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51 Clothing Hacks To Save You Money

51 Clothing Hacks To Save You Money


Contrary to what retailers (and reality shows) want us to believe, we do NOT need to buy new clothes every season (or every month). Nor do we need fifty pairs of shoes or an ever expanding wardrobe. We can be amazingly fashionable for significantly less money by changing our mindset about buying clothes and using an arsenal of money saving techniques. For strategies beyond “use coupons,” and “shop end of season sales,” consider the 51 clothing hacks below for your savings pleasure.

1. Apply the 75% Off Rule.

75 Percent Off

    Only look at clothes that have been marked down at least 75%. Yes, it drastically narrows the selection, and, yes, some things may be harder to find. However, the sheer magnitude of clothing options out there is astounding. Plus, there will always be something new to pique your interest. Personally, I find that this clothing hack saves me time as well because I bypass the majority of clothing racks in the stores or only look at a couple of pages online. Of course, combine with coupon for additional savings. Confession: I have been known to cheat and purchase something that was 75% off AFTER combining the discount with coupon.

    2. Wait a Month.

    Wait a Month

      So you’ve found something that you just HAVE to have. It’s perfect in every way. Except for the price. Take a deep breath, walk away and wait a month. The act of waiting can have an amazing impact on how you view that must-have item. Within that time, I have usually completely forgotten about it (or replaced it with another must-have item – which gets the same wait-a-month treatment). Also, in a month’s time the price may have been reduced. Either way you’ll have money in your pocket longer. In the many years of applying this clothing hack to probably 10,000 (slight exaggeration) must-have items, I can honestly say that I have probably purchased two when all is said and done.

      3. Make Room in Your Closet.

      Closet Full of Clothes

        Many of us arguably have a closet full of clothes while simultaneously lamenting that we have nothing to wear. Before buying something new, get rid of one or two. If you get rid of (donate, sell) an item or two of clothing before you buy something new, it sets you up to be mindful of how much you are spending and what you are spending it on.

         4. Buy Discounted Gift Cards (with a Rewards Credit Card).

        Discount Gift Card

          Do this and you’ll be saving money before you even begin shopping. Purchase from a site like Cardpool or Gift Card Granny. Combine your gift card with deep discounted sales and coupons and work a triple whammy of savings. Extra bonus: when you buy with a rewards credit card you’ll earn points that can be cashed in for other free stuff.

          5. Use a Coupon App.

          Coupon App

            Smartphone Apps like RetailMeNot make it easy to find coupons on the go. Always look before checking out at the store. When purchasing online always search for a discount or promo code.

            6. Scan Before You Buy.

            3186783884_1912928de8_b

              Download a barcode scanning app like RedLaser and scan the price tag before you buy. Unless the item you are considering is a store exclusive, you might find that it is significantly cheaper somewhere else.

              7. Leave the Credit Cards at Home and Pay with Cash.

              Pay with Cash

                There is something about handing over those greenbacks that gives pause. When credit cards make it too easy to spend, even if you pay the bill in full when it is due, remove the temptation by paying with cash (or see gift card tip above).

                8. Know if Deeper Discounts are Found Online or in the Brick and Mortar Store.

                Shopping Online

                  Some retailers typically have better sales online, while others offer deeper discounts in the store. Get to know which is the case for your favorite merchant and save some time and money.

                  9. Shop at Consignment and Thrift Stores in Wealthy Areas.

                  Consignment Store

                    Even those who turn their noses up at consignment and thrift stores may be amazed with their finds when they shop in wealthy areas. Wealthy people sell their clothes too!

                    10. Host a Swap Party.

                    Swap Party

                      Have friends with styles you like? Invite them over and throw in a few friends of friends. Bring gently used clothes, shoes and accessories. Have folks bring a small food item (maybe some wine), and have a good time swapping. You’ll go home with new clothes and memories of a great time with friends.

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                      11. Buy Clothes that Fit You Now.

                      Right Size

                        Not for when you lose ten pounds or whatever needs to be done in order for it to fit. One, there’s no guarantee that the item will fit like you think it will. Two, be like me, and by the time it actually fits, it’s out of style. Either way, it’s like setting money on fire and calling it a light show.

