Posted by Amy | Posted in Collective Bias | Posted on 26-11-2012
Tags: awesome, CBias, Collective Bias, Duane Reade, Fab Girl, Tasty Treats
The past three weeks have kind of been like this…
Pump water, haul trash, FEMA guy, still pumping, plumber, clean, spill bleach, haul trash, plumber, plumber, roof guy, more bleach, waiting for insurance guy, more trash and then more trash, wait for gas, still waiting for insurance guy, wait for groceries, wait some more for gas, FEMA girl this time, plumber again and again, YAY hot water! debate the need of an electrician, more never-ending bleach, still waiting for insurance guy, trash again, all while trying to work, help the neighbors and you know, like survive living through SuperStorm Sandy’s 3 feet of water in the house, no power for 6 days and no heat for, gosh I lost count… 3 weeks?
So when offered a little retail therapy at one of my favorite shopping spots, I jumped, double time, and dragged Lil Sis along for the ride.
My un-ending love for Duane Reade is pretty legendary. Lil Sis would undoubtedly agree with me. You really can’t be a NYer and NOT shop Duane Reade at least once a week. They are literally on every block after all.
Now, I shop Duane Reade in one of two modes: 1. Leisurely strolling down the aisles, reading every product description, slipping completely frivolous items in my basket; or 2. Super Duper Power Shopping with lists, alternatives lists, price comparisons and coupons.
See, I’m not really a power shopper. I don’t usually flip through circulars and price match and compare and drive all over town to save 6 cents on frozen broccoli. Duane Reade is a little different for me because of the Balance Rewards points. It’s kind of like a game – How many points can you get in one trip?? You can get most of what you need and want at Duane Reade so why not take advantage of offers when you can? I’m in there so often, that I can wait for certain items to go on sale or have extra bonus points associated with the purchase.
I immediately zeroed in on a few things…
I’m not really a power shopper, and I’m not really a green, eco-product fan either. But let me tell you, after cleaning out a flooded basement with bleachy chemical nonsense leaving my hands cracked and bleeding, yeah, I think it’s about time to look at less chemically chemicals. This new Ology line looks really promising.
And then… I stumbled upon this…
Holy Curling Iron Batman. I’m a little (nutty, obsessed, crazed) particular about my hair care products. I’ll cut to the chase because I could go for HOURS about this… but… most commercial shampoo and conditioner are terrible for naturally curly hair because of silicone and sulfates. Silicone is in most conditioners and is great for silky smooth hair, but it is TERRIBLE for curly hair. Basically, silicone coats your hair in plastic depriving it of the extra moisture curly hair needs. And since it’s basically a plastic, you need a detergent to remove the silicone from your hair. Yup, that’s right, I said DETERGENT. Go compare your favorite shampoo to your dish washing soap and the ingredients are alarmingly similar. And detergents strip everything from your hair, dirt, silicone, natural oils and hair color. Silicone and sulfates are bad bad things for your hair. ANYHOO, I get all gleeful anytime I find a new healthy shampoo to try out.
DuaneReade.com has this super handy feature where you can create a shopping list as you browse and print it before you go. So I had my list, my Balance Reward card and a game plan – The game is purchase at least $20 of private name brands at Duane Reade and get an extra 3,000 points. BOOYAY!
I met Lil Sis at the Duane Reade at 52nd and Broadway.
I was strategic, she strolled.
Right off the bat, I met a few obstacles. No, I’m not talking about the items on my list, like Hershey’s Kisses to try out the cookie recipe in the Health and Happy flyer, that were no where to be found (One tiny problem with urban shopping, stock isn’t endless, so things do sell out). Nope, I found myself in a battle of NEED vs. Want.
You see, I NEED conditioner and tea and tissues. 3 weeks with dealing with post-Sandy nonsense meant I didn’t do a lot of shopping and my essential supplies were low. But I WANTED nail polish and fancy makeup. STICK TO THE LIST.
One thing that was not on the list that did make it’s way into the cart was pudding. Yeah, I know, I have a weakness for Pudding. Duane Reade carries several private label brands of super tasty treats like Delish and Nice and it takes everything I have not to walk out with a bag of chocolate covered almonds every.time.I.shop. Lil Sis and I had never seen the pudding before so we snapped that up quick.
I also discovered the Delish line of teas (Which were the Happy and Healthy Special of the week!). I think I used every last tea bag in the house. With no heat, curling up before bed with a “cuppa” after cleaning up all day was a nice reward.
One of the things I adore about the new, redone, super spiffy Duane Reads is how roomy they feel. Most shopping experiences in NYC are crowded and oddly dark.
So what did I end up with? Not a bad shopping trip, eh?
And I totally won the Balance Reward Point Game!
Duane Reade is doing some pretty fun social media stuff too. They have FourSquare QR Codes that you can use to check in and get special offers. The only codes I saw were in the basement and they didn’t work for me while I was in the store, but I’d be very interested to try it out the next time I’m in the store.
To see more pics of my shopping adventure, check out my Google+ story!
I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™. #CBias #SocialFabric and #cbBigapple. All opinions are my own.