It’s a real turn-off for me when a guy strolls in wearing jean shorts and a neck beard. He should look the best version of his authentic self – unless his authentic self has a neck beard. For my part, it’s important for me to not show up for a date looking like the Paper Bag Princess. I really like to make a good impression on a first date.
However. I am an improviser with five part-time jobs. That does not entitle me to a life wearing Louboutins as I throw back Dom Perignons and ride on the back of an albino tiger. I’m willing to spend a significant amount of my income on dating as it is a hobby I care about, but I really have to save money where I can. Here are some tips for a lifestyle that looks like it costs more than it does.
Join the Dollar Shave Club. Ugh, I LOVE this website. No, it doesn’t cost a dollar (even if you want their garbage $2 twin blade model) and it’s not a club, but it’s pretty great other than that misleading nonsense. For $18 (free s/h) I recommend ordering the “Executive” 5-blade, sticking around for 2 months, and enjoying the 9 cartridges that that affords you. That’s less than half the cost and all the glory of dumb ‘ol (identical) Gilette Fusion. Or, you know, don’t shave. Pink arm pits seem to be very trendy but I firmly believe that I couldn’t pull those off.
Steamline the Makeup. Not only can makeup be harmful for your skin, it is also really, really expensive. It’s a good philosophy to only buy a few high-quality products and use them sparingly (until they expire, of course) rather than losing your g-d mind at Walgreen’s every time Jessica Simpson puts out a matte line. Be a makeup minimalist, buy only a few high-quality products, and when the night comes along to meet up with that delicious-looking Ultimate Frisbee-playing IT guy, you’ll look fresh-faced and sophisticated.
Give Swagbucks a try. Swagbucks is a rewards site that gives you redeemable points for shopping and doing special promotions. I’m not shilling here- I’ll tell you upfront that 95% of Swagbucks is stupid. Never take a survey. Never watch videos. It’s a waste of your damn time and pays almost nothing. BUT! Sometimes they have awesome “special offers.” I got a 6-month supply of Wen conditioner, a pair of badass kicky boots, and some fun nail polish basically for free (you can get gift cards with the points.) Also, I tend to do a lot of online grocery shopping anyway, and you can get rewards for that.
Do a clothing swap. My last clothing swap was a depressing disaster. Nobody showed up so I drank all the mimosas, ate all the pancakes and eggs, and sat around in a pointlessly immaculate apartment all by myself. Actually, it was awesome, because all of those things are great. I started doing clothing swaps in Korea back when getting American-sized clothing was a hassle. Now H&M exists and I could hypothetically replace my entire wardrobe once a month, but I’d rather buy a few high-quality outfits and trade them with my friends once every few months.
There! Now you’re ready for the perfect date.
Buh-buh-buh BONUS LIFESTYLE SAVINGS!
- Shop for groceries online. I’ll never pay top dollar for flax seed spaghetti again. Most of these places ships for free once you order over $50 worth of stuff and believe me, I can go through $50 worth of stove top popcorn.
- Call people and ask if you can pay them less money. It works. I recently lowered my Verizon bill and my US Bank fees simply by asking. There are promotions and rebates all the time and it’s worth the phone call to find out.
- Buy a menstrual cup. Before I bought my Diva Cup I was literally throwing hundreds of dollars away a year. Menstrual cups are super convenient, money-saving, and much less gross than the other options once you get used to them.
- Don’t turn your nose up at the dollar store. If you can avoid the Peanut Butter Puffs (I never can) you can actually really stretch your food dollar in a healthy way, since most dollar stores carry frozen fruit at rock-bottom prices. Of course, I’m probably growing an extra arm on my back from all the GMOs, but I don’t really believe GMOs are unhealthy so- aaah! Stop chasing me with that pitchfork!
Here’s hoping you all save a ton of money on dating (and life) because you read this. Do you have any great money-saving tips for dating? Post them in the comments!