If You Want to Start Saving, Here Are a Few Things That You Should Stop Buying

No you don't need it.

Since we’re just starting to build better saving habits, I won’t include your daily dose of caffeine on the list… for now.

Related: With 2023 Coming To A Close, Here Are Small Steps to Building Better Habits

In today’s fast-paced world, we easily fall into the trap of instant gratification. We’ve all been there – whether it’s spontaneous mall trips or a scroll through TikTok shops, we find ourselves swiping credit cards, paychecks, and allowances with alarming speed. At this point, we’re living the same story: we don’t even stop to think through our purchases, and we don’t consider the consequences. Before realizing the damage, our bank balance is ‘below minimum,’ and Kuya Delivery is already knocking on our front door.

Now, let’s make something clear. Buying ~ this and that ~ after a hellish week at school or a hectic stretch at work is well-deserved, but it’s time for a reality check. Unless you make six figures or live off generational wealth, we’re adults who can’t afford another purchase from a content creator’s yellow basket. If you’re all about crushing those #TravelGoals, creating that emergency fund, and adult things, it’s important to establish a healthier relationship with your finances. For starters, here are a few things that you should stop buying.

It’s the Same Shade!

As a beauty girlie, I’m most guilty about purchasing the same shades of makeup products. The worst part is I’m not the only one with this problem. Sure, we finally found the palette and scheme that works—which is great, BTW—and that’s why we keep gravitating towards the same reds, pinks, and browns. Then again, what we’re doing is cutting down those beauty buys.

Let’s consider the time it takes to finish that bottle of liquid blush. By then, what will you do with the extras? This unhealthy habit results in a cluttered vanity and a stash of unused products—aka wasted money and makeup.

New Clothes

As a teenager, ‘you don’t need new clothes‘ was a hard piece of advice I can’t seem to follow. Now that I find myself working in a professional setting, it’s even harder to stop spending on outfits, a trending top, and a pair of chunky shoes. With every purchase, I’m starting to feel like Rebecca Bloomwood from Confessions of a Shopaholic—without the consequences, yet.

Given that I take the phrase ‘passion for fashion‘ literally, here’s some advice: you don’t need to stop shopping for clothes. We know, it’s ironic for the story, but it works by setting proper rules. Only purchase new things with the money you’ll earn from selling pre-loved pieces. There’s Carousell, Facebook Marketplace, and Instagram. Imagine decluttering with a new dress coming your way. It’s a win-win.

Over-the-Top Costumes

As the calendar turns toward the spooky season and the twinkling lights of Christmas, it’s time to reconsider over-the-top costumes. In recent years, the trendiest and coolest costumes have become a staple of both Halloween and holiday parties, with people competing to outshine one another with the most Instagram-worthy OOTDs. These same outfits will make an appearance only once, then be tucked away in the closet forever. That said, it’s time to embrace a more minimalistic and mindful approach for these events, with DIY costumes, re-wearing last year’s not-so-scary look, and saving yourself from unnecessary spending while keeping things sustainable.

It’s Called ‘Cheap’ Jewelry for a Reason

‘Affordable’ jewelry and accessories lack the quality and longevity of their ‘more expensive’ counterparts, which means they’re prone to tarnishing, fading, and even breaking. While that ₱299 necklace might seem like a bargain, these budget-friendly baubles can quickly turn into expensive regrets.

Don’t stress; you don’t have to invest in real-real jewelry that could potentially pay off your future home, but consider higher-quality bracelets, necklaces, and earrings that come with a heftier price tag. It’s called an investment because they are your best bet in the long run. Now, before you start doing some girl math to calculate the cost-per-wear and reach for that too-good-to-be-true purchase, remember the old adage: ‘You get what you pay for.’

Tiny Trinkets and Novelty Items

Look around your home. How much stuff have you accumulated? Now, identify which ones are actually functional. From trinkets to little novelties, you may find that you’re surrounded by objects that do nothing more than clutter your living space.

I remember that Shrek butt because I thought ‘cute, add to cart.’ Now, it’s lurking somewhere in my bathroom, contributing nothing but a non-functional touch. Like, leaving your toothpaste out in the open for the sake of showcasing a grinning green ogre isn’t the most hygienic choice. The same goes for those trendy novelty items on social media—they may look funky, but they lack any practical purpose.

Nope, Not Another Phone Case

Coming in different designs, phone cases are basically accessories. I don’t know about you, but I’ve color-coordinated outfits with the cutest cases for a picture-perfect mirror selfie. Now, you’re probably wondering why it’s included on the list. Like, what’s the harm in purchasing a ₱100 phone protection that doubles as a statement piece?

With girl math, it doesn’t seem expensive, but phone cases are far from affordable IRL. One wrong money move, and that ₱100 turns into ₱1000. That said, imagine ten things you’ll probably throw out once you upgrade to the next phone plan.

Cute Socks

Just like phone cases—they’re cute, but you don’t need another pair of socks. After all, most people won’t look at your feet. Trust me, they won’t even notice whether your socks have detailed designs or holes.

Spontaneous Fast Food Deliveries

Food deliveries are justifiable when you’re tired, far from a joint, or can’t cook, but those spontaneous scrolls through Grab Food and Food Panda can lead to unnecessary purchases. That overpriced fast food with an additional shipping fee could be spent on something else entirely. If we’re doing the math, getting up, grabbing a pan, and cooking a homemade meal can make you ₱350 richer.

Continue Reading: What is Girl Math? The TikTok Trend Exposes the Most Gen Z Reasons For Horrible Money Management