Shortly after the big move in July, my fiance and I noticed a bunny hanging around our apartment complex. One of his feet had been crushed by something, so he scurried around with it flopping at his side. We affectionately named him "Tripod." When he stared at me through the door of my new workplace for a solid 30 seconds, mere moments before my teaching evaluation, I decided he was our lucky bunny. We loved seeing the little guy, but we didn't expect him to last past the warmer months due to his damaged foot and the many coyotes in the area.
And indeed, as the weather turned cold on the great plains, we saw less of Tripod. At the same time, tragedy upon tragedy occurred in the United States, including a horrific shooting at a synagogue in my hometown. I have friends who attended that synagogue. I used to pass it every time I rode the bus in to the city. I fell in to a depression, constantly questioning why I bothered to do anything when the world was so desperately shitty, then feeling even worse because my pain simply cannot compare to what the victims of these tragedies are facing. I briefly considered abandoning the blog entirely and wallowing in self-pity.
Then Tripod reappeared this week. I didn't believe it at first--surely he hadn't outsmarted the coyotes!--but there he was, floppy foot and all. And he showed up again the next day, and the day after that, nibbling on grass and doing whatever else bunnies do. Maybe it's silly, but seeing our lucky bunny made me realize that I need to quit moping and get with the program.
Privately, I've taken action to help the communities affected by these many tragedies, and it's helped me shake off that feeling of impotence. Publicly, I've started wondering what I really want out of life. With that comes the question, "Do I really want to spend that much money on makeup?"
Don't misunderstand me: I still love makeup! I recently had an awful reaction to a new product (review coming soon with pictures, oh boy howdy), and taking a week off of wearing makeup to let my skin heal felt odd. And I've been excited about several products I've stumbled upon. But I remember that, even when I was challenging myself to stay on a budget, I spent $322.27 on beauty products in a year. That's a hefty chunk of change. Prepping for Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales has further emphasized that I've probably spent more on lipstick and face cream than I should have. Don't I have goals beyond trying new products? What else do I want to achieve in my life? My interests are varied, but the blog is relatively linear--how might that change if I created more of the content I really wanted to create?
That's when I decided I'd like to try a year-long no buy in 2019. I'm still working out the details, but it would be a great way to challenge myself. I'm sticking with a no buy rather than a low buy; I want to spend $0 of my own money on new products. I've made the following exceptions:
- I'm allowed to purchase replacements. For instance, I go through a bottle of La Roche Posay Toleriane Dermo Cleanser every 5 months or so.
- I'm allowed to accept PR. I receive a relatively small amount of free swag compared to bigger influencers, no doubt, but if I review what I do receive, that will provide ample reviews for the blog.
- I'm allowed to use gift cards and store/referral credits. Sephora gift cards have become my family's go-to present for me. And hey, if they're just about all I have to spend, I'll be more thrifty with them!
Hilariously, I'm not worried about the blog's content becoming stale if I do this. If anything, I'm hoping it'll force me to be more creative. Reviews and swatch posts are great, but what else am I capable of? Can I get back in to experimenting with different looks, for instance, or come up with another series that will benefit my readers? And of course, there will be regular posts to keep me accountable, posts that will list what I wanted to buy, what I've finished up, where my money is going instead, etc.
I'd also like to do more non-beauty content from time to time. I've posted the occasional "not beauty" post on the blog, and while the response has been mixed, it's been personally fulfilling for me. As a hobbyist, I think that's a perfectly fine motivation for posting "here's some food" videos or "I have an opinion on stuff" rambles.
So if you'd like to join me on a no buy journey in 2019, comment down below! We'll share some tips, address our fears, talk more about floppy-footed bunnies...whatever makes us feel right with the world.