                        12. Don’t Buy Print Jeggings.

                        Print Jeggings

                          Ever. Just Don’t.

                          13. Buy Timeless.

                          Classic Look

                            What is considered timeless is a little difficult to describe because it varies according to each person’s style. Ask yourself this. Can you see yourself wearing it often and years from now (no, not you Jeggings), and still feel confident and stylish? If the answer is yes, consider adding it to your wardrobe. The more well-made timeless pieces you have, the less you’ll need to buy.

                            14. Don’t Buy Into Trends.

                            Trendy

                              This is not the same thing as buying timeless. Fashion trends are just that: popular, fun and fleeting. What is all the rage one moment may very well be done in two months. While your timeless pieces will get you through, sometimes you want to join in. Here’s how: first and foremost, NEVER buy a trendy piece that doesn’t look good on you. Just wait it out. Something else will come along. Since it’s only a temporary investment, always purchase at a deep discount store. Only buy one or two trendy items. You’ll be moving them along soon enough. If you’ve gotta have lots of it consider the next tip.

                              15. Get an Extra Job with Your Favorite Retailer.

                              Extra Job

                                I have no illusions about this one being popular, but it certainly is a good idea for the broke fashionistas who continue to buy clothes. Get an “extra” job at your favorite retailer. Don’t make it your primary place of employment or you may find all of your paycheck going right back into the store! Your extra job will probably come with the benefit of a deep employee discount and you’ll have a specific fund from which to use for clothes.

                                16. Return It.

                                Returns

                                  It was kinda cute. Check. The price was awesome. Check. You got it home. It looks alright, but you know it’s not going to be a favorite. Check. If you feel this way, return it if the store policy allows. I have done this even when it didn’t seem worth the time, energy or cost to do so. It was my self-imposed punishment for wasting money. After a while, I got very good at making sure I loved it before I brought it home. Still not worth it? Then try this:

                                  17. Sell Your Clothes.

                                  Sell YOur Clothes

                                    Do you have a closet (drawers, bags) full of clothes you don’t wear, but won’t give away or swap because ___________________(fill in the blank)? Sell them. There are so many ways. In addition to brick and mortar consignment stores, you can sell to online consignment stores such as ThredUp. Ebay still works. Garage and yard sales do too. Mix it up and use all of the mediums. You’ll open up some much needed space and score some extra cash to boot.

                                    18. Get a Price Adjustment.

                                    Price Adjustment

                                      You just got an amazing deal, and the following week you see it at an even more amazing price. Many stores have a price adjustment policy where they’ll credit you the difference between what you paid and the current price. Just make sure the difference is worth a trip back to the store.

                                      19. Use Cash-Back Sites for Online Shopping.

                                      Cash Back

                                        Sites like Ebates and Fat Wallet share the wealth by giving you a small percentage of your purchase price back in the form of a cash rebate. They are simple to join and easy to use. Once you hit your cash out threshold the site will send your cash. The hardest part of this clothing hack is remembering to use them when you shop online! Tip: if you go to the retailer site first, and then go back and click through from the cash-back site, you may not qualify for the rebate. To get around this, open a different browser to access the cash-back site and click through to the merchant to complete your purchase.

                                        20. Buy one Excellent Winter Coat.

                                        Winter Coat

                                          Winters are cold where I live. I used to have ten cute coats that I got at rock bottom prices. The problem? None of them kept me warm, so I was always in search of another. I finally invested in a well-made, stylish coat. Though I bought it on sale, and combined with a coupon and discount gift card, it was not cheap. It was, however, very warm and I wore that thing every single cold day. Two years later I still do. Guess which ended up costing me more. I gave all of the other coats away.

                                          21. Don’t Buy Linen.

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                                          Ironig Linen

                                            If you hate how easily it wrinkles, you’ll probably avoid wearing it, which means it’s a waste of good money.

