having access to basic necessities like toilet paper was terribly inconvenient and annoying!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. luggage! seriously?! i must admit i find it a bit odd that people are going to be traveling for vacation in the midst of a global pandemic… (no hate though ❀️)

    Liked by 1 person

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