The Spending Ban Diaries


Hi, I'm Jasmine and I'm a Shopaholic. Like many addicts, I've decided to attempt going cold turkey. Yes, I chose the shortest month in the year for my spending ban, but still... I'm not usually one for extremes but I just wanted to see if I could do it for real and if that could lead to me being more moderate in my spending going forwards. I am working hard and obviously I do deserve treats but I really want to get saving more and just get used to living on less money as I will be moving down south in a few months. Plus I'm off to New York at the start of June so want to save for that, along with other travels!

I'm writing this little intro at the start of the month and I'll be publishing it at the end, so you'll be coming along with me on my journey. I'll be tracking how much money I've put in my savings account, which products I've added to my wish list, products I've rediscovered from my stash and all the temptations along the way... I hope you enjoy it and that (if I succeed!) it helps motivate you to do the same, as trust me: if I can do it you can do it!

I've decided to allow repurchases, though I'm not expecting to run out of anything this month as I got backups for most of my favourites in the January sales, but sometimes you just don't know! If I have other similar products that I like enough to use day-to-day then I'll revert to those where possible, instead of re-purchasing.

1st February

I can tell already that lunches are going to be difficult as I work in the city centre and like to go out and get some air at lunchtime, which inevitably leads to the shops... Today I avoided it as we all went out for food to welcome some new additions to our team but a whole month of staying away from temptation is going to be tough.

2nd February

I always planned to 'let myself off' and allow myself to go and buy the Nars Velvet Matte Skin Tint that was released today as it sounded perfect for me and I had an NCentive. I felt really bad about it and I want to stick to this for the rest of the month. On the bright side I resisted buying the box with it, as I though £30 was a bit much for a few samples anyway!

3rd-5th February

For the second half of the week I had my CII workshop with the other underwriting graduates, who all came up to Manchester for it. So that meant I managed not to go to the shops at all as we were all together after work and at lunch times. Though the amount I spent on food and drink (I obviously couldn't get it through expenses as I was hosting in my home town!) is another story altogether... My mum gave me a brand new (and really nice) jumper she'd bought for herself from River Island, as it didn't quite fit her properly and she thought it'd be nice on me which was a lovely surprise!

6th & 7th February

I have an exam next week so I was pretty much holed up indoors all weekend getting some study hours in, which was good for the spending ban! I received a pretty amazing bundle of goodies from a PR company with products from KIKO, Pur and Amazing Cosmetics, so I think I'm good for new products for a while... I also received some absolutely stunning brushes from Sigma (their individual copper brushes).

8th February

Yay - no purchases! (Other than a Valentine's gift for the boyfriend) However two little payday treats from last month did arrive. I'd ordered a couple of Kat Von D Liquid Lipsticks (which was naughty...) I tried out all of the Sigma brushes today and they were so good - there should be post up on them by the time this goes live (which I will link here). The Kat Von D Liquid Lipsticks are just beyond incredible too; Double Dare is everything I could ever want! Just think of New York... Think of Spain with the girls... You can do this, Jasmine!

10th-12th February

Ok, I can't do this. Forgive me readers, for I have sinned. I've relapsed and I'm so annoyed at myself! I did a little BeautyBay order as the new Makeup Geek Contour Powders had arrived (they're amazing, by the way). I passed an exam on the 10th so I guess I wanted to 'treat' myself. However the guilt is real. I could have not put it in this post but I'm trying to be honest with myself and with you. Hopefully it will shame me into not having any more moments of weakness. I did also get some new jeans but I don't really feel bad about that as I needed them after the only pair I actually like went missing! I decided to go for something slightly different and chose the Topshop Joni Jeans in Camel, which are an amazing fit and great if you want something other than blue or black. I also received a GHD hair dryer from a PR contact that I can't wait to try out.

13th-15th February

The temptress Space NK keeps reminding me of their £15 off a £60 order offer. All marketing emails are going straight in my trash folder! Although I haven't spent money as far as beauty is concerned, I forgot my railcard and when you're travelling between Manchester and London on a ticket pre-booked with it, the fines can be eye-watering. I had to cough up £30 for a new one. Booo... On the plus side I have booked my flights to Malaga with the girls for June!