                                            22. Buy One Good Swim Suit that Looks Amazing.

                                            Swimsuit

                                              All of the $4.99 tops, bottoms and one pieces in the world are not worth the price if you don’t feel amazing in it, prefer not to wear it, and are always looking for the next one. When you find one you love, take care of it by rinsing it out after every use and letting it hang dry, and it will last a long time.

                                              23. Avoid the Bridesmaid Dress Effect.

                                              Bridesmaid Effect

                                                Don’t buy clothes that you know you are only going to wear once. If you need something for a special event, try to borrow it from a friend or family member who is a similar size. Renting is also a good alternative for expensive items such as suits and evening dresses.

                                                24. Don’t Buy Cute Shoes that Hurt Your Feet.

                                                Cute Shoes that Hurt Your Feet

                                                  Seems like common sense doesn’t it it? Then someone please explain the plethora of band aid covered Achilles heels and toes from shoes that have caused painful blisters and worn the skin away. Cute shoes that hurt, whether you paid $10 or $300 (BTW, I would never pay that much for one pair of shoes) are a waste of money upfront when you stop wearing them or later on at the back end when you’re paying podiatrist bills. On that note. . .

                                                  25. Don’t Buy It Because it’s Kinda Cute and Really Cheap.

                                                  Cheap and Cute

                                                    I’ve fallen into this trap before. It was marked down to $6.99 from $200. It was kinda cute and well-made, but I was more enamored by the original price, wore it once, realized I didn’t love it, and never wore it again. That was a waste of $6.99. Tip: look at the price tag AFTER you decide you love it. It may hurt sometimes when you see it’s out of your price range (I almost cried once), but it could just as often stop you from buying something just because it’s cheap. And that’s a good thing.

                                                    26. Shop the Men’s and Boy’s Section.

                                                    Sneaker Store

                                                      Some items such as sports socks, sneakers and tee shirts tend to be cheaper in the men’s and boy’s sections of the store.

                                                      27. Unsubscribe from Store Email Lists.

                                                      Unsubscribe

                                                        When you pay attention to your lists, you’ll notice how cyclical they are. The same discounts come around again and again, very regularly and frequently. There’s rarely, if ever, a need to rush to jump on a particular sales promotion. However, if seeing the sale makes your mouth water and you feel the urge to buy coming on, unsubscribe to remove temptation. Or send those emails to an email address dedicated to your subscriptions. You’ll be more likely to only check it if you’re looking for a discount for a specific store.

                                                        28. Take Advantage of Birthday Freebies.

                                                        Gift

                                                          If you can withstand the temptation of sales promotions in your email, there is one time of year when you can truly cash in. Your birthday. Many stores send you “gifts,” in the form of certificates good for a specific item or a dollar amount off of anything in the store. Victoria’s Secret sends a certificate for a pair of free undies.

                                                          29. Don’t Window Shop.

                                                          Window Shop

                                                            Some people find window shopping enjoyable, inspirational, motivational even, and can leave without spending a penny. If that’s not you, don’t tempt the fates. Avoid it and keep your money in your pocket. Same goes for browsing online!

                                                            30. Don’t Get Sucked in by the Background Music.

                                                            GalleriaOne

                                                              Have you ever had a moment (or two or three) in your life where you wish there was a real life movie soundtrack playing in the background? A moment where it would be absolutely perfect if a certain song were playing to externally represent what you’re feeling internally? Oh, that’s just me? Well even so, don’t let the malls suck money out of your wallet with their music. Retailers know that shoppers are influenced by many senses. Smart retailers will do so with music designed to make you feel good and happy, or get you to linger a little longer, all tricks to get you to loosen your grip on your wallet. It’s the same reason why it’s difficult to find a clock in a store.

                                                              31. Don’t BOGO.

                                                              Buy One Get One

                                                                Buy one, get one. It’s an old trick to fool you into thinking you’re getting an awesome deal by giving you something for “free.” Seems like a good deal at first, but consider this. If you wait a little bit you can usually do better than 50% off each, which is what BOGO amounts to. Besides, do you really need two? Don’t even bother with the other versions like buy one get one 50% off. That’s an even worse deal because you end up getting only 25% off of each.

