One thing that frustrates me is when I use disposable items where a more permanent item would do the same job. I think that the decision to invest in a permanent solution is more environmentally conscious, and will save you money in the long term. This also means that you only have a small amount of reuseable things, rather than many more disposable things, because you aren’t throwing them away after every use.
I use cotton fabric makeup remover pads. I have a mix of soft pads and some slightly rougher ones. These are great to use with makeup remover or micellar water in exactly the same way you would use conventional cotton pads, the only difference being that when you have taken all of your makeup you put these in the laundry rather than the bin.
The rougher pads especially are great for cleaning my face. They work well with my Angels on bare skin cleanser from lush as the rough texture of the fabric works with the exfoliating almond bits in the wash to give my face a really good, but still gentle clean.
I have 9 pads, which works fine for me, even if sometimes I need two to take off particularly heavy makeup. Although I use fewer of these than I would usual make up pads because they hold up better and won’t fall apart when I am using them. If I wore makeup everyday I would invest in more. These get washed at least once a week on a hot wash with my bedding, and if anyone else in the house is doing a white wash then I will sneak a few in then too.
I got mine here. Of course you could make your own.
Having only got into Lush last August I feel like my Lush collection, or hoard, has just happened, without me totally aware of it. I went to the Boxing day sale this year, and that is where it got really out of hand. It’s fair to day that I won’t be buying anymore for a fair while. But here is a look at what I have at the moment to get working through.
Soaps and Shower Gels
Lush are well known for their soaps. I remember the first thing I ever bought from Lush was the Honey I washed the kids soap when I was about 13. For years this was all that I’d ever buy from Lush. Last year for my Birthday my Flatmates got me a bottle of Flying Fox shower gel and I fell in love. I was only just getting into Lush when they said that they were discontinuing it. I think when I have worked through all of the soaps and shower gels I will try and get some off Lush Kitchen.
I got a small amount Yog Nog before boxing day because I love the nutmeg scent and found it generally quite moisturising. I got some more in the 50% off Boxing day sale. I don’t know how much I will use the scent during the rest of the year because it is quite festive. But I really enjoyed it over Christmas.
This soap is another of the Christmas collection, it smells like berries and shares it’s scent with the comforter bubble bar. I’m glad I got a big block as I can see myself using this throughout the year.
Snow fairy? No. It’s all about Rose Jam as far as I am concerned. It leaves you smelling like turkish delight, all rosey and sweet. The rose scent from Lush is beautiful, it’s rose like without smelling like a cheap rose perfume that you’d consider getting for your Grandma.
It’s Raining Men
This Shower gel shares its scent with Honey I washed the kids. I went into my Lush after I discovered that Flying Fox was being discontinued to see if they still had any stock. They didn’t, but the shop assistant pointed me towards It’s Raining Men instead, it is sweet like Flying Fox, but doesn’t have the subtle floral smells that Flying fox had. Luckily I like how Honey I washed the kids smells and find it quite nostalgic. But nothing compares to Flying Fox!
Dirty Deal Showder
Incase you haven’t come across this yet a showder is a shower powder, so powdered soap. This was a limited edition product, but I think you can still get it, to raise money for War on Want which is a charity fighting the TTIP trade deal.
Showder is great to travel with, because it’s not a liquid. But I wasn’t so taken with it at home and I think it’s a bit of a faff to have to decant it into something smaller to take in the shower with you and if you get it the tiniest bit wet it will all start to change colour and froth up. But used carefully this is a really fun product and it does have it’s uses.
Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner
This is one of the more pricey Lush products, however I got this as a gift from my Grandma. If you haven’t tried a body conditioner then go into Lush and get a sample. This has the same scent as Rose Jam so I was in love from the very beginning. The oils sit nicely on your skin without feeling greasy and it does a really good job of moisturising and it soaks into the skin well.
