UPDATE: Since this article was posted, the prices of goods in RM5 stores have increased to RM5.90
RM5 stores welcome thrifty spenders with an immense number of great value items priced at only RM5. While it may have gotten people loading up their baskets full of items, some of these wares may not be worth buying for their price.
In our quest to get you more for your money, here are the items you should avoid buying when shopping around your local RM5 store:
We explain further and expand the list of items below:
1. Kitchen Utensils (Used Over Fire)
These plastic ladles appear like they'll snap in two at the slightest twist. Could you safely use these when cooking on a high flame? While we aren't saying it is for sure a bad quality item, you're dealing with a two pronged risk here: the risk of having inferior plastic melt into your food and the danger of having the item crack over a fire.
Unless you are looking at items for basic scooping and serving; it's probably best to spend a little more money to safeguard yourself. Even supermarket quality spatulas with plastic ends have been known to melt on the side when left in a pan on the stove, what more a cheaper item?
2. Gift Wrapping Paper
When you're on a panicky last minute gift hunt, it's easy to make an entrance and head over to the gift wrapping section. At first glance, the papers look pretty decent but before you make your way to the cashier- think about it, should a scroll of giftwrapping paper cost RM5? Go to your nearest bookstores, you can find them for a fraction of a price - some for as low as RM1!
Your skin absorbs mostly everything. Just like you sometimes eat your lipstick when it's on your lips- your skin eats whatever is on your face too. Some people assume that more expensive make-up is only that way because the companies are out to make a killing but that's not entirely true. Legitimate makeup manufacturers are forced to abide by safety regulations and use only approved ingredients and chemicals, the same cannot always be said for items you buy for RM5 at a store such as this.
If you're unlucky, your skin might suffer from breaking out or an allergic reaction. Llong-term use can even cause serious skin damage. While we can't be sure that these cheaper items are truly toxic - it'd better to be safe than sorry. Stick to reputable makeup producers that abide by international safety standards. It will cost you more but you can have peace of mind knowing that the likelihood of poisoning your skin is pretty low.
4. Nail Clipper
A small nail clipper can cost as low as RM1 at your regular grocery store and only a little more for the larger ones. There ara a variety of options available in the RM5 store from the usual metal plated ones to polka dotted fancy clippers.
It's definitely more kawaii to have a bejewelled or colourful clipper- so if that is your thing, then by all means, go for it. However if you're in for practicality, RM5 is not worth paying for something you cut your toenails with.
5. Cutting Board
As pretty as this lemon yellow one is; we're sure we've seen sturdier and more durable cutting boards for RM5 or less elsewhere. Again, if you're into the designer colours then this is the board for you but if you just want something practical - why not get more value elsewhere? A bendable version from IKEA is two for RM6.90.
6. Hair Accesories
At a glance, hair accesories that come in packs are definitely worth buying, right? Before you take your pick, it's still important think of whether you can get cheaper alternatives. Hair accesories like scrunchies, bobby pins and elastic ties can be found at a fraction of the RM5 price at some acessories stores. One scrunchie for RM5? Really?
With that said, RM5 stores are still great places to purchase bargain items especially on goods that shouldn't cost so much in the first place. However, some selective buying is required to truly reap the benefits of the RM5 store without the pitfalls. We hope our list can help you make a more informed decision.
Have anything to add to this article? Do share your thoughts with us in the comments section down below!