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                                                                32. Don’t Pay for Free Shipping.

                                                                Free Shipping

                                                                  Truly free shipping, the kind with no minimum purchase is optimal. Free shipping that requires a minimum purchase amount . . . not so much, as it immediately puts you in the position of searching for more stuff to buy to meet the minimum requirement. This, of course, doesn’t matter if what you were going to buy meets the limit. Free shipping discount codes seem like a good deal until you realize that many times you can’t combine them with percentage or dollar off discounts.

                                                                  33. Read Reviews Before Buying.

                                                                  Read Reviews

                                                                    There may be a reason that garment is priced so cheaply. It’s not uncommon for an excellent price to be trumped by poor fit, quality or both. Reading reviews can clue you in and help prevent you from making a bargain hunting mistake.

                                                                    34. You Really Don’t Need One in Every Color.

                                                                    Stockings in Every Color

                                                                      Awesome fit. Excellent quality. Amazing price. You still don’t need one in every color. Inevitably, you’ll wear one, maybe two, consistently while the others will sit in your closet.

                                                                      35. Use the Two Outfit Rule.

                                                                      Outfits

                                                                        Before you buy, make sure there are at least two other items currently in your wardrobe that can be paired with it. If you don’t have anything to wear with your new find, leave it on the rack. It’s not a bargain if it’s hanging in your closet unworn.

                                                                        36. Know Your Triggers.

                                                                        emotional Trigger

                                                                          Some people are emotional eaters. Some are emotional shoppers. If you notice that you shop more when you’re feeling down, work at being intentional about finding a less expensive form of therapy.

                                                                          37. Ask for a Better/Additional Discount.

                                                                          Ask for a Discount

                                                                            The worst that can happen is that you won’t get one. Sometimes, more often than you might expect, the store associate will surprise you with a positive response which saves you even more money.

                                                                            38. Don’t Buy Pajamas (or Lingerie).

                                                                            Pajamas

                                                                              Victoria’s Secret may beg to disagree, but it’s true. Do you really need 16 pairs of pajamas when you wear the same two or three over and over? How many times have you thrown on your comfy sweats instead?

                                                                              39. Remember that Dressing Room Mirrors Belong in the Funhouse.

                                                                              Funhouse Mirror

                                                                                Have you ever tried something on in the store and you looked absolutely fabulous when you checked yourself out in the dressing room looking glass? Then you try it on again at home and look at yourself and think, “What just happened?” I’m not saying stores do this on purpose. Okay, they do. It’s just another example of how retailers use psychology and slights of hand to get you to spend money. From softer lighting, to tilted mirrors that make you look slimmer, retailers know how to get you to buy their clothes. If this happens to you, take it back.

                                                                                40. Avoid Flash Sales.

                                                                                Flash Sale

                                                                                  Just because your favorite retailer tweets that they are offering 50% off everything for the next two hours doesn’t mean you have to buy something. I’m speaking to myself here. The truth is, if you weren’t thinking about buying something from the store before the flash sale, don’t tempt yourself by checking the flash sale out. There will always be another, better, sale of some kind where you can score a better discount.

                                                                                  41. Dry Clean Only? Wash them Anyway.

                                                                                  Dry Cleaning Clothing Hack

                                                                                    I try to avoid dry clean only garments at all costs, but it’s not always possible. So I wash them. In the washing machine. On the extra gentle hand wash cycle. Then I hang dry followed by a light ironing. I haven’t ruined anything yet. I have used this technique with cotton, wool, silk and polyester blend.

                                                                                    42. Vodka as Febreeze.

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                                                                                    PaulScott56

                                                                                      As someone who had to wear suits everyday, finding a way to keep the, um, armpit area smelling fresh was a challenge. No one wants to declare bankruptcy due to dry cleaning bills and I never could get myself to invest in those clunky, somehow more embarrassing armpit pads. Besides, dry cleaners do a good job of removing stains, not odors. Vodka to the rescue. Pour some unflavored vodka into a spray bottle, spritz the smelly area on both sides until damp and let hang dry. This works for me between washing in the machine if possible (see above tip). Buy a cheap brand of vodka. Save the good stuff for happy hour.

