11/09/2014

Update | Spending Ban Overview


If you've read any of my posts from the last month or so, you'll have probably seen me mention that I've been on a spending ban since the end of July. I thought I'd do a quick post to tell you all about my experience as it's now officially over (thank God)!

So technically speaking, I did fail BUT I feel like it wasn't a complete fail as it could have been a lot worse. I originally set myself the target of not spending anything until after Leeds Festival which was August 24th. Although I did break the rules and spend money, it was all on items I wanted to wear to Leeds so I couldn't realistically wait until afterwards. 
I bought a couple of chokers from Ebay but only spent about £5 so it wasn't a huge dent in my funds and the day before Leeds, I decided I wanted a floral headpiece to wear to Leeds Festival so ventured into Topshop. I think I did quite well though as I spent under £10 and only bought sale items!



I ended up wearing the floral hairband I bought (pictured above) as I thought it had a more subtle vibe than a full on headpiece (and it went with my newly dyed hair). But other than these purchases I managed to keep to my ban so I'm still pretty proud of myself. It's the longest I've gone without buying unnecessary items in a good few years! Now on to the tips I learnt along the way:


Wish lists - One of the main reasons I love shopping is simply because I find it fun. I love finding new pieces for my wardrobe and browsing shops is one of my favourite pastimes so I found making wish lists to be a great substitute. You still get the pleasure of looking at the latest trends and new arrivals, just from the comfort of your own settee! I absolutely hate buying clothes online and only do it when I have to, for example, if it's an online only store or if the product's a lot cheaper on ebay/amazon than in stores but otherwise I much prefer being able to try clothes on beforehand. Therefore, browsing websites is just harmless fun to me however if you're a regular online shopper you may want to approach with caution!

Justification - I've had this rule for a long time (way before my spending ban kicked in) but I always found a way around it. Now that I'm allowed to spend again, I'm still going to try cut down how many useless items I buy by having to justify each purchase to myself. Except this time, I actually have to come up with a valid reason for needing it rather than just 'it's too cute to leave behind'. Some questions I like to ask myself when considering a purchase is how much wear will I get out of it? Will I wear it for more than one season? And my favourite is 'Is it worth X hours wages?' as it really puts the money you're spending into perspective. 

Wait 48 hours - I will hold my hands up and admit that I'm definitely an impulse buyer therefore I find the 48 hour rule really helpful in deciding if I actually want something. Pretty self explanatory, if you see something you like the look of, you have to wait 48 hours to think over if you actually want it before you can buy it. Something that seems like a must have item in the spur of the moment is, more often than not, completely forgotten about in a couple of days time and something you could quite easily live without. 

Make lists - If you really have to go shopping because there's something you actually need, make sure that's all you buy! A simple way I like to keep to the bare necessities is to make a list on my phone and stick to it. I found myself having to buy shampoo and a few other essentials over the past month so having a list ready made it a lot easier to get in and out of Boots without getting tempted by the make up counters. 
Now that I am allowed to spend a little though, if I see something I'd quite like to buy such as a beauty product from a blog post I've seen, I'll still write it down as a note on my phone. Then if I feel like treating myself, for pay day or just a little pick me up, I have a list ready made so I don't just end up buying another nude lipstick like always... This also comes in handy if my sisters are ever short of ideas for gifts to get me!

Don't wander aimlessly - If you have weak willpower (like myself), take yourself out of a potentially dangerous situation. Instead of going into town to wander round the shops, I've found myself taking advantage of Orange Wednesdays a lot more. This way I still get to see my best friend but I know I'm only spending under a fiver on the whole day, bus tickets included!


So those are my little pearls of wisdom I've pick up along the way, I hope they help some of you to cut back on your spending. What are you guys trying to save up for at the minute? And what's your biggest weakness when it comes to shopping? Mine is definitely rings! They're such a small item they don't really count though, right?!

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