Pamper Yourself on the Cheap

Everyone loves to be pampered every once and a while. It’s relaxing and indulgent; it makes us feel good. But let’s face it, a lot of people are struggling right now, or at least trying to get by without too many “extras”. Here are 10 tips to keep those extras in your life while spending less.
Tip #1 – Go With Groupon
I cannot stress this enough. Groupon rocks. Now in addition to the daily deal for your area, there are offers called “Groupon Now!” – offers from local businesses that are good for a very short amount of time. They’re designed for someone who wants to do something right now. Every time I check my Groupon app, there’s always special offers from salons and spas offering a deal for a little pampering. For example, here are some of the Groupon Now! deals in my area today:
  • $15 haircut
  • $15 Mystic Tan
  • $35 for wash, conditioning treatment, haircut, and blowdry
  • $25 deep conditioning/scalp treatment
  • $15 spa pedicure
  • $29 1-hour massage
Tip #2 – Say Yes to Yelp!
Have you been on Yelp lately? There’s more to it than reviews. Many businesses offer specials exclusive to Yelpers. One boutique I like to shop at offers 10% off your first purchase if you write an honest review of your experience on Yelp. 
Tip #3 – Cheapest Mani/Pedi Ever
If you really want a little sprucing up but don’t have the cash to spend on a full mani or pedi, duck in for just a polish change. You’ll still have nice, neatly polished nails (that you didn’t have to do yourself!) for a whole lot less. At salons near me this usually costs between $5 and $7.
Tip #4 – Craigslist
The beauty services section of Craigslist always has specials from local salons and individuals looking to build up more clientele, especially mobile beauty businesses. Because it’s more economical, many beauty professionals are opting to become mobile, coming to you rather than paying to rent a station in a salon. If that is something you’d feel comfortable with, it may be an opportunity to save some green!
Tip #5 – Take Advantage of Trims
Most salons I’ve visited offer free bang trims to maintain your style between cuts. Take advantage of this! When your bangs need a trimmin’, don’t pin them to the side and ignore them (I’m guilty!). Go to your salon for a bang trim. You’ll still get the salon experience, your hair will look better, and it was free! 
Tip #6 – Low Maintenance Highlights
Highlights are pretty and look awesome, but can be expensive to maintain. If you are looking for a little less maintenance involved, ask your stylist to do “peek a boo” highlights – highlights that won’t be on the very top layer of hair. The roots are hidden this way and you can get away with waiting longer between touch-ups.
Tip #7 – DIY Color
If you color your hair, you may be able to switch to doing it at home. I recommend not doing it yourself if you are going lighter, but for a long time I was faithful to my trusty Revlon Colorsilk. It’s ammonia free, and very frequently goes on sale at drugstores for 2/$5.
Tip #8 – Make it a Playdate
Remember when you used to sleep over at a friend’s house, stay up all night talking about boys and wishing you had D.J. Tanner’s life because she was so cool? Invite over a girlfriend or two for a grownup slumber party (pajamas optional). Make a pitcher of margaritas, have snacks, and paint each other’s nails just like you’re in jr high again. Better yet, have her bring some of her favorite polishes, so you can use each other’s. It’s like getting new ones! 
Tip #9 – Make it a Sexy Playdate
Have a quiet night in with your partner, and take turns pampering each other! Guaranteed good times. ;)
Tip #10 – Just Ask
If you’re not feeling adventurous enough to try a new salon or spa, it never hurts to ask if they have any specials. In addition to bringing in new clients, everyone’s trying to make sure they keep the ones they already have. Many beauty pros also have referral incentives to offer their clients, so if you have a great stylist or a favorite manicurist, tell your friends and ask them to mention you sent them!
Etiquette Reminders 

– If you are using a coupon, or requesting a special, always mention it when you’re booking the appointment to avoid confusion later on.

– When it comes to gratuities, remember to always calculate based on the full price of the service. 15-20% is customary. There are many great ways to save on beauty services; a lousy tip is not one of them. :)

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