16th-19th February

Though I had to pop out to Primark for some new PJs, I managed to rest the temptation to buy anything other than what I'd gone in for. I've generally been skipping going out for lunch so I could have some extra study time. I haven't made it past Pret to spend any money - yay! Which is best as my bank balance is not looking great. Although February is a short month, we got paid a week early in January because of getting paid early before Christmas so it's actually going to be a 5-week gap. In the meantime I've been loving the Jo Malone Earl Grey and Cucumber Cologne my boyfriend got me for Valentine's Day. 

20th - 21st February

I spent the weekend holed up and feeling a bit under the weather, catching up on some study so there was no opportunity to break the ban. I've also been steering clear of online shopping. One positive thing I did do is set up a Help to Buy ISA, which you put money in every month and when you withdraw the money to buy your first house the government gives you a considerable percentage bonus on top of what you've saved. My Debenhams Beauty Club bonus came through but I've resisted the temptation to use them for anything.

22nd-25th February

We are on the home stretch! Although I always said I didn't want to get into a situation where I was just adding things to my wish list and buying them all at the end of the month, I am looking forward to one or two modest purchases. The best thing about this experiment has been cutting out impulse purchases. The products I'm going to treat myself to at the end of this month are going to be things I really want. Going forwards I'm going to wait at least 2 weeks before buying something so I know I definitely want it. I was really close to breaking the ban for the Manny x MUG palette which was released on BeautyBay whilst I was ill however they were flogging it for an eye-watering £50! I don't think I've ever spent that on a single beauty product and when I considered I could get Tom Ford for a little bit more, that cemented for me that it just wasn't worth it. Instead I was a bit naughty and bought the Makeup Geek Vault Travel Palette as I felt I could create something that looked essentially the same with stuff I already owned in a nicer-looking palette.

26th - 29th February

The final days of the spending ban! I've not been very well so I was treated to a few bits from Lush so I could relax and look after myself over the weekend. It was a fairly quiet and frugal one. On Friday and Monday I was also able to avoid temptation as I really needed to study over lunch time.

Products I Rediscovered

NYX HD Blush in Amber (post) - the perfect peachy-pink everyday cheek colour. This is one of my favourite matte blush formulas and I will definitely be reaching for this more often in future.

MAC Lustre Lipstick in Jubilee (post) - this is a perfect everyday sheer nude that adds a bit of pinky-brown colour to my lips.

Stila Eyes Are the Window Palette in Soul (post) - this is just so unique and beautiful; I love it for a nude-bronze smoky eye. I saw my mum using her's (she copied me initially, by the way...) and it encouraged me to dig mine back out. I'm so glad I did because I'm obsessed!

Barry M Chisel Cheek Contour Kit (post) - Barry M recently released a darker version of this which reminded me to dig my original palette back out. These shades are pretty great for me when I want a subtle, everyday look and the formula is really easy to work with.

H&M Eyeshadow in Act Your Beige - I've not actually posted on this as it's one of those things I bought then kind of forgot about but I definitely will be doing now. It's such a beautiful formula and is a perfect sheeny beige shimmer for everyday use.

The Wish List

Morphe 35O Eyeshadow Palette - I've wanted this for SO long and I'm a big fan of the 35T and I know I'll love the warm browns, oranges and golds in this. I'm not expecting it to be back in stock any time soon but if it does return I will allow myself to buy it.

Zoeva Nude Spectrum Eyeshadow Palette - I tried to resist this one as I have enough neutral eyeshadow palettes but it just looks so perfect for me and it'll be great to have all my neutrals in one compact palette.

KIKO Creamy Colour Comfort Lip Liner - I first spotted these apparent Charlotte Tilbury dupes over Christmas and have my heart set on snapping up the shade 303 Tea Rose.

Tony Moly Sheet Masks - I've been wanting to try this brand for ages and thanks to Making It Up Blog, I found out you can get a variety pack of the sheet masks for about a tenner on Amazon.

Savings 

Final Total: £400

I managed to save so much more than usual this month! I'm really proud of myself. Yes, half of this went on the flights to Spain but that's not going to be an every month thing. If I can put away £300 into savings and £50 into my ISA every month going forwards I'll be very proud of myself. It feels good to know I've saved a little bit of money as I'll have to live more frugally when I move down south in September.

