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Being Frugal

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  • Being Frugal

    So I don't know if there is a thread like this already but anyone have any frugal tips?
    On any part of life?

    My mum is a seamstress and has turn dresses/skirts that people have given to us (instead of tossing them) into new dresses & skirts for my daughters.

    We grow some of our own food, make our own compost.

    Sent from my HTC_PN071 using Marks Daily Apple Forum mobile app

  • #2
    You don't need any store-bought household cleaners. You can mix 1:10 vinegar:water in a spray bottle. You can use baking soda and water as toothpaste. zturn the heat down. Use flourescent of LED lights. If your power's cheaper at night, do laundry before you go to bed and put it in the dryer in the morning.

    Don't buy the following items at the dollar store (you pay 1/2 as much and use 3 or 4 times as many):

    Dish soap
    Dish sponges
    Paper towels
    Toilet paper
    The Champagne of Beards


    • #3
      Being Frugal

      Frozen produce over fresh (usually cheaper not always).

      Buy in bulk when food stuff is on sale; freeze.

      Only shop for clothes at turn of the seasons sales (usually starting new year and last week of June) for last season's clothes.

      Thrift/garage sale shop.

      Go to hair schools for basic trims and cuts.

      Know how to trim your own bangs, or don't have bangs at all as they are expensive to maintain. I don't get salon haircuts ever because it is just so much money.

      Don't ever buy a beauty product that does not flatter YOU. Try it before buying. Tons of females have tons of makeup they bought because it looked cute on a celeb or because it is the IT color of the season.

      Coupons. Use them. Be it it's a code online (retailmenot), or, or at your local HEB (omg I miss Texas HEB for this reason... Saved 40% some times).

      Drink/smoke less... If you can. XD

      Superfluous spending: Starbucks, subscriptions (magazines, services) you don't use, eating out more than 1x a week when you don't travel, etc.

      Groupon deals. Can be used to your advantage (you wanted to try something anyway) or to your detriment (you wouldn't have bought that yogurt maker if you didn't see deal on it).
      Last edited by TQP; 01-26-2014, 06:45 PM.
      Gelatin/bone broth recipes blog.
      Professional Style Website.
      #TeamBrisket Shirts


      • #4
        Good ones, TP.
        The Champagne of Beards


        • #5
          Learn some of the local edible wild plants. You can also grow your own food.
          My opinions and some justification


          • #6
            Oh and this is only applicable if you are in a densely populated area like me and have access to a multitude of grocery stores within a few blocks: comparison shop and keep a running list of which stores has the weekly sales and which stores has the lowest non-sale price. Key Food's lamb is $6.99 regular but $3.99-4.99 sale. Butcher shop is $5.99. Korean grocer has the cheapest fruits and middle Eastern spice store has the cheapest artisan cheese unless Key Foods/Trader Joe's have sales.

            The Salvation Army around me has a 50% off everything sale on Wednesday. Another thrift store has sales every holiday. I haven't started thrifting again but I already have the relevant research on file.
            Gelatin/bone broth recipes blog.
            Professional Style Website.
            #TeamBrisket Shirts


            • #7
              Frugal beauty tricks I learned from broke makeup artists/models:

              -crushed aspirin + honey + yogurt (three types of weak acids) masks instead of acid peels.
              -baking soda + cheap shampoo instead of "deep cleaning" shampoo. Don't use too often.
              - leftover coffee grounds instead of cellulite cream/scrubs (main ingredient is always caffeine anyway). Use in shower and it's very messy, but you smell like coffee afterwards. Good for body exfoliation before the beach too.
              -milk of magnesia as a toner (if you have oily skin)
              -baby powder as dry shampoo (I think most peeps know this)
              -baby wipes as makeup remover on the go
              -to travel light and look fabulous for a one-time big event, go to your local sephora at your destination city (learned this from a broke actress lol... Haven't used it yet but I might).
              -generally, quality over quantity... Makeup, products, clothes, food, entertainment.
              -(Oh and fashion-related: if you are short/petite shop in the juniors/teen section. Always cheaper for the same stuff. )
              Gelatin/bone broth recipes blog.
              Professional Style Website.
              #TeamBrisket Shirts


              • #8
                Craigslist is pretty useful. A lot of used stuff is just as functional as if it was new, and there are no taxes or regulations to raise the cost.
                In matters of style, swim with the current. In matters of principle, stand like a rock.