I also have 2 massage bars. I am currently working my way through Tender is the night, which I love, but I also have a backup of Shades of earl grey that I again picked up on Boxing day.
They are wonderful to use on your own or with someone else as a special treat. The oils warm up when you rub the bar against skin or warm it up in your hands. A few rubs up and down is enough oil to then rub in with your hands. I like to use these after a shower or bath before I go to bed, so they can soak in really well overnight and I will wake up feeling fantastically moisturised and smelling divine too.
Haircare is one of the things that I think Lush do really well, and more people need to get on board with. The products are on a par with more luxury conventional brands, but the results are better, at least for me.
I travel a fair amount and the naked products Lush have were what drew me to trying the hair care. It all started with Jason and the Aron Oil solid shampoo bar which I have since used up which is a real achievement as they last forever. This was also where I fell in love with the Rose Jam scent.
This is another solid shampoo, but comes in a deli style slice rather than a round disc. Trichomania is rich and coconutty, but I still use a conditioner with this. The OGX coconut milk conditioner adds to the coconut smell and is a great cruelty free conditioner. Trichomania really brings out the scent of American Cream too, when I wash my hair with both I can really smell the vanilla and strawberries in American Cream.
I wanted to try Trichomania for some time, and it was in the 50% off sale at the Lush I visited on boxing day, so I got myself and my Mum a chunk. I love it and am considering getting more when I run out, however my Mum really didn’t get on with it. So maybe ask for a sample to check if this will work for your hair type.
Lullaby Shampoo Bar
This product is now an online exclusive, but I got mine, again, in the boxing day sale. I loved Jason and the Argon Oil and thought I’d give a different scent a try. These are great for travelling, but you have to be careful to dry them out or else they can become bonded to the tins.
My Grandma got me some American Cream as part of a present. I love the scent, but as a conditioner I find it remarkably so-so, especially considering the price. I don’t think I’ll be repurchasing this.
R&B is a hair conditioner, so you can put it through your damp hair, or dry hair to add some extra moisture and shine. It also smells fantastic. So far this is lasting me really well, and I only got the small pot.
Henna and Jasmine Frizz ease
I don’t know because I haven’t tried this yet. But it smells amazing.
Angels on Bare skin was the product that undoubtedly started my fascination with Lush all over again. Lush skincare can be pretty hit or miss for me, so I’d recommend getting samples before you commit to the full product to save you money. The people at Lush are all lovely and will advise you on what might suit you and will happily send you away with a few samples to try.
Angels On Bare Skin
This is a face and body cleanser. To use it you take a small amount and mash it up with some water on your hand to make a paste and then apply to your face. There are lavender flowers as well as small pieces of almond that exfoliate your skin gently. Angels leaves my skin baby soft. Since using this to wash my face my skin has improved so much, I feel more balanced and I rarely get spots anymore.
This style of cleanser can be a bit messy to use, I always wash my face in the shower, so I don’t have to deal with bits of face wash gettting all over my sink. But for how it leaves your skin feeling and looking I’m happy to put up with the messiness.
One of the Lush fresh face masks, this also smells like roses. The scent is pretty strong though, so be prepared for when you put it on your face. You keep these in the fridge and they usually last around 2-3 weeks.
This is a lip scrub, so sugar, salt and some oils to moisturise your lips and add some flavour. I like the popcorn flavour as it isn’t too sweet. You run this all over your lips and then you can either wipe it off with a tissue, or lick it off. Exfoliating your lips is a good idea if you like to wear more matte lipsticks.
Ok, so I’ve saved the biggest until last. Most people’s first experience of Lush is either Soap or Bath bombs and they are really well known for them. I usually split my bath bobs into 2 or 3 uses, because I get the same effect, but at a third of the price. These are easy to buy and hard to use up. because how many baths do you really have? Probably about 3 a month maximum in my case. So it is easy to build up a hoard of bath bombs, even if you are trying to be careful.
