Looking Good and Saving Money

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Looking our best is important however, tough economic times have put a pinch on some of the extras that some can afford. I know for myself that paying $150 (cut, color, and tip) to get my hair done every 2 months is an expense I have to consider cutting out of my budget. So this time around when my gray hairs were showing a bit too much I decided that I needed to find a way to still get myself dolled up without spending a small fortune. Here are my top 10 tips for saving money and still looking good.

1. Find a local beauty school: By the time a cosmetology student is allowed to work on live customers they have received extensive training already and are not “experimenting” on you. Rest assured that you will come out with a great cut and color. The students are just fine tuning their processes on you. You can save 50% or more by going to a beauty school. Beauty schools are not just for hair care, you can get a manicure, pedicure, and waxing done here as well. Ask the instructor or someone at the front desk if tips are permitted, and if so don’t forget to tip.

Find a local beauty school at one of the following links:

2. Do it yourself: If you are comfortable with it there are many color at home options available in retail stores that will give you just about any choice for hair color. From all over color to highlights you can do it all in the comfort of your own home for $7.00 to $20.00 depending on the brand (of course less if you find a sale and combine it with a coupon, I recently picked up a highlighting kit for $2.00 after coupon/sale and gave my tween some highlights..she was thrilled!). There are also acrylic nails kits, that with some practice you can give yourself a professional looking manicure at a fraction of the price. Don’t forget at home waxing kits too for those that are brave! Don’t forget the hair cut, while for women cutting their own hair can be a bit difficult but trimming your bangs can easily be done at home by yourself or with the help from a friend. Additionally investing $20-$30 in a good set of electric clippers you can easily give the men and boys in your life a nice look. I personally clip my husbands hair and my two boys and save about $30 a month by doing it myself.

3. Find a different salon: If your hairstyle is pretty simple and does not require that much in the way of layers, razoring, or multiple shades of highlights you may want to consider going to a cheaper salon. Salons like Fantastic Sam’s, Super Cuts, and Great Clips can offer you a discount on your hair-do with a savings of as much as 50% or more.

4. Save On Maintenance: Did you know that most salons will trim your bangs for free. You just call in and ask if you need an appointment, then come in and the trim takes less that 5 min. Do you need a all over trim to keep you looking good between hair cuts, then use a discount salon for trims.

5. Do without: Some budgets are just not going to budge and you may need to decide that you just can no longer afford to maintain your beauty regimen as you would like to. But that does not mean that you need to look like a ragamuffin, instead think hard about what you can cut back on or out of the budget altogether. Go to the salon less. Instead of getting a cut and color every 6-8 week, see if you can stretch your time between appointments an extra week or two. Go “Au-natural”, get rid of the acrylics and learn to give your self a manicure at home. A bottle of nail polish and a nail file is much more inexpensive than a professional manicure. Same goes for a pedicure. Invest in a foot bath and some implements found in your local drug or discount store and give yourself a pedicure. I have convinced my husband that he gives great pedicures. Even if the paint on my toes is not perfect, I just enjoy the free foot massage.

Looking nice is important but you can still look great without breaking the bank!


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