How to Do Beauty on a Dime?

I’m cheap! I don’t like to pay full price for anything if I can help it. I will shop around and shop around until I decide I don’t really need something. I will literally talk myself out of purchasing certain things because I don’t want to pay the price on the tag. However, the one thing that can get me – almost every time is makeup (including skincare). Since I know this and I know what my account looks like, I follow certain tips to keep my spending in check.

  1. Try Before You Buy – If there are high end products that you are interested in purchasing, you can go and get a free sample from Sephora of the product. It will last you 3 – 4 uses, depending on the amount placed in the container. This will allow you real life use to determine whether you want it or not. If you’re still unsure about it, go back and get another. Most times, if you’re buying something from Sephora, that means you’re spending about $40, per item, so it’s best that you decide whether you actually like the item. Also, if you are shopping at Ulta and there is a brand with a designated artist there, they will also provide you a sample of the time notwithstanding that Ulta itself does not provide samples.
  2. Use What You Have – Confession, I am a product junkie. I got into makeup in 2016 and since then, whenever my favorite YouTuber recommended a product for me and I had the money, I would buy it – drugstore or high end. So as you can imagine, I have several products, from foundation to makeup brushes. I have more foundation that I can use in the next year, but every time a new one is mentioned, I feel the need to get it. But not now, I put myself on a no spend. What that means is before I can buy new products, I need to use what I have. I need to use up all of the contents of one foundation product before I can purchase another. This means that I will get all of my money’s worth from a product before moving on.
  3. Product Swap – If you have something that you don’t like that you’ve discussed with a friend, and the friend has something that she doesn’t’ like, switch with her. Along those lines, you could even make a few extra dollars by selling it on Poshmark. I have sold perfume and eyeshadow pallets on Poshmark and Facebook as well. Swapping items allows you to try something that you wanted to try without having to spend any extra money, even during your no spend period.
  4. Donate What You Don’t Like – If you can’t swap the product out or sell it on a third party site, donate the item. There are women’s shelters and youth groups who are always interested in beauty products. These women have fallen on hard times and could use some items to help them feel beautiful again. When they’re going on job interviews, a little foundation can make the difference with confidence.
  5. Return what Doesn’t Work For You – Return. Return. Return. Stores have return policies for a reason. The way most stores make their profit is by literally banking on people not returning items that they don’t like. Look around, I’m sure you have at least three beauty items that you have sitting in your stash that you haven’t used, like ever, but didn’t return. How much money is sitting there collecting dust? You can return beauty products anywhere. Department stores, drugstores, boutique stores. At Sephora, so long as you have an insider account, they can look up your purchase at a stand alone store without having a receipt. You must have purchased the item with your account for this to work though. The same thing goes with Ulta. So long as you purchased the items using your account information, phone number or email address, they have record of the purchase and will return the item. It must have at least 60% of the product remaining. If you go to Ulta and you don’t have a receipt and they can’t find the purchase on your account, they will refund you only the lowest selling price of the item. Lastly, Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, and Target also allow for returns, even if you’ve tried the product. Because, let’s be honest, it is super easy to get the wrong shade of makeup when you’re shopping in the store.

These are just a few tips. If you are interested in more beauty on a dime, check out this video where I give more money saving tips.

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