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Uploaded:2020-08-27
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In this video, one woman tells us her best frugal tips for saving money — some of which are quirkier than others.

Through weekly video essays, "Making It Work" showcases how *real* people have upgraded their personal or financial lives in some meaningful way. Making your life work for you doesn't mean getting rich just for the sake of it. It means making the most of what you have to build a life you love, both in your present and in your future. And while managing money is a crucial life skill for everyone, there's no one "right way" to go about it — you have to figure out what works best for *you,* full stop.

Based on an article by Kristi DePaul: https://thefinancialdiet.com/5-quirky-frugal-habits-i-refuse-to-be-ashamed-of/

Video narration by Kasey Hott

Video by Grace Lee
https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatsSoGreatAboutThat
https://twitter.com/whatssograce

The Financial Diet site:
http://www.thefinancialdiet.com

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This week's video is sponsored by Fidelity Investments.

Who is up for a bit of wholesome distraction? Our lives have retracted into an ongoing state of crises.

And I don't know about you, but sometimes it's shocking just how gleeful I become over the smallest things-- deleting irrelevant emails, having just enough coffee creamer, my toddler sitting still long enough for me to clip an exceptionally long toenail, Netflix not getting stuck at 25% loaded, or the "25 of doom," as I call it. In a recent bout of escapism, I spent some time thinking about my thrifty ways. I've cataloged some of the random, frugal quirks I hold most dear, because when everything seems to require the utmost concentration and concern, we need an outlet.

And with so much financial uncertainty in these trying times, we could also use a little frugal inspiration. These habits won't make you rich, but they may make you think twice about getting rid of something that could be recycled or repurposed. Are these habits quirky?

Yes. Frugal? Definitely.

Cringeworthy? Your call. Without further ado, a short list of all the frugal quirks I'll never share at parties, but will gladly share with you.

Number one is saving and using hotel goodies for as long as possible. Going camping in the great outdoors? Your hygiene still matters.

Those mini shampoos, conditioners, nail files, et cetera, from past hotel visits in the before times fit so handily into your toiletry bag and are perfect for camping, future trips, or just a pleasant reminder of past vacations when you use them in your shower at home. Expiration dates aside, I have hoarded shampoo from getaways that have gotten me through other getaways, which makes it pretty weird when you're in Norway reminiscing about Bora Bora, or in Scranton but secretly longing to be in LA. Either way, I never let these goodies go to waste.

Number two. Hanging on to my favorite vintage undies. That's right.

Hanging on to comfortable undies for the better part of a decade can be a point of pride. Hear me out. At some juncture, these are the undies that have earned their way into your perma wardrobe.

They are bespoke to you. I have marathon skivvies that have withstood 26.2 miles on two different continents. Don't get me wrong.

They look horrible. But this is about performance combined with comfort. While they may not be anywhere near the sexy undergarments you'd want to be caught wearing in a dress while, I don't know, standing over an exceptionally breezy vent, these are the base layer you need in your life.

In a world where fast fashion reigns supreme, I refuse to feel guilty for hanging on to clothing that still does the job. Number three. Repurposing plastic storage bags of all sizes.

Relegating Ziploc bags to different duties might seem to be the hobby of a certain kind of mother-in-law, or those who have survived the Great Depression. Don't be fooled, though. Millennials and Gen Z are in on this, too.

Not unlike cats, my plastic bags have seen second, third, or fourth lives as containers for sunblock, bandages, and markers. Some have had the particular distinction of becoming garbage bags for especially offensive diapers in the car. Who knew the thing you once stored snacks in or piped cake icing from could be the singular item you were so glad you brought along on the road trip?

Number four. Transforming old shoe boxes into drawer dividers. Marie Kondo, thank you for everything.

Before my daughter was born, I nested like a pro. Now that she is here and is increasingly mobile, how glad I am I that I can pull off a onesie change in the dark? Thanks to some serious organizational skills.

It turns out that shoe boxes make a great home for tiny human clothes, folded in Ms. Kondo's three section signature style. Also, since, "look in the shoe box in the middle drawer" is so damn specific, my husband can easily find them.

And last but certainly not least, this is possibly an excuse to own more shoes, and therefore reason alone to adopt this practice. Number five. Keeping envelopes like they're museum artifacts.

Prepare yourself for the piece de resistance-- saving unused envelopes for an encore performance. You literally have these pouring into your mailbox on a weekly, if not daily, basis, potentially in the form of bills or junky credit card offers. No matter when it comes to the envelope, all are useful.

Those birthday cards you're getting? Keep that outer layer. The bubble mailer your latest Amazon purchase came in?

Time to store some fragile stuff. Sort out receipts, photos, or coupons. Write love letters to your partner, reminders for your kids, or anonymous passive aggressive notes to your roommate.

Or, you know, you could mail something one day. So, there you have it. I feel like you know me better just by listening.

And hey, if you've got some frugal tips of your own to share, feel free to leave them in the comments. As I mentioned, this video is sponsored by Fidelity Investments. They are here to help you reach your savings goals.

And if you're looking for an easy way to finally start investing what you save, check out Fidelity.