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Twenty-something Ruth was very casj about money; I would have regular shopping sprees (read, most weekends), was regularly going out for food and drinks and pretty much embodied the ‘treat yo’self’ lifestyle. Now, whilst thirty-something Ruth isn’t all doom and gloom, I still love going out and clothes, I’m far more conscious about how I spend my money. 

I don’t know whether its because I’m in sole control of my finances now, or because I’m far more environmentally aware and understand we don’t need ALL OF THE THINGs, but I’m a lot more careful about how I spent my money – whether that’s clothes shopping, make up or food shops and household bills. It all adds up. 

I do actually pride myself on my decent money management skills, so thought in the current economic climate with Coronavirus scaring the bejesus out of many and the fact that I’m due to be unemployed in around a months’ time, it might be helpful to share how I save money? I love reading these kinds of posts on the Metro and Refinery 29, as it’s a topic that genuinely fascinates me, so here’s my 10 pence worth: 

Meal prep 

I’m a huge fan of meal planning and sticking to just one food shop per week, where possible. Top-up shops are a no-no! I sit down one day a week with all my favourite cookery books and plan our meals for the week. I then write a shopping list before we go to ASDA or Morrisons (our supermarkets of choice) so we don’t go rogue and end up with random bits that don’t equate to one full meal! 

This is the easiest way to keep costs low by sticking to the list and ensuring every item you buy will get eaten, therefore reducing food waste. I’m proud to say that we don’t throw any food away as everything gets eaten or batch cooked and frozen – so there’s always an option and we’re no longer relying on Domino’s on a Friday night! 

Make like Macklemore and thrift shop 

I’ve spoken before about swap shops and charity shopping, but I’m fully converted. Whilst I do still get some high street items, I can count on one hand the number of items I’ve bought from the high street in the last six months. My consumption has way lowered and I’m spending a lot more time on Pinterest and Instagram getting ideas on ways to re-wear and style items I already have in my wardrobe, rather than trying to keep up with new trends. 

Make Martin Lewis King

I am an avid checker of the Money Saving Expert emails that come out weekly and I’m such a fan of switching bank accounts when 0% interest offers run out and taking advantage of cashback. I use Quidco whenever I do an online food shop or have place Domino’s orders, even though it’s less than a quid, it’s something that goes straight into the joint savings account. 

We are no longer brand loyal and have switched our internet provider looked for new broadband deals to make sure we’re paying the best possible price for our internet connection. There’s so many different internet providers out there and comparison sites to check so you know you’re getting the best deal. We’ve saved so much money and have a super speedup connection which is important, as there’s so many devices running in our home, from Darren’s gaming, my blog and both of us being huge YouTube lovers. Defo compare the packages avukable and check the contact length as some sky rocket at the end of the contacted period! 

Discount Code Queen

I’m happy to go on record and say there are a few items that I can’t dupe. Whilst I’m such a fan of Aldi’s dupe make up and skincare products, I can’t live without some high-end brands, however that doesn’t mean I need to be buying full price for them. If you follow any beauty instagrammers, bloggers or vloggers, you’ll see that many often have personalised discount codes for online retailers such as Cult Beauty and Feel Unique. This is my personal fave way of stocking up on those make up and beauty brands that I can’t substitute, whilst still making a saving. I’m also back on the bandwagon of using my Superdrug and Boots loyalty cards to rack up points – another quick win if you need a new perfume but can’t wait until your birthday/Christmas/anniversary (delete as applicable). 

These are just a few ways in which I’ve saved money and will continue to do so, as they’re easy swaps and I haven’t felt any different by reducing my outgoings. This has meant we have actual savings across a couple of different pots and life is a lot less stressful! Let me know if you’d like to me add a regular ‘money’ series to my blog! 

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Ruth Writes
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Ruth Writes is a 30-something Liverpool based blog covering mid-size fashion, pescatarian food and beauty.

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