These days it’s all about saving money when and where you can. With the cost of everything continuing to rise while wages stay the same, the smart woman in the know is always looking for ways to cut costs on the things you can so you don’t go broke on the things you can’t. Whether you’re saving up for a designer handbag or a European vacation, a little planning and some basic life hacks will help you achieve your goals.
Coupons are everywhere these days from your Sunday paper to dozens of website dedicated to the art of coupon clipping. Use them. There are coupons for cleaning products, off-brand face moisturizer and cleanser, even shoes. Don’t skip that weekend edition newspaper and go to your favorite search engine, type in what you’re looking for and the word coupons.
One of the easiest ways to save money is to plan when you spend it. You know that you’ll need thick socks, a heavy coat and boots for winter so don’t wait until the cold weather is upon us and pay full price. Instead check for deals at the end of the previous season. Keep your style classic and don’t be a slave to trends and you’ll find your money goes a lot further.
This is where it pays to be a woman with a voice. Don’t you hate when you splurge on expensive mascara only to find it on sale days later? Don’t just shake your fist at the injustice of it all, do something instead. Grab the sales paper and your purchase receipt and ask for a price match. It’s not a lot but over time it sure ads up.
Bonus tip: Check the papers regularly for sales on your favorite products.
Shopping smart starts with generic brands when it makes sense. Things like paper towels, cotton swabs and my favorite, mascara—can certainly be bought for a few bucks at your local drug store. The formula isn’t all that different because the brush is what matters. SO if you have splurged on the expensive stuff, save the wand and use it with the cheap brand. Voila, great lashes on a budget!
This is true for household products too. Sure the Swiffer brand dusters are fantastic but the off-brand versions get the job done at a fraction of the cost.
Just because you’re on a budget or saving for something special doesn’t mean everything has to come super cheap. Some things—heavy winter coat, a killer pair of black heels, a quality bag—are worth paying a little extra. If you plan to wear a coat for more than one winter, splurging on a coat with good lining and solid fit makes sense. But if you’re a trend-a-holic then it’s best to stick to low end items with low end price tags.
Some products like shampoo and conditioner already do two jobs in one but investing in other products like this will save you more in the long run. Think of leave-in conditioner, skin products that contain sunscreen and every day hacks like using conditioner instead of shaving cream. If you really want to save money opt for a moisturizing agent like coconut oil that can double for cooking.
This is one area where every woman I know could stand to cut back a little. Or a lot. One of the first things you can do to save money is at home manis and pedis. Even with the cost of materials (polish, remover, files and buffers) you’ll come out ahead. And best of all, you don’t have to pay for weekly touchups. Get your girlfriends together to swap colors and get help on those hard to reach spots.
This is true for expensive trips to the salon and spa for beauty upkeep, but it’s also true around the home. Think of the things you can do but you simply don’t like to do; is that task worth another few years of saving for a home or a trip around the world? Probably not, especially if you could speed it up with a little DIY!
No matter where in the world you live one thing is universal; we throw out a lot of trash that could be reused for another purpose. I know you want to argue this point but think about things like old t-shirt that you could repurpose into cleaning rags. Or buy a pack of 10 or even 20 cloth napkins and save on your weekly purchase of disposable ones.
Cleaning is necessary but it isn’t fun so why spend the big bucks on expensive cleaning products when a little distilled vinegar, water and lemon juice can get the job done, and it’s less toxic. Use old towels to create your own fabric softener sheets and look to nontoxic products around the home to help you clean without the chemicals or the cost.
One of the best ways to save money is to take advantage of the sharing and gig economy on the rise. You need your taxes done without paying through the nose and your accountant friend needs your help with a social media campaign. Put your skills to use to get the things you need done instead of your wallet.
The point is that there are always things you can do to save money on the things you need so that you can splurge on the things you really want.
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