21 TFD Readers On The Thing They Stopped Buying And Don’t Miss

The other day in the TFD team chat, we were talking about buying clothes, wanting clothes, and the kinds of clothes we end up not using. I took a small trip down memory lane via the tagged photos of me section on Facebook (shudder), and realized that I had distinctly stopped purchasing a type of clothing, and — despite how crucial it used to feel for both my wardrobe and my sense of self — I didn’t miss it at all. Put simply, I used to buy quite a lot of A-line skirts and dresses with a lot of material. Think Blair Waldorf or Charlotte York, a preppy-bordering-on-princessy vibe that I felt, during a time when I was most self-conscious about my body, “hid” my most sensitive areas.

Of course, looking back, I can see that not only did that clothing bulk me out unnecessarily, it also always made me look uncomfortable, as the truth is I am just not the Charlotte-type character I used to wish I was (living in a super-WASPy sailing town will give you that desire). But I remember to the finest detail the moment I decided to stop buying those kinds of clothes. I was standing in a dressing room, trying on yet another foofy floral number, when it hit me all at once that this kind of outfit was not who I was, but rather who I was trying desperately to be. I put it down, embraced #NeutralLife and more classic, tailored lines, and have since developed a personal style that mixes a bit of the feminine without being over-the-top girly (and, in my case, unflattering). I can say with conviction that I do not miss that old wardrobe one bit, and it got me wondering what other things TFD readers have cut from their budgets, and found they don’t miss at all. So I took to Twitter and asked them!

1. “Food delivery. I can say with 100% honesty I haven’t ordered anything off Seamless in the past three months. That is a personal record! I think I haven’t been as tempted because a) I moved in with my boyfriend and am no longer going back and forth between two apartments all the time, and b) I’ve just been really into cooking lately and have been conscious of eating all of my leftovers. So far, I haven’t missed it at all!” – Cara

2. “I stopped painting my nails and doing manicures and pedicures about five years ago and haven’t looked back since. I grew up in a pretty mellow town outside of Portland, Oregon, and when I showed up to college in Los Angeles it was news to me that manicures were something that every woman was doing. (In college!? With what money??) Once, a friend of mine looked at my unpainted toes and told me in the most disapproving of tones that her rich-ass mom says ‘feet must always look like a lady’s!’ This kinda traumatized me — like what? What 1950’s bullsh*t is that? Having blue lacquer on the dead protein cells growing out of my baby toe determines my womanhood? Still, I adhered to the custom for years. Then, I went through a spate where I was feeling outraged at how expensive it can be to be a woman, so I vowed to kick to the curb practices of which did not serve me. Nails went, never to return. (No judgement if you like nails—I’m just more of a wild clothes and lip color gal myself!)” – Diane

3. “I stopped subscribing to monthly beauty boxes such as ipsy and birchbox and don’t miss them at all. Most of the time I didn’t even enjoy the tiny products they sent and eventually was stuck with a giant surplus of unused samples. Waste of money and I don’t miss them at all!” – Monica

4. “When I first moved out of home, my then-flatmates and I decided we didn’t want a TV. We figured it was a waste of time, a waste of space and just not something we wanted in our lives. That was in 2012, and our no-TV policy has survived until this year — no Netflix, no Stan (the Australian equivalent), nothing but the radio and 100,000 books. I’ve recently moved in with my fiancé, and following my years without it, we’ve decided to chuck his TV too. We miss it a bit during the footy, but it’s a great excuse to go to the pub or someone’s house.” – Sally

5. “Magazines like Cosmopolitan and Glamour. Not only am I saving $5 a month (not a huge expense, but it adds up!) I also feel way less awful about myself and way less pressured to buy even more things that are advertised in those magazines.” – Natalie

6. “I recently moved to Philadelphia but I am living in a neighborhood where having a car is still an option. I debated whether or not to keep my car for weeks and weeks because while it is an option to keep your car in my neighborhood, it is not a cheap one. I realized the only time I was using my car was to visit my long distance boyfriend and my family maybe once or twice a month plus some errands. While it was convenient to have my car, it was in no way a necessity. Finally last week I decided to sell my car. I am saving $200+/month on insurance plus my parents are saving on the monthly car payment they were still paying from when they bought it for me as a graduation gift. (Not to mention the parking passes and the parking tickets I’m sure I would have collected over time.) I’m so happy with my decision! Taking the bus or the train to visit my boyfriend and family is not the most convenient option but it is definitely the best option for me and my wallet (and the environment!).” – Abigail

