Have a laugh on me

We're not all in the same boat, some of us struggle to even get in the boat!

What do you skimp on?


I wouldn’t consider myself a tight arse, mean or overly frugal with money – but I am sometimes stingy on what I will and won’t spend our hard-earned dollars on.

When the Husband and I were DINKS, double-income no-kids, we had plenty of disposable income and had we decided not to have children we would have paid off our average-sized mortgage in seven years.

Now we have three kids and our income has been almost halved, at this rate it’s going to take about 25 years to pay the sucker off and we’ll be in our 70s – 😦

Old Couple

I’ve been known to visit three different supermarkets to get certain products on special, these shops are all in the one shopping centre so it’s not as crazy as it sounds.

Let’s call them Moles, Saudi and Pull-a-hearse.

If I can save a few dollars here and there it means I don’t have to feel so guilty about lining the pockets of Mr Murphy, Mr Choice and Mr BWS.

Here’s a few things I now skimp on in an attempt to save some moolah:

1. Dishwasher tablets
Our machine was the cheapest and crappiest one around when we bought it some 7 years agos and I want it to hurry and knell over. Until it does I won’t be feeding it three-course, multi-coloured tablets with a flash ball. It gets a plain Jane blue ones that are one-third of the price, and deep down I’m hoping this will aid in its demise (sorry Husband).

2. G-bangers and gruts!
I used to splash out and buy fancy pants but nowadays if I can get 3 for $3 it’s a bonus. I’ve got some ‘nice’ knickers from yesteryear for when the occasion arises, pun intended.

Image source

3. Clothes
I can’t remember the last time I paid more than $19 for a shirt/singlet for myself, I baulked at spending $39 on shorts a while back – just last week I got 3 for $28. Gone are the days when I spend upwards of $90 on a work shirt or skirt.

What I refuse to skimp on:

1. Toilet paper
I only buy Quilton- 3 ply – not just because the paper core tells me ‘Quilton loves your bum’ but because there’s nothing worse than thin bog paper.

Image source

2. Insurance
It’s a smart persons way to make sure their investments are safe.

3. Kids shoes
I’ve always splashed out on shoes for kids because their little bones should be well supported, this is the same for school shoes that are worn 8 hours a day.

4. Certain foods/beverages
Eggs have to be free range, baked beans gotta be SFC, coffee will never be Blend 22, wine won’t be clearskin and tomato sauce won’t be homebrand.

The Husband always says “buy once cry once” – he’s a wise man!

What do you refuse to skimp on??

Linking up with Jess @ Essentially Jess for IBOT (hope you get you iPhone 5 girl – they rock)

Author: Have A Laugh On Me

I'm a mum to three, write from home and I rarely cook, craft or clean but admire those who do. I try to live by the mantra that there's no point in worrying about something that might not happen! Be warned this is not a fluffy, sweet mummy blog, rather a place where you can cringe, laugh and be shocked at my brutally honest take on my life.

58 thoughts on “What do you skimp on?

  1. I am a tight arse with buying drinks for kids. On weekends I am happy to buy them lunch at the bakery, but tell them they can wait until they get home to have a drink! Before you know it you have spent $20 on sugar laden drinks. Poor deprived boys! Oh, and I buy home brand mineral water. It’s mineral water right? How different can the more expensive stuff be??

  2. I bite the bullet when it comes to fruit and veg. It is amazing how expensive they can be but I know they’re the best for us so I refuse to skimp if I know we’ll eat it (it would be different if it ended up in the compost heap!) eg when mangoes or avocadoes are expensive I still buy them coz we love them!

  3. I am pretty much a tight arse on most things these days. But I refuse to buy cheap coffee, or generic cola. I am sure they is more but I am definitely more tight arse then spender.

  4. Never cheap on coffee or toilet paper here either! Hilarious as usual Em x

  5. I only buy Quilton too! None of that thin, poke your finger through, rubbish for me, thanks very much!
    Oh, and I’m very happy with Saudi coffee 🙂

  6. I’m a tightarse on anything and everything that barely changes across brands. So tinned fruit and vegies (with a quick ingredient panel check), basic cereals, butter, milk. I also buy Earth Choice cleaning products – they seem to have the double whammy of being cheaper AND better for the environment! Win win!

