We Are All Frugal

I wonder what everyone else’s secretly weird saving tip is.

The other night while picking up some groceries for a girl’s night in, my friend and I were grabbing some veggies to go with our hummus. Of course we put the pepper and carrots into the provided plastic bags, but I wasn’t about to put the cucumber into a bag – I mean, it was already wrapped in plastic. That’s when she said the following: “Oh can you bag that cucumber? I use these as poop bags for Harley.”

Before you get ahead of yourself, Harley is obviously her dog, not her child.

I laughed to myself and said: “Oh totally, that’s a great idea to save money.” And that’s when I realized…

We’re all frugal.

We all have weird ways of saving money. Even if it doesn’t overtake our entire plethora of spending habits, it still contributes to partial success with our finances. So that’s when I thought to myself, I wonder what everyone else’s secretly weird saving tip is.

Here is what I got:

1) I sometimes shower at the gym to avoid having to pay a higher water bill.

2) I always make sure I use every ounce of lotion in the bottle, like facial cleansers, after you stop being able to pump the product out, there is still a sh*t ton left.

3) I’ve done my laundry in the sink before to avoid paying at the machines.

4) We only use our hot tub in the summer.

5) I drink my parent’s alcohol so I don’t have to buy my own.

6) I never grocery shop on an empty stomach and I cut my own hair, as well as my buddies.

7) I don’t take anything with me to the bar but my ID and $20 cash.

8) I unplug everything after we’re done using it. Your sockets use electricity just sitting there.

9) I start a new TV series so that I’m busy and don’t want to go out.

10) I use what’s leftover in my cupboards and fridge to make stir fry.

11) Pre-drinking = essential.

12) I once stole a bathrobe from a hotel so I didn’t have to buy my own.

13) I’m 25 and I eat 75% of my meals at my parents. Free food.

14) We use all of the empty bottles people leave at our house parties to buy more liquor.

15) I used to collect every single coin I saw on the ground and put it in a jar.

16) I cancelled my gym membership and use playground equipment to work out.

17) If I can’t finish my coffee, I save it and then microwave it later.

18) Once I run out of data I turn it off and go straight green bubble text messages.

19) I reuse all zip lock bags after using them.

20) We grow all of our own herbs to save money at the grocery store.

21) I once had a friend in high school who refused to throw out lip chap or start a new one until she officially finished the current. Do you know how hard that is?

22) For every bill I break, I put the change into a savings jar. It adds up super quick.

23) When I feel poor I make boys take me out for dinner & drinks.

24) I use a tax estimation calculator to make certain that I’m getting each and every penny I can on my tax return.

My personal frugal habits: • I am obsessed with turning off lights to save on electricity. I’ll follow you through every room. • I make my fiancé drive on the weekends so that I keep my gas costs low. • I sometimes buy 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner so I only have to buy one bottle. • I don’t make a grocery list before I shop, instead I only buy things that are on sale.

It’s funny because as I asked my friends what they did to save money in a weird or frugal way, half of the time I was thinking to myself – that’s not frugal, that’s just smart! Which I’m sure many of you reading this will think as well. Then I remember that not everyone out there is very wise with their money.

Many people would think these make us cheap, when in reality, we are just trying to save a quick buck!

The definition of frugal is sparing or economical with regard to money or food. Now I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a part of everyone’s lifestyle at one point or another. We may not all be able to appear on an episode of TLC’s Extreme Cheapskate, but we are all frugal, and we should all be proud!

One other thing I noticed is that a few people said things like “open a TFSA” or “started a retirement fund” as their weird savings tip. Isn’t it sad that these days our generation still believes it’s weird to start saving for the future in your 20s? Just so you all know – it’s never too early.

One day this mentality will change.

What are some of your weird and frugal money-saving habits? Let me know in the comments.