                This message has been intercepted by the NSA, the only branch of government that listens.


                • #9
                  Instead of buying new clothes, learn how to refashion/upcycle what you have into new functional pieces. Pinterest is a wealth of ideas for this.

                  Also instead of buying new clothes if yours are worn out and you like the refashion idea, hit up the sales at the thrift stores ($1.29 Mondays at Goodwill rock! My local St. Vincent duPaul has 99 cent Sundays, but Goodwill carries better quality clothes than both SVdP and Value Village) and buy clothes that are 2-3 sizes too big for you. Technically you will be looking more at the fabric of the item rather than the style. This will give you plenty of extra fabric to work with.

                  Use Pinterest to find ideas on how to make a lot of household items/products with things you already have in the house.

                  Don't buy books, use the library - both physical, audio, and digital loans.

                  Also, if you have a Kindle, Amazon has tons of free books every single day...I've got about 1,000 on mine from the last 2 years that were free and I still haven't gotten to most of them yet.

                  iTunes has a new free song or two every Tuesday, so far I've liked all but a handful of them. Amazon has a lot of free MP3 songs and sampler albums that are free too.

                  Cancel your cable and just pay for one or two streaming services like Netflix/Hulu. We've been cable free for almost 6 years now and we don't miss it at all. We've saved hundreds this way.

                  Several major networks show episodes of shows right on their websites, free of charge.

                  You can recycle a lot of packaging materials into functional household items...again Pinterest!

                  Got a store with a membership card that racks up fuel points, use it. We recently did not renew our Costco membership because we were mainly keeping it for the lower gas prices. We've been earning enough with our Fred Meyer card to get gas between 10 to 60 cents cheaper than Costco.

                  Phone apps like Shopkick, ReceiptHog, Checkpoints, and iBotta (this one not so much anymore after dropping the processed food stuffs), can help you earn money or gift cards to other stores/venues.


                  • #10
                    Rice. Sigh.

                    Big Lots! Woo!

                    No car. Ride bike.

                    Use condoms.

                    Wear things until they have holes in them. Continue to wear them (especially shoes).



                    • #11
                      practicing minimalism helps.


                      • #12
                        -Figure out when and where it is your local grocery store puts out the "sale" meats (the ones close to their sell by date.) Clean them out and freeze it. I've gotten organic, free range air chilled chicken breast for $2/ lb. I've gotten pork shoulder for $0.50/ lb.
                        -If you have veggies in your fridge about to go bad, either plan a meal around it or chop and freeze it.
                        -Chili is cheap, if made right. So is curry.
                        -Use meal "stretchers": rice, frozen spinach, cheap veggie o' the week, (sweet) potatos
                        -"Use it up, wear it out, make do, or go without." An old phrase from the Depression my Gramma taught me that I try to live buy.
                        -Fix things until they can't be fixed, including clothes and cars. Then salvage what you can for scrap, parts, or selling.
                        -You see the brightest, shiniest, newest thing? You don't need that.
                        -You don't need new furniture until what you have breaks. It may be 3 decades out of "fashion," but if it's serviceable, you don't need to replace it. My couches are older than I am. My coffee tables (dumpster resurrections) might be.
                        -If you need something, check what's free or cheap first. If it's still perfectly serviceable but hideous, that's what paint and slipcovers are for. (Says the woman with the brown tweed couches.) No point in paying $600 when you can get it free.
                        -Dumpster diving, curb rescues, and thrift stores are your best friend.
                        -Learn to sew, learn to tailor, and learn the fine art of epoxying things back together. Also learn the art of invisible or decorative functional patches, whether on clothes, walls, or anything else.
                        -75% of the time, you can make that repair yourself or get a buddy to show you how to do it. That said, if it involves remodeling, knocking out walls, electricity, or an internal combustion engine, make sure you know what you're doing or get a pro. Electrocution is not your friend.
                        -Can you get by without whatever it is? You don't need it. Is it a one time use purchase for a repair or something similar? Beg or borrow it from a friend or neighbor.
                        -Birth control, whatever your method. Extra mouths cost money.
                        Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, steak in one hand, chocolate in the other, yelling "Holy F***, What a Ride!"
                        My Latest Journal


                        • #13
                          Never throw leftover food out - turn it into soup and freeze in single portions so you only heat what you're actually going to use (you can put pretty much anything into leftover soup!).

