Cheap Tricks from Cheap Bettys

The Bettys offer their confessions of a cheap-a-holic and how they save a penny here and there. We have no shame because the tricks save us big bucks!

Budget Betty

Cheap Tricks from Cheap Bettys

We have no shame – these are little tricks that save us big bucks

-Megan Southwick

a woman stretching her dollarThere ain’t no shame in my budget game. Or hers. Or yours.

I freely admit to using a spatula to scrape every last bit of peanut butter out of the jar. I’ve even been guilty of microwaving it to melt the PB so that every last drop pours out, because I was too cheap to open the new jar just yet. But admit it – these little cheapskate moves can sometimes add up to big savings! Here’s what the rest of the Bettys – who are remaining anonymous, and you’ll understand why! – are doing on the cheap:

When my four-year-old doesn’t drink all her milk in the morning, I use it in my coffee. Hey, we splurge on the organic for her, and I can’t bear to see it go to waste!

I totally smuggle in cans of pop to the movies so I don’t have to buy big ones for my kids, and this is especially rude of me because I’ll buy myself a big ‘ol Diet Coke there because I love the fountain sodas!

I have been known to cut the mold off the ends of an expensive block of cheese and continue eating it. (I fully blame my Depression-era grandparents for this tendency!)
I religiously return my MAC containers so that I can get new lip gunk, instead of paying for it.

I buy nice, new (crucial!) bras on eBay. I’m a bra snob – only Chantelle and the like for my girls … but I refuse to pay the $85 retail that those babies demand. Thanks to eBay, my bra wardrobe is sweet.

When I have bangs, I trim them myself because I don’t want to go back and get a full-price haircut. You’d think seven or eight years of school photos where I looked like Special Edina would’ve cured me of this, but nope.

Instead of getting a full manicure, I just get a polish change (it’s only $5 and looks just as good).

I shop at the cheaper grocery store to save a buck or two when it’s my turn to pick up groceries. How cheap is it? They only recently upgraded to loading your groceries in plastic bags as opposed to using recycled produce boxes. And as long as I’m there, yes, I do go for the no-name items to pinch my pennies.

I use the plastic bag my newspaper comes in for dog poop scooping – it’s biodegradable like the other bags, so why not?

I buy a bunch of one thing when it’s on sale, if it isn’t perishable (soap, contact solution, etc.) Right now I have a closet that’s loaded with shampoo.

For the first time ever I am thinking about buying a new pair of prescription glasses on line. They are so much cheaper. I hope I can see.

Now I only buy the cheapest laundry detergents. I admit it I have gone from a supermarket to a Wal-mart to a CVS, comparing prices. But are the more expensive ones really any better?

I wash and reuse Ziploc bags whenever possible.

I had my hair professionally straightened so that I don’t have to have it blown straight in the salon – I can do it myself. The straightening cost a bit upfront, but I will be saving money in the end. And I think I look better. Really.

My friends have started having potluck suppers. Each couple brings something. A first course, bread, dessert, a side dish or wine. It may sound corny, but it is fun – and a lot less work for the hostess.

Do you have any penny-pinching moves of your own? Cheap Betty wants to know!

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