Have you ever tried to do a month of not buying anything? Ok, not anything, of course. You need things like food and medication and other essentials of course. But there has been a growing movement over the past few years to take a month off from buying anything other than necessities.
We’re not exactly sure where the no-buy month idea came from, but do a quick Google search and you’ll see a lot of articles devoted to it.
It may have started with Buy Nothing Day which typically happens on the day after US Thanksgiving – also known as Black Friday – with BND acting as an antidote to that kind of rampant consumerism. Spend the day buying nothing, or at least buying only the things you need at this time. Just because it’s a bargain doesn’t necessarily mean you absolutely have to buy it. It’s all about consideration before making a purchase…consider the need and the reason for buying before whipping out your wallet.
The no-buy movement is seen a lot in the area of makeup and toiletries, and before you get too worked up, obviously this isn’t something you want to do forever, but it’s definitely a good time to take stock of what you have and move on from there.
The Living Aveda blog has an article that is somewhat related, in that it’s all about finishing your products before moving onto the next big thing. And there is a lot to be said for this idea. For one thing, how satisfying is it to use a product you love right to the last tiny little bit? The accompanying photos in this Living Aveda article have us nodding right along. If you’ve found the perfect product, you definitely want to make it last and you don’t want to waste a bit of it either. And there definitely is a sense of real accomplishment when you’ve managed to squeeze out that last bit of conditioner or hand cream, or you’ve made it to the end of that fave lip balm without losing it! (Honestly, can you relate? How many lip balms never see the final twist because they’ve fallen out of bags or been left behind in hotels because they’ve rolled off the nightstand??? RIP.)
If you decide to take the no-buy pledge for the month of March – or any month, really – there is no formal or official way to do it, you just kind of have to take the plunge and find what works for you. For example, perhaps you’re a lipstick junkie or an eyeshadow fiend, and every time you pop into Willow for an appointment you just have to see what’s new and maybe go home with a fresh new look AND a new lippy or eye colour. Well, maybe take a look in your makeup stash at home and in your bag and decide that you will not buy another lip or eye product until you’ve used up what you already have.
Does this sound like something you can do or does even thinking about it cause you to break out in a sweat? Ok, don’t panic! Maybe that’s a little too extreme, so what about using a product until you hit pan? Basically, this means until you can see the bottom or base of the product – think of the shiny metal or plastic that comes through when you’ve hit the bottom of your blush or eye shadow. It’s a start, right?
And of course, this refers only to those unnecessary things we all buy because…well we know why we buy them. If you are in desperate need of foundation or an eye pencil because you just used up the last of the one you had, go for it!
The no-buy idea is another way of trying to be mindful of where we spend our money and what we’re spending it on. So often we breeze into Sephora or Shoppers Drug Mart or wherever intending to buy one thing and then whoops, many many dollars later we are walking out thinking what the heck just happened?! If we are consciously looking at the things we have and saying yes, I can work with this for a bit longer, then we are definitely being more mindful. Taking stock can be a wonderful thing.
If you’re committed to trying out the no-buy trend, let us know in the comments! And, fill us in on which of your current favourite products are the ones that are, as the saying goes, good to the last drop!
Have a great week, everyone. We’ll chat again on Friday!