New 2017 Focus: No-Buy-Low-Buy Hybrid

So, it’s resolution time! I toyed with the idea of doing a summary of my year long Low-Buy for 2016 but if you’ve followed along on the journey, it can be summarized as this: well-intentioned. ๐Ÿ˜‰
no_buy_low_buy_2017_2
I did start out well early in the year but I got myself in the red badly by mid-year, which then meant that I had to go on a self-imposed No-Buy for a couple of months to get myself out of the hole. ย But it was down hill once again by late Autumn. I’m not even going to insult you by posting a December Low-Buy post – I ended the whole year in the red in a bad way! ๐Ÿ˜ณ ย If you’re curious about my journey, have a read through my Low-Buy Accountability posts. ย Remember when I achieved my No-Buy in 2015, I rewarded myself? ย Well, I didn’t achieve my Low-Buy target so no rewards to myself! ๐Ÿ˜ฅ

no_buy_low_buy_2017_4
You might be wondering, “but Stashy, you did a No-Buy for the whole year in 2015! Why were you not successful in your Low-Buy in 2016?” ย To that I say: I actually think a No-Buy is easier than a Low-Buy. For me, once the faucet is turned on… the trickle of spending just starts flowing and it’s a challenge to turn off. Whereas, if I’m consistently not purchasing, it becomes a habit that’s easier to maintain. It’s difficult to explain – possibly an all-or-nothing or black &ย white type of thinking. So, I’m hoping a hybrid system will help me to stay on track this year! Here’s what I’ve devised, based on my spending patterns:

January:ย Free For All again – c’mon, all those clearance sales! This will forever be known as Haulurary (thanks to GymBagMakeupย for coining that term!)

February – March: No-Buy

April: $200 for Sephora VIB sale

May – June: No-Buy

July: $200 for birthday hauling

August – October: No-Buy

November – December: $300 per month for VIB, Black Friday, and holidays

So that’s 7 months of No-Buy and 5 months of Low-Buy. Let’s see how I fare!

no_buy_low_buy_2017_3

Additional details:
โ€ข Focus on not buying unnecessary makeup AND skincare items (this is different from last year – I did not count skincare but I think I need to curb the hoarding with skincareย too)
โ€ข Keep spending within the allotted monthly budget
โ€ข Overage amount will be deducted from following Low-Buy month(s)
โ€ข Leftover amount will be added to following Low-Buy month
โ€ข No-Buy months means NO BUYING – even if I have leftover money or gift cards
โ€ข Replenishment of finished beauty products is ok and not counted as part of the total
โ€ข Items purchased on vacation do not count! (currently we have no travel plans yet – we’ll likely not be taking big trips this year)

no_buy_low_buy_2017_5
One in, one out Policy
As an added bonus, I’m also instating a one in, one out policy for makeup purchases. I truly am running out of allocated space for my makeup. Of particular focus to destash are nail polishes, blushes (SAD FACE), and brushes. I’ve just got too many of those items that I never use! This policy isn’t a hard rule, but a focus for me to net out with the same amount or less makeup at the end of 2017!

What are your thoughts? Are you attempting any Low or No Buys / spending reductions this year?

75 thoughts on “New 2017 Focus: No-Buy-Low-Buy Hybrid

    1. I feel like I made a lot of progress with using up a lot of products in 2016. I just need to purge a lot of stuff that I don’t reach for anymore before I can think about buying more stuff! Good luck with your low buy in 2017!

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  1. Good luck with the no-buy / low-buy.

    I agree, not buying anything at all is easier than buying just a few things. And it’s not strange, it’s perfectly normal. Not buying means you don’t have to go to the store in the first place, so you won’t be tempted.

    Have you thought of swapping beauty items and nail polish with your colleagues and friends? Or you could sell a few items at a low price and donate the money to charity.

    I’m pretty sure that you’re the master hoarder and that none of your friends or family members have anyhwere near as much to swap as you do. But then… you never know who else might have the same hoarding problem… ๐Ÿ˜‰

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    1. You’re so right. No shopping means not even stepping into the stores – THAT was a huge part of why I was able to stay on course for 2015. But once I was exposing myself to the stores and all those NICE sales people / makeup artists in 2016… it was game over! ๐Ÿ˜›

      I’d much rather just give my things away to friends. Swapping won’t make sense since I just end up with the same amount of makeup. Selling / donating isn’t possible since they’re not brand new / unused products. Plus, I wouldn’t feel right donating used items.

