Money saving tips – PERSONAL CARE

Personal care chapter can swallow a lot of money. It greatly depends on which country you are, since the price of the services can be very different. And also about the level of care you are used to. I will be talking only about basic needs: maintenance of the hair, shaving, eyebrows, mustache and skin. Makeup habits, hair dyeing, nails, face masks and so on are already outside of the basic care and will not be discussed in this post. So here are my methods for basic care, some pros and cons and tips and tricks.

1. Cut your own hair and beard

First let’s talk about men: short hair, short beard (not shaving, which is even cheaper and easier).

Men need to cut their hair roughly every 2 months and trim their beard every 2 weeks. The average price for a man haircut is 12 eur and for a beard trim is 7 eur. If you go to a barber shop you will need for this 250 eur/year and roughly 24 visits per year to the barber. Sure, you will look amazing. But if you want to look just ok and also save money, you can learn to do this by yourself. You need to buy one trimming machine and have it for tens of years and one person to cut your hair in the back, can be your kid, grandma, wife etc.
I won’t give any advice on how to do this, just watch YouTube videos :D.

For women, you can also cut your hair. We all know how ridiculously expensive cutting long hair is. I mean, I am still considering becoming a hairdresser and be rich just from that…  But if you have long hair, you can cut it yourself. Again, watch some YouTube videos and don’t expect to have a super stylish haircut, you can only clean the damaged hair and do some nice layered haircut. So if you need style, you have to pay for it. I like it a bit uneven nowadays and it is mostly in a ponytail in my bike helmet, so this type of self-chopping is a great saving method for me:

2. Shape your eyebrows

This one is tricky and you can mess it up very fast. What I usually do is find a cosmetician that can shape them very nice and for the next months I follow her plucking, take each hair out as it grows, trying to not touch the existing ones. This works for a while, until you need her to re-shape them again. But it is certainly not necessary to go every month. Once you repeat the cosmetician’s work a couple of times, you will learn how to follow the line you need and stop paying for the work of another person, when you can do the work yourself.
Also a nice tip: use some ice on the skin, it will help with the pain.

3. Epilate, wax, shave

This is a long subject. But the short story is that getting rid of your hair at home is an excellent method of saving a lot of money. Since it became a social requirements almost to have smooth legs as a women, you might want to look into making them smooth yourself, if you want to spare the hundreds of euro spent on beauty saloons. Here is how you can get rid of your hair:

1) Shaving

This is certainly the fastest, easiest and cheapest. However, it is not always working. For areas where there is a lot of friction, shaving can cause a strong irritation. Moreover, even if it is fast each time, you need to repeat it 3-4 times a week. This can lead to a total of 16 times a month. If it takes even only 3 min to shave your legs, you are spending 50 min/ month on your legs. You might want to put in balance roughly the same amount of time you need for waxing or epilation. It is painful, but in exchange you get smother legs for a longer time and less irritation.

Here are some tips I found that can reduce irritation:

  1. Apply oil on the area that you want to shave and leave it there for 5-10 min.
  2. It can be coconut oil, jojoba oil, almond oil or baby oil.
  3. Wipe the oil with a clean paper towel.
  4. Apply shaving cream, the best brand is the one with active silver ions which prevent irritation. Nivea has a fairly priced one.
  5. Shave the hair against the direction of growing with a used razor.
  6. Very sharp razors cause even more irritation.
  7. Dry the area and apply some antiseptic alcohol.
  8. Once the alcohol dried, apply on the area a non-perfumed roll-on antiperspirant

I find this method to work the best after few times, the skin gets used to it, but it did not work for me long term, the skin remains very sensitive after shaving.

2) Epilation

This method can be perfect if your skin can take the continuous plucking and doesn’t get very irritated. Buying one device once and having it for a long time will save you lots of money. I have my cheap Philips for 15 years, poor thing! Here are some pros and cons for this method:

– very cheap, you basically buy a device once and can have it for many years
– very nice to use on less sensitive areas like legs and hands
– very clean to use, you only need a towel for gathering the hair
– not too painful and you can control the pain, stop or go faster on the areas that are   more sensitive
– it is very safe, no risk for cutting or burning

– takes a long time
– can break hair rather than pluck
– it is a bit loud

3) Waxing – save 200 eur/year on your pubic hair

Such a title, but it is true! For only 3.5 eur you can buy 250 g of wax and have it for one whole year. All you need to do is warm it up in the microwave and start suffering. It is just a matter of getting used to it, but we are more resistant to pain than we think. If you are using this method anyways through your cosmetician, it is worth learning the method and stop going to a beauty salon – they are expensive, the ladies chat too much when I am in pain and sometimes they are not too thorough. After trying this 3 times you will be an expert in waxing, all you need to do is to be careful about the temperature, place the wax in the direction of growing, pull with determination against the direction of growing while holding the skin around.
Here are two methods (warm and cold) you can choose from, with their pros and cons:

So 50/50. Try them both and choose the one that suits your needs better.

4. Wax your mustache – women

My first piece of advice is: don’t! But if you already did it once, it is too late, the hair will grow darker and it will be way more visible than before. It is very cheap to do this at home: all you need to do is buy the Veet wax for delicate areas and it will be enough for a looong time. I am even cutting one stripe in half, since I don’t need the whole length. As for how easy it is, well, you can judge for yourself from this very accurate video :D:

5. Don’t cheap out on quality sun lotion

Even if you want a perfect tan, you have to use the sun cleverly. Otherwise you will end up with all sorts of freckles and unwanted stains. Everything after moderate UV (3-5 is moderate, after 5 it is high, very high and extreme) will burn your skin in less then 30 min. You need to be careful even with moderate UV, a fair skin will get burned in 45 min. So if you spend more then 45 min in one go outside, use sun lotion.

Why not cheap out on it? Because if you get the greasy heavy Garnier or supermarket one you will never want to use it, it will stain your clothes, it will feel greasy and heavy. Buy a special one for face from La Roche Possay, NeoStrata, Avene or anything that has high quality, very light face cream. Same for body lotion – the difference between a heavy, greasy, prone to leave stains cream and the high quality, light on the skin, non greasy, high protection cream is enormous.
Why you will save money like this? Well, it is the perfect way to preserve a good quality skin, especially for women who are hormonally predisposed to more skin conditions. Keep your skin healthy and you won’t need expensive makeup to cover imperfections or laser treatments.

6. Intimate hygiene – women

This is just a quick tip for you: bidets are an awesome addition to any bathroom that can allow us a quick wash at any time. However, in case you can’t install a bidet in your bathroom, I totally recommend this incredibly cheap bidet sprayer from AliExpress, it works wonders:

All these tips might seem like a very little savings, but gather them all and you might be shocked by how much you can spare per year just by doing the work yourself.

If you want to see my tips for saving money when it comes to food or health, you can check my previous posts here:

Money saving tips – HEALTH

Money saving tips – FOOD