No Buy Month (Update)

Image via Pic Jumbo

Image via Pic Jumbo

Exactly 30 days ago, I shared an article about buying absolutely nothing for 30 days. The challenge was to spend money on necessities ONLY. Cut down on monthly expenses, use up whatever we already have and hopefully end up with more savings after the 30 days. This is an update on how I got on with it, how much did I spend and my final verdict. If you still have no idea what this is, click below for more information.

In the previous post, I did mention “not buying bus tickets, not going to town, no takeaway coffee for the month” however, I went out to town for a day because my mask supply was running low. During No Buy Month, I’ve finished my toothpaste, shower gel, face moisturizer and a bottle of hot sauce. Just a disclaimer, I know how long each product lasts so I’ve purchased replacements prior to this (except the hot sauce). Since company covers my meals and I’ve done my main food shop prior to No Buy Month,  food & groceries expenses would be lower than usual. This is what we spent on and how much was spent for each category:

 
  • Food & Groceries : ¥321 (RM193)

  • Transportation : ¥117 (RM70)

  • Extras : ¥221.90 (RM133)

    Total : ¥660.20(RM396)

 
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What I did during No Buy Month:

  • Reorganized off-season items. Sweaters, outerwear and light layers are now tucked away. Just 4 coats waiting to be taken to the dry cleaner.

  • Reorganized and clean up pantry. Coffee, tea and cereal are now arranged neatly. Wiped down the entire cupboard and threw out two expired energy bars.

  • Up-cycled an old top into a shoe bag. Cotton top that pilled so bad even my de-piller couldn’t save the situation.

  • Picked up German. Guten Morgen, bis spater! (Good morning, see you later!)

  • Signed up for Vietnamese. người phụ nữ muốn uống nước ép táo (The woman wants to drink apple juice). Let me tell you, I do NOT sound sexy.

Final Verdict

Without restrictions during No Buy Month, I would have bought:

  1. A pair of room slippers. Toes were sticking out way too much and was touching the floor.

  2. A high stool for the office. To lift my plant off the ground.

  3. An umbrella. Umbrella broke and can’t draw back completely.

  4. A vision board for the office. To display postcards collected.

I love No Buy Month and would take up the challenge again soon! I’ve managed to re-organize my space, learn new skills and save extra cash for the future. My toes are still touching the floor and my umbrella still pisses me off but I now see the value of delayed gratification. What is the longest you have gone without making a purchase?

5 WAYS TO SAVE MONEY

. ZALORA slingbacks .
[use 'ZBAPQLL' for extra 15% off]

.01 CUT DOWN ON GOING OUT
Yumcha a.k.a. Drinks Session
Shopping
Movie Night

.02 GO LOW MAINTENANCE
Haircut ['Bangs' can be cute but visiting the salon every 2 weeks can be a hassle]
Haircolour [Haircolour that requires bleaching can be fun. But touching up roots can be costly]
Hair Removal [Waxing? Why not opt for laser hair removal. Cost saving in the long run]

.03 INVEST IN GOOD SKINCARE AND STICK TO IT
Monthly facial visits might not cost a lot in a glance but add that up to your skincare budget and compare that amount to your housing/car installment, it can be substantial.  Make laser/aesthetic treatment a 'TREAT' but not an essential. Better off converting additional beauty treatments into shares or other investment medium.

.04 MEASURE THEN BUY
Know how much you consume and actually NEED. I suggest buying products on a replenishment basis only. By the end of the year, you'll see how much cash you've saved. Through travelling and being constantly on the go, I've learnt that I need very little to get through life. 5 tubs of body lotion and 7 bottles of moisturizer is unnecessary. I keep brow pencil and lip products to the bare minimum and only use the few that I truly love. Beauty products can be costly and would expire averagely in 12 months' time.
Purchasing too many of the same products will end up being thrown away. 

What I use:
- Oskia Cleansing Gel (100ML) - 4 months [RM140 x 3 = RM 520]
- Pixi Glowtonic (250ML) - 4-5 months [RM85 x 3 = RM 255]
- Aesop Parsley Seed Serum (100ML) - 4 months [RM220 x 3 = RM 660]
- Khiels Midnight Recovery Concentrate (30ML) - 4 months [RM220 x 3 = RM660]
- Skinfood Black Sugar Mask (100ML) - 6 months [RM35 x 2 = RM70]
- Laura Mercier Primer (50ML) - 6 months [RM180 x 2 = RM360]
- Laura Mercier Foundation(30ML) - 8-9 months [RM 230]
- Shampoo (30ML) - 3 weeks
- Shower Gel (100ML) - 5 months
- Body Lotion (100ML) - 3 months

The bulk of my regime costs approximately RM3000 annually. This excludes haircut, quarterly facial sessions and occasional gel manicure. 
Strongly recommend to stick to a beauty budget. There is no one to blame when you couldn't afford to pay your bills or an annual getaway.

.05 COST PER WEAR/USE
I've always emphasized that its wiser to spend $1000 on a pair shoes/trousers that you wear 3 days a week than a $100 dress you'll wear only once.
Find a balancing point between the price tag and the frequency of wear/use. Create a habit of looking at the product first before the price tag.
Rationalize a purchase based on whether you think you need it, and not by the price tag.
Don't buy something just because it's on sale or because you think you MIGHT need it. Trust me, you don't.

 

 
ONLY BUY SOMETHING YOU CAN AFFORD
DON'T BUY ANYTHING ON CREDIT
AND LAST MOST IMPORTANTLY
NEVER GO IN DEBT.
 

 

BE MENTALLY, PHYSICALLY AND FINANCIALLY STRONG. Enjoy being a woman but also bear in mind that we have power over our own finances. Put money into education funds, travel, investments, retirement and even building your first bucket of gold. If not now, then when? Through phases as a teenager and now as a woman,  I've always been savvy.  Majorly cut down on monthly haircuts, facials and shopping therapy. Anywhoo, I still treat myself when along the way. Its the joy of buying things I love and treating myself well, but only spending within limits after planting seeds for my own future.