      My friends hoard clothes, shoes and purses! ๐Ÿ˜†

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  2. I’m totally with you – my permanent ยฃ25 budget a month fizzled out by the middle of the year. I think I’m on a mission to keep going through my stuff this year and decluttering and using stuff up, I did do a genuinely good job last year but still want to get rid of a lot of things I have part used up and get it gone if I don’t like it any more!
    I’m in a desperate need to purchase some foundation but have a few that are on their last legs that I’m forcing myself to finish up first!
    I think your mix of no buy low buy will be better – like you say once you’ve bought a few things the mood to keep spending strikes!

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    1. I have a couple of foundations to be used up too! My goal in January is to finish up TWO! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ I know I can do it because I estimate both have about 2 weeks’ worth of product left.
      When I was thinking back last year – I did fine when I had the self imposed No-Buy – I just channeled my attention into other things for those months. I’m going to watch movies / tv shows instead! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  3. The no buy/low buy sounds like a good plan! You’re not restricting yourself and you’re still able to purchase things in certain months for your birthday, Christmas etc. I haven’t purchased a lot of makeup in the past 6 months at all, I’ve been pretty much on a no buy without realising it! That and it takes me FOREVER to use up products!

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    1. Yes, I just know myself that I will find “excuses” to treat myself so why not make them the months I can shop? Within reason, of course!
      I have noticed that you’ve been really good with not spending the last half of the year. I also think it could be that you’ve been “distracted” by someone! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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  4. I like your goals for the year! They definitely seems doable…although a no-buy for the whole of 2015 still seems so impossible to me!! I totally get your whole “once you start buying, you can’t stop” thing, but not buying at all would seriously make me go insane. Also, no using gift cards during no-buy months? You are really sticking to this!!

    I have my low-buy/no-buy months decided too (post to go up tomorrow)…they are very similar to yours, I guess most likely due to the Sephora sales/holidays, haha.

    Are there any specific places you find clearance sales? I feel like I don’t often see any makeup-related clearances in January, just regular sales!

    Will you be doing posts on things you are throwing away too?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I honestly toyed with doing another No-Buy for 2017! Actually, I personally felt that I was more creative in my blog posts when I was just hauling all the time! ๐Ÿ˜†

      I just saw your goals – we have similar No-Buy months – solidarity in No-Buying! *fist bump* ๐Ÿ˜›

      Places I’ve hit up on clearance sales (both online and in-store): Sephora, MAC, BBW, Rexall, Shoppers, Yves Rocher… I will post my haulage once I get some more stuff in the mail!

      I haven’t decided if I’m going to do period destashing posts or group them in monthly with my Trash Stash. What do you think?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hmm, I like the idea of you doing separate destashing posts. I kinda like seeing what you’ve used up separate from what you’ve decided you don’t need anymore, ya know?
        Aww man, the other day I saw a bunch of things I wanted in the Sephora sales section on the website, but we were in a rush to leave the house. I didn’t go back until later that day, but all the things I wanted were gone by then *cries* I suck at taking advantage of sales!

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        1. You make a good point about separating them. Also, I was working on my Trash Stash post and some of the numbers were muddled by having some of the Trash Stash items not actually being an empty, but just re-homed. Perhaps I shall do quarter de-stash posts.
          If you have a Sephora near you, maybe you can find them at the stores? Because the day of Boxing day, I saw that all the Tarte sets were gonzo on the site. But then I was at the mall on the 28th (at Eaton Centre, no less) and they had a whole shelf-full of them! So odd.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. That is a great idea, a monthly empties since you use up so much, then a quarterly de-stash. I think that works out nicely!
            Yeah, I thought about going to a Sephora store to check out whether or not they still had the sale items! I was most interested in some Becca products that were on sale. The one downtown near my work doesn’t carry Becca products, and I haven’t had a chance to make my way to the ones that do. Very weird that Eaton Centre still had them on the 28th, though!

