The best cheap wine under $3

This budgetologist purposely stays away from expensive wines so that her taste buds don’t acquire a taste for it…and you should too! Less money spent on wine is more money in your wallet of course.

With that being said, this budgetologist also cringes every time she has to pay over $3 for wine. I strive to pay $2 every time I buy a bottle. And if you think about it, spending $4 on a bottle of wine is TWICE the amount I would normally pay. Paying $6 a bottle is THREE TIMES the amount I would normally pay! Ain’t nobody got time for that.

With that in mind this is the best wine you can get on the cheap. It’s Less than 3 dolla and honestly, if you have a Walmart by you, you can get it for less than two dolla!

Quail Oak is by far the cheapest and the best quality…way better than Charles Shaw. Charles Shaw tastes like dirt and everything bad in this world! Meanwhile, Quail Oak is epic!!

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At the time of this blog post, the Quail Oak sweet red wine bottle at Walmart was only $1.96! Less than 2 dolla gets you a nice buzz for two days! (Half the bottle now, half later to save even more money!)

If I were you, I’d hit up Walmart TODAY to get these sweet red bottles of wine on the cheap. This budgetologist is definitely a cheap drunk, and always will be. Don’t waste your money on fancy wines…that’s a little pretentious.

♥ The Budgetologist 

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Get Money Back Shopping At Target

Target is decently priced. You can probably get cheaper things at Walmart, but this budgetologist discovered a loophole in the system that might not make that so.

A loophole! In the SYSTEM! What a beautiful thing to save money and feel like a smooth operator at the same time.

If you buy something on target on sale, let’s say a dress was $20 but is on sale for $10, then when you get to the register you will pay the sale price, a receipt will be given and you will go on your merry way.

Now, if you wait until that dress is no longer on sale at target and then return it with the receipt and original credit or debit card you paid with, a loophole will become apparent. Target will have to give you back the full price of the dress and you will receive $20 instead of $10.

It’s a weird system they have but it’s required they give you back the price of the dress as it is now, not as it was when it was on sale. You can do this with virtually anything in the store and even make a profit with this method!

Check online to see what kind of temporary sales Target is having, buy said item…return it after the sale to get even more money back! Booyeah!

♥ The Budgetologist

Get Cans of Tuna for 87 Cents Each!

Right now, CVS is having an incredible sale. They are selling cans of tuna for only 87 cents. I don’t know about you, but this budgetologist can make a can of tuna into a meal and be full from it until it’s time for the next meal.

Want a cheap ass snack? Or perhaps, a whole lunch? Put some mustard and mayo in there and you’re set. (Get the mayo and mustard from the Cosco lunch stand if you don’t have any and don’t want to pay for it!)

Best of all, you might even be able to get the cans of tuna for free if you use a CVS card.

I had a $5 receipt coupon from CVS after a shopping day. I was able to buy 6 cans of tuna, and got my lunch for the week for free. Make sure to take advantage of these “Extra Bucks” to get free goodies. They’ll go a lot further for you the cheaper items you can get.

Is the tuna the highest quality? No! It’s under a dolla, yo! But…it will be enough for a meal and fill you up. This deal might not last forever, or maybe it will. This budgetologist didn’t check the details of that. Regardless, you’re going to want to hit up CVS right away to get tunalicious.

♥ The Budgetologist

Get Free Clothing Hangers Anytime With This Tip

If there’s one thing this budgetologist always needs more of it’s hangers. Mine disappear! I don’t know where they go. Luckily, there is a way to get free hangers anytime you want and it involves: KOHL’S!

I love Kohl’s. Have you seen their jewelry clearance section?? I get necklaces for $4 there. But there are two great things about Kohl’s you can use to your advantage: 1. They have a lenient return policy and 2. They let you keep the hangers.

See where I’m going with this? Do the following: Go to the Kohl’s CLOTHING clearance section. There you can find things for under $10. It doesn’t really matter what you buy. Buy 5 things, 10 things, whatever. Check out.

They will ask you if you want to keep your hangers. Say “yes! Absolutely without a doubt! Thank you very much!!” Then walk out of the store with your bag of junk and your free hangers.

You can then return the clothes the next day, next week, heck, even in the same hour if you feel like it. And the best part is, you don’t have to return the hangers with it. It’s not even expected you bring them at all!

You will get a full refund (as long as you have the receipt and the card you made the purchase with). Do this as many times as you need to for as many hangers as you need.

It might be a bit of a shlep to Kohl’s, but it will save you tens of dollars on hangers in the long run.

♥ The Budgetologist

Get Cheaper Pregnancy Tests Now

Perhaps some of you readers are choosing the frugal life because you’re trying to save money to start a family. Mazel Tov to you!

Whether you’re pregnant because you want to be or it just sort of happened the first and very important step is to check if you’re actually expecting with a pregnancy test.
The pregnancy tests they sell in Walmart, Target and most everywhere else are absurdly expensive. I’ve seen some in the $20+ range. That could go towards diapers or…whatever! It’s so bad that teenagers have resorted to stealing these expensive sticks from the store…and ain’t no one got time for that.