Plenty of Seasonal bath bombs and bubble bars.
Three lots of Yog Nog bath bomb.
Shoot for the stars bath Bomb.
Half of Rose Bomb Shell bath bomb.
Butter Bear and his tin
This is the last of the halloween collection I have left. I cut this bubble bar in half and found that it worked really well, giving me plenty of bubbles. I could have even cut it into three.
Peeping Santa bubble bar
This bubble bar has a rich oil filled center. I can’t wait to use him as it smells fruity and sweet. Not to mention how cute he is!
Santa bath bomb
This smells like strawberries, I will probably split this in half or quarters before I use it.
A pretty simple bath bomb, I have used this one before. This is one of the few bath bombs that I will use whole, as it is quite small.
I love most things apple scented. When I was younger my favourite perfume was the DNKY be delicious green apple one . Snow white reminds me of this and is a beautiful smell. I have used this bath bomb before and split it in half. I will split this one before I use it too.
Luxury pud bath bomb
This is by far the most crumbly bath bomb I have ever purchased from Lush. The dots of colour keep wanting to fall out. I would like to split this bath bomb, but I am scared of the mess this might make. I’ll probably end up using this whole. Again, this is a sweet smell.
I have ended up with 3 of these, as I got one as a gift for Christmas after I had already got myself 2 from the Boxing day sale. They smell just like the soap, and have chunks of bath oil in them, for an extra moisturising bath. I have to be in the mood for the nutmeg smell now that it isn’t christmas anymore. But I am still looking forward to using these when the mood takes me.
Butterbear and his Tin
When I went to the boxing day sales I knew that I’d need something else to store my Lush stuff in because I was intending on stocking up. I think the butter bear tin is really adorable and a good size. I have a total of 6 Butterbears, the others are hiding inside, they are lovely and simple bath bombs with loads of chunks of cocoa butter that will melt in a hot bath. Butterbears are the perfect size to be used in one go.
Shoot for the stars
This smells like Honey I washed the kids, so of course I love it. The effect that this bath bomb gives in the water is spectacular, whether you cut it or not. During the rest of the year you can get hold of the Honey Bee bath bomb which has the same scent, but is a lot more plain. This is part of the Christmas Collection.
Part of the Mother’s Day collection this has the same smell as Rose Jam. Inside there are Yellow rose petals. I am not a huge fan of petals in the bath, but I’ll happily overlook that because it smells so good. If I didn’t have all of the Lush I do at the moment I would go back and get some more, before they disappear.
I’d love to hear more about your Lush collections. Please let me know if you’d like a more in depth review of any of the products I have mentioned in this post. Thanks for reading!
One of the easiest ways to save money is to avoid buying unnecessary things! While making lunches, which I will come onto, takes a little bit of pre planning and effort, taking drinks with you when you are out of the house can easily become a habit.
I always take a full water bottle with me to university. This saves me from buying drinks when I am out of the house which in turn saves me money. Also this helps to keep me on the straight and narrow in what I am drinking. This habit has really helped me to reduce the amount of fizzy drinks that I buy, which is great for my health.
The best thing about taking water with you is that you don’t need to spend anything to get going. Chances are you will have an old bottle lying about from drinks you have purchased, so instead of throwing it away, recycle it into your new water bottle. Of course you can buy one if you are looking for something more substantial, or haven’t got an old bottle. Careers fairs and events on campus are an excellent place to pick up a new water bottle, free of charge! Also you can fill up your bottle throughout the day and so you are never without a drink.
If you don’t like water you can always take squash with you instead, but make sure you are cleaning your bottle more regularly if you do this to avoid any unpleasant tastes in your drink.
Sometime you just really need a cup of coffee. While Starbucks, Costa and even the University ran cafe will cost you around £3 for a coffee, if not more, if you make a coffee at home and take it with you in a thermal flask this significantly cuts down on this cost.