I didn't manage to 100% stick to my spending ban, but in a way I wasn't expecting to. It takes a lot to go from buying things virtually as and when you want them to not buying anything at all. However I think it's taught me a little more self-control and not to be as impulsive. What I want to take from this (aside from spending less money going forwards, obviously!) is being more considered about my purchases as even if they're small, the cost can rack up. 


Have you ever tried a spending ban? How well did you stick to it and what are your top tips?

 


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62 comments

  1. Yay you did it! Congrats!! I've managed to break my no-buy ban this past month and have made it my hope that I can do it this month instead! How exciting you're going to New York in June! Can't wait to see all of your photos! :) I've also been meaning to start using products that I haven't given much love to, so hopefully I can do it during my ban haha! Fingers crossed! Oh and I've heard those masks are amazing! I'm def on a sheet mask kick right now, getting close to sheet mask obsessed haha!

    xoxo
    http://www.hellohimawari.com/

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    1. I definitely need to keep up this or something similar until New York! And thank you lovely - good luck with your spending ban :) xx

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  2. Haha I have tried two months not to spend on clothing but just relapsed damn change of season weather is colder and needed some wintery things !! Well atleast you tried not spending is hard when you are a blogger!!

    Beauty Candy Loves

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  3. You did very well! It's very difficult not to buy a thing for a whole month if you were used to treating yourself often. Unless I will be in a very bad financial position I don't think I can deny myself some beauty treats every month. But of course having a family my budget is quite limited which helps me not to spend crazy amount of money on cosmetics. x

    Mummy’s Beauty Corner

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    1. Yeah I think it's all bout moderation and keeping my eye on all the exciting stuff I have coming up that I need to save for :) xx

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  4. I don't think you have to completely go cold turkey but knowing you can reduce your spending and up your saving is a great thing. I've been on a spending ban recently and I'm rediscovering so many products that I completely forgot about!

    Sophie x | Essential Twenty

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  5. I have started this this month! I keep trying and failing... oops! No willpower x

    www.shayholly.co.uk

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  6. Well done! You did so well! I'm on a spending ban as I'm going on holiday in september. I'm doing pretty well, I just wanna buy stuff all the time but can't :'( haha!!
    Fix Me In Forty Five - A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog
    Blog Lovin' // Instagram
    xx

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  7. I really should do a spending ban - little things like wedding magazines (my new guilty pleasure!) add up so much! x

    NINEGRANDSTUDENT: A Student Lifestyle Blog

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    Replies
    1. Yeah definitely - people often say if you look after the pennies the pounds will take care of themselves and it's so true! xx

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  8. I have tried to do spending bans and i last a while but then i always buy something but i don't buy as much as i usually would!
    Emmy | Emmys Beauty Cave | Bloglovin

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  9. Spending bans can be a real test of will power, but also a great way to see what you are able to live without. My spending is usually not too bad. I'm too much of a penny pincher to let myself splurge much these days!

    Rachel | www.currentlyrachel.com

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  10. I was on a clothing spending ban last week but three days later I gave in a put an asos order! I seriously cannot ban myself from not buying makeup or clothes; it is almost painful!
    + Been lusting for the 35o too, I hope it comes back in stock soon!!!!

    Hope xox // B'bB

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  11. Seriously good effort. I've made myself a wee list of products to buy at the end of the month, I went a bit crazy when I was home visiting family & friends...it's allowed on holidays! I think though I need to just switch back to budgeting for a few spends each month, just to help ease it in. I've fallen back in love with beauty products and want them all!

    Honestly Aine

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    Replies
    1. I know what you mean - I'm just trying to focus on the reason I'm saving! xx

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  12. That is such a great post and I definitely recognize myself in some points! I always allow myself repurchases ( when I try to save money) as well, just because there are some products I can't live without! And I also always wait a couple of weeks before purchasing the product I want, just because, sometimes, I want a product very badly for a few days and then I completely forgot about it within a week!

    http://fannyanddailybeauty.com

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  13. Goes to show how much spending you actually do when you pay attention! haha This is a wonderful idea! I think I'll try this in the next couple of months...preferably a month that has 30 days instead of 31, haha!

    http://covetedbeauty.blogspot.ca/

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  14. I tried to do it for a month, I forbitted myself from going to the shops and the mall, and I found myself browsing various online shops and I purchased lots of make up and clothes! What a nightmare! haha
    Yiota
    pinkdaisyloves.blogspot.com.cy

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  15. I'm so not a spender, so I have no tips at all, because every month is like a spending ban unless I'm buying makeup I need, like actually need lol. And I'm a makeup artist so I have an excuse too! Love the day by day diary, you did pretty well!