    I never, ever skimp on chocolate. But I do load up when my faves are on sale. Shame I can’t then spread out the consumption…

    • I don’t mind crappy tinned tomatoes, coconut milk etc. and even some fruit, but only after checking the ingredients also. I know what you mean about consumption – I have no rationing skills either 🙂

  7. Baked beans are Heinz, dude……. but let me tell you my new tight-arse secret. Buy wine at Greys Online.
    Good wine, for a tiny fraction of the price….and it gets delivered by the CRATE!!!
    Seriously, check it out…..then you can keep splurging on the soft loo roll.

    PS I currently have 24 bottles of wine in my cellar for under $100……mwah hahahahahaha

    • They used to be Heinz when they were made by Watties (a NZ company) – not so much now.
      I used to buy wine by the carton or two, but my willpower didn’t hold up and it went WAY too quickly – but as I slowly regain some of my shit I might have to have a look at it! A woman after my own heart – thanks for tip girl 🙂

  8. I never skimp on coffee! Clothes for me are only purchased on sale – and I prefer the end of clearance type sale. I’m happy to shop at 3 different supermarkets to get groceries cheaper – that makes a great deal of sense to me. I also try my best NOT to buy bottle water – it drives me crazy that water costs more than petrol by the litre!
    Josefa from #teamIBOT xx

    • Yes bottled water is a total rip off we have a water purified thingee in fridge, otherwise our tap water is completely fine to drink and I also fill up bottles before we leave the house! Glad someone else agrees the whole 3 supermarket thing isn’t odd.

  9. Love this post! I skimp on cleaning products! I hate when your weekly shop jumps by $xxxx when you run out… hello homebrand wipes and cheap dish liquid. I don’t blink at the price of moisturiser. xx

    • I’m completely the same with cleaning stuff. I used to get $60 facial moisturiser but that had to go – however, I’m thinking of getting something a bit better to help iron out my wrinkle face before it’s too late 🙂

  10. Never skimp on alcohol! OK, I can’t get Veuve as often as I like, but I cannot live without a decent Gin or a preservative free wine. Just won’t do it!!
    Becc @ Take Charge Now

    • Here here Becc, another woman after my own heart. I only buy organic, triple-distilled vodka. I’ve stopped drinking wine because preservatives make me feel yuk the next day if I drink more than 2 glasses, do you get it anywhere special, or is it just online? And that does it cost? Em x

  11. I would move around different supermarkets to get a good deal too! I wouldn’t skimp on icecream, facial tissue, body products or kids shoes either 😛

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

  12. Oooh, such an interesting post and comments. I scrimp on most things, and have bought some awesome cleanskins in my time but after a few trips to wine country last year we somehow returned with rich person’s tastes. Don’t care about toilet paper, but try to get recycled unless I’m at Saudi who just refuse to get on the recycled paper goods train. DO care about spaghetti and baked beans (Heinz or SPC, just not home brand), tuna, cheese and ice cream. Eggs and meat I try to always get free range/organic even if it means eating less of it to afford – which is good for everyone really. Perfectly happy to buy things just out of date if it’s on sale (but not eggs, dairy, meat or skanky vegies, promise!)

  13. I never skimp on toilet paper – refuse to wipe me bum with something that feels like the toilet tissue we used to get at school.
    Never skimp on alcohol or tea. And I do shop at two different supermarkets to get my bargains.

  14. Oh, that undies photo is classic!
    Isn’t Quilton the best? I try and go as organic as I can on veggies. But that doesn’t tend to get us very far so it just depends on what’s available and what I plan to cook the next couple of nights…

  15. I actually think we scrimp on everything except toilet paper and paper towels. ANd I won’t pay more than $25 for something for me – shoes, shorts, tops. I did get about $300 worth of underwear when I lost all that weight, so I guess that was a splurge, but it isn’t a frequent splurge.

    • Yip paper towels, except I buy good ones for wiping up and crappy ones for cleaning! OOoo those under garments must have been pretty spunky – must deserved though! Need to get some myself to hold these smaller puppies up 😉 xx

  16. We skimp on clothes, sort of. I buy a tonne of them, but all from the oppy. I love second hand shopping. It’s so gratifying. We don’t skimp on food – eat very very well. Or on wine. But since having kids, we don’t go out for breakfast or dinner any more. Or movies – those are suprisingly big savings. And we never go on holiday. That’s another one. x

  17. Hi Emily 🙂
    Thanks for stopping by my page. You’re a hoot! I refuse to skimp on paper towel. The cheap stuff does not do the job. And shoes. Cheap shoes are never good 🙂

  18. It’s important to keep a sensible budget, but a girl’s gotta have standards! An ex boyfriend once told me that coffee, toilet paper and tomato sauce were the things in life one should never skimp on – your list is eerily similar! Cleanskins are a good gamble sometimes though 🙂

  19. I skimp on things for myself as I feel guilty for spending “frivolous” money on me but am happy enough to spend the world on my kids! We have had to adjust our budget recently as we’re paying rent and paying off our land while we build so it’s back to Homebrand items for us…except for toilet paper, I’m so with you there!

