How To Save Money | March 21

How To Save Money | March 21

With many people spending less in the last twelve months due to lack of a social life, commute or just skipping those mid-morning coffee runs, we should all have saved a fortune, right? Some people have been squirrling away their extra cash at the end of the month, other’s financial wellbeing, or priorities have changed significantly, and some have been waking up in the morning purely for their ASOS order (and that’s absolutely fine). If you’re scratching your head as to where all your money has gone at the end of the month and if you want to start saving for a rainy day, or something bigger then here are my tips.

Unsubscribe from mailing lists

Whether you signed up at the checkout, for a discount or can’t even remember doing it. I used to get 20 emails every morning, all cleverly tempting me with things I had no intention to buy until I saw them. Do a check of all the emails you get and assess if you genuinely want to see the content, or whether you’re just scared of missing out on something. Unsubscribe. You can always re-subscribe at a later date and it will reduce any temptation.

Make your savings, bills

If you’re like me, your bills come out on the 1st of the month so come the 2nd, you know how much you have to play with. The mistake a lot of people make is they keep the money in their account and transfer to their savings at the end of the month. This doesn’t work for me because money burns a hole in my pocket if I think it’s disposable. Set up some direct debits for short savings goals (e.g. holiday or new clothes fund) and schedule them to come out at the start of the month. It essentially becomes a bill, but it’s your savings.

Out of sight…

Similar to my last point, I sometimes transfer the majority of my wages into a savings account then transfer money in as I need it. It makes you think twice before spending because you’re going to see your savings go down and down.

Lay it bare

Budgeting is boring but it works. Lay it all out to get a clear picture of how you’re spending your money. Create a spreadsheet, categorise and add each individual spend (even if it’s 99p). I only did this for a few months but it allowed me to see where the forgotten transactions had gone, and I’m now more conscious of it.

Give yourself pocket money

I used to see my wages as a target to spend now, I allocate myself money each week that is essentially, disposable. It’s for buying clothes, books, coffee – things I want, but don’t necessarily need. It means I don’t feel guilty for treating myself things, but I’m not frittering away money for no reason.

Look at your outgoings

Do you need Netflix and Amazon Prime? Are you paying anything you didn’t realise you were still paying? Did you auto-renew on your car insurance? Are you paying interest on your credit card when you could get a 0% interest card and transfer the balance? I’m not saying the answer to any of the above will always be yes, but it’s important you’re asking yourself the question.

Educate yourself on savings

Did you know you can get up to £1K of free money from the UK Government every year if saving for retirement or your first home? Do you know your interest rates on your savings account, and where you can check who has the best rates? MoneySavingExpert is a great place to start and I’ve learned so much and spending and saving.

Celebrate saving

There’s still a stigma around people who watch their finances closely are ‘cheap’ or ‘tight’, and lack of knowledge around your finances is a sign of wealth when that couldn’t be further from the truth. Don’t feel guilty about not wasting money. Have conversations about saving with your friends and family, they will understand your priorities and you might even pick up some tips.

I hope some of the above has helped, whether you’re new to savings or just need to re-focus. If you have any thoughts, tips on saving money, or just want to say hello, please leave a comment below.

Buying Beauty Products Online

Buying Beauty Products Online

There’s not much I won’t buy online. From clothes, shoes, bags, jewellery, homeware, furniture, you name it. I don’t have the same anxiety about ‘seeing it’ in real life that others have, until it comes to beauty products. Foundations, lipsticks, even eye shadow palettes cause me so much stress when I need to buy them online. Pre-2020 this wasn’t an issue, my second home is a shopping centre and wandering around Boots or Superdrug with 7 swatches on my hand was a normal Saturday. Then the shops closed, and the shops that stayed open removed all their testers, so there was no merit in going to a shop to buy make-up. I started looking online and found a few tricks to make buying beauty online a little bit easier.

Findation / Match My Make-Up

Run out of your foundation, want to try something new but have spent hours agonising over Goggle images trying to find swatches? Sites such as Findation or Match My Make-Up provide a matching service. Put the details in of a foundation type, and shade, that matches you well and let it do the rest. This was a lifesaver when I wanted to buy a new Charlotte Tilbury foundation during lockdown but I didn’t know my shade.

Influenster

Think TripAdvisor but for products. There’s not much, beauty or not, that aren’t on Influenster. Detailed reviews with user photos, the ability to ask questions, as well as it’s own awards, Influenster will make sure you have all the information before checking out. I use this all the time and I contribute reviews as well as reading them. It is American based so not all UK brands are on there but I would say the vast majority will be. Influenster also has VoxBoxes where contributors can receive a VoxBox in exchange for reviews, there’s different campaigns for brands and you get a tailored selection of products or the full release. If you like to review products of all kinds, and you’re not on Influenster, I would recommend you sign up.

Blog Reviews

My favourite types of beauty posts to read are product empties, favourites, or new in beauty. I find it so helpful to see what other bloggers enjoy using and would recommend and find it re-assuring if I’m buying a product I’ve never tried, or seen before. Some of my favourite beauty buys have been discovered via blog posts. If you’re a beauty blogger, or enjoy beauty blogs, please leave your links in the comments below so other people can check out your beauty recommendations.

Read the Product Description

This sounds basic but I think the majority of people, myself included, have been caught buying products because of how they look, the name or because they’re heard other people talking about them but don’t actually know what the product is supposed to do. It’s so important to read the full product description and

Do You Know What You’re Looking For?

Understanding your skin is difficult. Everyone’s skin is unique to them and your skin type not only changes with so many factors, it can be difficult to understand in the first place. With brands throwing so many claims around about what products do, you need to wade through a lot of noise to get to what the product is, what it should do and more importantly, will it work for you. While we all have the luxury of time, if you haven’t already, I’d recommend putting some time in to research all things skin. You’ll be able to make more informed choices, reduce the time spent scratching your head and build a skincare/make-up routine that works for you. If you’re not sure where to start, I’d recommend Skincare by Caroline Hirons. The book is fantastic, it explains everything you need to know and gives some product recommendations.

I hope this post as been helpful and has given you a couple of ideas when buying beauty and skincare online. If you have any other tips, I’d love to know so please leave them in the comments below.