Buy This, Not That
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22 Cheaper Alternatives to Popular Products That Won't Disappoint

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Buy This, Not That
sigridgombert / RooM / Getty Images CC

Buy This, Not That

Some products inspire a fanatical devotion among fans — but that makes them an easy target for other companies who want a piece of the pie. Often, knockoffs and lookalikes suffer in comparison to the product they imitate, but in some rare cases manage to offer equal or greater performance for a fraction of the price. Here are our favorite tried-and-true cheaper alternatives to some of the most beloved buys out there.

Prices and availability are subject to change.

Amazonbasics Classic Backpack
Courtesy of amazon.com

AmazonBasics Classic Backpack

Price: $16 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: JanSport SuperBreak, $36
JanSport's SuperBreak has become an icon of the backpack world: It's simple, it comes in a massive array of colors and patterns, and it's got legendary durability. But for about half the price, the Amazonbasics Classic Backpack offers the same sleek look and adds side pockets the JanSport doesn't have. Reviewers say it holds up to plenty of abuse, calling it surprisingly sturdy for the price.

Ozark Trail 20-Ounce Tumbler
Courtesy of walmart.com

Ozark Trail 20-Ounce Tumbler

Price: $7 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Yeti Rambler, $30
If the nearly 4,000 happy reviews on Walmart's site aren't enough to convince you, there are plenty of firsthand tests that say the same: The Ozark Trail Tumbler keeps drinks just as cold for just as long as the Yeti. One downside? You can't toss Walmart's cup in the dishwasher, but that's a concession we'd make in exchange for the modest price tag.

Lodge 6-Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Courtesy of amazon.com

Lodge 6-Quart Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven

Price: $59 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Le Creuset Dutch Oven, $350
They're both made of enameled cast iron, oven-safe up to 500 degrees, and will look classic on your stove while dinner bubbles away. So why pay nearly six times the price for Le Creuset? We're honestly not sure. Testers at The Kitchn are fans of the Lodge, too. "In terms of value, nothing comes close," they say, noting that their beef bourguignon was delicious no matter which pot it was cooked in.

L'Oreal Paris Blend Artist Infallible Foundation Blender
Courtesy of target.com

L'Oreal Paris Blend Artist Infallible Foundation Blender

Price: $6 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: The Original BeautyBlender, $20
The BeautyBlender may be "the first, the best, the original," but count us among the legions of buyers who don't want to pay more than the price of our foundation for a simple makeup sponge. L'Oreal's version inspires similar raves about how evenly it applies liquid makeup without streaking, but you can get three for the price of one BeautyBlender.

WorkPro Quantum 9000 Series Ergonomic Mesh Chair
Courtesy of officedepot.com

WorkPro Quantum 9000 Series Ergonomic Mesh Chair

Price: $320 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Herman Miller Aeron, $1,275
Sure, the Herman Miller Aeron is an office-furniture icon, but can your back tell the difference as much as your wallet will be able to? Happy reviewers say this WorkPro chair comes extremely close to its much pricier brethren, with similar breathable mesh fabric and plenty of adjustability. The Aeron's warranty is two years longer, but for the savings, we'll take our chances.

Kirkland Signature Golf Balls, 24 Count
Costco
Pinzon Signature Heavyweight Flannel Sheets, Queen
Courtesy of amazon.com

Pinzon Signature Heavyweight Flannel Sheets, Queen

Price: $70 | Buy them 
Try it instead of: L.L. Bean Ultrasoft Comfort Flannel Sheets, $109 
L.L. Bean has been the name to beat in flannel sheets for years, but Amazon's Pinzon competes for a price that won't keep you tossing and turning at night. Made in Portugal, the 190-gram Pinzons "are equal in weight and comfort to the $250-plus designer flannel sheets I bought for years," one reviewer raves. They're also frequently available for less than $70 depending on the color you choose.

