Ease financial stress by doing without these things

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Like many people throughout the United States, you might be struggling to make ends meet due to a failing economy, rising gas prices, inflation and other issues. If you’re feeling like it’s time pull the purse strings tighter in your household, there are several ways you can start saving money. Sometimes, there are little things you can do to ease financial stress. Each measure taken might not seem significant on its own. But, together, over a period of time, it adds up.

Saving money to pay bills when financial times are tough typically requires sacrifice. Many things that 2/3 of the world would consider luxuries, we, in America, treat like a necessity or as something we’re entitled to. So, if your goal is to cut spending, ease financial stress and start setting more money aside to meet the current cost of living, you must be prepared to do without some things.

Cut your own hair and do your own nails to ease financial stress

The average cost for a man’s haircut nowadays is $28 but can be more. For ladies, this price increases to $53 or more. These prices do not include gratuities. As for nails, getting a manicure or pedicure is nice but it’s not a necessity. Doing without these perks can have a significant effect on your finances in a short amount of time. A set of nails typically runs about $45 for acrylics. A pedicure can cost between $35 and $60 dollars.  Do the math, and you’ll see how doing without these things can quickly start to alleviate financial stress.

If you get your hair cut every two months and a manicure and pedicure every month, you’re talking upwards of $250 (or more, with tips included!). To keep it basic, let’s just assume you’re spending $250 every two months. That’s $125 per month, times 12 months per year, which equals $1,500. That can really come in handy when gas prices are more than $5 per gallon! Learning to cut your own hair and do your own nails is a money-saving idea!

Less financial stress at yard sales and consignment shops

When financial times are good, it’s easy to become accustomed to off-the-rack shopping. When you need something or want something at the store, you go get it. And, there’s nothing wrong with that. However, if you’re struggling to make ends meet during the current economic crisis, it might be a good idea to shop elsewhere, where prices are less expensive. Maybe the idea of wearing second-hand clothing doesn’t appeal to you. There’s a saying about food, which says, “Hunger is the best spice.” The same goes for clothing.

If you’re struggling to pay your bills but spending top dollar for designer brand clothing, it would no doubt be helpful to change your spending habits. There are many consignment shops (where you donate clothing to sell, then receive a percentage of the proceeds), as well as thrift stores and yard sales, etc., that offer quality clothing. Why pay $45 for a pair of jeans off the rack if you can get a similar pair at a discount store or second-hand venue for $15 or less?

Plant an herb garden

Eating out less and making homemade food is another way to stave off financial stress. To start, consider planting a small herb garden. Fresh herbs and spices are expensive at the grocery store or farmer’s market. If you grow your own, you have healthy, flavorful herbs on hand to spice up your meals. And, you’ll be saving money, too! If you’re interested in planting an herb garden but aren’t sure where to start, this post may be helpful to you.

Stop using some many toiletry products

If you were to keep a tab on the exact prices of the products you buy for your personal hygiene and beauty routine, you’d probably be astounded at how much you spend on such things each month. Not only are toiletry products expensive, many of them are full of toxic ingredients that are known to cause cancer and other health problems. The bottom line is that you’d be better off without many of the lotions, scrubs, sprays, deodorants, shampoos, conditioners and other products you use on a regular basis.

To ease financial stress, learn to do without these things. Okay, you have to wash your hair, of course, but you don’t need top-shelf-priced shampoos and 10 other hair products every time you take a shower. For lotions, you can switch to pure coconut oil. It’s healthier for you, anyway. You can make homemade sugar scrubs and other bath products, too, including your own toothpaste! Doing without a cupboard full of hair and bath items can help you save a lot of money.

Purchase sale items and re-sell at a higher price

This is an extra tip that doesn’t involve “doing without.” It’s a viable option for generating cash flow and easing financial stress, though. Many people have started micro-businesses on line, either as a side hustle or full-time job. They scour the stores for designer brand clothing on sale. If, for instance, there are Under Armor shirts on sale for $8.00 each, and there are six shirts on the rack, they buy them all. So, they spend a total of $48. They then re-sell each shirt online for as much as $15 to $20 (which is still less than the regular price).
At $15 each, they bring in $90, which is a $42 profit after their initial purchase.

Think carefully and cut spending wherever you can

What are some other things you’re willing to do without to help alleviate financial stress? Do you a Starbucks habit or other regular purchase you make on a daily basis or several times per week? Why not set that money aside, instead. If you buy a grande-sized drink at Starbucks three times per week, you’re spending more than $10 a week on coffee. That’s $40 per month or $480 per year.

Tough times call for tough measures. You might not want to do without things that bring convenience or pleasure to your life. But, it might be worth it in the long-run when you feel the financial stress lift and you’re better able to pay your bills and put food on your table.

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