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            1. Speaking of Becca… I did major damage at their counter at The Bay. I scored some 50% off stuff – they had a ton left! I’m just a teeny tiny bit ashamed… ๐Ÿ˜› Will post soon.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Oh my gosh! I walked by the Becca counter at the Bay and didn’t notice any sales (see what I mean about being a bad sales shopper?) I wonder if they’re discontinuing those items. There is NO shame in getting a good deal, hahaha. Tomorrow I’m heading to the mall that has the good Bay/Sephora, so MAYBE there might be something left for me…please!

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                1. The sale items were on a separate tower, away from the main Becca display. I do believe the Becca items were being discontinued. They were the Tinted Shimmer Souffle blushes, Bronzer / contour duo, Eye tints, and liners. I got a couple of the blushes and the bronzer / contour duo and an eye liner! ๐Ÿ˜ณ HALF PRICE, c’mon… I am crossing my fingers for you. Those Souffle blushes are gorgeous and I’m sad they’re being discontinued – I got Watermelon and Raspberry, both highly rated by Temptalia:
                  http://www.temptalia.com/round-becca-beach-tint-shimmer-cheek-souffles-thoughts-comparisons/

                  Liked by 1 person

                  1. I THINK those Tinted Shimmer Souffle blushes were one of the Becca products I was meaning to get at Sephora! They only had certain shades on sale on the website. I remember reading about them on Sephora when they came out and they looked beeeeautiful. So awesome you managed to snag some! Fingers crossed there’s something left, LOL!

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  5. This sounds sensible to me. The buy and no buy ratio kind of evens everything out and lets you really think on what you want to buy during those months you won’t be making any purchases.

    Similar to what Mrs Strawberry Blonde suggested, have you thought about selling items through Ebay? You may not get a whole lot $$ back, but it will be something and you will get some space back.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wouldn’t sell my things because a lot have been used (even if once or twice) I wouldn’t feel right selling them. My friends are always welcoming of my destashing activities! ๐Ÿ˜‰

      It’s true, if I limit myself to certain months of buying, I do mull over what I want to spend my money on instead of impulse purchasing!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m going to try to buy less. It’s hard as a blogger but I’m learning I don’t need to get and try every single new thing. I’m going to focus more on my personal likes/needs as well as decluttering once I get my new desk/vanity put together (I put the drawers together tonight but I have to take the tabletop back to IKEA next weekend & exchange it because I got the wrong size – too short).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. See, I never buy stuff just to review for the blog. I’d buy things regardless if I had a blog or not. I actually shopped a LOT more before I had this blog. Having the accountability has helped me a lot. I’ve also cut down watching YouTube in the past year which also helped – that was the worst for me in terms of temptation.

      Oooh, new vanity! I’d love to see it once you have it put together! I think having a proper place to put everything helps with containing / limiting the amount of makeup. Right now I throw everything into our spare bedroom closet. ๐Ÿ˜›

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      1. My makeup buying went through the roof after I started blogging. Before then, pretty much the only brands I used were Bare Minerals, MUFE & Smashbox. That was it! Blogging introduced me to MANY brands I never would have tried otherwise. It made me discover how much the drugstore brands have upped their game. It introduced me to indie brands like Morphe, ColourPop & Sedona Lace.

        But now that I know of these brands and temp track of what’s available, I can try to cut back and be more selective of what I buy. I’m going for quality over quantity. I got enough eyeshadow to last me at least 5 lifetimes. ๐Ÿ˜‚

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        1. I hear you – I’ve got enough makeup to last 10 people several lifetimes! The only things I’d need to replenish would be foundation and concealers! ๐Ÿ˜†

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  7. I can’t lie to myself. The moment I get on Instagram, I’ll be wanting to buy shit. I would like to say that I will at least use the stuff I have bought before I buy more….. but I know that’s not going to happen. I swear, I’ll be more successful at losing 20 pounds. I am the absolutely WORST trying not to buy makeup. Total fail.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I used to be TERRIBLE about finishing up a skincare item before starting on the next, but last year I really forced myself to do that and now it comes naturally. But makeup… that’s another story. I mean, do I really need another taupe eye shadow? Another MLBB lipstick?! Having a blog / social media definitely adds fuel to the fire! ๐Ÿ˜›

      Liked by 1 person

        1. It really IS a challenge when you’re a beauty blogger – there are so many new launches, and especially if you get sent stuff, it’s just not possible to stick to one thing and completely finish anything.

