I’m all about being an independent woman and I shook my booty along with the rest of my friends when Destiny’s Child encouraged us all to buy our own diamonds and rings. But what’s a girl to do when the budget barely covers the rent, let alone bling?
Million Dollar Divas know that, as much as we’d love to rock a new outfit every weekend, it’s more fulfilling to have a fully stocked emergency fund and a growing investment account. Thankfully it is possible to be a rockin’ diva today, while making our savings grow for tomorrow.
Be a Bargain Bloodhound
If you want to live large on the cheap then you’re going to have to know how to spot a bargain. Sites like Scoopon and Groupon are awesome if you are looking to do a little splurging without spending a lot. Sign up to a couple of sites and wait for the deals to hit your inbox.
To avoid getting overwhelmed by a mountain of emails everyday, I suggest you set up a separate email address just for group deal sites. Then when you want to treat yourself to a massage or a night out, scroll through the recent emails and find a deal that suits you.
Of course, you’ll want to carefully check the Terms and Conditions on the deal to make sure that you’ll actually be able to use it before it expires. Diva’s hate wasting money on unused coupons even more than we hate six week old regrowth.
Ask for a Discount
If you’ve managed to find a beauty salon that does 15 minute pain free Brazilians or a hairdresser who knows how to cut your hair just how you like it, then you probably don’t want to shop around on group deal sites. Instead ask your salon if they offer a discount for buying a certain number of treatments up front. Or if you’ve sent a lot of friends their way, mention this and see if they can offer you a deal. Good businesses know the value of loyal customers and they’ll be more than willing to show their appreciation.
Get Event Tickets for Free
Got a penchant for the theatre? Or do you like getting down and dirty at music festivals? Perhaps you are a die hard fashionista?
If you can’t afford to pay to go to the events you want, then why not see if you can volunteer. Volunteering is a great way to attend events for free or for a massively discounted price.
You could work as an usher at shows and concerts. Or man the merch tent at a festival during the day and watch all your favourite bands at night. Or perhaps see if you can help set up for the annual fashion festival and later rub shoulders with the glitterati.
The key to getting a volunteer gig is getting organised and contacting the event coordinators early. Usually you don’t need experience, but when you contact them make sure your application stands out from the pack. Tell them exactly why you’d be a great fit for their festival and let your personality shine.
Stop Shopping, Start Hiring
One of life’s great mysteries is how a woman can have a wardrobe full of clothes, and yet still find nothing to wear (I hear NASA is working to solve this as we speak). And if you’ve just been invited to a fancy event and it’s very likely that Bradley Cooper will be attending then you’re going to be tempted to blow your rent money on a to-die-for stunner.
Stop! Unless you’re planning to wear that princess cut gown to the supermarket every single day then it’s not a good financial decision (and even then, no).
There are plenty of websites that allow you to hire designer frocks for a fraction of what it would cost to buy. Sure, it’s still not a cheap option for everyday wear, but if you need a dress that’s going to knock the socks off a certain blue-eyed dreamboat then hiring is a great option.
Nothing Looks as Good as Financial Independence Feels
Remember the most important thing is nothing is more fashionable than financial security. If you’re struggling under the weight of credit card debt or wondering how you’ll ever be able to afford to retire then you need to work on setting some goals and working towards those. Start by creating a budget and putting some money away in an emergency account. Wipe out all your consumer debt, and get a retirement savings plan in place. Then you can worry about where to score the hottest hair treatment at a fraction of the price.
Have you got any tips on living like a diva for less?
Photo credit: Money Swimsuit by Meshalo1/Etsy
This post was first published on 17 September 2013.