Deal-breaker: Shopping, savings apps + asthma unfriendly products.

Deal-breaker: Shopping, savings apps + asthma unfriendly products.

Last updated: August 2017

A few months ago, I started using Checkout 51, a free app that allows you to earn cash back on certain featured items each week (some things, like Scotch Expressions Tape, are on there seemingly endlessly—dear app: I do not need more temptation to buy pretty tape, okay?). I’ve so far accumulated $19.75--and of course, I need $20 for them to cut me a check… Anyways… Really, who doesn’t like earning money back here and there for items you're going to be purchasing anyways? Sometimes, I like trying new things I might only learn about through the app—other times, I don’t actually buy anything new because no, I will not buy those $8 crackers to get $1.50 back, thank you very much. I am sure this app sways me to buy a lot more random impulse-ish items, like snacks and tape and a new hairbrush because I got a dollar off.

Here is my one qualm.

What’s the deal with all the scented deals?!

I get it: people like stuff that smells good. I can get behind that. I like things that smell good, too. Except, like, naturally good. Like cookies. Or Starbucks/coffee. Or even bacon, despite that I've been vegetarian for 10 years. Or pizza.

Artificially or chemically good smelling? No, thank you—thanks to asthma and headaches I am steering clear of that stuff.

And of course… where do they put the fragrance-free stuff? Oh yeah, right beside the same variety of scented products—fragrance free laundry detergent? In the laundry detergent/air un-freshener aisle that makes my head hurt. Fragrance-free antiperspirant? Yeah that’ll be by approximately beside the AXE. (Seriously, what’s the deal with AXE? It’s terrible.) Natural cleaning products? Oh yeah, those still either smell like chemicals somehow, or are just less bad chemicals, or are right next to the asthma-inducing Fake Pine Smell chemicals.

Last week I learned that in order to maximize on people’s impulse buying, stores rearrange their stock/store every 6-8 months so that shoppers have to hunt around a little more and just can’t shop purely by memory. We go where we think the desired product is, and find something else that piques our interest. This is potentially bad news for both my lungs and my wallet—but mostly my lungs. If I have to spend more time in the lotion aisle, for instance, than anticipated (depending on what other products are nearby), I can only shallow breathe or hold my breath so long to avoid letting most of those random fragrance particles into my body. (I presume this tactic works?) I’m on a mission, and in the case of looking for the few fragrance-free products in existence, I’m not likely to spend more money anyways—unlike in the dollar store, say, where the longer I am there the more money I spend. Because it’s only $1 or oh this is just $2, finds me $8-15 later at the cash register.

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