Luckily, this budgetologist has a cheaper alternative. It’s been one of the industry’s best kept secrets for years. And no, it’s not going to some clinic to get a free one because that takes upwards of an hour, although that is an option if you have the time.

Well, here’s the secret: You can get pregnancy tests at the 99 Cent Store. I repeat, your dilemma of buying an $8 pregnancy test or lunch that day has just evaporated.

The 99 Cent Store is heaven for budgetologists and this case is no exception. Pregnancy tests for under a dollar…take as many as you want just to be sure!

At this point you might be saying, “But budgetologist, are those ones like expired or defective or like whatever?” To which I might reply, “No you fool! They’re just cheaper!”

If there’s one thing this budgetologist should be teaching you, it’s to get that notion out of your thick skull that just because it’s more money means it works better. Maybe it works better for Target’s pocketbook if anything, but your best bet is to head to the land of everything under a dolla.

♥ The Budgetologist

Make Your Own Shampoo and Conditioner To Save $$

Not only can shampoo and conditioner be expensive, it can also be cancerous! That’s right, studies show that shampoo has cancerous chemicals in it that are bad for your body. If you want to talk about budgeting, the best thing you can do is not get cancer, which has wiped many out financially despite health insurance…but that’s a whole ‘nother subject.

The point is, something that is cheaper, healthier, and heck, even fun to do is make your own shampoo and conditioner. It will save you money and leave you so fresh and so clean.

To make what this budgetologist likes to call “po man’s shampoo and conditioner” you will need two ingredients:

  1. Baking soda
  2. Apple cider vinegar

So how does it work? First, you’re going to need old shampoo and conditioner bottles with nothing left in them. Take the shampoo bottle, fill it with two parts baking soda one part water. Then shake-a shake-a shake that. That’s your shampoo. Baking soda cleans the hair and leaves it refreshed. Scrub the mixture into your scalp like normal shampoo then rinse.

Next, it’s time to make the conditioner. In your empty conditioner bottle mix one part apple cider vinegar with two parts water. dump that on your scalp and hair after the baking soda to leave it shiny and soft. And that’s it! Not only have you created way cheaper conditioner and shampoo, you’ve gone all natural. Rock on with your bad self.

Here’s another fun thing you can do with apple cider vinegar: use it as a natural appetite suppressant so that you don’t spend as much money on food. Just one table spoon accomplishes this. Then you can do the costly craving avoidance method and there you have it! Multiple uses for cheap-ass products.

♥ The Budgetologist

Broke? Eat lunch at Costco!

You gotta love cheap prices, right? Someday my future fiancé will buy my engagement ring from Costco and this bugetologist will know he’s the one because he’s frugal and reasonable.

I remember my first adult purchase was a Costco membership card. I paid $55 for it for the year. They even took my picture and everything. But after a few months, I realized I wasn’t using it and so, in defeat, I returned it like a sucker. I got the money back and quickly my spirits were lifted as I thought about how many Costco hotdogs I could now buy.

Anyway, Costco, like Jack in the Box offers one option that is so cheap this budgetologist takes advantage of it on the regular.

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Honestly, tho. A dolla fiddy for a hot dog AND a coke. That’s a frugal lady’s dream. You can even upgrade it to the coveted polish sausage for the SAME DAMN PRICE!

Now remember, when you’re at the condiments portion of the transaction, stock up on that shit! Get enough ketchup, mustard and onions to last the next few weeks. You can then use that to make your own hotdogs at home, put it in deviled eggs, a burger, whatever your heart desires.

In that way you’re saving money on condiments while getting a cheap ass meal at the same time. Score!

♥ The Budgetologist 

Cut Cable, Curb Costs

There is absolutely, positively no reason to have cable nowadays. A bold statement I’ll stand by it. Cable costs hundreds of dollars a month for a service you can get online for free.

Want to watch your favorite TV show? Just wait until the next day and it’ll be streaming online. Want to watch sports? You can watch those online too. Movies? Yep, it’s called Netflix, hop on the train people.

You can watch a lot of different TV shows on Project Free TV. It’s a free service! Hulu has a lot of television shows on it for free, or borrow your friend’s Hulu Plus account. If you type in any TV show or movie, chances are you’ll be able to find it if you go to Google and put “Gone With The Wind Streaming Online Free.”

You’re probably saying to yourself, “But Budgetologist, I hate sitting through the ads on the MTV website when I’m trying to watch Teen Mom 2 what the ef mannnnn.” To which I reply, get on Google Chrome and get AdBlocker. It works fantastically no commercials and best of all…it’s freeeeeee.

If you haven’t seen my other cost-eliminating techniques to get out of debt check those out. But for christ sakes, get rid of your cable now. It is a luxury that is completely useless…like paying a phone operator to connect your cell phone.

Cable can cost anywhere from $60-$300 a month WHAT?! Cut it now and put that money right into your savings account.

Don’t just sit there eating your popcorn watching your expensive ESPN that isn’t even making you happy anymore, cut that cable! You’ll thank me later.