    • Same here Kirsty, why is it that we feel guilty spending on ourselves – silly ! It must be hard paying rent and off land, we did that but didn’t have kids! We also had to pay off the house as it was being built, glad times have changed. x

  20. We have way less choice in the bush and no more Saudi , my favourite.
    Eggs have to be free range here too but WW brand are ok – I skimp on clothes for me too – who cares about fashion if it covers me up.
    I won’t skimp on Bonds undies for me though i only buy them on special and wear them forever.

    • Yeah I’m not fashion guru, as long as I look respectable enough not to embarrass my kids 🙂 Bonds are really the best and used to be all I bought. Maybe one day I’ll head back there. Thanks for visiting and commenting Trish x

  21. I use to only buy branded toilet paper but then I discovered a major generic that is actually better. Total disbelief I can tell you but most certainly true

  22. Nodding in agreement about toilet paper, no homebrand variety is every going near my tush, but I am a Sorbent fan. No instant coffee allowed in my pantry either. My Saudi machine is awesome, and even more awesome now that I have discovered the Gloria Jeans pods work in it, yum. Heinz Big Red Tomato sauce and Thommy Mayo are no exception staples as well.

  23. I’m very similar to you! I wish we had more choices though. I only have a woolies and a local IGA. I don’t skimp on fruit and veg and meat. But I happily skimp on cleaning products and a lot of the ‘basics’ sugar, flour, oil, some tinned food etc.

  24. Life’s too short for bad coffee, bad wine and milk chocolate. I’m with you on the undies issue. I’ve got pairs which are a decade old. At least they still fit 😉

  25. I agree, you should never skimp on toilet paper! I buy Quilton as well 🙂

  26. I don’t skimp on much but I am smart with our money – I buy bulk when it’s cheap. I miss Costco, I can’t wait until it comes here. Knickers I still buy from the UK at 8 for £10 ($16!) and often with free postage I can get nice ones from M&S or Debenhams for less than getting a nice pair here. I would never knowingly buy caged eggs and only buy good coffee but I’m not too fussy on wine and I love our soda stream – I drink fizzy water instead of softdrink these days.

  27. Yes Costo is awesome, I had in the US, totally adored it! Oh that’s right soda streams are back in fashion – must look into that – cheap soda water 🙂 Thanks for visiting and commenting Kyla xx

  28. You’ve hit the pulse for a lot of readers here. I scrimp too (shop at Aldis – my sister teases me the lettuces are from Chernobyl) and use herb tea bags twice – herb ones only. In splashing out i buy happy eggs, nice loo paper and paper towels, good quality meat (but eat it only occasionally) good wine (life is too short for Crappy wine and bad hangovers) and skiing trips … Life’s to short for caravan parks too.

  29. I am the same with undies! My mum knows this and I always get an undie care package for Christmas.

  30. Haha! I like buying cheap undies. I never skimp on toilet paper too or on tissues.

  31. *ahem* I’m a tight arse lol

    *insert ply* toilet paper lasts five seconds in this house, and I refuse to spend a fortune on toot paper that just wipes crap and gets flushed. So it’s two roll packs of B&G here!

    I’m an op shopper. Love it! But when I do buy new I’m a tight arse lol Although shoes, I have to agree I get the best quality for the cheapest price I can. I’m also a bargain hunter.

    Dishwashing tablets. I don’t have a dishwasher anymore, and I have a couple of flashy tabs left… you want them? I don’t know anyone I can give them to and I can’t bring myself to throw them away cause I know how much they cost me!! lol

    I don’t drink anymore but I do smoke *hangs head in shame*

    Tomato & BBQ sauce are only Masterfoods. Baked beans are Heinz. Eggs are free range. Icing sugar is CSR…. there are more but I can’t remember!

    Undies, I’m a cotton girl. None of this fancy crap lol

    MC xx

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