Top 5 things you use in daily retirement that you shouldn't skimp on

Since the thread is Retire well on less, there are a few things that I think are worth paying up for:

  1. A nice mattress with luxury bed sheets (680 threads or higher)
    you spend at least 1/3 of your time in bed, why not sleep in comfort (the Costco 680 thread bedsheets are my go to for this category)

  2. A nice pair of sunglasses…When you try on a nice pair, you never want to go back to anything less (for me, it would be a good pair of Maui Jim’s)

  3. A nice, warm winter jacket ( for the colder days and nights). If i had to choose one Winter Jacket, it would a Northface Puffer Jacket (1996 Retro Nuptse Jacket or similar)

  4. An electric Toothbrush…Makes all the difference in mouth care…once you switch from the regular old fashion brushes, you never want to go back…

  5. Comfortable undershirts/t-shirts. paying up is worth the comfort…actually the brand I prefer is probably cheaper than the standard Hanes/Fruit of the Loom 3 packs. Ever try 32 degrees sleep t-shirts…so, so comfortable…

Have you tried any items on the list?
What would be on your personal list of daily items that you would pay up for to live a more comfortable life?

Looking forward to trying items from the older, wiser crowd whom have more life experience than me… :slight_smile:


I actually don’t like electric toothbrushes, have tried a few out, like manual better.

I trail run, so a good pair of running shoes is necessary. I like Hoka’s.

Like to kayak on rivers, close to shore on bigger waters. Upgraded from the cheap, uncomfortable boats that retail for a few hundred bucks from sporting goods stores, and purchased a Hurricane Santee model. Night and day difference in comfort and handling, and luckily bought it pre covid, before the prices doubled.

A vehicle in very good shape is needed, not just for comfort but for safety and reliability.

I like to xc ski in the winter, so a good pair of ski’s, boots, bindings, and poles are well worth the cost. Fischer is my favorite skate ski, and I like Madshus classic ski’s, but they’re all pretty good nowadays.

Good food, almost always prepared at home, is worth it. Am becoming less and less impressed with dining out.


I have to agree with #4. You won’t believe the difference an electric toothbrush makes. If you have never tried one you won’t be disappointed. I suggest giving one a try.


Fresh local produce, top of the line chef’s knife that holds its edge and lasts a lifetime.


I have tried to pull the trigger on this more than once, but I’m just too cheap.


I’m like that too. But a few decades ago, when I was visiting my parents house, I had a realization. My dad was cutting dried salami with an interesting looking knife. I’d seen it throughout my childhood, but was never interested in cooking knives. The knife had a worn wooden handle and appeared to be quite old and worn. But it cut wonderfully. We discussed it. Turns out that it is a Henckel knife that he got from his father (my grandfather) when he died, and that my grandfather got it from his father after he died fighting in WWI. So that knife is over 100 years old and still functioning wonderfully. A few weeks later I bit the bullet and bought a Henckels set for multiple hundreds of bucks. I still have the set 3+ decades later (maybe 4 or close to 4 at this point). They look new and function very well. They look newer because they don’t use wooden grips anymore, they use some sort of plastic composite that appears to stay in better shape. When you buy Henckels, or any German brand, it is important to buy their “main” brand, not their cheap knock-off brand. Usually you can tell by “Made in Germany” printed on each knife versus “Made in China/Spain/etc” on them.

A few years later when I noticed a terrific sale on Henckels steak knives I bought a set of those as well.

My main set is similar to this one, but without the scissors.


Excellent knives are available at reasonable prices. Not the absolute best, but great value. I find the reviews at America’s Test Kitchen of anything related to the kitchen to be reliable, knives or otherwise. Such as this review of chef’s knives.

I bought the bread knife that was their top pick and it is so sharp it is almost intimidating. My steak knives are actually a bunch of Victorinox paring knives that do double duty. Not serrated, just sharp.

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Yes, agree on this. I’ve had one of these going on five years now and it is still, mostly very sharp. Bread knives are fiendishly difficult to sharpen well, though, so we’ll see what the next couple years bring.



I have one of these electric sharpeners. It has three sharpening stages. The left most is for blades in really bad shape and is very aggressive. The middle is much more moderate and sets the edge. The right-most is a sof of rubber with some abrasive that provides that last polish to the edge. In theory, once the knife is sharp the first time only the third one will be needed. And, they say, the third one can be used on wavy edges such as those bread knives. I haven’t tried it.


Good quality, comfortable shoes. Pure gold, worth investing in (an equivalent of having a good desk/computer chair). Hoka’s are next on my list to buy for running. Only, I prefer white shoe laces (flat cotton for my running shoes, leather for my fancy ones), cannot explain why. The model I like comes with blue ones so I’ll replace them. Okay, that part is more a matter of taste than comfort or necessity, I just really like how white laces look on any shoes. A personal preference bordering OCD, I know. Back to the topic. The shoes keep the spine properly aligned so this is not where you want to try to save.

A good mattress. A must. Same as good shoes and a chair. Had some lower back pain that got significantly better with changing the mattress. To be fair, it was the whole package - a new chair, mattress, exercising. Still, I think the mattress played the main role. As for the sheets, natural fabrics work best for me.

I’ll add good undies. Ones that have good elastic around the waist, are long enough to hold in your junk but not too tight and have excellent wicking properties to avoid any rash.

I buy these. They last forever. DW just ordered a bunch of them for her as well.



That is why I think of bread knives like disposable razors. When they get dull replace them.

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