Essentials in Motion

While taking the following pictures at Target, I looked at more of the things that were sold out a few months ago and the things that were fully stocked now. The hand sanitizer was a big one, at one point it was impossible to find hand sanitizer, let alone anything that had an antibacterial killer in it. Now the hand sanitizers are back and fully stocked. Most of the stores I shop at daily like Target, Kroger or Meijer, were sold out for months, there were literally no places I could find what I needed, regardless of the time of day.

While taking my pictures, I wanted to show how these things that were once a rare find, are now everywhere. Toilet paper, paper towels and hand sanitizers are a select few things people were in desperate need of during quarantine back in March. I tried finding some pictures of people buying disinfecting spray or wipes, but as an essential worker who sees how fast these things are selling it out, I believe more people are giving up trying to find things like Lysol spray/wipes, simply because usually walking into a store they are sold out in my area.

Most of the pictures I took were just of the aisles, products or signs telling people how many of a product they could purchase. The signs are a big thing in stores now, most stores limit guests to 1-3 of the same sanitizing or disinfecting items. Most of the things that were in the stores I went to find the best visual of missing essentials were sold out. While working at these stores, every day we get asked “do you all have Lysol? Are there any Lysol wipes…” The answer has been “no” very often.

The picture I took of the mother and daughter in the hand sanitizer aisle was interesting, because as soon as I walked up, she said “oh let’s try this one.” It is kind of strange now that I think about it because there are so many different types of sanitizer that we didn’t have before. Like the hair/body company “Sauvé” now has their own kind now. It is just an odd thing because I think of how it was only a couple different brands, the most used is “GERM-X,” now there are about 5-10 brands to choose from.

I honestly don’t think it was difficult to capture what I wanted to, because I knew I wanted to have pictures of what stores lacked and what they had an overflowing amount of, but it was difficult to show what should have been there because a lot of stores are simply filling in the gaps of empty aisles through out the store where there should be antibacterial wipes, sprays or soaps at. Clearly, these companies are getting better at making sure there are the essential needs for everyone and their households, but I think it is very hard to keep that up, especially when there are way more people than there are companies that make the items we may need.

While looking at some other past assignments where my peers went to stores and there was nothing, this is  big progress.

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