Hamilton Beach Eclectrics All-Metal Stand Mixer
Courtesy of amazon.com

Hamilton Beach Eclectrics All-Metal Stand Mixer

Price: $200 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: KitchenAid Artisan Tilt Head Stand Mixer, $380
Hamilton Beach's stand mixer doesn't have the KitchenAid's fancy attachments, nor does it come in its rainbow of colors. But if you just want a mixer for its primary job, mixing, and don't need a precise color match for your kitchen, happy owners say this one gets the job done equally well, and for much less. The 400-watt motor is plenty powerful, and you get two more mixing speeds.

Ikea Alkalisk AA Batteries, 10 Count
Courtesy of ikea.com

Ikea Alkalisk AA Batteries, 10 Count

Price: $3 | Buy them
Try them instead of: Duracell AA Batteries, 10 Count, $9.50
Duracell batteries fare slightly better than Ikea's in expert tests, but the key word is "slightly." There's nothing slight about the price difference, though — you pay more than triple for the iconic Coppertop batteries versus Ikea's cheerful yellow ones. If you can stand to change batteries a touch more often, you'll come out pretty far ahead by stocking up at Ikea.

Xiaomi Mi Band 3
Courtesy of amazon.com

Xiaomi Mi Band 3

Price: $28 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Fitbit Inspire HR, $100
Wary of spending your hard-earned money on an electronics brand you've probably never heard of? Don't be — especially for the price. AndroidCentral notes that Xiaomi is the second-largest maker of wearables in the world, and says there's "very little to fault" when it comes to the Mi Band 3. You'll even get heart-rate monitoring, which comes with a three-figure price tag on a Fitbit, while features such as water resistance and activity tracking are similar.

Tramontina 10-Piece Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Clad Cookware
Courtesy of walmart.com

Tramontina 10-Piece Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Clad Cookware

Price: $129 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: All-Clad D3 Tri-Ply Stainless Steel 10-Piece Cookware Set, $700
All-Clad might be the gold standard for foodies, but if you're looking for a quality alternative that won't leave such a hole in your wallet, Tramontina comes highly recommended in expert tests. For instance, while Serious Eats says All-Clad is the better performer, "differences were minimal" and in no way justify the price difference. "You cannot beat it for price and performance," raves one of the Tramontina set's happy owners. Just like All-Clad, it's backed by a lifetime warranty.

90 Degree By Reflex Women's Track Jacket
Courtesy of amazon.com

90 Degree By Reflex Women's Track Jacket

Price: $40 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Lululemon Define Jacket, $118
Plenty of gym-goers swear by their Lululemon, but when the price of one jacket far eclipses what you pay for a month of workouts, a well-priced rival is all the more appreciated. Owners say they've found exactly that in the 90 Degree By Reflex Women's Track Jacket, made from a lightweight blend of nylon and spandex that looks and feels like Lulu. The style is also almost dead-on, though you have fewer color choices.

Ikea Frosta Stool
Courtesy of ikea.com

Ikea Frosta Stool

Price: $15 | Buy it
Try it instead of: Artek Aalto Stool e60, $317
Finnish designer Alvar Aalto's graceful, minimalist stool has inspired countless imitators over the years. One of the most notable? The modestly priced Frosta, churned out by none other than Swedish megastore Ikea. If you don't mind the Frosta's lack of color choices (and at this price, you can certainly grab a can of paint), reviewers are more than happy with this hackable, stackable design.

Kirkland Signature French Vodka
Courtesy of costco.co.uk

Kirkland Signature French Vodka

Price: Around $20 for 1.75 liters | Buy it in store, if not prohibited by state or local law
Try it instead of: Grey Goose Vodka, $46
If you're lucky enough to live in a state where you can buy booze at Costco, Kirkland Signature vodka is called a must by customers. Testers at The Kitchn prefer the French variety, even ranking it above pricier bottles of Chopin, Reyka, Ketel One, and Grey Goose. In fact, Grey Goose is often compared with Kirkland vodka, and there are long-standing rumors they're actually the same. But Kirkland is roughly half the price.