7. “For the most part, I’ve stopped spending on boutique fitness classes, and I don’t miss it at all. That’s not to say I wouldn’t do yoga sometime with a friend, but the ethos of places like SoulCycle that charge $35 for a 45-minute session just rankles. I think it’s a philosophical thing, for me: that physical health should be accessible even if you don’t make 60K, and that the commodification of exercise is this new and unnecessary thing.” – Linnie

8. “I’ve stopped spending on gum! Don’t miss it! The few bucks I spent every time I was at a corner store really used to add up.” – Christine

9. “Since I’m saving money to move to a new (and more expensive) city, I’ve cut on the ‘social-coffee’ in the middle of a class, I just bring whatever I’d like to eat and my bottle of water, hang with my classmates and my wallet stays safe. Also, BOOKS. I still want to buy everything I see in the bookstore, but I find a lot of joy going to the library, I’ve realized that I end up reading more because there’s a due date, and also reading things that I wouldn’t normally. So yeah, maybe I miss the newbies, but the experience is amazing.” – Rebeca

10. “After a Whole30 a year or two ago I stopped buying lattes, etc. Black, drip coffee actually has a lot more flavor variety that I noticed post-sugar/cream days & I haven’t spent more than $2.50 on coffee since then! I do buy a peppermint mocha around Christmas just to be in the spirit, but other than the occasional culture/seasonal drink, I don’t miss it. I’m not trying to be pro-latte factor, but when I have $10-15 mad money for the week, the cheaper drink means I can treat myself to a Friday lunch and get a coffee that week…or just more coffee-treat days.” – Maire

11. “Stopped spending on weight loss products/coaches/expensive boutique gym memberships! I probably spent thousands of dollars on the next thing that would FINALLY solve all my problems. The second I started focusing on confidence and growth potential instead, I never looked back.” – Emma

12. “Coloring my hair! Saving $100-200 every two months and never having having to deal with “roots” is liberating AF.” – Jayne

13. “Drinks with (restaurant) dinner on most occasions. I used to feel like I HAD to get the wine pairing or some chic cocktail to complete my meal but my fiancé and I cut our dining out costs a lot when we stopped drinking as much as we used to. If we drink at all, we’ll have a drink at the bar before or after dinner. It seemed like having drinks with food made me drink more and spend more. Both because if I finished my drink with the appetizer, I’d want another one for the entree, and also because it would lower my inhibitions just enough to get that fuck-it dessert I never really wanted in the first place.” – Katie

14. “I stopped spending money on mobile games! I use to play Candy Crush or similar games while waiting in line, on the bus, or just to pass time. I’d get so hooked on them I started paying money for more lives or special in-game features. It was so silly and didn’t bring me any real satisfaction. Now I use that time to read ebooks (from the library!) or articles. Both my wallet and my time is being used more wisely now and I’m happier for it!” – Nicole

15. “I re-evaluated monthly subscriptions. Apple Music I wasn’t using much plus I get music with prime. Credit monitoring through insurance was replaced with credit karma and the third bureau with my bank. I ended up cutting about 50$ a month total on things with small fees that weren’t getting used or could be replaced. I did keep Audible. :)” – Guera

16. “After moving to NYC from France, we’ve stopped going to the movies. We used to go all the time in Paris and now I feel it’s out of our budget for NYC. Now that so many streaming services are available to us that weren’t in France — we manage without. Also, going to brunch and just eating out in general. Having a nice meal in Paris didn’t break the bank, but now with living in NYC you could spend a fortune for a meh food experience.” – Jacqueline

17. “I had a regular habit of hitting up fast food for lunch or dinner (shoutout to Chickfila and Chipotle). I decided to become a vegetarian about 6 months ago, and an unintentional byproduct of doing so is I almost never get fast food now. Many don’t have great vegetarian options beyond salads so it became a much less tempting quick meal option. And frankly, I don’t really miss it, and I don’t really miss eating meat either.” – Amanda

18. “Buying fancy bottled drinks, like packs of La Croix and kombucha, used to be a staple on my grocery list. But, then I realize how much that stuff was adding up, cost-wise. Sure it’s awesome to have those things on hand at home, and they can make lunch and dinner at home feel fancier, but that shit didn’t last more than a couple of days once I got it home. If they’re stocked in my fridge, I’m going to drink them fast — sometimes multiples per day. In the end, it just wasn’t worth the extra $15 on my weekly grocery bill. I’d frankly rather spend that money on flowers or something else I get more joy out of.” – Carrie

