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Trimming My Budget: Toiletries

February 10, 2010 by Lulu in Save Money with 6 Comments


Who came up with the word toiletries anyway? Are these items that we use only around the toilet? I just completed my No Spend January but since I had those big expenses that crashed the emergency fund I think my results were a bit off. I am trying for another No Spend Month this February and decided to cut down toiletries this time around.

I know that the first thing many people think of when they hear that you are cutting down on personal hygiene items is that you will tell them to make their own. I know that it is the frugal thing to do but for my lifestyle this would not work. It would just take up too much time and be a hassle for me to think of making my own so I will go for the convenience factor of store bought items.

Okay, to clarify, I just don’t want to take the time out to make my own:

  • soap
  • laundry detergent
  • hand sanitizer etc.

I like the convenience of having those things already made for me and packaged and I am just not the Martha Stewart type at all. I have a few items already stocked up that I will not need to buy any time soon. These are items that I got while on sale and they ended up costing me just a few cents when combined with coupons. I also managed to score a few free items from great deals at CVS so my little stockpile is growing some more. Here is a list of the items that I do not ‘need’ to buy for the rest of the next month or so:

  • Toilet paper
  • Bath Gel (but I do need soap bars)
  • Toothpaste
  • Laundry detergent
  • Conditioner (but I do need shampoo)

I plan on buying the other items that I am coming up short on by seeing what is available at CVS and on sale at Walmart. Then if I have coupons I can get those items at a discount and save some money while shopping.


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6 Comments

  1. Keith MorrisFebruary 10, 2010 at 10:12 pmReply

    I just started keeping a budget last month. I’m still sort of in the process of establishing a baseline. I figure once I know more about how I spend my money naturally, I can start making adjustments.

    There’s a nifty list over at LifeTuner of great websites for bargain hunters. Worth checking out:

  2. Credit GirlFebruary 11, 2010 at 10:20 amReply

    I know exactly how you feel…I’d rather save money on toiletries by taking advantage of coupons as well rather than making my own things which would just simply take too much work. And I’m not going to lie, but I’m too lazy to do all that stuff even if it’ll save me a couple dollars.

    • LuLuGalFebruary 11, 2010 at 8:42 pmReplyAuthor

      I give props to the people who can exert the energy to do those things but I am just not crafty like that. I guess it can be compared to eating out and cooking at home..but I just think it is not worth my time to make toothpaste..when I can get it at CVS for mere pennies.

  3. oneadviceFebruary 15, 2010 at 8:14 amReply

    haha, i’ve always thought that – toiletries is such a funny word :) xx

  4. JillFebruary 18, 2010 at 7:10 pmReply

    Ah toiletries. I actually went “No ‘Poo” meaning no shampoo (also no conditioner) 2 years ago. I haven’t calculated the savings but it must be over 200$ in 2 years. I scrub my scalp with a mix of baking soda and water. Then rinse. Then do a dilute apple cider vinegar or lemon juice rinse (VERY diluted). And a final cold water rinse. My hair and scalp are in better shape than ever. Really. I do have dry skin and hair but the hair is now very nice.

    I also brush my teeth with baking soda or salt. Not delicious. But cheap and more effective for me than toothpaste ever was.

    Finally, I gave up industrial lotion and just bought 8pounds of shea butter at once. That was about a year ago and I’ve only used one pound! I need to find people to give most of the rest to. I did not turn it into lotion. I use it straight (see above “Dry Skin”) and it works fine and smells fine.

    Since I don’t wear make up and don’t shave, that is pretty much all of my toiletries aside from toilet paper and soap I’m not ready to give that up yet.

    So, really, no need to be crafty and “make your own” just realize that most things (like shampoo and conditioner) have only recently been thought of as necessary and you can do just fine without them.

    • LuLuGalFebruary 18, 2010 at 9:39 pmReplyAuthor

      Wow Jill that is really impressive that you have used those simple things in place of regular toiletries. I love the idea of the shea butter as I use a lotion with shea butter now and it works well.

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