Curated Frugal tips from the Dollar Stretcher. These have not been tested so use wisdom when trying.
Your favorite colored tablecloth has a stain? Try covering it with a lace tablecloth. The color will shine through, but the stain will not show.
No More Dryer Sheets
Tired of paying for dryer sheets? Try wadding up some aluminum foil and tossing it in the dryer. There will be no chemicals used, and you’ll find no static cling either!
Protect the Pantyhose
I need to wear pantyhose to work every day. For years, I was replacing them all the time. Then a friend suggested that I buy a size bigger than recommended. I’m average in height and weight, so I started buying queen size. The pantyhose are so stretchy that they don’t bag, but I don’t have to pull so hard to pull them up, so I’m much less likely to snag them. Now, they last much, much longer than before!
Why Buy Resealables?
I got tired of buying, using, and throwing away those resealable bags for food, so I bought a good set of reusable containers. They cost a bit more to start, but I’ve cut my bag purchases to a minimum. The only time that I use them now is if I’m packing food that I’ll eat away from home and it would be inconvenient to carry a plastic container with me.
Overly Dry Winter Air
Every winter, the air in our house begins to feel like a desert. I hate the way it dries out my skin. We just found an unusual solution. It’s an aquarium! For Christmas, we got the kids a ten-gallon aquarium. We were surprised to find that we had to add a little water every few days. Then we realized that it was evaporating and adding to the moisture in the air! In just a few weeks, I’ve noticed that my skin isn’t so dry. I guess I got myself a present at Christmas, too!
Facial Cleaning Cloths
To really clean and exfoliate your face, add a couple teaspoons of baking soda to a squirt of your favorite liquid facial cleanser and rub this into your face. Start gently until you get a sense of what pressure works best. Rinse with warm water. I do this in the shower. You don’t need to use an expensive cleanser either. A baby wash will do. You will be amazed at how clean and glowing your skin will look. Also, your pores will appear smaller.
Keepin’ It Simple
My husband and I are both on our second marriage. When we combined households, we had a blend of towels, sheets, and linens. Over time, I’ve gradually replaced everything with white. Now I don’t have to wonder if a hand towel will match a guest bath towel. It is not only simpler, but also I can find bargains at estate sales, thrift stores, and yard sales. As a final bonus, I don’t need to worry about colors running!
A Spray Paint Solution
I can’t tell you how many cans of partly-used expensive spray paint I’ve tossed because the nozzle clogged (despite precautions) and couldn’t be cleaned. It finally dawned on me that replacement spray tips might be available, and they were! I found a pack of four tips for under $3 to replace the type I needed. Spending 70 cents to recoup a $6 to $7 can of paint is a good investment in my opinion, and it saves me a trip to the store.
Winter storms remind us that most of us depend on city utilities for our heat, and sometimes a storm can interrupt that service. That’s why we bought some of those Mylar space blankets to keep in our house and car. They maintain body heat and can keep us warm in an emergency.
They’re light weight, cost only a few dollars, don’t take up much storage room, and do a wonderful job of keeping us warm when a car breaks down or a heater doesn’t work. I’m so glad the space program invented them!
It took a little work, but it certainly was worth it. I took every can out of my pantry and separated them according to years. One shelf was for 2014 and another for 2015. Next year, I’ll add one for 2016.
It didn’t matter if there were all different products on each shelf. I lined them up accordingly. Now we are only eating from the 2014 shelf, and when I buy other canned goods, I can put it on the correct shelf immediately. No more rooting for the oldest. The oldest is right before me on the oldest labeled shelf. If I need something that is no longer on the 2014 shelf, I just go to the 2015 one.
Better Gas Mileage
I thought I would share my tire pressure story. I was traveling from Las Vegas, NV to Houston, TX. As I started out, I had to stop every hour to fill up my 2006 Cadillac with gas. I noticed the tire pressure in the owner’s manual was the recommended 35 PSI, which is what I had it set at. However, the tires stated 40 PSI. I upped the tires to the 40 PSI and was able to get 29 miles to the gallon. Amazing! I did not have to fill my tank for almost 400 miles!
I asked my dealer later why the 35 PSI? He told me it made for a more comfortable and less bouncy ride. I will take “bouncy” over comfort any day.
We Trade Puzzles
We enjoy doing jigsaw puzzles. It was so surprising to find out that many of our family and friends do as well. We now have a “Round Robin” going with the puzzles. There are five we exchange with in this town, two in another town, five people in another place, and several more people in a retirement town.
After a person has put a puzzle together, they put their initials on the back and send it on. If a piece is missing, it is also noted and a circle is made where it should go on the puzzle box picture. I was so surprised that my neighbor does these and has for years. That family prefers just the 500-piece puzzles, so that is all I send over to them. So far, everyone has sent the puzzles back to me with a few additions. It is almost like a library here now, and when we are all through, the puzzles go to a senior center or a hospital waiting room. Most are still in very good shape.
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