                                                                                      43. Hem Tape is Your Friend.

                                                                                      Hemming Pants

                                                                                        Have you passed on an incredible deal on an amazing pair of pants or blazer because they were too long and you didn’t want to spend money on alterations? Never again, as hem tape is your friend. If you can fold evenly, apply double sided tape and iron, you can now alter the length of your own clothes.

                                                                                        44. Remove Grease Stains.

                                                                                        Grease Stain

                                                                                          You can save a grease stained garment! Sprinkle talcum powder, cornstarch or baby powder on it, and rub it in. You may need to repeat until the stain is gone. The talcum powder soaks up the grease. This clothing hack works on leather furniture too. I once placed a greasy bag of french fries on my nice leather ottoman (V-8 smack to the forehead). I rubbed talcum powder into the (very large) stain every day for 5 days until it finally disappeared.

                                                                                          45. Clothes as a Magic Marker Canvas.

                                                                                          Magic Marker

                                                                                            Have you every had a small bleach stain on a dark colored shirt, or pants? Color it with magic marker, let it dry, and wear. Yes, the mark will probably reappear after a few washings. In this case, Wash, color, repeat.

                                                                                            46. Learn to Sew a Button.

                                                                                            Sew a Button

                                                                                              This may very well be the holy grail of clothes saving techniques. When buttons fall off or start to hang by a thread, do you sew them back on or basically retire the item to the back of the closet hoping that the button sewing gnome will somehow repair it? Me? I ask my mom to sew my buttons back on. She finally told me to learn for myself. It is not difficult and will save you from having to buy new clothes. Lost most of your buttons? Buy new ones, even different ones to give your garment a fresh look.

                                                                                              47. Shave Your Clothes.

                                                                                              Shave Your Clothes

                                                                                                Nothing is as disappointing as when your favorite clothing starts to pill and look like a collection of fuzz balls. Don’t despair. They can be saved. An electric shaver is one solution. Carefully raking a straight edged blade over the pilled area works too. Sticky masking tape is another option, gently patting and pulling to remove the fuzz.

                                                                                                48. Hang Dry.

                                                                                                Hang Dry

                                                                                                  Instead of throwing your clothes in the dryer, hang them on a line (or indoor rack) to dry. You’ll use less electricity which will save you money, and your clothes will last longer (the lint in your dryer trap is evidence of fabric being lost each time you dry).

                                                                                                  49. No. Wire. Hangers.

                                                                                                  No Wire Hangers

                                                                                                    Wire hangers are vile things that pucker sweaters and ruin the shape of clothes. They may be cheap, but they will cost you in the long run. There are hangers out there that cost an arm and a leg. There is no need to invest in expensive hangers. In fact, don’t spend any money at all. The plastic ones used in the stores work just fine. Whenever I buy something, if the hanger doesn’t automatically accompany it, I ask if I can keep it. I have even asked for a few more. I have only been refused once.

                                                                                                    50. Remove Armpit Stains.

                                                                                                    Remove stains with lemon juice

                                                                                                      Yes, people really can see them. Once my light colored shirts and blouses started to show armpit stains I converted them to under tops. You know, tops worn under something like a sweater. No more! Use a mixture of lemon juice and baking soda to make a paste. Rub it into the stain and wash as usual. Now I get to choose how I want to wear those tops. It’s good to have choices.

                                                                                                      51. Those Boots are Made for Walking. Just Not Through Water.

                                                                                                      Leather Boots

                                                                                                        If your leather or suede boots have unsightly salt and/or water stains, this clothing hack will make you click your heels. Gently rub the stains with a cloth that has been dipped in distilled white vinegar and let dry.

                                                                                                        52. Don’t Buy Print Jeggings.

                                                                                                        What? I said that already? Okay, but it bears repeating.

                                                                                                        I’m always looking to add more money saving clothing hacks to my repertoire. Please shares yours below!