    RachelShuchatMakeup

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  16. This was such an interesting post, inspiring me to keep track of my spending, although I've been quite good this month other than a few bits from H&M and Kiko when I was in London. I really want to get one of those Stila palettes, but I just can't decide which one!

    Kirstie | Behind The Scent

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  17. This was such an interesting post to read as I'm a serial spender myself! I'm trying to save at the minute because I've got lots of things to pay for but it's really difficult!

    Lauren Ashleigh xx

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  18. This is such a good idea! You've inspired me to give this a go.
    Well done for making a change as it can be so hard, I'm naughty when things I want go on sale!
    Good luck for saving for your future
    Katie xx

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    1. I'm such a sucker for special offers and discount codes! xx

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  19. I don't think that I could go completely cold turkey but I am trying to take a more considered approach to my spending this year. Compared to how I usually am, I'm doing quite well! I am seriously impressed with how you did! Well done xx

    Beautylymin

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  20. I love the Barry M chisel cheeks palette. You're right, it's great for an every day bronze and contour. I especially love the middle shade. :) xx Jodie

    http://www.jodiecaughey.com
    http://www.youtube.com/jodiecaughey

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  21. It sounds like you were really successful! Perhaps moving forward you could do a week each month where you don't buy anything, rather than a month-long sort of thing. I should definitely give this a try I make so many impulse purchases haha

    www.beautyfromkatie.blogspot.com

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    1. That's a great idea! And yeah it's the impulse buys that always get me too :( xx

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  22. I absolutely love how you've structured this post and taken us along with you! :) You did super well! Yay that you're moving south?! You'll be sure to live on less, trust me haha - I treat myself now and then, but nowhere near what I used to *sob....*

    Style Sunrise☀

    :)
    x

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  23. Loved this update! I toyed with the idea of a spending ban at the start of February and.. let's say it just didn't materialise.. Totally envious of you saving that much! I spend my time in arguably the 2 most expensive places in the country so saving is just.. yh, let's say that that doesn't materialise either! Adore that first photo btw

    www.Barely There Beauty.com | British Beauty & Lifestyle blog

    xx

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  24. Going on a no spend is something I have been meaning to do for ages, I am hoping I will be able to do it next month after I come back from my holiday to Australia, fingers crossed it happens

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  25. Well done, I think you did really well. what an entertaining read! x

    franklyflawless.com

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  26. You restrained yourself so well! I work in a city centre too and am so naughty for shopping on my lunch breaks.
    Popping in for a browse always ends in spending. It's a disease haha

    www.clearconsciencebeauty.com

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  27. Congratulations on passing your exam! I'm quite good with not spending on beauty products as I haven't brought any new ones for a while, although saying that I have done a few clothes orders (I hadn't brought anything new for a while) and some skincare goodies for Mother's day :)

    Velvet Blush

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    1. Thank you lovely :) I've needed some new clothes lately too! xx

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  28. Aaaah you have done so well this month! I didn't I so caved into that SpaceNK offer! No willpower here lol, you did fab! Now you just need to keep going, and I will need to start lol

    http://www.makeerinover.co.uk

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  29. I was on a spending ban for many months since last year until early this year but I never detailed it down the way you did! This was a really good read, I love how you made it into an online diary and girl, you did great despite a few slip ups.

    Shireen | Reflection of Sanity

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  30. You did amazingly! I started to cut down on unnecessary purchases a while ago (beauty, mainly) as I felt things were getting a little out of control and my boyfriend and I are currently saving to eventually buy a house. It is difficult to resist temptation, but you soon get used to not always leaving a shop with lots of bags in your hand! We've saved so much and I now get a lot more excited when I do treat myself or I'm kindly sent things.

    Alice / Alice Grace Beauty

    x

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    1. Yeah having something big and important you need to save for certainly focuses the mind! xx

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  31. I love this post Jasmine! You did so well! I did not. March not going well either for controlling my spending unfortunately! So frustrating when it's a want not a need! Well done!

