Ways to take money saving one step further

Ok, so by now you may know that I love to save money! I generally try to find the cheapest way to do anything! I don’t think I’m a cheapskate, I’m not afraid to spend money. I just really struggle with spending money on things that I don’t need, use, or paying someone else for something I could do myself! For example, if something goes wrong in our house, I am going to see if I can fix it myself. At time, this has worked! I learned to fix the issue, gained some valuable knowledge, and saved a lot of money! However, other times this hasn’t worked and I have had to call a professional in, and I am very glad I did! So I’m going to list a few simple ways you can save money throughout your household by making some simple everyday changes.

1. Make your own laundry detergent

Making your own laundry detergent is super easy and this recipe is generally good for people who may have allergies to certain detergents! One of my best friends (who HAS to make her own laundry detergent or she will break out with store bought ones) gave me this recipe. So that’s how I know it’s pretty safe.

1 bar of grated Fels Naptha laundry soap (Found in the laundry aisle)
2 C of washing soda (Laundry aisle)
2 C of Borax (laundry aisle)

This recipe is super easy. It is a dry laundry detergent, so make sure your washer can handle dry detergents well. One other caution I would use with this recipe, is that when you add it to your laundry, it doesn’t always dissolve well. So sometime you may have some soap build up on clothes and will have to wash them again. BUT! The way I found to combat this, is to keep a glass jar near your washer. Add one scoop of detergent to the jar and fill the jar with hot water. Put on the lid and shake the jar until the detergent is dissolved, then add it to your laundry. Add some vinegar as a fabric softener and laundry booster and you’re done! It really doesn’t take much longer to make this simple change. It’s better for you and your clothes and you save money!

2. Opt for more reusable rather than disposable items.

I would suggest finding some areas in your life that make it easy to use reusable items, then slowly grow from there!  I first started this reusable journey through menstrual care!  I don’t know about you, but I get tired having to buy pads and tampons every other month, for something I don’t even want to have!  I started doing some research on reusable menstrual cups.  I was pretty skeptical at first and when I talked to friends or family, everyone thought I was crazy!  I didn’t know anyone who had used reusable menstrual care, so I had to depend on the internet for my information.  Well, I took the plunge and purchased a reusable menstrual cup.  Guess what..  I LOVE IT!  I’ve been using it for about 2 1/2 years now and haven’t had to buy a pad or tampon in that amount of time!  Goodbye annoying monthly trips to the store for pads!  We were able to save money by making this simple switch, and it turns out that it is actually a lot healthier for you too!

A few other areas that we have made some major changes with reusable items is with reusable grocery bags, cleaning rags, reusable paper towels, reusable coffee filters, using actual dishes more often, glass jars for food storage, and cleaning products.  Changing these areas of our lives has helped us to save money over the years and even help the environment!

Check out my DIY reusable grocery bags out of t-shirts post. We have also found these extremely useful in the bathroom or in the car as reusable trash bags. It’s really easy to just empty the trash into one trash bag and wash the the old t-shirt bag! This helps to minimize the use and need of trashbags within our household which helps to save money and the environment!

I love to get rid of old things that aren’t being used or to get rid of things that we just have too many of. First it was t-shirts, second was towels. So rather than throwing them out, I cut them up and stored them (in one of my t-shirt bags) to use as cleaning rags. This worked so well, especially because towels can really help with scrubbing action when you’re trying to deep clean! It’s so much cheaper than using paper towels to clean and helps to reduce waste! I also cut a couple towels in half, cut a small hole near the top and added a hook to our back door to use the towels as paw wipe when its muddy out. We also just saved some old full towels for our dogs whenever we go kayaking or hiking with our little furbabies 🙂

I found some reusable paper towels on a website and loved the idea! We purchased some and use them for when we have guests as reusable napkins. We also use them daily to clean up small messes or dry dishes. This once again helps to reduce waste and money, because you don’t need to buy as many paper towels!

The coffee pot my husband and I use has a mesh reusable coffee filter that came with it and I absolutely love it! We haven’t had to buy coffee filters in years! We just dump the grounds (or you can compost them) rinse out the filter and it’s ready to use again! I know coffee filters really aren’t that expensive, but imagine that cost over multiple years!

We DO NOT buy disposable plates, napkins, or plasticware. I ABSOLUTELY refuse! That stuff just goes in a landfill because most of it isn’t even recyclable! PLUS! You are literally throwing away money… for a one time use! That really doesn’t make sense to me. Sure it may take a little longer and trust me, I HATE doing dishes. But I would rather wash dishes than throw money in the trash can.

3.  Make your own toiletries and beauty supplies

Did you know you can make toothpaste simply by mixing baking soda and coconut oil?  I actually think it makes my mouth feel even cleaner!  You can also add bentonite clay, essential oils, trace minerals, and xylitol.  You can make your own homemade deoderant basically by using the same ingredients!  Combining coconut oil, arrowroot powder, baking soda, bentonite clay, and essential oils can make a pasty deoderant that you can apply with your hands.  Coconut oil works as an awesome makeup remover!  Use a cottonball to apply coconut oil to your face, soak a washcloth in warm water and wipe off the coconut oil and makeup easily!  If you want to make any of these toiletries, just google the recipe you’re looking for!  I have sensitive teeth, so I googled a sensitive toothpaste recipe and there are a ton!  You can also google a sensitive skin deoderant recipe, because using a lot of baking soda irritates my underarms.  Making toiletries is easier than you think, and it’s actually a lot better for you!  Give it a try!

4.  Make more items from scratch!

Rather than buying pre-mixed cakes, pancakes, cupcakes, cookies, hot pockets, frozen pizzas, frozen dinner rolls, bread, tortillas, or anything pre-made, try buying the basics of flour, baking soda, baking powder, yeast, and make them from scratch!  Does it take a little more time?  Yes.  Is it a lot cheaper and healthier?  Yes and yes!  You know exactly what is going into your food and your bodies, and it’s really a heck of a lot cheaper; especially if you can find a bulk food store near you and buy your flour and other base items in bulk!  It amazes me how almost lazy we have become, we want the quickest and fastest things we can just grab.  If you take a little extra time (only about an hour or 2 a week) you can start making more items from scratch.  It’s much healthier for you and it can be a great bonding experience!  Get your kids or significant other involved, it can be a fun experience to do together as a family!

My husband and I have tried to commit to each of these areas to help us save a little more money.  A couple things like making our own laundry detergent, toothpaste, and using more reusable items we do on a regular basis.  It really hasn’t affected our busy lives too much!  We have made some items from scratch like tortillas, hot pockets, cakes, pancakes, and dinner rolls.  I love doing it, but we’re just not as consistent.  We would like to be, but yes, sometimes busy lives can get in the way.  So we are right there with you in this struggle of trying to save money.  Our goal is to make all those items above at home, it just takes a little discipline.  Let me know some other ways you can take money saving a step further in your home!  I would love to hear your ideas!

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