That's me. I'm a cheapskate. A frugal little whore. Most of the time.
Over the years I've learned when to spend the money and when to skip it. I've learned a few tricks that maybe can help someone out somehow. Not sure why this is on my mind today. Probably because I'm broke as hell, stressed as hell, and want to spend lots of money. Which is how I usually deal with being broke and stressed.
Things I think you should never buy on the cheap:
I'm not saying to always pay full price for those things. I'm a HUGE fan of getting deals on normally expensive things. Black Friday is the perfect day for scoring on the bed linens and jeans..maybe even the furniture. The best deals I ever found on Black Friday was a dishwasher, a convection microwave, and 1200 thread count sheet sets. It worked out to be able to save for those because I knew we'd end up finding deals and wouldn't have to wrestle the crowds because they're not common Christmas shopping things. All of those were under $100 each. DSW has the best clearance racks for shoes...combine that 70% off price tag with one of their $5 or $10 off coupons and you're walking out with a $150 pair of shoes for $8.
Just about everything else is fair game. I know some would argue the furniture bit there but after 3 kids, 16 years, and countless sofas, dining room tables, and recliners I've learned my lesson. There really IS a difference between a $250 sofa and an $1800 one. It's about 8 years and 2 kids worth of difference....and still going. Spend the money. You'll thank yourself, unless you're one of those people that has to buy new stuff every year. In that case just hit up IKEA.
I love Suave shampoos and conditioners, I've used the Biolage, Paul Mitchell, you name it. The Suave really does work just as well. Instead of the expensive hair oils I use Burts Bees Baby Bee Almond Oil. I buy Target brand body wash, unless my favorite Coconut SoftScrub is on sale. I've used Aussie Sprunch spray since 6th grade. It's changed a bit but I can't seem to give it up and it's still under $3 a bottle. My favorite eye liner of all time is still the $.93 long stick Wet n Wild. I can't get enough of the NYC $1.50 lipgloss. I can deal with regular baby lotion instead of the fancy pants stuff. Now Johnson and Johnson has a few different scents like Cocoa and Shea Butter, Country Apple, and Lavender. Nothing high end but it gets the job done. Cheap nailpolish is my obsession. I actually like doing my own nails at home with a cocktail and an epsom salt soak.
What I really have the most fun with is planning vacations on a budget. It's a challenge I take very seriously. My biggest secret is VRBO. I guess I can't really call it a secret, I think I tell everyone I know about it. It's how I got a 5 bedroom, 5 bath house with its own pool and hot tub for $1100 for 8 days. It's how I went to Hawaii, twice, for $85 a day. I love it, I really can't get enough. If you're planning a trip for three nights or longer it's a must. You always have a fully stocked kitchen so you can save even more by making your own meals. Not a fantastic idea but hey..if you want to afford to go to Hawaii or the likes, you make concessions. I wanted the Hawaiian food experience so instead of restaurants or eateries (we still went to a few) we hit the local farmers market or food stands and cooked with all the local fare. I think I have more fun than should be allowed searching for the perfect place when we decide to go somewhere. Searching for free or cheap activities. Look for local Groupons before you go for restaurants or shops.
I'm not afraid to hit up places like TJ Maxx for shoes, clothes, even my pots and pans. It's also a great place to pick up small gifts like cook books, picture frames, kitchen gadgets, or even a bathrobe and pajama set or a kitchen apron.
This post kind of came out of left field but I knew I needed to write about something and this ended up being it.
If not, at least you killed a few minutes of your work day. Or not..because it's Saturday.