I use a lifeventure 300ml flask, this is roughly the same as a small cup of coffee. The RRP for this is £13, but I got mine on sale for £10. This is a good investment as it has already lasted me well over a year and shows no sign of giving up soon, so for the cost of maybe three coffees from a cafe I can take my own drinks in, saving me money in the long run.
Depending on how you look at this, there are a few downsides, or positives… So if you want more than one hot drink in the day then this can be a limitation, but I like to see it a good way of managing how much caffeine I am drinking. Also you are limited to drinks that you can make at home. No gingerbread lattes here, however the syrups are mostly sugar anyway, so this makes me make a better choice for my health.
All of this isn’t to say that I don’t occasionally buy a can of Diet Coke or a coffee or hot chocolate on campus. But I definitely don’t buy nearly as many as I used to.
If possible cooking with other people is a good way to cut the cost of groceries and split the effort of cooking a meal. In my house 3 out of the 4 of us cook together. This is a fairly flexible arrangement as there are some days of the week where some of us just aren’t in to eat with everyone else and sometimes we can go away for a weekend or for reading week.
I think that one of the things that scares people away from sharing food is that they imagine that there has to be a lot of commitment and that everyone has to do it. But in reality you can have a lot of flexibility as long as it is planned in advance and everyone communicates well.
When I say that I meal plan it isn’t some scary chart with everyone of my meals on it. Generally we will only plan 5 meals for the week as this is all we will manage to commit to. We plan this on a board from paperchase, which to be honest isn’t the best quality, but the layout is great and suits us well. There is no need for us to plan breakfasts as we have similar things every day. For lunches, I have a rough idea of what I want but will generally try to use leftovers and things that we already have.
Where you shop can have a big impact on how much a week you are having to spend on groceries. Big supermarkets like Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda are all quite similar in price. Whereas the discount supermarkets like Aldi and Lidl can be noticeably cheaper. We shop once a week at Aldi, and will top up on things like milk and eggs if we absolutely need to.
Aldi is great, the variety in what they sell, although this changes from week to week, has definitely increased from when I was younger and my parents used to shop there. You can get most of the basics that you need here. They also have some free range options for meat and eggs.
What you buy also affects the overall price of your weekly shop. We cook mostly things from scratch, or as much as possible. This may be a bit more effort than cooking more processed foods, but because there are three of us cooking we cut the time we individually spend cooking so it is fine to spend a bit more time cooking cheaper, as well as more nutritious meals. It is easy to live healthily on a budget with just a little bit of planning. Usually we spend between £22 -£35 a week on food for the 3 of us, so around £8 to £12 a week each. This depends mostly on if we need more meat, or if we have ran out of things for the house.
Taking lunch to university saves me money in the same way that taking water and coffee saves me money. When we cook we try to bear in mind what lunches we might need and if necessary overcook some of the food, mostly the carbohydrate element of the meal to help make lunches a bit easier.
I, personally, am not a big fan of sandwiches. I prefer to take a salad or a leftovers as my lunch. Fried rice is a great lunch and one that I really enjoy, it is great to stir fry any sorry looking vegetables into and it is easy to incorporate an egg, boosting the protein content of the meal.
As I mentioned at the start the easiest way to save money is not to spend money. While this is common sense it is much easier to not spend money if you avoid temptation. I try not to go shopping for fun as much as possible, and write a wishlist in my journal of things that I need, or rather want to buy. By not making the purchase immediately it lets me think over if I actually need the item.
Cold hard cash is often a lot harder to hand over than just swiping your card. I try and take about half of my weekly budget out as cash on a Monday. Usually this will last me just fine. Having the real money in my purse makes it easy to keep track of, and dissuades any impulse purchases.
I really hope that these tips will help you get better control over your lifestyle and money. There is a lot more that I could mention, but I think that these tips are the easiest to get started on and can make a big difference.
Do you have any money saving tips that work for you? I’d love to know.