How I'm Doing My Low-Buy Year | 2020

After teasing this post for a solid week since I decided to stick to this low buy, I'm finally putting pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard I guess.

I've been toying with the idea of a 2020 low buy or no-buy for a while but it wasn't until I watched this video from one of my favorite Youtubers that I decided I was going to go on this journey.

For the entire year, I will not buy anything frivolous without some parameters around it. This includes not buying beauty products, accessories, clothes, home goods -- basically anything that isn't food or personal care like body wash, face wash, etc.

My shopping habit had gotten out of control, as I've been very open with here. It hit me in November that I really needed to get a grip on things, start saving money and acting like an adult. I have been working for 5+ years and have nothing to show for it.

I also realized that my anxiety stems directly from money. I thought not shopping gave me anxiety but I realized watching the number in my bank account decrease and not having enough money to put on my Metrocard or grab a Starbucks coffee really stressed me out. Seeing money in my account and not being restricted help me immensely and it was at that point that I knew what I needed to do.

There also came a point where I looked around my room and was completely overwhelmed with the amount of stuff I have. I had too many books, too many bags, too many knick-knacks. It stressed me out and I felt like not everything had a place. It was at that point that I knew I had to stop accumulating so much stuff which is another point for this low-buy... I don't need anything else.

I will most likely write another post about my declutter... it's not anything substantial but I feel great after getting rid of a lot of stuff and reorganizing everything.

I'm hoping that this year will bring me clarity, help me save money and really kick a bad habit. Let's get into the nitty-gritty.

Photo Credit


The Rules

My rules for the low-buy are pretty straight forward and are as follows:

  • No impulse shopping
    • I would like to purchase myself a new iPad and a new Stoney Clover Duffle Bag this year. I am saving up for them in the Qapital app instead of buying it at once. Whether I go through with the purchases or not is still up the air.
  • One purchase under $100 allowed each month
    • To me, this is the easiest way for me to not go cold turkey. It will be one item/one purchase that is under $100, not multiple purchases to add up to $100. If I see a new lipstick I want, I am allowed to buy it but that is it for the month.
  • Occasions do not count
    • I have a Bachelorette party and three weddings (one being in Mexico) this year so if I need an outfit, a dress, or a new pair of shoes I will allow myself to buy them.
These rules might sound a little easy but to me, they are definitely not. I was spending over $500 a month shopping... that is $500 that I wasn't saving or using wisely. By limiting myself to one singular purchase under $100, I'm able to look at this as a true lifestyle change and will hopefully never go back to wildly irresponsible spending. Also, teaching myself to actually save up slowly for the things I want will be a really great lesson for me. 

My main issue has always been impulse shopping and buying things the moment I decide I want them. By limiting myself I am able to make smart spending decisions and truly change the way I view money and items.

Exceptions

I already listed out my one exception: occasions. However, I am not limiting myself when it comes to food purchases or 'experiences' such as pedicures or getting my hair done. I get a pedicure every 2-3 months and I have been getting my hair blown out more often but to me, they are not tangible items and a way to treat myself without spending $50+. (My pedicure is $16, blowouts are $18 - not including tips) but that amount every few months is not a lot.

When it comes to food, I spend about $70-100 every 2-4 weeks at Trader Joes and that is when I get my Weight Watchers meals and some items not included in my mom's weekly grocery shop. I also go out to eat at least once a week with my boyfriend which isn't a crazy amount. I am going to limit my coffee and snacking at work but I don't buy breakfast or lunch at work during the week so I'm comfortable continuing to spend money on the weekends on groceries and a nice dinner. 

My last exception is replacements. If I run out of my mascara, I will go and purchase one. If I run out of face wash, I'm allowed to purchase it. However, if I run out of my 'favorite' mascara but I have more in my backups, I'm not purchasing anything. I have enough makeup and skincare to probably last the entire year so we'll see. I will definitely do a check-in every month or so to keep you posted on what is happening. 

This might not be your traditional low-buy but it's going to solve my problem of impulse shopping and accumulation of items I don't need. 

I feel really invigorated and excited to see how far I take this within the year. My life needed this change and I am so excited.

What do you think? Could you do a low-buy for an entire year? Let's talk about it in the comments!

xoxo
B