4 Trends I’ve Ignored to Save Money
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Remember how, as a teenager, being trendy was the be-all-end-all of your social status in the high school hierarchy? I sure do. When I was a teenager in the 90s, I rocked knee-high socks like Cher Horowitz, platform sneakers like the Spice Girls, bathed in CK One, studied my Delia and Alloy catalogs and crushed on boys in JNCO jeans (don’t ask me why!) I was a 90s girl, a teenage fad queen and looking at my old pictures reminds me why I don’t worry about staying trendy anymore. I looked ridiculous!
Although I still like to look good now that I’m in my 30s, no one has ever accused me of being trendy in the last decade or so. These days I’m more likely to zone in on something long after it’s trending, after I’ve taken the time to deem it worthy of my time and money, and I’m okay with that, because I have no desire to be a trendsetter. I do my own thing and could care less if I have to ask my 16-year-old nephew to explain to me what “on fleek” means. (I’m still not exactly sure what it is, but whatever.)
I’m (thankfully) done with worrying about what the cool kids (or trendy adults) are doing, and I’ve saved a lot of dough by not caring anymore.
Here are four trends I’ve ignored to save money in my adulthood.
#1 (All) Trendy Shoes
After falling victim to a pair (or three) of expensive Uggs years ago, I decided I was done buying trendy, but seriously ugly shoes. That means you won’t find any Crocs, Toms, Topsiders or those super trendy knee-high leather boots in my closet. I know what looks good on me, and that doesn’t include rubbery plastic shoes or anything that makes me feel like a horse jockey.
The closest thing you’ll find to trendy in my shoe collection are my beloved Converse All stars that I’ve loved for 15 years straight. (And I’m not sure that a shoe that has been around since the early 1900s can be counted as trendy anymore.)
When in doubt about your trendy shoe purchases, just look back at a few of your pictures from the 1990s. Remember those white K Swiss shoes you wore with the tall socks? Those Jellies? The platform Sketchers? What about those unisex black Adidas sandals with socks? You’ll probably feel the same way about those Toms and “Keep Calm and fill-in-the-blank” shirt you’re wearing in a few years.
#2 The Latest Pyramid Scheme Party
You know those spending parties that people continue to throw in the guise of a “fun female get together” but are really used to sell you overpriced Pampered Chef/31 Bags/Pure Romance products? They are a dime-a-dozen and a new one of these
pyramid schemes multi-level-marketing companies seems to trend every year.
I’m not worried about hurting someone’s feelings by declining their invitation because the only reason someone wants me at their party is so that I will spend money for them to earn free swag and make extra money. Those “parties” aren’t fooling me anymore.
#3 Paying for Radio
I’m not sure what genius marketer came up with the idea to trick people into paying for a free service like radio, but it’s probably the same guy who manages to get people to pay $100+ per month for their cable TV. I see it all the time, and it drives me crazy. Whether it’s Pandora on your phone or satellite radio in your car, it’s never a wise idea to pay for something you can get for free.
#4 Subscription Boxes
Monthly subscription boxes are popping up everywhere online, and I know the concept sounds fun because you never know what you’re going to receive in each box, but as a frugal minimalist, I don’t love the idea of spending at least $20 per month for a box of stuff I didn’t choose. I don’t care how fun it is to receive the box in the mail, that temporary excitement is over in the time it takes to go through the box, and then I’m $20 poorer for a bunch of stuff that I didn’t really need anyway. I’ll pass, thanks.
I’m not here to make fun of anyone who loves staying on trend or even saying that I’m completely immune to the desire to be trendy, but today I’m glad that I’m aware of what’s happening when I want something silly, like that white Louis Vuitton bag I was dying to own in 2005 because Jessica Simpson was carrying it.
These days I simply want to limit my consumption, be aware of why I really want something new, and save money. I believe that the best way for me to do that right now is to forgo most trends, and somehow I’m making it just fine without them. And although I’m not trendy enough to tell you what chambray is or why it’s popular, I’m happy to say that I’ve moved on to bigger and better things to worry about.
What trends have you rocked back in the day that you look back on and make you cringe? What was your favorite ’90s trend? Are there any trends today that make you shudder already?