s a college student with not a lot of money, I am constantly practicing the art of spending less. However , you don’t have to be a college student to appreciate getting things for free! Here are some ways to get new things without ever having to open your wallet:
1) Take Advantage of Your Birthday:
What You Have to Do: With most companies, simply signing up for their membership club will include annual birthday perks!
What I’ve Gotten: Sephora Beauty Insiders receive an annual gift. This year, I got a mini mascara tube and highlighter from Benefit Cosmetics. Last year, they gave a duo pack of SUGAR lip treatments.
What I Discovered: A Starbucks membership will get you a free drink on your birthday and one with Ihop will get you a free meal!
Extra Tip: Here is a comprehensive list of other birthday perks!
2) Sign Up for the Mailing List!
What You Have to Do: Just say yes! When I’m at the register and the cashier asks me if I want to join the mailing list, I’m always prone to instantly say “no thanks!” However, there are are many perks to spending an extra couple of seconds to join a mailing list.
What I’ve Gotten: Aerie and Victoria’s Secret both send coupons pretty frequently and most of them are pretty good. Anthropologie also sends an annual birthday coupon and usually in really creative packaging.
Extra Tip: Store catalogs are another thing that I love getting because they’re mailed to me and they’re free! (who doesn’t like getting nice things in the mail?) Free People, Urban Outfitters, andAnthropologie are just some of the stores that have catalogs that can be mailed to you. The photos are beautiful, the quality is great, and they cost nothing at all! I love to use them for collages and making envelopes!
3) Make Use of Your Smartphone!
What to Do: Downloading apps on your smartphone is one of the best ways to save money because it is so convenient.
What I’ve Gotten: Wrapp is an app that allows you to send gift cards to friends. They often have promotions which can include things like free H&M gift cards at various prices. They once were giving away free $12 gift cards so I sent one to my roommate and she sent one to me. I was able to use that gift card to get myself two beautiful and free necklaces!
The Urban Outfitters app allows you to complete various challenges and gives small discounts upon completion. The Yogurtland app works a lot like a points card and keeps track of how much yogurt you buy. After you’ve bought a certain number of ounces, you can get free yogurt!
What I’ve Found: Foursquare is another app where you can get deals just by checking into various places. A friend of mine told me how she’s checked into Chili’s so many times that she’s able to get free salsa and chips every time she goes.
Extra Tip: Because some store apps are better than others, it’s generally a good idea to read reviews just to see whether they’ve worked for people and if they’re worth having on your phone.
4) Just ask!
I wasn’t sure where to put these last two things, but they are definitely two of my favorite ways to avoid spending money. The first is something that my roommate taught me.
Samples at Sephora:
What to do: Customers at Sephora are allowed to ask for three free samples of any product that they want to try. All you have to do is find a product that you’re interested in and ask an employee for a sample. It’s a great way to try products that you’re curious about but have no interest in paying the full price for.
Hand Treatments at Sabon:
Sabon is a small luxury bath and body fragrance company with boutique like shops all over the city. If you’ve ever been with me when we’ve walked past a Sabon shop then you’ll know where I’m going with this.
What to do: When you walk in, all you have to do is ask if you can wash your hands. Quite often, one of their lovely employees will walk you through what their products do while you test them out. Usually, you’ll be able to at least try the hand soap, hand lotion, and their amazing scrub. When you’re done, you’re hands will smell amazing and feel incredible.
(I’m not joking. People might actually stare at you as you walk past them because you won’t be able to stop screaming about how great they feel)
These are all the ways that I try to save money. Let me know below if there are any tricks that you have! My wallet and I would love to hear them! Thanks for reading!