                          Learn to sew and darn - then you can repair just about anything in the way of clothes and soft furnishings, and make your own curtains and blinds, too.

                          Use charity/thrift stores - you can always personalise what you buy with bits of worn out clothing that really can't be used any more.

                          Learn to turn collars and cuffs on shirts - you'll get several years more use from them.

                          Use your freezer if you have one. Buy food on offer and freeze it. If you have to bulk buy, then consider bulk cooking and freezing in appropriate portions (it's amazing how much money and ultimately time that saves!).

                          Turn lights off when you leave a room, and consider using fewer lights in each room. Use daylight where possible.

                          If you're cold, don't turn up the heating, put on extra layers instead. Wear bedsocks at night and add an extra blanket.

                          Use your local library - they can usually even order books for you if you're prepared to wait for them!

                          If you have children and they bring back loads of paintings from nursery or school, then save them and, with your child's input, use them for wrapping paper for presents.

                          Keep greetings cards, cut off the fronts and re-use for someone else or use instead of gift tags.

                          Make presents for people, don't buy them.

                          Teach yourself basic DIY so that you don't have to pay professionals to do minor jobs such as putting up shelves or curtain rails, but DO be prepared to pay for more complicated jobs if you don't know how to do them yourself. Learn to upcycle and recycle your belongings!


                          • #14
                            Hah, being "thrifty" with the heat cost me some pipes last week

                            Luckly the fiance's brother is a handy man...



                            • #15
                              If you have a clothes dryer, don't use it to dry your clothes completely. A short (10-15mins) spin in the dryer at low or medium heat will knock off most lint and keep even towels from feeling rough after you've air-dried them the rest of the way. Washing isn't so hard on your clothes, but drying is, and everything will last much longer if you air-dry it.

                              Replace all your lightbulbs with LEDs. They will more than pay for themselves between long bulb life and the small fraction of energy they require vs. incandescents. The new ones are much brighter, have a nicer quality of light, and are less expensive than the last bunch I bought two years ago--they've hit the tipping point for me. I've been buying a few during each Costco trip lately, and almost have all the incandescents replaced. I've relegated the CFLs to the basement and garage, and will replace them once they've burned out.

                              If you can, go car-free. This is a huge one. I never made car payments, but I sure as hell don't miss maintenance, repairs, gas, insurance, registration, parking costs, sitting in traffic, and all the other costs of car ownership. I love being able to read books on the bus and let someone else do the driving. I get a lot of walking in every week. I'm getting a bike, and looking forward to it. When I do need a car, I either use Zipcar (car sharing by the hour) or rent one at the Enterprise office in my neighborhood. I've learned to use Zipcar to my best advantage (all day, once a month, instead of more frequent short trips), and only rent a car every 3-4 months or so.

                              I make lists of things I actually need, plan my shopping ahead of time, and stick to the lists. I do "big shopping" that requires a car as infrequently as possible, and load up on as much as I reasonably can during each trip so I can put off the next one for longer. Since I use Zipcar (a car-sharing service), I also plan things like veterinary appointments and donation drop-offs for my shopping days, and take a car for the entire day to get the best rate.

                              Also, know your own habits and preferences. I used to cook up big batches of food and freeze it in smaller portions because I always heard that was the most frugal thing to do. For me it's not. I prefer fresh food that's quick to prepare; most of my meals are stir-fries, salads, or omelets. So the frozen stuff languishes forgotten until it's freezer-burnt and nasty and gets tossed out, meaning that good frugal tip is actually wasteful and counterproductive for me. Frozen veg isn't a bargain or a convenience for me, either--not when I live near a decent cheap produce stand. So my freezer is for meat, gin, vodka, and a purely medicinal bottle of Jagermeister (hey, it's good cough syrup).