Ninja Chef Countertop Blender
Courtesy of amazon.com

Ninja Chef Countertop Blender

Price: $144 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Vitamix A2300, $450 
Vitamix has long set the bar for anyone who needs a powerful blender, but happy Ninja Chef owners say they've got comparable quality at a much friendlier price tag. Both blenders have a 1,500-watt motor, a digital timer, and variable speed control, but the Ninja Chef has a bigger pitcher and 10 presets for confusion-free blending. We have to hand it to Vitamix when it comes to the warranty, though: You'll get 10 years with it, versus one year with the Ninja Chef.

Women's Mad Love Keava Footbed Sandals
Courtesy of target.com

Women's Mad Love Keava Footbed Sandals

Price: $23 | Buy them 
Try them instead of: Birkenstock Arizona Sandals, $100
Target has always been a go-to for "cheap chic" fashion, and its Mad Love Keava Footbed Sandals have all that casual Birkenstock style for a fourth of the price. Like their more expensive inspiration, they have a flexible EVA sole, and owners say they're much comfier than their price would suggest.

Men's Amazon Essentials Lightweight Packable Puffer Jacket
Courtesy of amazon.com

Men's Amazon Essentials Lightweight Packable Puffer Jacket

Price: $39 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Patagonia Men's Nano Puff Jacket, $199 
Made with PrimaLoft insulation, Patagonia's wind- and water-resistant Nano Puff jacket is a lightweight base layer perfect for the great outdoors. But if you don't need trail-worthy tech, Amazon's Packable Puffer offers similar benefits, including polyester insulation without the fancy name. It's also just as compressible for travel.

Women's Bearpaw Emma Short Boots
Courtesy of amazon.com

Women's Bearpaw Emma Short Boots

Price: $56 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Ugg Classic Short II Boots, $160 
Love 'em or hate 'em, sheepskin-lined Uggs have had remarkable staying power, likely because of legendary comfort. Lookalikes abound, but some of the best are Bearpaws. Enthusiastic owners praise their comfort, warmth, and copycat style that's nearly indistinguishable from the real thing — and they come in a ton of colors.

Char-Griller Akorn Kamado Kooker
Courtesy of homedepot.com

Char-Griller Akorn Kamado Kooker

Price: $328 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Big Green Egg, large, $1,000-plus
Grill masters across the country swell with pride when they show off their Big Green Eggs, but now that the market has caught on to kamado grilling, other brands are churning out similar grills for much less. One that earns raves is the Akorn Kamado Kooker, which even comes with an easy-dump ash pan and prep cart that the Big Green Egg lacks. It also has a bigger cooking surface.

RTIC 65 Cooler
Courtesy of amazon.com

RTIC 65 Cooler

Price: $231 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Yeti Tundra 65 Cooler, $350
Just like its tumblers, Yeti's coolers have become something of a phenomenon for their ability to keep ice frozen and food or drinks cold for days. But RTIC makes a line of similarly constructed lookalikes that give them a run for their money. Tests of the RTIC 65 and the Yeti Tundra 65 have found the RTIC actually holds more ice and keeps it frozen longer, and buyers who've used both say they can barely tell the difference.

Project 62 Round Decorative Brass Wall Mirror
Courtesy of target.com

Project 62 Round Decorative Brass Wall Mirror

Price: $60 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Pottery Barn Vintage Round Mirror, brass, $300
Pottery Barn may be the go-to for a large set of design mavens, but when you get down to it, there's no reason to overpay for a mirror. Target shoppers have gone gaga over the similarly sized $60 round brass mirror from the store's Project 62 home-décor line. The on-trend piece has inspired hundreds of happy reviews. As one buyer points out, it's "literally one-fifth the cost of similar mirrors I've found elsewhere." Ahem.

Repel Windproof Travel Umbrella
Courtesy of amazon.com

Repel Windproof Travel Umbrella

Price: $23 | Buy it 
Try it instead of: Davek Solo, $99
The much-lauded Davek Solo comes with a lifetime warranty, but let's face it: Most people can't fathom spending $100 on an umbrella. For comparable quality at a fraction of the price, try the Repel — The Wirecutter recommends it above the much pricier Davek, and it's similarly lightweight, compact, and wind-resistant. The best part? It comes with its own lifetime warranty.