Frugal Living Tips: 10 Popular Things I Don't Do to Save Money

Get ready to hear some of my favorite frugal living tips. I like the idea of saving money and living a simpler life. Here are 10 popular habits I stopped engaging in that have helped me live more frugally so that I can save my money for the things that are most valuable to me.

1. No more averaging electricity bills

I do not participate in the popular electricity program where bills are averaged throughout the year. We are very mindful of our electricity usage. We know that our electricity bill will fluctuate if we don’t manage it correctly.

We used to be part of that program but then I noticed something strange when my son went to college. When he left the house, he took all of his electronics with him. He took his computer, Xbox, and everything else and I knew we were using much less electricity. Then I noticed the average of our bill only went down ten dollars after a year of him out of the house.

I had $1500 in credit that I couldn’t access. I had to wait a year before I could get it recalculated. I called the electric company and canceled that averaging plan and got my credit. It covered an entire year of electricity the following year.

Beauty products

2. Overspending on beauty care

I don’t color my hair anymore. I used to get it done at a salon and then I downgraded to dying it myself at home. I have back issues and it hurts for me to lift my arms to color my hair. Now, I decided to embrace my grey and do away with hair dye altogether.

I don’t get manicures or pedicures. I do dishes by hand. I garden. It just didn’t make sense for me to be doing my nails because they’d just get messed up and I’d end up feeling like I just wasted my money.

3. No new event clothing

I don’t buy new dresses or clothing for big events anymore. I just use what I have in my closet. I feel like I have more than enough to choose from. I used to buy a new dress every time there was a wedding or a graduation, but then I barely ever wear those clothes again. There’s no point in buying a new dress when I know I’m only going to wear it once. I already have plenty of dresses in my closet that I can use.

4. I don’t buy ice cream

We started making our own ice cream. It’s cheaper and it tastes better. I can even make dairy-free options for my kids who are allergic to dairy.

Cleaning a rug

5. No more dry-cleaning rugs

I no longer bring my area rugs to a dry cleaner. Instead, I take them outside and hang them. I beat them with a broom the old-fashioned way. It gets out all the dirt that the vacuum can’t get. It also extends the life of the rug to refrain from using carpet cleaning chemicals.

6. No ice maker

We do not have an ice maker and we do not buy ice. We make our own ice cubes. I just use regular ice trays and I keep a bag in the freezer that I fill with the ice cubes. This way I always have plenty of ice just using ice trays.

7. We don’t buy new food for camping

We love camping. We used to go out and buy all sorts of food and supplies to bring with us. Recently I have found that I can get creative with what I already have on hand in the house. I’ll take meat that I have sitting in the freezer and cans of tuna from the pantry. We don’t always have burgers and hotdogs every time we camp, but that’s okay.


8. No fancy vacations

We love to take vacations and we are not willing to sacrifice that. We are however willing to do as much as we can to keep our spending within reason. Some people go on vacation and have the attitude that anything goes because this is their time to go wild and enjoy. We don’t do that.

We carefully plan what we’re going to do. We plan how much we can spend and find the best ways to bring those dollars as far as they’ll take us. We determine whether it’s cheaper to drive or fly. We look at the activities in the area and the prices. We’ll even look at the menus of nearby restaurants to figure out where we can eat. We plan very carefully.

9. Sticking to the basic ingredients

Instead of sticking to the main ingredients when cooking I started using things to bulk up the food with affordable fillers. I use a lot of oats. I add it to meat, pancake mix, and muffins. It’s a cheap product that I can add to more expensive foods to get more out of every meal.

You can’t even tell the oats in there. I use it in meatballs and am able to make several more meatballs than that amount of meat would make without it. Best of all you would never know there are oats in there.

10. I don’t buy new clothes for the new seasons

I no longer buy new clothes at the start of each season. People see me in a lot of the same clothes and that’s okay. As long as I have plenty of clothes that fit and are in good condition there is no reason to get something new.

Frugal living tips

I have found that these habit changes have really helped me live a more frugal lifestyle. Just because something is popular or common practice, doesn’t mean it is the best way. Are there any popular things you stopped doing to help you save money? Leave me a comment and let me know.

Join the conversation
  • Louise Hanaway Louise Hanaway on Nov 12, 2023
    I check the weekly ads before grocery or drug store shopping and also use a lot of coupons, I buy items I use regularly when on sale (not waiting until I run low), I also limit myself to shopping for these items once a week or more which cuts down on both impulse purchases and gas for the car. If I didn't get something I simply do without it until the next trip. My meals are planned around sale and coupon items. Even if I'm not cooking a holiday dinner I still take advantage of the free turkey offers as they can keep in the freezer--once had a Christmas turkey for Easter. On OTC drugs I check ingredients and if the same buy the store brands unless there is a promotion or large coupon for the known brand. I group errands, shopping trips and appointments to save gas, i.e. dentist appointment takes me right by a grocery store so I plan my grocery shopping for on the way home or grocery store and bank are in the same shopping center so plan grocery trip if I need to go to the bank. Grouping not only saves on gas but gives extra time.
  • GRANDI ASKS GRANDI ASKS on Nov 13, 2023
    I'm not sure how making my own ice saves but I do turn on and off my ice maker so it doesn't over make and we use what's fresh