How to shop smart without compromising your values or breaking bank.
Shopping can be rewarding or maddening. We buy stuff we need. We buy stuff we want. And we buy stuff we neither need nor want. And the "why" does not always make sense. And while there are definitely some products worth splurging on, the most expensive option is not always the best. Here, some tips to help you be more mindful with your money.
1. First, the obvious: single-use water bottles.
If there's one thing we waste far too much water on, it''s bottled water. Today, North Americans often drink bottled water for what they hope is not in it. Companies like Nestlé play on these fears and profit from sales of billions of litres of fresh water they take and bottle every year--essentially for free. So do your wallet and the environment a favour and invest in a reusable water bottle instead.
2. Smartphones, like the latest iPhone.
Before you splurge yet another $500-$1000 on a new phone, ask yourself: do I really need the latest and greatest version? Too often, people buy into the perceived scarcity, the attraction to "what's next" and the shelling out thousands for a phone that isn’t all that much better than previous editions and is mostly just a status symbol. Go for the features that matter to YOU.
3. Expensive face cream.
The secret to finding a good face cream is the ability to read and understand the ingredients. Often we end up paying extra for fancy packaging or marketing without realizing that the actual content of the precious jar is almost identical to that of a basic skin cream. Look out for greenwashing tactics used by some skincare manufacturers.
What is greenwashing?
Greenwashing is a marketing tactic where brands depict that their product is environmentally friendly or organic to appeal to consumers consciences, when the reality may not be the case at all.
4. Basic workout leggings.
Can you bargain on a pair of leggings and still receive great quality, or do you have to fork over the money in order to obtain it? Turns out quality affordable leggings are actually easier to come by than many active gym-goer and barre enthusiast think. Whether it is high-end leggings or more affordable generic brand, the material used for leggings manufacturing has not changed in decades: for the most part it is just a different ratio of nylon, polyester and spandex. All you really need to do is to look for heavier jersey with moderate stretch so they can pass the squat test with flying colours and to check for targeted compression zones to keep you feeling supported in all the right places.
5. Meal planning & groceries.
Try to plan your meals for the next few days or week ahead. You would be surprised by how much money you could save when shopping for groceries by simply following your pre-planned meal menu. In fact, when you go to the store without a list, you can spend up to 40% more! And try not to shop on empty stomach. According to numerous studies being hungry amps up your desire to acquire things. These acquisition-related thoughts spill over and put us in the mode of getting more stuff in general, such as junk food for example.
The bottomline is that you don’t need to turn your world upside down to start saving money. Start by making these simple yet effective steps to save and before you know it, you’ll start seeing your savings grow with less effort.
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