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  8. I attempted a no buy makeup ban mid last year but that failed! It was probably not the best time to start a challenge towards the end of 2016! I started strong but as soon as the new releases came out for Christmas it was game over for me! I’d like to maybe do a no buy skincare since I’ve become a bit of a hoarder with that! Hahaha! I hope you get to do a this hybrid! You seem like you have more determination to succeed!! I enjoy reading your updates too! x ๐Ÿ˜Š

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    1. I think the worst time to start a No-buy is January, and September! That’s when everything is on sale or when all the Holiday releases are out. It’s a real challenge for me to curb skincare purchasing too – I was doing well but then I saw so many interesting products I wanted to test out. Yes, I’m determined! Perhaps if I adhere to my goal, I will reward myself somehow. ๐Ÿ˜›

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  9. Holy! This is some real planning and strategy here. Drastic at times.. :)) Good luck and strength to stick with the plan.
    I has sorta promised myself not to spend money on makeup unless its really insanely amazing or if I need the item – I have way too much of everything :))

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    1. I need to get tough with myself!
      It’s so tempting with all of the pretty new shiny things… I really need to declutter my makeup stash though. I’m honestly thinking half my lip products need to go – I never reach for them!

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  10. I know what you mean on the spending thing. It’s kinda how I am with dieting. I have to follow a strict plan with no treats or I’ll “overspend” my calories. I think it’s super smart of you to base your low/no-buy months off your spending history. I feel as if the past two years for you have both been a learning curve and you will rock 2017’s socks off with your budget! I also like your 1 in 1 out policy!

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    1. Yes, I too, feel the last 2 years were kind of practice and behaviour modification over time! It’s not easy to just flip a switch. It’s similar for diets and excising. People restrict and then they binge and gain everything back and more… slow and easy does it!

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  11. I like the concept of the low-buy, but I think I too would easily go overboard. Especially with nail polish, just the other day I was in TJ Maxx, searching through the polishes forever and finally found one that I had been wanting forever. Somehow four more made into my hand by the time I went to check out. Dang.

    I am trying my first no-buy for January (though all the post-holiday sales are KILLING ME). The trick for me is to get my friends and family on board, because when I go shopping with them they like to point out the nail polish and hand creams and basically be terrible for my wallet because they know all my weaknesses and apparently like to watch me fail, haha.

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    1. What you described at TJMaxx is exactly how I am. I went in for ONE thing and leave with TEN. Whut.

      Oooh no buy right after the holidays is killer. If there’s one thing I’d recommend is don’t do anything drastic in January – be it a no buy or a strict diet. Way too hard on the system! This is how people get that post-holiday slump! But it’s so true, you need to make a huge announcement to all of your friends and family – in fact, you should just stop all social things with them and become a hermit for the month. ๐Ÿ˜› So many temptations out there especially in January!

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  12. It’s nothing I had set in stone or resolutionized (is that a word?) but last year I made a real, concerted effort to stay on top of the things I bought – as in, I knew how much of something I had and where it was all stored, so I could easily remind myself that I didn’t need something because I already had X large amount of it to go through. And then I made sure to really use my products, partly so I’d have something to blog about outside of “Look what I bought!” and also to clear more space for potential new things. I think overall I ended up spending less on that sort of stuff because I wasn’t just randomly buying – there was more of a purpose to it than that?

    Then again, just before Christmas a wax vendor I like offered about eight different blends that I just couldn’t say no to, and now I’m up to my eyeballs in scented wax. I didn’t need it, but here we are! Problems, problems…

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    1. Sounds like you really got a handle of things in 2016! I’m with you, I’m sick of my own haul posts. People seem to love them but personally I find them hollow. This year, I’m actually going to revisit all those hauled items to use / review them.

      Well at least with the scented wax, you do really use them up, right? What would you say, you have enough stock for 6 months?

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      1. I really love your haul posts (and other blogger’s haul posts) but I always find it to be a bit of an untenable blogging situation – like, unless you’re getting press samples, testers or other freebies on the regular, you’re shelling out with your own money, and there’s only so much stuff you can buy (and store) before you run out of money (and space.) Just in my own personal experience I’ve found that the blogs that shutter fairly quickly are the show-me blogs, as pretty as they are to begin with. You need to do something, even if that something is actually using and reviewing your products, right?

