Ever since I started reading Into the Gloss and XO Vain, I’ve been compelled to spend more than my annual salary on beauty products. $73 on a one ounce jar of Glamglow mud mask that will revolutionize my skin, you say? I have to have it! Clarisonic exfoliating brush will minimize my pores for eternity? I won’t even pause at the $150 price tag. It’s a frequent struggle for us when scouring the fabulous world of beauty products. There are so many new things to try and yet so many hefty prices to consider.
Before you go out on a shopping spree and end up spending your entire month’s rent on a set of Smashbox’s entire primer line, it’s good to have a savings plan so you can get the most out of the money you’re spending. And because we’re all about budgeting here at Sincerely Savannah, here are five ways to stretch your beauty budget and save a buck.
1. Provide Your Email Address for Coupons
Most of us already have dozens of email subscriptions, but signing up for one more from your favorite store is worth it.
You’re the first to know about sales and promotions, and stores often send coupons or codes for an online discount. That way you can shop without leaving your home.
Others send more than just sales notifications. Victoria’s Secret informs its subscribers when new stores open in their location as well as upcoming products and trends about to hit the market.
2. Join the Rewards Program
Free rewards programs are great if you shop at a certain store multiple times. Usually, each dollar you spend equals one point on your card, and those points eventually turn into discounts off a purchase.
Being a rewards member also gives you exclusivity. Only your card makes you eligible for certain offers, like two for five deals and other benefits. Some stores might even provide a gift card for your birthday.
3. Know the Store Policies
It’s wise to read the fine print and become familiar with returns, store credit, charge cards and more.
Know which items are returnable and by what date for a full refund. Once the time for return expires, the most you might get is store credit. Most sale and clearance items are final, so ask a clerk about this if you’re not completely sure of your purchase.
Some stores are a bit strict with return policies and only offer store credit in exchange, regardless if the item was full price or not. So if the clerk asks if you’re familiar with the return policy, take the time to listen.
Charge cards are a bit trickier and can be problematic when interest collects and payments aren’t made. However, they can be helpful for repeat customers because they collect points that eventually turn into spending money. If you sign up for a charge card, be fully aware of what it entails and ready to handle the responsibility.
4. Check for Product Reviews
If you’ve seen a new product and aren’t ready to make the purchase, chances are you’ll find online reviews to guide your decision.
Product stores like Ulta offer testers for certain lotions or perfumes, but they can’t let you test each one. Before purchasing, search the product online for written reviews or videos. It’s hard to tell what a shade of lipstick or eye shadow actually looks like when it’s sealed, but YouTubers are famous for posting makeup tutorials. You might find something helpful about the product.
If you’re worried the product will sell out before you make a decision, purchase it and keep it in mint condition until reviews confirm your choice.
5. Get Your Friends in On the Shopping Spree
Another effective way to save money is to get some friends together and split costs or trade products.
Buying in bulk may not be the best option for you personally, but if you and a friend buy the item together and then split the cost, you have a fair amount of product between you, and you both save a few bucks. Do this with items like nail polish, lip gloss, razor blades or anything packaged in bulk but separated.
Ask friends about trading products you both rarely use. This allows you to try new items without spending money on them. To keep it safe, trade things that remain sealed in bottles like shampoo, perfume or lotion.
You’re Ready for a Shopping Spree
With these five tips, you’ll save a bit more and expand your beauty budget. Happy shopping!