19. “Fancy mixed nuts. I used to buy cans of them (shout out to the ‘no peanuts’ variety) in nice flavors or just roasted with sea salt to keep them on my desk. They are a ‘healthy’ snack and keep me full, but let’s be honest, I could blow through a can of wasabi-soy mixed nuts in a matter of days, and the sizes I got were often at the ten-dollar mark or higher. Now I have high-protein snacks around that are way less expensive (seeds, dried flavored chickpeas, hardboiled eggs, string cheese), and the nuts are just an occasional treat. In fact, having them rarely makes them all the more special.” – Alison

20. “Meat. Even though I haven’t gone fully vegetarian as I believe everything is best in moderation, I stopped buying meat as a part of grocery shopping with my roommate and we already save a ton of money by replacing it with beans and grains. Now I only eat meat when I really want it, at a good restaurant, when it’s worth the money, and not at home because I have it and need to eat it before it goes bad.” – Rachel

21. “Lipstick in any shade but a nude-ish mauve. I used to buy these experimental colors and absolutely never wear them because I feel uncomfortable and unattractive in like, bright red or deep blackberry lip colors. I stick to my boring, natural shades now and wear those things down to the nub.” – Hope

Image via Unsplash

In-Post Social Banners-04
  • I love this. A few things I cut out and don’t miss

    cable – $100 a month, cut this out five years ago
    daily skinny vanilla latte – $4 a day on weekdays, now I buy maybe one a month – I switched to tea, much better for me!
    tolls: if i’m not driving to make money, I take the normal route and plan the timing so I don’t get stuck in traffic. I only spend $6 a week on tolls now vs $20 a week average before
    bags: this one may be a little controversial but I love bags and I used to buy cheaper bags like every other month. I stopped doing that and chose to invest in more expensive classics that will last a long time and won’t go out of fashion
    wine: stopped buying my weekly bottle – $10 saved a week

    • Liz

      I stopped buying cheap bags too. I bought one expensive and classy looking bag that I use daily. It’s held up well and is versatile!

  • Jack

    Not even joking, this article made my heart flutter because these are all EXCELLENT and I wish I could chat to all of these people! It’s also not your typical “just don’t have brunch” article.
    To #2 the nail polish girl…someone once told me that unpainted toenails were “disgusting” so I FEEL YA. What kind of madness is that?!

    • Miss Meg

      THIS so hard. They’re my feet, what do you expect them to look like!?

    • Judith

      Also, they’re really deciding something based on the tiny surface of your pinky toenail… My usual response is something like “I’m really sorry, I don’t really have the time for that, I work a lot.” Sarcasm aside, I really don’t understand how people have the time to get everything done *and* get their toenails done. It would be so far down on my list of priorities that I’d need a separate notebook for it. I’d love to get a look at other people’s list of priorities though, it should be interesting how different we all rate things.

  • Lava Yuki

    After I started earning my own money and daddy bank being cut off, I stopped spending a lot of things.
    Coffee every day: £2-2-50- changed to just the weekend.
    Buying lunch everyday£10- changed to just the weekends.
    Fresh Seabass: £5-6
    Monthly Shellac Nails: £27
    Monthly deep tissue massages: £50
    High end skin care from brands like Clinique and Shiseido: £££
    Opting for second hand books off Amazon instead of new books in local bookstores.

    Also now that I live within walking distance from work, I save about £150 on transport per month.

    • Lauren

      All of these are great but I always think it’s worth the cost to buy books from local bookstores instead of Amazon

      • The second hand books on Amazon are almost always listed by independant bookstores on Amazon market place. That’s where I buy most of my books, too!

  • Ella

    Dismantling the patriarchy one unpainted toe nail at a time!

  • Lauren Pemberton

    I haven’t bought paper towels in years. We just use washable kitchen rags. If a rag get too ripped up or used to clean something gross, we toss it. And we can always buy a new 24 pack for $4. I feel like it’s good for the environment but I know it is good for my bank account.

  • Erin C

    I think the author may be confusing a-line skirts with circle skirts, but otherwise it’s an excellent point. We all buy “aspirational” clothing for who we aspire to be instead of who we are.

  • Judith

    Thumbs up to #20. I cut out meat from my groceries a few years ago because you can’t really leave it in the fridge for weeks like you can do with (for example) tofu and preparing it can become kind of a hassle. So I still eat meat but I very rarely make it myself. This way I also don’t feel guilty for getting the occasional burger or shawarma.

  • Mireille Cecil

    Ditto boutique fitness classes. I’ve been doing an hour + yoga for the last month by downloaded the Down Dog app for free. I plan on paying for the full membership for all the features but that’s just $60–half of what you’d pay for an unlimited yoga subscription! It’s the closest thing I’ve gotten to a studio class at home.