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                                                                                                        Published on January 17, 2020

                                                                                                        How to Eat Healthy on a Budget (The Definitive Guide)

                                                                                                        How to Eat Healthy on a Budget (The Definitive Guide)

                                                                                                        Have you ever looked at health gurus and wondered how on earth they can afford all that health food? Or maybe you’ve tried multiple times to start eating healthy only to find the $600 monthly budget overwhelming?

                                                                                                        If you’re anything like me, you know exactly what I’m talking about! I absolutely understand the sinking feeling of looking back over a grocery budget and finding you went way over what you intended. And besides that, it can be hard to justify buying a tiny $5 bag of carrot chips while a $1 mound of potato chips is sitting right next door.

                                                                                                        My husband and I recently ran into that struggle. We got married this past year and soon found ourselves trying to balance 12 hour work-days with keeping our relationship strong and trying to keep our personal businesses afloat. Granted, our budget was the one thing that took a hit! After we started tracking our spending, we were shocked to see we were spending over $1000 a month just on food! A little planning cleared that right up.

                                                                                                        So, how to eat healthy on a budget?

                                                                                                        Here’re the top tips I learned that helped us shave over $600 monthly off of our food budget so we could reinvest that in the areas that really mattered to us![1]

                                                                                                        1. Meal Plan

                                                                                                        You’ve probably heard the saying “Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail” right? Well, this saying couldn’t be any more true than in the area of healthy budgeting! The fact is, most healthy foods don’t actually cost that much… the pre-made time saving ones do!

                                                                                                        If you go about creating a healthy meal plan within your budget, you could easily cut costs down to around the same price you are paying for junk food.

                                                                                                        Meal planning is as simple as working in foods you already have in your fridge/freezer, adding in several meals with simple ingredients and seasonal veggies, and breaking it down into a shopping list.

                                                                                                        Often, finding a few meals to make in big batches will save you the most money in the long run, which leads me to my next point.

                                                                                                        2. Cook in Bulk

                                                                                                        Not only will cooking in bulk save you a whole lot of time, it will save you a whole lot of money too! Believe it or not, if you find meals to make with similar ingredients, you can easily save more money than when you were eating unhealthy.

                                                                                                        Don’t believe me? Just look at a $4 frozen pasta dinner. Now, sub that with a veggie pasta dinner. 5 zuchinni ($3), Pasta sauce ($2.50), and chicken ($5) could last you a full 5 meals which adds up to a whopping total of just over $1 per meal!

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                                                                                                        That’s not even digging in to all the money you will save from fast-food. Trust me, a little $10 spent here and there add up! You’ll be saving a whopping amount from all the meal prep you will do!

                                                                                                        3. Cook all Your Meals in One Day

                                                                                                        The science behind this is 2-fold.

                                                                                                        Number one, if you have lots of meals to grab and go, you will be far less likely to binge on pricier food when you get hungry. Let’s be real, you’re not going to spend 1 hour cooking when hub-n’-grub is at your bekon-call!

                                                                                                        Number 2, meal prepping ahead of time will help you stick to your meal plan better when you’re not in the mood. Let’s face it, we’re all going to have days when protein and veggies doesn’t exactly sound appealing. But, if you have a full meal that’s quick to grab in the fridge, it will be easier for you to fill up on the good stuff rather than spending money on what you don’t really need.

                                                                                                        4. Cut Back on Snacks and Specialty Items

                                                                                                        I can almost hear you from across the screen. “But, I thought snacks were good for me!” Here’s the deal: Snacks are expensive! And healthy snacks, oh my goodness, say goodbye to your paycheck!

                                                                                                        Look, I’m definitely not saying that healthy snacks are bad. Quite frankly, I would much rather you chow down on Halo Top than a triple-butterfinger-fudge sundae. It’s just that… healthy snacks are why eating healthy gets a bad rap for being expensive.

                                                                                                        Look at it this way: You could either buy a week’s worth of groceries full of chicken, fish, beans, veggies, and fruits for $30. Or, you can spend that $30 on six snacks that will leave you hungry for more.

