Greatly Improving Your Quality of Life for $100

{No this isn’t an ad for facial cream}
Last night Jared and I spent some time reading through a forum thread about what items you can buy for under $100 that will greatly increase your quality of life. It was a great question with some really interesting and hilarious answers. Things that were suggested were: high thread count sheets, multiple pairs of your favorite sock, a nice shower head, a good knife, etc.
I’d love to hear your thoughts though: what is your favorite item under $100 that greatly improves your quality of life?

You can read the original forum thread here (warning: the language is a tad harsh)


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I adore, love, don't want to live without my Bodum electric kettle. Before I got my friend the Bodum, I had one of those crappy plastic kettles that leaked and was an eyesore. But the Bodum is a joy to make tea and coffee (french press) with in the morning. It's fast, has multiple temp settings, pretty stainless steel, energy efficient, BPA free. a bit over $100, but well worth it.

For pet owners (and/or parents?) – a Bissell SpotBot. Never scrubbing pet messes out of the carpet again = best $75 I have EVER SPENT.

i often think in these terms when making purchasing decisions. I really do look at whether the item or service improves the quality of my life.For me it's about services mainly.

Anon, yes I definitely agree on the babysitter and Sara, a good radio/speakers for the ipod is brilliant! I use mine almost daily

Several years ago, I bought a digital clock radio with an ipod dock for about $80.00. Waking up in the morning to music I actually like, instead of whatever horrible thing was on the radio, made a noticeable difference in the quality of my days.

This is not (probably) under $100, but last year I finally bought a decent rolling carry-on, and it has made traveling so much easier.

all these ideas are making me so happy. I agree tater tots just sound better if eaten with a cloth napkin! Life's little luxuries!

Cloth napkins. I swear they make tater tots taste better.

OMG! You're a Redditor! How awesome. Thanks for the link to the thread; I saw a parody on RedditThroughHistory but couldn't find the original.

Good beer – I will spend a lot of money for a six-pack of something awesome, no matter how poor I am! A cast-iron pan – they are a little bit of an investment but I use mine every day for everything and I love that sucker. Good lotion – something that smells nice but not crazy-strong and that sinks into your skin like butter. Which, on second thought, isn't any more expensive than bad lotion. But it does improve quality of life.

Really good cheese makes me very happy; worth every penny (not to mention every calorie). Getting a babysitter to go out to dinner with my husband is pretty tough to beat. And XM radio – the "coffee house" station makes me so happy!

I highly recommend buying different pens and trying them out until you find your favorite ones, then buying a bunch of your favorites and stashing them away for the future.My husband uses the pens I rejected, but you could always give them away or donate them.

netflixa high powered showerheadmy husband's flowbee (maybe the best purchase ever)take-outfresh direct (groc. delivery)bike basketbaking mats (no mess)magnetic door stop that holds the door open when bringing in groceries & door stop on my laundry door that has auto shut. (possibly my two favorite things in the house).

Amen for quality knives. My favorite is a small serrated one that I use for almost everything. Slices like a champ. Whenever I'm at someone's house and they have cheapo knives I'm always grateful I finally splurged and got good ones.Jared's comment hits home. We still have cheapo silverware and I really want to get a good set. Feel free to do a post about your favorite flatware so I can just copy you.

Two ideas–first of all, really great stuff in your bathroom (cushy towels & mat, and a really knock-out shower curtain). Are you the only one who's going to see it regularly? Probably. But it's awesome to feel like you're staying at a really chic spa when you're just stepping into your own bathroom. I just redid my kids' bathroom this way for about $60 because I loved mine so much.Almost a decade ago my husband talked me into buying the cherry-red trench coat I was in love with but was waaaay out of our student budget. It is hands-down my favorite piece of clothing, and I feel like a million bucks whenever I wear it, plus it gets compliments from friends and strangers alike.

That website is hilarious!! And, I agree with Gabby- name-brand cereal does make me feel better! Other things making me feel better about my life-A Costco membershipAn awesome raincoat (we live in the NW)The piano we got off CraigslistMatching towels (from Costco)

Baby gates were one of the best investments we ever made. If you have one room you can contain you children in, it is such a relief. Also, good knives and food with ingredients I recognize. Oh, and when you are traveling with kids skycap is a dream.

decent silverware. i think about it all through the meal.i always end up fishing through the drawer for the good forks, it would be nice to just have only good forks to choose from.

Good soap for the shower that leaves you soft and not dry skinned. Imagine showering with hotel soap every day….. not so good.- Sarah

I have to agree with Susan. Buying a bunch of flowers, even a simple bunch while I'm grocery shopping makes me so happy and it isn't that much money. I also recently decided to get rid of all the miss-matched cups and glasses that we collected as college students and newly weds, and just buy a new set of matching glassware. I just bought a simple set from IKEA so it was really cheap but I like opening that cabinet and putting away the dishes so much more now!

Ashe- um, how did i not know about crock pot LINERS? Must get!Susan- flowers! of course, i love it!

Gabby + Emily, I agree about it this. I always grew up with the cheapest no frills brand and while it was economically smart, it always made me feel like we were poor. heidi, we have a memory foam pad and LOVE IT. Although Jared thinks it greatly contributing to his inability to get out of bed in the morning and wants it out.

Flowers – where we live they're super cheap ($3 for a small bunch) and buying a bunch or two once a week makes a huge difference. Especially sunflowers in the summer and ranunculus all winter long : )

My husband and I spent about $60 on a pair of really good memory pillows and it has made our life much better. Every time I crawl into bed, I am so happy to see that pillow – it's THE most comfortable thing. I just sink into it and sigh.

Crock pot Liners- HA! I know…I live on the wild side. 😉

I have a rock-hard bed, so I've been eying one of those memory foam mattress pads. I just can't bring myself to spend the money on it. I'm convinced it would really help.Also, I live in Florida, so a ceiling fan.heidia week from thursday

I bought a set of All-Clad French Skillets for $99, and I LOVE them. I enjoy cooking, but it is such a pleasure to use them. And they are so versatile that I've cooked everything from steak to eggs to stirfry.

I agree with Gabrielle, having the "proper" food makes me feel a little better about my poor student existence :PI bought a recipe box with cards and a matching pen for $45 and got everyone to write down recipes I associate with them for me. I have to cook for myself now I'm living out of home and it makes me so much happier!

good coffee. it makes the weekend a weekend, just knowing that it is finally time for the GOOD coffee. And also, an umbrella that is cute and has a button to open and close it.

What a cool idea. Probably not the sort of answer you're looking for, but I remember when we were super poor newlyweds, I would still splurge for the brand name food items – like real Cheerios instead of the store brand. It was only like 30 cents more per box and it made me feel happier when I opened the cupboard. : )

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