        It seems like lots of people in the wax world go a bit bonkers with the buying, and then put themselves on a low buy or no buy program (which doesn’t really seem to work all that well?) I’ve managed to keep it reasonable, but after my late Christmas splurge, I’m feeling the pinch. But like you said, I’ve got tons in reserve, and you do use it up. I think if I melted a couple of ounces a day, I’d probably have enough for, yup, half a year.

        Okay, that’s scary. I’ve got wax – not candles, mind you, which are useful when the lights go out, but wax! – for six months. Frightening!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. It’s more of situation with storage than money for me. If you can believe it, I bought more beauty products when I didn’t have a blog – that’s when I finally put the brakes on buying and started the blog to keep accountable. Last year I was at least tracking the purchases. I buy stuff for me, not for the blog! I’ve just been a hoarder for way too long to let go of the habit. ๐Ÿ˜› Seriously though, this year I am getting rid of a lot of stuff I never use that’s taking up SPACE.

          I guess when you write it out – it is daunting, isn’t it! I saw someone on Reddit calculate how long an eye shadow would last based on weight and # of applications it would yield and it made me realize that I have enough eye shadow for hundreds of years. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

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          1. That’s awesome, I didn’t know that’s how your blog originated. ๐Ÿ™‚ Great idea, accountability to others.

            Ha, I love the makeup calculator! I believe the extended timeline, too, especially as I’m actually not much of a product person, so it takes me years to use up an item. I’m actually a few days away from using up a cuticle cream I’ve had for two and a half years, and that’s only because I’m using it as an impromptu foot cream at the moment.

            And I almost get, like, panic attacks when I look at some people’s Lush collections. You know, the surface of an entire king size bed just packed with (perishable!) products. Do you think people actually use this stuff, or is this more of a hoarding thing? All I know is it freaks me out to see thousands of dollars of perishable bath and beauty products all laid out like that!

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            1. Of all things to hoard… LUSH is ridiculous! I do think they hoard it rather than use it all up. There is absolutely NO way.

              I use up so many creams by turning them into foot creams… ๐Ÿ˜†

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  13. I can be a bit of a shopaholic and one of my goals last year was to be more mindful of my purchases. The best thing that helped curb my spending last year was walking away from the item(s) for a bit to see if still feel the same about it once the “rush” has faded. I love finding good deals and/or sales and sometimes I was (and still do) buy things just for that reason. But walking away for a bit really helped me be able to think more clearly. I definitely bought a lot less than previous years – and I found the things I did buy I actually used and loved.

    I also did a big cleanse of our basement and my closet this year and got rid of a ton of stuff. And I realized how wasteful I am – I had stuff that had never been used that I actually spent a good chunk of change on. This year I plan on cleaning out my makeup vanity and nail polish stash and only keeping things around that I actually use. Easier said than done, especially when you blog about makeup!

    Best of luck with your low/no-buy this year! I’ll be following along for sure! ๐Ÿ™‚

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    1. That’s a good practice in general – leaving the item and let it fester (as it were). Unless of course, it’s limited edition or something at Winners / Marshalls! (Those commercials don’t lie! ๐Ÿ˜› ) I kid! But I know what you mean – impulse shopping typically do not end up with meaningful items.

      Good luck to your clean up efforts! I love a good destash. It really drives it home to see how much stuff we buy and hardly use… caught up in the excitement of something new and shiny!

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    1. You’re so right! The temptation is EVERYWHERE. Having a beauty blog doesn’t help since I see so many interesting things. But, having the blog also keeps me accountable. I have cut back on watching YT videos a lot which helps.

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  14. You’re plan sounds really good! I find no-buys easier too, mainly because if it’s a low-buy I find I start to try to justify purchases and bargain with myself.

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  15. Although I don’t have this problem with makeup, I have this problem with food and one thing that stopped me in my tracks is by actually looking at how much I spend on just food. This is not spam but I used everydollar.com and it made it easier for me to realize how much I spend and once I realized that I could do so many other things with that money, then I started to get straight with food but I have to admit that I just started this so talk to me in July and see if I’m just like you with makeup. lol

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    1. Thanks for the site! My SO is an accountant and a professional financial planner! ๐Ÿ˜† He keeps me in line financially. I just have to keep me in line with hoarding. ๐Ÿ˜› We’re running out of space!

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