                                                                                                        What’s more, the ingredients for gluten-free baked goods, sugar free substitutes, or protein powders alone will add up to you eating a full week’s budget in one sitting. By all means, if you want to work some yummy items into your budget, do it! But don’t confuse that extra monthly $300 of delicacies as a necessity. Your body and budget will thank you!

                                                                                                        5. Satisfy Yourself with Your Favorite Subs

                                                                                                        We all have an emotional tie to food. Maybe pasta reminds you of home! Or maybe a fresh-baked pizza is what gives you a feeling of comfort. Whatever you favorite food, find a way to work it into your budget in the best way.

                                                                                                        We’re only human, and depriving ourselves of what we love will never end well. More often than not actually, it ends in take-out or a pricey-premade substitute.

                                                                                                        Instead of finding yourself in this situation, find a way to make your favorite foods fit your budget. Zuchinni noodle pasta might just give you that feeling of home without breaking the bank. Or maybe you could google a healthy pizza alternative you would like that you could make at home. Often, something similar to your craving will be enough to give you a sense of satisfaction.

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                                                                                                        Or, just buy your cheat meal and save it for a special day. That’s okay too!

                                                                                                        6. Stick to the Cheaper Proteins

                                                                                                        Okay, I know we all love steak. Unfortunately, buying pre-cooked or expensive cuts of meat are one of the easiest ways to drain a budget.

                                                                                                        Instead of purchasing those, try buying frozen chicken or eggs. A 5 lb bag of frozen chicken can be as cheap as $5, and you can buy a whole weeks worth of eggs for just over $1. You could even try going vegetarian for a few meals if you really want to cut down on costs!

                                                                                                        7. Buy Frozen Fruits and Veggies

                                                                                                        I know, we all love our fresh fruits and veggies! However, sometimes frozen might be the way to go if you’re looking to cut costs!

                                                                                                        Fruits and veggies are easiest to ship when frozen, making them a much cheaper option. Contrary to popular belief, scientists have actually found that frozen might be better for you too![2]

                                                                                                        The reason is, frozen produce is picked at its prime and shipped immediately. Fresh fruit tends to be picked much earlier so it will ripen while being shipped. Not only does this make it less nutrient dense, but sometimes the fruits are actually pumped with artificial flavors to make up for the lack of real nutrients.

                                                                                                        While I’m all for fresh fruits and veggies, don’t feel guilty if you opt for frozen foods due to a budget.

                                                                                                        8. Bump up the Calories with Rice and Beans

                                                                                                        The problem some people find when trying to eat healthy is that it can be hard to get the amount of calories you need without relying on expensive “specialty” items. Instead of stocking up on pricey gluten-free breads and pasta, I say stick to simple rice and beans as the bulk of your meals.

                                                                                                        Brown Rice is very cheap and easy to use as a base for bowls and dishes. Likewise, beans can add a bit of fiber making you feel full and satisfied without having to spend a lot of money.

                                                                                                        If you are trying to cut on body fat, use extra veggies as the bulk of your meal and add in rice and beans as a filler.

                                                                                                        9. Try Acai Bowls

                                                                                                        Acai Bowls can be a really cheap and satisfying meal as long as you do it right.

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                                                                                                        You can find cheap fruits at most stores or just freeze your fresh fruits before it goes bad.

                                                                                                        Making your own granola can save you a lot of money as well. The total cost for this delicious meal should only add up to a few dollars compared to triple that price if you were to buy one pre-made.

                                                                                                        10. Make Your Own Meal Kits

                                                                                                        Do you like your meals freshly cooked? Sending meal kits to your doorstep is an easy way to drain your budget. Instead, try making your meal kit at home! Not only is it fun, you will easily get a delicious taste.

                                                                                                        Simply find a few simple meal cards or print some out and fill a ziplock with the ingredients for each specific day. Don’t know what recipe to make? Another option is to order one month of meal kits and recycle the recipe into ingredients for the upcoming months with ingredients you picked up from the store.

                                                                                                        11. Don’t Drink Your Calories

                                                                                                        A few dollars spent here and there can really add up! Just as with specialty items, healthy drinks can be a blackhole for you. An energy drink and kombucha and coffee each day could easily have you spending and extra $300 each month!

