Given that we're now halfway through the year I've recently been conducting a little review of the clothes I've purchased in the last 6 months. My goal at the start of the year was to buy no more than 20 items in 2014 and so far I have bought 11 things so am on track to stick to my limit. One factor which I think has contributed to my success (I usually never manage to stick to my limits!) has been having a couple of shopping bans, so for example from the beginning of January until the end of March I didn't buy any clothes, shoes or accessories.
One unfortunate side effect of these little shopping bans is that my spending on beauty products has gotten a bit out of control recently. Because I don't keep track of my beauty purchases like I do with new wardrobe additions, I didn't realise how bad it had gotten until I decided to list all the products I bought this year. I'm a real spreadsheet geek (I've recorded all my clothing purchases since 2006!!) so I came up with a list of everything I bought, and the price, and was shocked to realise I bought 22 products (skincare and make up but not including stuff like shower gel, deodorant, toothpaste) and spent over £200! This is even more shocking in light of the fact that I now work part time and money is tighter than ever, so realising that I'm spending £35 a month has been a real wake up call.
I think because I've become more content with my wardrobe and am consuming less in this area, my urge to shop has spilled over into another area and instead of browsing online for clothes I now waste time reading beauty blogs and skincare reviews! I've always been interested in looking after my skin, but have only really taken a serious interest in it since the start of the year when I discovered a blog by Caroline Hirons. I've also read a lot of what Paula Begoun has to say on the subject and have become a bit obsessed with the product reviews on Beautypedia. I love reading about the science behind it all, and its fascinating to me how many skincare brands make completely ludicrous claims without the slightest bit of evidence to back them up. As a result, my usual 2 step skincare routine (cleanse and moisturise) has acquired a few additional steps and I'm trying more products out in my quest to get perfect skin!
That said, as I work towards a more minimalist, simplified life I need to be mindful of creating additional physical and mental clutter so I'm putting the brakes on and have decided that for the rest of the month I won't be buying any beauty products and will also avoid browsing online too.