Before the post-World War II economic boom brought affordable consumer goods to the American masses, people did a lot less shopping. There weren’t easily disposable plastic goods or $15 dresses from H&M—in the 1920s, a simple dress might have cost as much as $130 in today’s money—and so when people did shop, they were looking for products that would last them for years. Now, it’s hard to find something that isn’t made to fall apart after just a few months.
A website called Buy Me Once aims to help consumers avoid cheaply made, flimsy goods in favor of quality products that are built to last. It features only products that can demonstrate longevity—meaning lifetime guarantees and high-quality materials that ideally can be repaired when they do break.
While the prices of such goods are much higher than you might be used to seeing, ultimately, opting for them is a money-saving move. Yes, you could buy a new $10 umbrella every time it rains, or you could buy a $110 one that will last for as long as you keep it (a smart strategy so long as you're not the kind of person to forget yours at every restaurant you go to). And things like luggage, furniture, and toys shouldn’t need to be replaced after just a year or two. If they’re made right, they should last long enough for you to pass them along to your kids.
Spending more money up front is more cost-efficient in the long-run (which is one of the many reasons it’s incredibly expensive to be poor in America). It’s better for the planet, too. Since it’s so rare to find clothing, shoes, and toys that aren’t designed to send you back into the store almost immediately, Buy Me Once has a curated collection ready for perusal.
All images via Buy Me Once