Tips for a Successful No-Buy

When it comes to makeup, there is such a thing as having too much. It may not seem that way, but if you're at the point where you can't use what you have before it goes bad, it's a good time to cut back. Other obvious reasons include having a tight budget or noticing you're beauty spending is becoming out of control.

A lot of people have tried this with mixed or little success, myself included. I'm currently on a form of a no-buy, referred to commonly as a Project 10 Pan, which emphasizes using what you already own before purchasing more.

A few tips for preparing and getting yourself through a no-buy, whether it's for a month or close to a year (yes, I know of a few people who've done this).

1. Don't think of it in extremes: Like a diet, if you swear off everything "bad," that's exactly what you'll crave and you'll go insane. Even during a makeup fast, allow yourself a small monthly budget. Deprivation is the key to failure, so don't put yourself in line for it.

2. Try what ex-smokers often do when quitting: Put aside whatever money you'd spend on makeup and save it for another desirable purchase, such as a vacation. Whenever you find yourself close to caving and buying makeup, think of the larger picture and something more desirable on the horizon.

3. Get rid of the triggers: Nowadays, we are inundated with beauty marketing. Unlike the past, you don't need to seek out images of new makeup collections. If your triggers are beauty magazines or Youtube hauls, give yourself a cooling off period and stay away for the time being.

4. Don't fall prey to the "limited edition" ploy: This is a gimmick by cosmetics companies to cause a stampede on their products by marketing them as unique and with a short availability. The reality is, many items from LE lines turn up again in future lines, or go into the permanent collection (think of MAC's Venomous Villains collection). There is also always a dupe for something.

5. If you fall off the wagon, get back on and keep going. Like a diet or anything else you're trying to work on, you'll have good and bad days. Life isn't permanent, either way. Don't focus on slipping up. Learn what the trigger was, come up with a strategy for managing it next time, and vow to keep going.

Most of all, remember that while makeup is a wonderful thing, it's not the only thing we work to spend our money on. Be as informed about saving and investing your money as you are about what line carries what collection.


  1. unfortunately for me, social networks are my triggers! I have "liked" the fanpages for many of my favorite brands and followed them on twitter, so I see their sales and updates. I think my next attempt at a no buy is also going to have to be a facebook/youtube/twitter break.

  2. Funny you mention that, Angela: I'm actively cutting down my FB time to avoid the triggers.


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