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I'm Asking: What's Your Most Valuable Cheapy Secret?

I'm Asking: What's Your Most Valuable Cheapy Secret?

In a world of too many choices, tips from those who are speaking from experience are truly priceless. I love hearing about cheapy solutions that do the job without costing an arm and a leg because we can't always afford the best of the best and must prioritize our purchases. Itsme3683 was kind enough to share one of her secrets:

I buy knives for 50 cents from the Asian supermarket that are THE sharpest knives I've ever used. My best friend (a chef) and my boyfriend's mom have both commented on how great they are to me — plus, at 50 cents I don't have to worry about treating it well or sharpening it because I'll just buy a new one when it's gone dull!

What's are your most valuable cheapy secret?


JamieRunning JamieRunning 6 years
A lot of what I do has already been mentioned. But here are some novel ones that I rely on; Buying clothes, and beauty products online. Including waxing kits so I can do all of my spa stuff at home. I also go to a fabric shop to buy muslin rather than buy it pre-cut for a higher cost from a beauty supply store. Using online deals like livingsocial and groupon - I never pay full price for Yoga or a night out. Take lunch every day and bring coffee from home/drink the free coffee at work. Save vegetable scraps to make broth - I freeze veggie scraps as I go and when the bag is full I put it all with water in a crock-pot overnight. Tastes better and free. Always have it on hand for stuffing, rice, and soup stock. Make my own breadcrumbs - Put stale bread in the food processor and freeze. Fuel up at a place that provides coupons for groceries (Superstore in Canada). Buy food in bulk and on sale to make freezable meals.
nyxmoxie nyxmoxie 7 years
Don't be in debt to anyone (friends, credit card company, etc) and you'll always feel comfortable no matter what you make. I also learned that its better to make it yourself, dinners, pedis and manis, tailoring, etc. Amazing how much money you can save if you just figure out how to do it or fix it yourself. I have a goal of retiring early, however I want to make it to my goal while enjoying my life along the way and not being foolish with money.
Ladytron7000 Ladytron7000 8 years
Share a car with your partner and say goodbye to insurance and car payments. Of course, for that to work, you have to live near one of your employers so you can walk, bike or ride public transportation. Which brings me to #2: live in a cheap apartment. Your bills are nothing. Do things at home: mani/pedi/spa/hair dye Saturdays, work out at home, netflix or redbox instead of movies, and my favorite: if you're a daily espresso drinker like me, make it at home with a decent quality machine.
binarygirl binarygirl 9 years
I browse deals for the holidays all year round and keep gifts in my closet until christmas. My favorite website is because I find stuff there all the time! Mostly tech though :(
ispyemo ispyemo 9 years
making your coffee at home and adding in your own flavored syrups and flavored creamers. buying day old pastries and bread in stores. freeze and use much longer. shopping in bulk. the bulk isle for noodles, oatmeal and other dry goods save you money on many items. farmers markets. find anything you want amazingly fresh and usually really cheap compared to shopping organic and the grocery store. you can usually even find sauces, flowers, pasta and bread.
samantha999 samantha999 9 years
If you are in NYC, Bumble and Bumble have their school and if you sign up with them your haircuts and colorings are free. They will also do stylings with points that add up to free gifts. All their "students" are professional hairdressers in a B & B salon from somewhere in the US or London. I haven't paid for a haircut or color in three years. Massive savings.
sundrops sundrops 9 years
I share a couple cheap secrets with those already mentioned. My husband and I go to happy hours for dates. We get away eating a full meal at a restaurant we love for $15 including drinks! It would normally cost us $60 to eat and be filled up there. My hubby and I also split every meal we do eat at full price, or less, since at least here in Texas the servings are SO huge and there's always enough for two of us. It was difficult at first to reach a compromise because we both like very different things. So I came up with a plan. He picks what he wants to eat one time and I'll be willing to eat it, and I pick what I want to eat the next time and he has to be willing to eat it. The first time we attempted this he went first because he was nervous to jump on board. After that he loved it, and now we do it every time we go out and both love it. We even split grande starbucks drinks. When I go out with girlfriends who have similar tastes we'll split a meal as well! I also boycott mani/pedis. I found that I can buy the items to give myself a pedicure that will make me feel like I've had a real pedicure for half the cost and it lasts at least five pedicures. To get more bang for my buck in grocery shopping I only buy things on sale. Even for the staple items there is usually always a brand that is on advertisement or has a coupon with it. If it's a brand or an item I normally wouldn't buy and it's on sale for a good deal I'll try it that week. I always check the original price to see if it's really on sale or they're only promoting it a bit. I've bought items at Whole Foods that were sometimes three or four dollars less than the regular price at our local grocery store, and I'm always happy I tried something new!
Misskastar Misskastar 9 years
One thing that I recently tried is going to a beauty school for a trim. I have long hair and long layers, so when I get a haircut, I want just a tiny trim, not like an all out haircut. I was sick of paying $50-60 dollars at the salon so I went to an Aveda Beauty School. It was AAAAAmazing! Not only did I get a haircut for $14, but a scalp massage with their yummy aroma scented oils, great tips, and a great blow out. My stylist was great and I hear they all are!!
lindserelli lindserelli 9 years
I'm cheap on hair styling. I have unpredictably long curly hair, so I just have my boyfriend cut it for free. If he messes up, the curliness will cover it up, or it's long enough to start over. We also cut our friend's hair in exchange for things like guitar lessons, computer repairs, etc.
