I am writing this at a particularly vulnerable time – I’ve just checked my bank balance. It made me feel physically sick to be quite honest with you. So if there are any typos throughout this post, it’s because I am shaking.
It’s less than half way through the month, where the f$*k has all my money gone?!
I do actually know where it’s gone (because I checked) so I know I haven’t been scammed or robbed (unfortunately).
I work 9-5 in an admin job in London. It pays reasonably well, but then I have to deduct things like tax, travel and rent, and after all these deductions I’m left with, let’s just say, not that much…
I work hard! I wake up at 6am, commute on a sweaty train to work, deal with people’s problems all day and then commute home for 6pm.
I look at other girls on the train with their Chanel and their Louis Vuitton and I think “okay next month I’m going to save so I can buy something nice for myself” but then the end of the month comes around and the concept of having money left over for saving is just ridiculous!
Honestly, I am so bad with money. You’d never know my dad is an accountant. Dad if you’re reading this… I’m sorry.
The thing is, when I got my very first job in London, which was about 2 years ago now, I couldn’t believe that my payslip was legit. I had never had so much disposable money, to spend on whatever I wanted. So, I decided to treat myself.
And… it all just kind of spiralled from there really…
But back then I had no bills to pay, I was living at home, life was sweet. Now I am living in the real world and I have responsibilities and direct debits, and it’s all a lot harder than it used to be.
And yet, here I am, still online shopping like there’s no tomorrow…
Okay, now that we have addressed my financial situation/spending addiction and got that nasty bit out of the way – let’s talk about the happy stuff.
What I have learnt:
Basically, when you have no money, you have to learn how to be clever with it.
I might be on a budget, but I still want to look nice. I want to have nice make up, cute outfits and be able to keep up with whatever it is that’s in fashion at the moment. I think that’s fair, and it’s probably true for most girls.
And there are ways to do this without breaking the bank. You just have to be careful, and honest with yourself.
I shop predominantly in the sales. Which actually isn’t as hard as it sounds, because Missguided and Boohoo have sales or discounts pretty much every other day. This just means that I can get more items for my money – which means I can create more outfits – which means I am winning! Most of the stuff in the sale is still in season, which means I am not constantly behind on trends. It takes a bit of skimming through the bad stuff – the weird mesh tops, the army print everything… but there are ALWAYS some diamond pieces in between all of the crap. So just keep digging, and get yourself to page 41 where they hide all the gems.
I am not afraid of dupes. In fact, I love them. I recently discovered Fashion Drug, where there are some amazing designer bag dupes.
They’re good quality, have the same exact design, and are just a fraction of the cost of the real thing. So I can still get insta posts with a little splash of luxury, which always go down well. And if it looks cute, I frankly don’t care about not having the designer label.
If I am buying from a designer, I only buy statement designer pieces. My beloved Gucci belt for example, or my DKNY bag. Something that I can use with multiple different outfits, so that I can make the most out of it. It just makes the most economical sense! Don’t waste money buying a Tee from Calvin Klein when you could buy 5 Tees from Pretty Little Thing. (Or, wait until ASOS are having a sale, because they stock a good CK selection!)
So, in the end, I think it’s just about being savvy. You have to think about how you spend your money and choose wisely.
Being on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t look good. In fact, you can have all the money in the world and still not dress very well. It’s not about money, it’s about fashion sense! And fashion sense cannot be bought.