                                                                                                        I you really need a special drink fix, try making your favorites at home. Bring a coffee in, make kombucha, or even try making lemonade with stevia or a healthy soda. You’ll be surprised w hat a big difference such a small change can make on your budget!

                                                                                                        12. Buy Cheap Online

                                                                                                        Just like anything else, it pays to be prepared. Buying foods from online retailers can be a really affordable way to save money as long as you’re prepared.

                                                                                                        Plan ahead for those more expensive specialty items you can’t live without. It will save you tons of money compared to having to buy food from a specialty store.

                                                                                                        13. Don’t Fret about the Clean Fifteen

                                                                                                        One of the huge things that can mess with a person’s budget is eating organic. For the record, I am 110% all for eating organic whenever you can. However, for some people, it can be hard to make organic food fit into a budget.

                                                                                                        Instead of scratching healthy eating for a smaller budget, try to buy meat and the dirty dozen organic, and don’t go crazy about the rest. The clean fifteen are the fifteen safest foods to buy that aren’t organic! Meanwhile, the dirty dozen is the most worthwhile avoiding. According to Produce Retailer, these are the dirty dozens:[3]

                                                                                                        1. Strawberries
                                                                                                        2. Spinach
                                                                                                        3. Kale
                                                                                                        4. Nectarines
                                                                                                        5. Apples
                                                                                                        6. Grapes
                                                                                                        7. Peaches
                                                                                                        8. Cherries
                                                                                                        9. Pears
                                                                                                        10. Tomatoes
                                                                                                        11. Celery
                                                                                                        12. Potatoes

                                                                                                        14. Pay Attention to Storage

                                                                                                        Keeping the food you have is just as important as how much food is in the first place. Try to stay on top of how much produce you can actually use before it goes bad. It might not be a bad idea to pencil an extra shopping trip in the middle of the week to keep food fresh.

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                                                                                                        Investing in good food storage containers could go a long way in saving you in the long run as well.

                                                                                                        15. Freeze Food Before it Goes Bad

                                                                                                        Instead of getting mad at yourself at the end of the week for all the wilted produce you need to throw out, try freezing it before you get to that point.

                                                                                                        Most frozen veggies will taste delicious in stir fries and soups. You can freeze fruits to make sorbet or smoothies. Frozen greens can be chopped up and tossed into just about anything for a nutrient boost!

                                                                                                        16. Consider Ditching Most Supplements and Powders

                                                                                                        I have nothing against superfood powders and supplements. However, if your budget is tight, it can be hard to fit supplements and powders in.

                                                                                                        Instead of adding in powders, add extra nutrients to you food. Add lots of greens and veggies to all your meals to meet your nutrient needs. If you need a specific supplement, you can find great deals online as well!

                                                                                                        17. Use Budget App

                                                                                                        There are so many great apps you can download for free. One of my current favorite is HoneyDue because you can track your budget easily with your spouse. There are many options available, just find the one that you’re most likely to use. The ones that download your spendings automatically are often the easiest and will give you a more accurate number.

                                                                                                        My husband and I use the same app, but have a separate budget for each of our weekly food plan and for our additional snacks. Keeping things separate can often be helpful to know exactly where your money is going. Plus, it can help hold you accountable if you have a significant other you are sharing money with.

                                                                                                        18. Use What you Have

                                                                                                        Most people have unused protein powders lying around in their cabinets. Instead of letting that go to waste, work them into your meal plan. Protein powders can make amazing doughnuts, pastries, or pancakes!

                                                                                                        19. Enjoy the Process!

                                                                                                        Finding ways to enjoy your new lifestyle will be helpful in sticking to it long term. Find fun in seeing how much you can save each month. Make a competition with someone to see who can stick to the lowest budget and create something fun to do for the winner with some of the money saved! Blast some music in the kitchen while cooking your new recipes.

                                                                                                        Budgeting and health doesn’t have to be a drag. Make it fun and you’ll enjoy your new lifestyle long-term!

                                                                                                        Featured photo credit: kevin laminto via unsplash.com

                                                                                                        Reference

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