    Danielle's Beauty Blog

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  32. Just last week my siter told me she put herself on a makeup buying ban....I think it lasted almost a whole week. It's hard! With all the emails I get reminding me of sales...it's easier to cave and buy a little something. I'm a little on the broke side at the moment, which helps with my band. Great post :)

    Nereyda│ This Girl Is Obsessed

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  33. I absolutely loved this post, I had a giggle every now and then. Spending bans are definitely hard so cut yourself some slack because you're doing pretty well! :) x

    Darling Jordan

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  34. The first step is admitting you have a problem, unfortunately I am still in denial. Can't stop, won't stop! At least until my bank forcibly removes my debit card. Well done! You did your best and we all deserve a treat now and then x

    Kiran | www.alittlekiran.co.uk

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    1. Yeah definitely - it's a balance between not going crazy and not guilt-tripping myself for a well-deserved treat :) xx

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  35. I actually planned on doing the same this February, but completely forgot about a promise to myself after a couple of weeks. oh well...


    Kotryna Bass Blog

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  36. Congratulations Jasmine! That's so much money you saved. I did a little ban myself too but broke it for the Manny MUA x Make-Up Geek palette!

    http://abigailalicex.com

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  37. This is amazing! Proud of you for making such a big effort to be more conscientious of your spending habits. I definitely am trying to be better about big "treat yourself" hauls as I made a large purchase earlier this year and like you, am trying to save for a house for the future. I think shopping your stash is a great thing, and also selling unused items definitely helps clear up space and give you a little "extra spending money" to buy new items. Hope you continue to do well with this :)

    Cindy | www.cindyhyue.com

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    1. Yeah definitely - I've rediscovered a lot of great products this month :) xx

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  38. I loved reading through everything that happened on each day as to what you spent or if you received any items. Was very interesting!
    Charlotte // www.charlottespicks.com

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  39. You did great. I have gone on spending ban once, like completely..it was a pure torture. Then I started to spend on the things I want and really think before buying something, that helped and it has become a habbit now :) I am sure you will continue to do the same.

    CoverGirl eyeshadow Brown Smolder review | Curious And Confused Me

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  40. Such an honest, relatable post! Very hard to cut back on shopping, especially with so many new releases! Yay on all the savings last month :)

    -Jen

    www.vibrantbeautyblog.com

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  41. You may not have been able to stick to the ban like you had hoped, however I'm so impressed at how many times you resisted buying things! And that saving is amazing

    Emily xx | emilyclairewrites.com

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  42. Even though you may not have been able to stick to the ban as much as you'd like, you have enabled me in many ways. Hahah, but I am going to start doing spending bans as well :) Loved the post!

    thatbellemakeup.blogpsot.co.uk

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  43. Good on you! A little hiccup shouldn't be punished, you did so well! I've never truly banned myself, but I have definitely had times when I'm far more conscious of what I'm spending and to reduce it.
    The Beauty Bloss

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  44. Thank you for your comments - I loved reading them :) xx

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  45. You did well though, you need to treat yourself otherwise it doesn't seem worthwhile! I waste so much money every month, I plan to be good next month after forking out deposits etc this month. The help to buy ISA's are so handy, I keep debating on switching to one x

    Tamz | http://www.throughneweyesx.com

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  46. Spending bans are so hard! I did one for just make up items last year, and tried to do it for 100 days. I only managed to keep up with it for 50 days, but still, that was such an achievement. I did end up buying a lot after that, but like you said, it's good to distract you from the impulse purchases. I am currently in the UK and I'm constantly editing my wish list. I did pick up a lot of drugstore items already, but I'm kind of putting off buying high end stuff until next month or so, just in case I change my mind about something, which I think is working so well! So far I've taken at least 3 high end things off my list and replaced it with something else I'd prefer more, so YAY!

    Love, Charline | Charline Has a Blog

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  47. I've actually told myself that unless brands send me beauty products, I am going to eliminate buying them this year because that's going to be the best way for me to save money. I used to go to Ulta & Sephora ALL the time last year and I haven't done it yet this year so I'm quite happy about that! xx adaatude.com

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  48. Youve done so well Jasmine! I gave up buying clothes and beauty items for lent last year and I did it but it was soooo hard! I think like you say it's all about realising how much little purchases add up, as they do so quickly.

    Lucy | lucyalana.blogspot.co.uk

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  49. Wow well done on saving so much! It is hard to resist not buying new things but it proves if you put your mind to something you can do it!

    Jodie @ Jodetopia x

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