I’m currently in Japan, my first trip there since I
majorly tumbled down the AB rabbit hole, and of course one suitcase is half
filled with beauty products. I’ve yet to even pack half of it, but a Japan haul
post is on it’s way!
One of the questions my friends have asked me is how
I can afford being a beauty blogger, with all the different products I try out.
With these two points in mind I thought it was
prudent to write a post on hauling and how to ensure AB doesn’t financially
take over your life. Sheetmasks are important, but a roof over your head and
the ability to eat are slightly more so :P
So with that in mind onward to the haul discussion!
Just some of my purchases while in Japan
I think it’s important to address the pressures
which can lead you into hauling first.
For me there’s three key pressures:
1.All Aboard the Hype Train! You’ve
just read about a new release, a Snail Horse Moisturising Mist Cream from CosRX.
Or it’s all over your Instagram Key ingredient buzzword, check. Well known
brand, check. New and you don’t have it, check.
It’s ticked all the boxes for things which pressure people into instant
gratification and purchasing things on a whim. It’s so easy to do, everyone is
talking about it and you want to join in on the conversation. We’re only human
after all. Acknowledge and embrace that fact, then square up to it. Take a week
to think about it properly. Sleep on it. Sleep is wondrous and can help control
2.Everyone Else Hauls, Why Can’t I? It’s
human to see what everyone else is doing and want to be able to do the same.
Children are the most honest about it, but even us adults have feelings of
jealousy and envy. When you see people posting haul pics it’s easy to think
that’s what you should be doing to. And it’s okay to because everyone else is. STOP. You don’t know their story. Maybe
they’ve been saving for 6 months, perhaps they just got their bonus. We are all
wonderfully different. For my own Japan haul I’d been saving for a few months
and restricted some other luxuries to put money in my Beauty Budget. Also we
are a large size community, yes a few visible people post their hauls, but most
of us don’t. Because we haven’t got a haul! But our pics of nothing are
non-existent compared to their glorious haul pics which skew the perception of
how many people haul.
3.There’s a Sale On!! This
is one of the hardest to resist in any industry, be that clothes, food or
beauty. Just remember; there will always be another sale! There’s no point
buying ten moisturisers at half the price if you only end up using two of them.
Now that we’ve addressed the three main pressures
remember you’re not alone! We are all in the same boat on this beautiful AB
journey and if your question begins with “Does anyone else…” the answer is
almost certainly yes.
You can see that despite looking like a ghost I'm pretty happy
The first question you should ask yourself is what
does skincare mean for you? For me it’s a hobby. I spend hours every week
reading reviews and browsing blog posts. When I get a new product I’m excited
to take pictures and write first impressions on my Instagram. And of course
there’s this blog itself! So for me skincare is something which intrinsically
makes me happy and I’m willing to invest in. Between a Starbucks and an extra
£3 into my beauty budget, I’d rather put it in my beauty budget!
For others skincare could be simply that, products
to care for the skin. Found a good moisturiser which their skin loves, good,
So figure out where it lays in your list of
priorities. Pause and actually think about it. Would a Starbucks bring you more
joy than a couple more sheetmasks? Are you the type who prefers to read rather
than hold a new product? Are you fully immersed into the technicolour, all
singing, all dancing Asian Beauty world?
Okay now that you know how important Skincare is to
you it’s time for the reality check! Not the most fun part, but probably the
most important part of this post.
There are two major ways to control your budget here.
not Hoard – If you’re on a tight budget this could be the way
to go for you. Only buying once a key step in your routine is running low.
Budget – Set yourself a budget relative to your own personal
income and goals.
Saving for a house in London? Put less in the Beauty Budget and more in the
House Budget. Currently married, no kids and both working at great jobs with
benefits, you can probably afford to put more into your Beauty Budget. Everyone
has a different set of circumstances. And that’s fine, I aspire to be a
multi-millionaire, but I don’t spend like one. Reality is different from
dreams. Harsh truth but important to acknowledge, otherwise you can end up
trying to “keep up with the Joneses” and spending yourself into debt.
Buying this much every month would bankrupt me...
Skincare Routine and Wishlist Building
Okay great now you have your budget! What next? How
to stop the urge to haul and follow the latest trend? You’ve just read the most
amazing review of this Snail Horse Moisturising Mist Cream and must have it.
First take a deep breath. Now this is the more fun part of organising your
beauty budget and hauling responsibly!
Write out your routine and what current products you
have in that routine. I like to use an Excel to track mine. With pretty colours
and everything. But that’s also because it helps me keep organised for blog
reviews, a simple pen and piece of paper also works!
Great you have your list, or colour co-ordinated
excel in my case. Now are there any steps missing? Is there any particular goal
you still want to address? (My Skincare Guide Here). Get another piece of paper
and write those out.
Now you have your wishlist! These might
be a cliché but wishlists are great for helping to control the urge to splurge.
No instant gratification purchases, but a list of products/goals which will
really help you. These wishlists are also great birthday lists for family and
friends who know about your AB love but don’t know about AB.
What’s more once you have your wishlist of
products/goals the research can begin! I’ve found one of the ways to satisfy my
cravings for Asian Beauty in my life is to read reviews and flick through blogs.
So read up on the product, ask questions at the Reddit Forum in the Daily Help
Thread on your specific issue, find beauty bloggers with a similar skin type
and see what they use. Narrow things down to the product which will target your
needs. Remember you only have one face! So
it’s better to have one moisturiser which will help you towards your skincare
goal, than 10 moisturisers bought on a whim because they were pretty or one
beauty blogger recommended it.
My personal method is to use a cost benefit analysis
on a product.
1.What does it purport to do? Is that
something I need done to my face?
2.What do other reviewers think? Does it
do what it says?
3.How pretty and practical to store is it?
(Yes shallow, but I’m only human :P, also I live in a small London flat so
storage is important)
4.Do I have it? I.e. Does something else
in my stash do the same thing?
1.Value per use. That’s important because
some of the more expensive products can last seemingly forever, think AIO which
are huge. While cheaper products like Sheetmasks are essentially one shot, so
can be more expensive in the long run.
A product I rebuy as it's affordable and my HG shaving foam
Occasionally you will be tempted by a mystery box or
a brand new release which has limited reviews yet. Don’t feel guilty about
giving into that temptation! As long as it falls within your budget and is
something you’ll ultimately use, it’s completely normal and fine to buy
yourself treats. The danger is when the buying itself is the thrill, not the
I personally set aside a set amount from my beauty
budget to subscribe to beauty boxes! I love surprises and discovering new
products, plus they’re great blogging material. So for me the benefits outweigh
the costs. It’s all also within my budget. Leading up to Christmas last year I
stopped all my subscriptions so that I could afford more presents. Remember a
budget should be fluid to adapt to different circumstances.
One of my One Off Treats
Skincare is my hobby and being an active part of the
community means that I’m going to see haul posts and new shiny products I’ll be
tempted to buy.
My excel of my stash and wishlist help to keep me aware of what I actually do
already own! And what I want to own in the future. I have a monthly budget, which
I do save up for big purchases. So there can be 2/3 months where I buy nothing,
in order to make a larger purchase in the future.
My personal budget is always going to have a portion of it dedicated to
skincare, and that’s perfectly fine and something I’m happy with. As long as I
control the urge to buy and not the other way round hauling can be fun!