Awhile back, I was able to get a free online subscription to GQ magazine. Since then, I have been receiving emails showcasing articles from the website. Most of them don’t interest me but some catch my eye. The article that caught my eye this time was "The best office desk drawer is stocked for whatever disaster life throws at you."

The idea is pretty simple. Every man should have a drawer at his desk filled with essentials for some of life’s little emergencies.

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The thing is, GQ decided to find the most expensive items they could find and call them essentials. I decided to take the list and recreate it in a more affordable manner. Almost all of the items can be purchased on Amazon.

"The best office drawer" - Casual Matt edition

The list

New Balance Men’s Fresh Foam CRUZ Running Shoe - $67.46

Whether it is working out or just needing a little something more comfortable to walk around in, a nice pair of sneakers can provide the comfort you need.

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I felt that GQ required too high of a price for a simple pair of New Balance shoes. These Yeezy styled shoes, also by New Balance, can provide a relaxed, yet office acceptable look

Buttoned Down Slim Fit Dress Shirt - $39.00

Ah, the humble white dress shirt. Perfect for almost every occasion. It is good for you to have an emergency shirt just in case that leftover pasta decides to attack. Elegant does not need to be expensive.

There is no need to spend over $300 when you can get a shirt that looks just as good for about a tenth of the price.

Couple that with the fact that the GQ recommended shirt would NEVER fit a fat guy like me, and you have a recipe for one pissed off employee.

The Tie Bar Knit Tie - $29.99

First off, I think knit ties are ugly as sin. I don’t want to wear a shred of Grandma’s scarf around my neck. Nevertheless, my quest to recreate the list continues.

If you are going to buy a knit tie, don’t commit credit card hara-kiri, just buy the $30 version of the Tie Bar.

Duke Cannon Solid Cologne - $24.95

Other than the fact that it is fun to say, there is no reason to spend $92 on the Le Labo Noir 29 solid cologne recommended by GQ. First, fragrance is such a subjective thing. What may smell great to one guy might smell awful to the next. Context is also important.

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We all knew that one guy in college or high school who thought a can of Axe body spray counted as a shower.

Secondly, there's the price. Why should I spend a day’s pay to buy a bullet sized cartridge of scent you might not even like. The Duke Cannon solid cologne comes in a 1.5 Oz tin. To get the same amount of La Lebo (see, isn’t it fun), you would need to spend over $800. A portion of the price also goes to veterans charities, so you can be patriotic while smelling manly.

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Hubble Contacts - $30

I don’t wear contacts, so I am going to go with GQ on this one. If you wear glasses like I do, Warby Parker has glasses starting at $95 including prescription. There are also cheaper alternatives like Zenni Optical, though the quality might not be as high.

Listerine Strips - $4

Can’t argue with GQ on this one. Your breath stank? Pop one of these strips in and have fresh breath in seconds.

Charcoal Infused Toothbrush (4 pack) - $12.97

Again, you can go to the dollar store and get a toothbrush. If you must have your charcoal infused bamboo toothbrush, go with this four pack. At least these are available on Amazon.

Burt’s Bees Sensitive Wipes - $12.94

$15 dollars for 20 wipes or $13 for 90 wipes? Take your pick.

Every Man Jack Eye Cream - $8.99

Why you need this, I don’t know. GQ makes it sound like every guy should have this to make it look like they are less tired at the end of the day. While slightly smaller than GQ’s recommendation, this is only $9, so go for it if you have the cash.

Arm & Hammer Essentials Deodorant (two pack) - $8

I have used this product myself and it is great. Smells clean, no irritation. It’s simple and it works. Plus it does not contain aluminum if that is a concern for you.

R+Co Dry Shampoo Paste - $28

Considering that I don’t know a thing about dry shampoo, I am going to defer to GQ’s recommendation on this one. I know you can get cheaper dry shampoo, but for a product this specific, GQ seems to have picked the best product.

GQ total for all 11 items - $956

My total: $266

My thoughts

The idea makes sense if you work in an environment that has desks with drawers. You could also keep these in a backpack. Every day accidents happen and it is a good idea to have items to compensate for those days.There are a few items that GQ missed which I would have added, and there are some that I would have taken out of the list entirely. I understand getting quality products, but there is a difference between quality products and the cost associated with them. Just look at Brandless, their whole model is making everything $3.That being said, if anyone from GQ is reading this, they can send me the items on their list so I can see for myself.

- Casual Matt

For more of my writing, see how gaming addiction might be affecting those around you.

For more Style writing, read about the 12-year-old fashion designer taking the world by storm.

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