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Items You Should and Shouldn’t Be Buying at Target

Jan. 22, 2015
Shopping News
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As fun as a shopping spree at Target can be, it’s not so fun to come down with a bad case of buyer’s remorse. Wouldn’t it be helpful if you knew ahead of time which deals you’d regret snagging? Here’s a look at what you should consider keeping and cutting from your shopping cart.

You shouldn’t buy…

Clothes for kids

When placed head-to-head with children’s apparel from competing discount retailers, Target’s prices just don’t stack up. Take the popular line of Disney’s Frozen-inspired merchandise, for example. A girl’s Frozen graphic tee runs for at least $8.99 at Target, but similar movie-themed apparel is available for as low as $4.50 at Walmart. That means that at Walmart you can stock up on both an Anna and Elsa tee for the price of just one of the famous sisters’ shirts at Target.

Target Clothing Item Target Clothing Item Price Walmart Clothing Item Walmart Clothing Item Price Kohl’s Clothing Item Kohl’s Clothing Item Price
Disney Frozen Girls’ Graphic Tee $8.99 Disney Frozen Girls’ Graphic Tee, Your Choice $4.50 Disney Frozen Anna & Elsa Hearts & Sister Tee Girls 4-6x $6.99 or 2/$12
Cherokee Girls’ Bootcut Jean $14.99 Faded Glory Girls’ Bootcut Jeans $6.92 SONOMA life + style Bootcut Jeans Girls 4-7 $14.99
LEGO Boys’ Pajama Set $16.99 LEGO Movie 2-Piece Poly Sleep Sets $11.97 The LEGO Movie Coat Pajama Set Boys 8-20 $14.40
Circo Infant Toddler Girls’ Solid Legging $5.00 Healthtex Baby Infant Toddler Girl Seamless Leggings $4.66 Jumping Beans Velour Ribbed Leggings Baby $4.80
Boys’ Button Down Shirt w/Tie $21.24 George Boys’ 2-Piece Dress Shirt and Tie Set $8.00 Chaps Button-Down Shirt & Tie Set, Boys 4-7 $15.60

Running shoes

Target sells pretty much anything you could ever need, but not everything. For niche items — such as running shoes — the store’s inventory isn’t as expansive as it could be. You won’t find Asics, New Balance or a number of other popular athletic shoe brands at Target.

Runners and athletes know the way your shoe fits is important for optimal performance, so if the C9 by Champion selection of shoes at Target just isn’t doing the trick, you’ll likely need to search for your new set of kicks elsewhere.

Running Shoe Brand Available at Target? Available at Available at Kohl’s?
C9 by Champion Yes No No
Nike No Yes Yes
Asics No Yes Yes
New Balance No Yes Yes
Adidas No Yes Yes

You should buy…


One of Target’s signature brands is called up & up. This budget-oriented alternative to brand name labels offers products in a variety of departments such as personal care and office supplies. For everything from makeup removing towelettes to pencil sharpeners, you’ll often find that it’s worthwhile to opt for Target’s own brand over competitors’.

Target’s up & up Brand Product Target’s up & up Brand Price Target’s Non-House Brand Product Target’s Non-House Brand Price
up & up Ibuprofen Easy Open Pain Relief and Fever Reducer 200 mg Caplets – 225 Count $7.99 225 Count Motrin Caplet $13.49
up & up Vitamin D 2000IU – 200 Softgels $9.79 Nature’s Bounty Vitamin D 2000 IU Softgels – 120 Count $10.49
up & up Automatic Dishwasher Detergent Packs Fresh Scent – 20 Count $3.29 Cascade Dishwasher Detergent ActionPacs Fresh Scent – 20 Count $3.99
up & up 150ct 3-Subject College Ruled Notebook $3.44 FiveStar Advanced 3-Subject College Ruled Notebook $5.99
up & up Disinfecting Wipes Lemon and Fresh Scent – 35 Count, 3 Pack $5.39 Clorox Disinfecting Wipes 3x35ct Variety Scent Pack $5.89


There are tons of electronics at the bull’s-eye retailer, including TVs, tablets, cameras, GPS systems and a variety of accessories. It’s not just Target’s selection that makes it an ideal destination for electronics, though — you can find these products at other stores, too. But they won’t have Target’s impressive return policy.

Target affords customers a full 30 days to return all electronics and entertainment items for a refund or exchange. Compare this to the 15-day return window for computers, camcorders and digital cameras at Walmart. Best Buy, too, has a general 15-day return period. 

Store Electronics Return Policy Window
Target 30 days
Walmart 15 days
Best Buy 15 days
Staples 14 days

Shopping at giant discount retailer Target can save you money on a wide variety of items. But it’s worthwhile to compare prices and product selection across brands and against competitors. It’s the only way to maximize your chances of getting what you need at the best price available to you.

Image via iStock.