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So, what does it mean to live frugally? We see people talk about this subject a lot! All it really is about is money management and never living above your means.
Living frugally is the ability to stretch the dollars you spend by making sure you spend wisely, as well as, the conscious ability to substitute items that are less expensive and never wasting what you have purchased.
Frugal living can help you free up your income to give more, to save more, and in some way makes you more grateful for what you have, rather than always focusing on what you don’t. It’s not always easy to live frugally, but it is worth it.
So, I have put together a list of frugal living ideas anyone can master and implement into their lives.
1. Don’t waste a drop!
Toothpaste, Lotions, hair products, makeup, sauces, and the list can go on. Don’t waste a drop of anything.
2. Buy products that are multipurpose
Don’t buy shaving cream. Instead, use a little bit of your hair conditioner for shaving cream. Works wonders. Also, Dawn dish soap can be used in more places than just the dishes; such as cleaning counters, toilets, sinks, and even bathing the dog.
3. Meal plan and prep!
This is the best and easiest way to not waste any food or money. You only purchase what you need to make the meals and then cook in bulk. This is why we love the $5 meal planning service. This allows us to have our meals planned ahead of time and they even provide a grocery list with everything you will need.
Tip: always check your pantry and fridge before you go to the store and take note of what you already have.
4. Use a Cash Back Service
Download an app that gives you cash back on your groceries and other purchases. Here are three services I have used to get cash back on groceries items after purchase and cash back on other items at the time of purchase.
1. IBOTTA – Get cash back on groceries, extra coupons and more!
2. Ebates – Get cash back at the hottest store you already shop at plus on Travel and Hotels too! Earn $10 Walmart Cash Or $10 Ebates Free Cash for Signing up!
3. Swagbucks – Earn Cash Back on purchases plus Daily Trivia Games, Searches, and Surveys.
5. Read More and Watch Less.
Reading is always better than watching T.V. If you have your favorite shows though, there are great services like Hulu and Netflix to name a few that are way cheaper than cable. You can also purchase an antenna to get local channels.
6. Purchase things of Value.
Buy quality clothes that you can wear over and over again knowing that they will last. It’s ok to be caught in the same t-shirt and jeans more than once. I have clothes that I have had for over 10 years. I have my favorite pieces and I’m not afraid to wear them again and again.
7. 48 Hour Rule
Wait 48 hours before making a purchase that is more than $48. I like to call this the “48 Hour Rule”. After 48 hours, if you still want it and can afford it, go get it.
8. Buy a water filter and Drink more water.
This will not only save money but help the environment too. Skip the sugary soda, juices, and teas. Water is cheaper and also better for you, especially if you have a water filter.
9. Cancel Unnecessary Memberships.
We live in the days where it feels like everything is a membership and on a monthly retainer fee. You have Music like Apple and Pandora, Gym Memberships, Makeup Memberships, Shoe Memberships, and the list can go on and on. If you don’t use the items or go to the gym or massage parlor then evaluate the importance of the membership.
10. Be Patient
Never purchase anything full price. This includes clothes, new toys, new gadgets like phones and game consoles. Always buy items on sale, clearance, or have a coupon! Thrift Shops are great! Plato’s closet is the place to go if you looking for a new outfit for a date night or pictures. Remember, just because you purchase at a thrift store doesn’t mean you can’t find good quality designer items.
11. Always Pay Cash
Try and prevent any spending on the credit card, especially if you can’t afford to pay off the credit card on the next due date.
12. Always try to do things yourself
If something breaks, try to figure out a way to fix it yourself before paying someone else to come out. Now, there are things that do need a professional for so know when to call and when you can fix it yourself is important.
13. Skip the Hair Salon
For Women, hold back on dyeing your hair. I know for some this can be difficult with roots, but you can always work your way back to your natural color and spend less time and money at the salon.
14. “X” out the Extensions
Don’t buy extensions, whether it is Hair extensions or eyelash extensions. Extensions are expensive and you’re beautiful just the way you are!
15. A little goes a long way
Minimize the amount of makeup you wear. I personally work from home so the only time I actually put any makeup on is if I’m going an event of some sort or meeting with friends. Makeup is expensive, so the less I wear it, the further my money stretches.
If you do have to wear makeup on a daily, then I suggest using it sparingly. When I was working in an office, I had my mineral foundation, blush, concealer, chapstick, and mascara. Those were my only go to makeup products that I used every day. Very minimal and I didn’t over purchase products that I knew I wouldn’t use.
16. Don’t compare your life to others.
You don’t have to have the latest and greatest gadgets that the “Joneses” purchased. This goes with being grateful for what you have and what you can afford.
There you have it! 16 of our favorite frugal living tips that we implement and use daily. Remember no one is perfect, I love my coffee so we don’t only drink water but it is cheaper than all the sugary drinks out there. Also, living frugally is just being mindful of your money, the items you purchase and using every bit and drop of everything.
I enjoy living frugally because it makes me grateful for what I do have. It also allows me to save more money and give more back to the community.