Extreme Couponing: Skincare Version

shopping20logo20tss-1Extreme Couponing was a popular show that aired in the States and Canada when I was young.

I’ve tried the techniques to save A LOT of money when I was pursuing my last degree. Funding was scarce in my program, and despite getting awarded the top package, I still found myself short due to the high rent and tuition I had to pay. I resorted to the use of coupons, in-store savings, price comparisons, and rebates to save money, and was moderately successful. In fact, I even managed a few times to get paid by stores to “buy” their products 😉 Really, all you need is time on your hands to do so (and a guilt-free conscience for bilking the stores, lol~)

Yesterday, I did a small extreme-couponing shopping, and was so excited because of how smoothly it went and how little time it took. For some reason, everything I bought yesterday was on sale, which made me extra ^o^

Here are some of the skin-related spoils of the shopping war:

1) Visia Complexion Analysis. Regular price: $50 – $130 at local clinics, spas -> Free

How: 5-min online search

Description: Complete skin analysis without persistent technicians trying to push sales at a real dermatologist office ^o^ I find it a very useful tool to see which area(s) I need to improve on in my skincare regimen. Also, unlike regular “free” consultations, the results are not biased. On a personal level, it’s an excellent ego-booster every time I do one //>.<// It really is nice to get objective compliments from doctors/technicians in the forms of shock and amazement, as well as to see them finding it difficult to sell me treatments and products~.^ If you are good, your score will only get higher as you age (due to that, comparatively, people’s skin conditions get worse), so this is the only time when a confounding variable is actually good 🙂

Tip: Check to see if there are any hidden fees. Unlike typical skin consultations, Visia analysis is objective and can provide very trustworthy results~ Be mindful to avoid technicians and cosmeticians pushing sales on you based on your results 🙂

VisiaSkinAnalysis2) Sunscreen. Regular price $30 -> $9.37

How: In-store sales+brand/product promotion (coupons)

Description: Cosmetic brand sunscreen formulation bought at drugstore/grocery market price. I know for an inside-fact that the company owns both labels, so I’m essentially buying the same “fancy” sunscreen just at a fraction of the cost~.^

Tips: Check the formulation and compare prices. Contrary to popular beliefs, cosmetic brand sunscreens are not always better than popular generic brands, but only branded differently.

sun-screen-300x1993) DU Shampoo. Regular price $4.96 for 1L -> $2.96 for 1L

How: In-store sales

Description: Great shampoo that is actually both environmentally friendly and well-formulated. I was skeptical at first because this shampoo emphasizes its “natural” sources, but then pleasantly discovered that it is actually quite well-formulated and costs significantly less than the more well-known brands. I don’t use conditioner on my hair, so am glad to find that the shampoo is gentle enough for everyday/frequent use.

Tips: Read the ingredients and compare brands. Salon-brand hair products are more often just marketing strategies and not worth the hype, especially since it is a rinse-off/cleansing product. Honestly, why pay $$ for something that’s going down the drain at the end of the day anyway?

9749364) Lysol Hand Soap System. Regular price $17.34 -> Free

How: Mail-in rebate sent to me via email notifications

Description: Since it’s free, why not? I’m suspecting that the sales are not great and that this product will go off the shelf soon, so get it while it’s still here and FREE~!

Tips: Sign up for different coupon sites that let you know of special offers in a collective email.

Lysol-No-Touch-System5) The Body Shop. Regular price $9.00 -> $2.50

How: Welcome membership special

Description: I didn’t really need it, as its products are mostly hyped up and overpriced, but thought it might be fun. All you have to do is sign up for its membership and get a special promotion of one free travel-sized item and 50% off any other item~ I managed to find a shower gel that I would dare use on myself and a cheap hand cleanse gel (so that I would only have to pay the minimal amount) I could use as a wipe-down cleaner at school, or for the students when they come into my office 😉

Tips: If you are a regular customer of the brand, then by all means take advantage of its promotion and use the coupon at different branches to exploit the company to your heart’s content get your money’s worth 😉

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