rabidmoon rabidmoon 9 years
I answered my kitchen one above..for beauty its that I have done years of research on natural ingredients and products, and make my own skin oils and moisturisers and started when I owned a little UK company making homemade "house" products..polishes for antique furniture without toxic materials, etc...branched out from there as I got more curious. I have a few "bought" skincare items, but years of experimentation have shown me that sometimes its a sheer waste of money. 45 bucks for rosewater toner? LOL, is what I say. I buy pure organic neroli or rose water (sometimes a blend) for toning from a wholesale supplier, spending the same amount of money for a massive quantity, and use that instead of pricey toners, and around the house I disinfect using simple natural soaps and things like lavender and eucalyptus essential oils, and even use things like bicarb of soda and lavender oil as a laundry softener. I have used lavender oil for scrapes, the herb oregano as medicinal tea, and macadamia nut oil for dry skin with success for years. (most laundry softeners are nothing more than a very very mild detergent base, with scent and bicarb, or similar ingredients.)
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
It is very true about the asian supermarket knives. I guess my cheapy secret is I have boycotted getting mani/pedis.
kgiuffre kgiuffre 9 years
Boxed hair color if you're just dying your hair one color. Why pay $100 bucks at a salon when the boxed stuff is so good nowadays?!
gemsera gemsera 9 years
oh two more things: 1) Two dollar shops are the BEST. Great for everything from homewares, cheap flip flops (handy if you break a heel or want something for around the house), and lots of other things you will have trouble finding elsewhere. Where do you buy a black plastic doorstop? 2 dollar shop! 2) Buying brands at two dollar shops are awesome, as its still the same brand. I used to buy pasta sauce, toothpaste, shampoo and conditioner, and lots of things along those lines back home. My BF wont let me near them now (I dont have a car) but as soon as I'm mobile again i'm back. 3) (sorry all) Consider buying from a country which is stable but has a good exchange rate. I often buy things from online stores back home (au) or the US as my money is worth double!
gemsera gemsera 9 years
I am the cheapie queen and not afraid to say it. I always shop for clothes at only certain stores (unless the high streets are on sale, I'm not there. I once bought a designer silk skirt for $80 down from $620, and I recently bought a really nice skirt from debenhams for £10 down from £60. I shop for all basics at primark/matalan (cant beat scarves for £2 or singlets and casual trousers for £2. I got my really really nice work shoes from marks and spencers for £15 down from £50 and they will last a very long time as they are such good quality. In relation to gadgets, I dont really buy them I usually get given them/buy mobiles on contract... In relation to food, I just dont care where I shop. I like nice things but ALOT of the food you buy is better when prepared/cooked properly than the expensive stuff. I go to one small shop in town just for diet coke as they have it 50% cheaper than the supermarkets. My biggest tip is to shop around and memorize prices, I can tell you prices for almost anything you need in my area/at the shops i go to, this works at supermarkets and anywhere you go, even if just browsing as that information comes into heaps handy later on. dont get me wrong I earn enough money I just hate paying retail! :D If anyones in east anglia and wants to know where the bargains are pm me :)
SweetKatie SweetKatie 9 years
When I go out to eat I always go to happy hours. Always cheaper and always filling!
rabidmoon rabidmoon 9 years
*equivalents! Ok..typos...time for caffiene. :P
rabidmoon rabidmoon 9 years
Make a point to find and use oriental markets in town, and use them. Exotic sauces and herbs (And many commonly used ones) are nearly ALWAYS far cheaper and more authentic than their "generic" Westernised equivalens, and its so much more fun!
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 9 years
Don't buy the fancy little jars of spices at the grocery them in the bulk food aisle. You will be shocked by how cheap the bulk spices are.
JeannieGrrl JeannieGrrl 9 years
My deep freezer was the best investment i ever made. My butcher shop sells meats in these huge family packs at discount prices and they're wrapped in small perfect sized individual servings. I also buy many pantry staples in bulk and package them into smaller zip lock storage dishes and freezer baggies.
samantha999 samantha999 9 years
Join your local and you can find amazing things being offered for free. My best find was a vintage 60's silk beaded dress.
sorrowja sorrowja 9 years
I have a BJ's card which a $40 for the year to shop in bulk. We go there every two months. Which works out cheaper than going to the supermarket every week.
keiren63 keiren63 9 years
I live in Toronto and use Value Village (second-hand) for jeans for my teenager. It's amazing how often you can find current jeans new or barely worn (I always imagine some well-meaning mom who doesn't know what her tens really like). My son's favourite jeans were $75 in stores...$13 at Value Village. And Dominion's grocery stores have a guarantee that if you find food that is past it's due date, or spoiled, they will give you a new one free. I've seen people who do their entire shop by searching for the off-date stuff...then their entire shopping cart is free.
dcfashionista dcfashionista 9 years
I get my cat food from the Dollar tree along with gift bags and cards. The cards are 2 for $1. When I need a quick outfit I will go to Forever 21 and pay under $20 for a dress which gets loads of compliments. My grocery store does 10 for $10 and even if I just need one item it only costs $1.00.
alethia037 alethia037 9 years
I manage a restaurant, so I buy a lot of my meats and wine from suppliers... it saves a ton of money!
Captious Captious 9 years
I used to be an assistant manager at Dollar Tree. One piece of advise I can give you is to NOT assume that dollar stores are cheaper. There are things for which they are clear wins but there are also things where it may seem like a good deal but if you compared the price/unit you'd actually be better off buying at Target/Walmart/Kmart/supermarket etc.
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