Penniless Socialite: My Deep Dark Coupon Secret

Sunday, November 27, 2011

My Deep Dark Coupon Secret

So, I have a deep dark shameful secret: I coupon.  No, I am not one of those crazy people on TV that buys 600 boxes of cereal for $1.  (I only bought 4 boxes last week for $0.75 each).  But, I do have a small stockpile of non-perishable food and beauty items.  I have to make room in the budget somehow for all the clothes I buy!  Since I started couponing, I've been saving on average $200 a month.  I spend about $50-$100 a month on food an toiletries, where I used to spend $200-$300.  I like expensive things, but you can get them for cheap.
And here is a glimpse into my madness.

I keep most of my stockpile in my linen closet.  An over the door shoe organizer helps keep everything neat and tidy.   
You can save a ton of money on canned goods.  I can't really keep food and beauty items completely separate because of the limited space in my small apartment.  Small drawer organizers also help keep things in their place

The remainder of my food stockpile is on the top shelf and in the kitchen.  I keep a large stockpile of cereal and pasta, since I eat them so often.  I also have a stockpile of travel sized items.  You can often get them for free if your coupon does not exclude travel sized items.

I've decided to come out of my stockpiled closet and share my coupon knowledge.  Ok, I have a crazy binder and an Excel spreadsheet, but I realize that's excessive.  A few little things can help you save a few dollars a month.  I'm going to focus on beauty items, since I am sure you don't read my blog to find out how much I paid for canned pineapple ($0.75 each, if you were really wondering).

The best places to buy beauty products are Walgreens, CVS, Target, and Rite Aid.  That's listed in order of how much work you'll have to do to save money.  You also need to check the coupon policies of each store...if you really want to get serious about this.

First things first, get yourself a Sunday paper, that's where you find the most coupons and the circulars for each store.  There are 3 different coupon inserts: Procter and Gamble (PG), Red Plum (RP) and Smart Source (SS).  The circulars are also on each store's website.

Second, you need to do specific things for each store, except Walgreens.

Walgreens is the easiest, you don't need any savings card and their coupons are right in the store circular which you can get in your paper or in the store.  With some purchases, Walgreens gives you Register Rewards, which are manufacturer's coupons that can be used on any thing at Walgreens.
CVS requires you to get an Extra Care card in order to take advantage of their special deals.  You can sign up in the store.  There are several benefits besides the sale prices.  You get a percentage back of what you spend every quarter in a coupon and you get special coupons from a machine in store.  CVS also gives you gift certificates (called Extra Bucks) with some purchases to be used for anything in the store.

To get the best prices at Target, you have to scour their website for coupons.  Target allows you to use one manufacturer's coupon and one Target coupon for each item purchased.

Rite Aid really makes you do the work.  You have to get their savings card (Wellness card), look up coupons on the Video Values site, look up coupons in their weekly circular AND sign up for their Single Check Rebate program.  So, there are a lot of new "coupon" words in there.  Video Values is a site that requires you to watch commercials in exchange for coupons.  The Single Check Rebate program is jut a rebate program.  You have to sign up for each on their website.  Rite Aid allows you to use a manufacturer's coupon, AdPerk coupon AND a Rite Aid coupon for the same item!!!  When these three things come together, you often get free stuff.  Rite Aid also gives you a coupon / gift card with some purchases called Up Rewards.

Ok, now that I have thoroughly confused and scared you.  I'll provide you with a few beauty deals each week.  If scouring circulars and making Excel spreadsheets is too daunting of a task for you, you can just go to various coupon websites and they summarize all the deals for you each week.  My favorites are: and

Here are my favorite beauty deals this week:

FREE Sample of Dove Nourishing Oil Care


Softlips Lip Protectant & Sunscreen, Pearl, .07 oz $2.00
Buy 1, Receive $2.00 Register RewardIt's like getting it for FREE!

Pantene Hair Care, 5.1 to 12.6 oz $3.50Buy 2, Receive $2.00 Register RewardUse $3.00/2 Pantene Products, from PG 11/27
Or 2 $1.00/1 Pantene hairspray, styler or treatment product, from PG 10/30
Or $1.00/2 Pantene products, from PG 10/30
Pay as low as $4.00, Receive $2.00 Register Reward
It's like getting each for $1.00! (when you buy 2)

Aussie or Herbal Essence Hair Care, 6 to 14 oz $3.00Buy 2, Receive $1.00 Register Reward, Limit 1Use 2 $1.00/1 Herbal Essences or Aussie product from PG 10/30
Or $1.00/2 Herbal Essences or Aussie Product from PG 11/27
Pay as low as $4.00, Receive $1.00 Register Reward
It's like getting each for $1.50! (when you buy 2)


Biore Skin Care $6.99
Buy 1, Receive $1.00 +Up Reward  
Use $2.00/1 Biore product, excluding trial or travel size from SS 8/14 (exp 12/31)
Pay $4.99, Receive $1.00 +Up Reward
It's like getting it for $3.99!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...