Fancy mascara brands.
Why spend $25 on a tube of DiorShow mascara that you have to throw out in three months anyway? Perhaps not all mascaras are created equal, but you will be the only person who can discern the very slight plumping effect that your high-end mascara gives you.
Expensive skincare that won’t reverse your impending signs of aging.
Beautiful skin is priceless, but so much of it has to do with diet, proper cleansing, drinking water, abstaining from drinking and smoking, and wearing sunscreen religiously.
If you want to add an anti-wrinkle cream to your regimen, choose Oil of Olay or RoC over La Mer. Experts in the beauty industry claim that mass-market brands have a lot more money to spend on research and development.
If you spend $30 a week on a mani/pedi, that’s about $1,500+ per year. Not saying you should appear in public with less than impeccable nails, but keep in mind that the more you do your own, the better you’ll get at it. Plus, there’s really no excuse now that nail polish strips exist at the low price of $5 per set.
And frankly, your feet are gross no matter what anyone does to them.
$300 Beats by Dre headphones.
If you value branding over quality, then by all means, buy a pair. But even an amateur audiophile will agree that Beats are not worth the money or the hype. Go with the $10 Sony earbuds instead. Or for truly stunning sound, get a pair of $140 ATM-50s.
Buying into diamonds, which are basically an international conspiracy.
The price of diamonds is kept artificially and grossly inflated, and the idea that they are indestructible is actually a myth. Less-expensive lab-created diamonds are practically indiscernible from real ones, while the moissanite is actually more brilliant and reflective than the diamond. Or you could be nonconformist and go with an opal or Alexandrite engagement ring instead.
Logo and brand-emblazoned clothing that will seem passé a year later.
Sometimes splurging on clothes can save you money in the long run, but printed items (T-shirts, caps, bags) will inevitably seem dated. Although, granted, that Von Dutch hat is poised to make an ironic comeback anytime now.
A wedding that lands you in debt.
The average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is $28K. To put that into perspective, the average household income is $58K. Even a modest DIY wedding budget will end up costing more than your typical party. Try to save money on catering and photography (those are usually the biggest expenses), forgo the flowers, and buy your own alcohol.
Or just elope and have a bomb honeymoon.
Expensive olive oil, if you’re using it for cooking.
When heated to 300°F, there is no discernible taste difference between olive oil and vegetable oil. Extra virgin olive oil has a very low smoke point of 200° F, which means you risk releasing cancer-causing carcinogens into your food if you cook with it.
Newfangled “must have” baby accessories.
Before you buy that $30 wipe warmer, remember to do your research, don’t go overboard, and consider how long you’ll be using the item for. Babyhood is ephemeral.
Buying things the second they come out.
If you are older than the age of 12, you don’t need to be the first person on the block to own a coveted item. Things like gadgets, games, game consoles, and cars go way down in price if you just wait a few months.