♥ The Budgetologist 

Avoid Costly Food Cravings

Here’s a secret: The budgetologist loves to eat. And I mean LOVES to eat. But, eating is expensive and so are food cravings.

Ever find yourself craving a chocolate bar and ice cream cake and a hot fudge sunday all at the same time? Yeah, you’re not alone.

Indulging on these cravings every time you have them will only dip into your savings, and let’s not dip our spoons for that.

There’s a secret though. It will help you to curb food cravings. Using this secret you can eat a few of your friend’s fries for free instead of going out and buying your own. Aren’t you a good friend?

Here’s what you do: Let’s say your friend is eating delicious french fries and it’s making you want to buy some. Take two of the fattest french fries you can finagle from your friend.

Get a full cup of cold water. Water…is freeeee!

Eat the first french fry slowly. Really enjoy the taste of it. Don’t be distracted as you’re eating it. Focus on the fry. Got it?

Savor it for a minute longer. Then drink the whole glass of water. Even if you’re feeling full and uncomfortable, finish it anyway.

Then take the second french fry and repeat. Eat it slowly and enjoy it.

Now what will this do?

This tricks your stomach into thinking it just consumed a whole bunch of french fries, when really the stupid thing only ate 2! Tricked you, body!

This is a method models use to lose weight and end food cravings but it’s this budgetologist’s trick for saving money on those horrible cravings!

♥ The Budgetologist

Save Money on Make Up

I work in television, which means people have the misfortune of looking at my mug every day. It also means I must buy a lot of make up to glob on so I look camera ready on the daily.

Make up is very expensive. Very, very expensive. Upwards of $40 for some face crap then anywhere from $8-16 for mascaras, eyeliners and eyeshadows. Um, no thank you. Frankly, I just don’t have that kind of money to spend.

That’s why I say, praise the lord for ELF brand make up. Now you may be asking, “But Budgetologist, won’t ELF and other cheap make up make my skin break out and make my prom date spit in my eyes and never talk to me again?” To which I reply: shut your dirty mouth, you know nothing.

It’s true, ELF might make you break out for the first month. I broke out slightly the first month of wearing it daily. But, a month of break outs is worth a lot of savings. And oh the savings you’ll see.

I’m gonna be flat out honest with you right now and say there’s really no reason to buy those more expensive brands with ELF on the market now. They’re no longer higher quality, they just can’t compete.

And if you’re still caught up on the acne thing, I’ll put my make up removing regiment in a post you can find here this so you definitely won’t break out (4 steps). And duh, of course the make up removing regiment is cheap as hell.

You can get all this shit at Target or Walmart, BTW.

  • Granted, there are some ELF products that are just crap, and I will take my money with me elsewhere to get something that actually works. Here’s the make up I use with the cost: Foundation – I get the ELF studio flawless finish ($6) it lasts me about a month and a half to two and a half months wearing it every day. And let me tell you, it saves so much money. This quality foundation would normally be at least $40 for a bottle like this. I take my loads of savings and put it right into my investing account. Wahoo!

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  • Powder / Concealer – I use the ELF essential cover everything powder ($2) I swoop it over my whole face and it covers all my hideous blemishes with the liquid foundation above! Now all the boys at the bar will buy me free drinks saving even more money. It’s a win-win, ya dig?

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  • Eyeshadow – I use the ELF essential flawless eyeshadow ($2) You know how much those Naked Pallets are? Well, cut that shit out it’s just not worth upwards of $50 every time you need new color for your eyelids. And btw, DO NOT get the studio baked eyeshadow it’s absolute garbage and doesn’t even work at all.

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  • Any brushes at all – They’re all good whether it be for your eyes, bronzer, powder, whatever. And they’re pretty much all a dolla. Again, saving you tens (possibly even hundreds at this point). ELF Subpage Designs
  • Bronzer / Blush – contouring blush and bronzing powder duo pallet – do NOT get the cream version of this, that stuff is absolute garbage. But the powder is a little cheap miracle. It’s based on that good Nars shit but it’s only a fraction of the price. ka-CHING!
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Did you really think imma pay for this picture?

Things I don’t use ELF for:

  1. Lipstick – Don’t use ELF lip anything it’s all absolute garbage. I still opt with a cheap option of course. I go with the Wet n’ Wild brand ($0.99) it’s a nice color and surprisingly stays on. Plus, it’s below a dolla. Cheap cheap cheap!
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  2. Eyeliner – This is the one thing I’ll drop coin on. Eyeliner is the lion’s nest of the face (WHAT?!) To me, it’s the most important part of my look. ELF brand is absolute garbage don’t even go there. Any drugstore eyeliner will be more than you want to spend, but sometimes that’s just necessary in this cruel girl world.
  3. Mascara – This is at your discretion. Usually, I steal mascara from my mother and sister until they yell at me, give up trying and finally go buy more for themselves, but I’m hearing that Wet ‘n Wild, which you can get at Target as well, has mascara that is quality and inexpensive. Elf brand mascara is absolute garbage and dries out after like…30 minutes.

♥ The Budgetologist