Stay Fab on a Budget

ESSENCE.COM Oct, 14, 2008

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Some of the best-dressed ladies stick to a budget. It does take a bit of planning. But when the economy gets you down, nothing feels better than saving a couple of bucks.

Here are our tips.

-Tiffany Miller

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We know it’s fun to head over to the mall and just buy what you like. But do you really need another pair of black pumps? Even if they are on sale? Decide exactly how much spending money you’ll have each month and where you want to spend it. If that’s $200 on a leather jacket, fine. Just don’t spend your jacket money on jeans.

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We know how important it is to try clothes on before you purchase, so do so, but that doesn’t mean you have to buy it just then. Come home and do a search online. You may find the same dress on eBay or another store. There’s a good chance you’ll find it cheaper. Many online businesses also have e-coupons. Do a quick Google search and you’re sure to find a money saving code.

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Classic pieces like your slim black pencil skirt, crisp white shirt and cashmere cardigan are meant to last a lifetime. But they’ll only last the season if you don’t take some pride. Make sure you use appropriate detergents and be careful with bleach. Choose hand washing when you can and skip the dryer. You won’t have to buy another classic piece again.

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We know it’s incredibly relaxing to go for a weekly mani/pedi. And that back massage the technician talked you into is only a couple bucks extra. But regular beauty rituals can cost thousands a year. All we’re suggesting is that you give nail painting a try. You may be surprised just how talented you are and just how much you save.

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Sure, a soy cappuccino with extra Splenda may be hard to achieve at home. But practice really does make perfect. Besides, even if it’s not a perfect Starbucks masterpiece, it can still pack the same buzz.


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