This post was featured at Diary of 1 and Save Money.
If beauty is only skin deep, why does it reach so deeply into our wallets? Although beauty products, attractive clothing, and other fashion items are necessary expenditures (goodness knows we don't want to look all the time the way we do first thing in the morning!), there are ways to save money on them. Try these suggestions and starting keeping your cash today:
- Give up the salon shampoo and conditioner. These products are specifically marketed to make you think you can't have luxurious hair without them...and they are priced to match. Try some of the more inexpensive knock-offs; Suave has a great line of products modeled after salon goods called Suave Professionals. They're excellent, for a fraction of the price. If you still long for those products, compromise by changing just your shampoo to a more affordable brand. If you absolutely can't give them up, buy your salon products online for big savings. Potential savings: $15-$54 per year.
- Color your own hair. If you color your hair regularly and you're serious about saving some money, this is a great way to do it. At-home hair color kits have come a long way, and they are easy to use. Better still, consider going back to your natural color and skip the coloring all together; you'll save money and time. If you absolutely can't give up getting your hair done professionally, think about switching to a more affordable salon. Potential savings: $264-$1152 per year.
- Get rid of your gym pass. Alright, time to 'fess up! You haven't used that gym pass nearly as much as you thought you would (or at all, ha!). Cancel your pass and exercise on the cheap: go running or walking outside, rent aerobics or yoga videos, or create your own workout right in your living room. If you can't cancel your pass, try selling it through craigslist.com, or perhaps to a friend who thinks they are going to use it (ha, again!). If you absolutely can't give up fitness classes or gym time, consider joining the community fitness center for a less expensive workout. Potential savings: $240-$360 per year.
- Buy one less article of clothing this month, and pass on the designer clothing. It's easy to pick up a new clothing item here and there, but the receipts will really start to add up. Each month, try buying one item less than you ususally do, and the savings will add up as well. For the fashionistas out there, skip the designer clothes completely and look for similar trends at affordable prices. If you absolutely can't give up your designer fashions, try bagborroworsteal.com for the latest fashions at a much better price. Potential savings: $120-$4800 per year.
- Give up doing your nails professionally. With a manicure needing a touch-up every 3-4 weeks, getting your nails done by a professional can be a money-consuming habit. Going au naturel will save you loads of cash. If you absolutely can't give up getting your nails done, try switching to a less expensive salon. Potential savings: $180-$595 per year.
- Use at-home sunless tanners. Like hair color kits, sunless tanning lotions have come a long way from their humble beginnings. You can get a great tan right at home, and save yourself time and money by skipping the salon. Sunless tanners are also easier on your skin in the long run. Potential savings: $240-$960 per year.
Beauty and fashion doesn't have to cost you a bundle. With a little sacrifice--or compromise--you are well on your way to saving some money, and looking good while you do it.