Make This One Change to Save €40 Every Year

Published on 12/3/2020

We are a generation of consumers, that’s a fact by now. We buy frequently and without hesitation. We buy things we like, things we want, and perhaps things we don’t need. A lot of ‘get rich’ schemes involve buying less, and I know that I dislike reading that. I want to earn more not spend less, and I’m always looking for a magical hack that will allow me to do exactly that.

Well here is the magical hack, one that saved me €40 in the past year. This might not sound like a lot, but given that it doesn’t even require a full five minutes of your time over the year, that’s a lot. How often do you earn €40 for 5 minutes of work? Think of five years from now, when that adds up to €200, that’s some ‘real’ money, and you’re not even at half an hour.

What you need:

  • A pair of scissors

Okay, enough introducing, here is the magic hack that can save you €40, and it won’t come as a revelation. Simply stop yourself from throwing away a product when it is ‘finished’, and instead cut a small strip along the top. You can keep it closed with a peg, but usually, that isn’t even required if you don't cut the entire way. You’ll now find that far more product is still available in the tube than you initially thought, enough to last you at least a week or two weeks extra. That sounds minimal, but consider this for every product: face wash, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, moisturiser, sunscreen, creams. The list goes on, and all you have to do is actually finishing the product rather than throwing it away when there is still plenty left.

The WHO estimates that each person uses six tubes of toothpaste per year. If each time you cut the end off of your tube and get at least an extra week out of it, that would lead you only to need five tubes over the year, saving you right there. Think of face wash and moisturiser, which can easily cost €10 apiece, and how much you save by even buying one less of each per year. It’s not enough to retire early, but it’s money that you’re literally throwing in the bin.

What I saved

I calculated that I saved €40 in a year through buying less of the following:

  • 2 tubes of Colgate toothpaste 75ml (2 person household) / €4
  • 1 Ordinary Squalane Cleanser 150ml / €18.20
  • 1 Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors 100ml / €7.70
  • 1 Garnier 50+ Sunscreen 200ml / €10

= €39.90

I don’t wear foundation, but that’s another product this could work for. Also depending on the bottle for your shampoo, conditioner and other hair products. This is an estimate and is based on my personal use; it will differ for everyone. But even so, there is money to be saved in this with little to no effort required.

Financial gain not enough to convince you? Think about the environmental impact of using less plastic tubes each year and producing less waste. Again, a straightforward step towards reducing your plastic use, without sacrificing anything. All you need is a pair of scissors sitting in your bathroom, and you’re ready to go.



Welcome to Symptoms of Living! A place where I like to relieve myself of the barrage of thoughts and ideas filling my mind. Here I'll take a look at various topics, from books to BPD, series to self-harm, there's nothing that we can't, and shouldn't, talk about.

Having struggled with mental illness since the age of 15, one of the hardest parts was how alone I felt in it. While mental illness is beginning to be discussed more openly, and featured in the media, I still think there is room for improvement. So whether it is mental illness or merely mental health, a bad day or a bad year, let's make this a place to approach it and strip it back. Everyone has their own symptoms of living, and you certainly won't be the only one with it.

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