I mentioned in my first declutter video that I’ve been inspired by minimalism content. It peaked my interest because in 2021 I felt very overwhelmed and frustrated with skincare; At the time, I coudn’t really figure out why.
I’ve come to realize that it was due to a few things: I felt discontent about my skin, had an accumulation of unused skincare products I no longer cared for, lacked motivation to write/film anything, and overall just felt “meh.” Like all lows, there’s only going up! I eventually got over my rut and got my groove back. This is where the point of this post begins!
My 2021 end-of-year faves video featured 15 products. These were all new products I purchased this year. What you don’t know is that in the background I have 50-80+ other skincare items – opened, unopened, expired, forgotten.
That doesn’t factor in my hair and body products, gadgets, makeup, nail polish. At first I thought it was just PR items sent to me that I didn’t give away and wanted to keep. But when I sat down and looked through the items, 90% or more were purchased by me.
For those of you new to my corner of the internet, my name is Michelle, I started my blog and YouTube channel to not only review skincare products, but to share my clear skin journey and put out to the world that you’re not alone in the struggle to clear skin. This blog, my YT channel, was supposed to be my creative outlet, something fun.
I got excited when brands started reaching out for PR opportunities and I also participated in review giveaways for online retailers. But then this all started to feel like a job. So I started hauling skincare more frequently and taking on PR opportunities because I felt like I needed to be consistent with my “work”. And this feeling of it being a second job is what began my discontent. I couldn’t keep track of my collection, everything started to feel the same, all the while having this underlying feeling that I was becoming a place for free labour and advertisement.
Now these companies are not to blame, I was the one who agreed to these terms, to accept the product in exchange for review, to meet a deadline. I’ve also never felt negative about affiliates like Wishtrend – I’ve always been able to take my time with reviews and I’ve given a fare share of negative ones. I also found some great products through PR in general.
But I did have to put other skincare on the backburner for these reviews (my purchases) because I do want to thoroughly test products before sharing my thoughts with you all. However this has now lead to me having what I think is an absurd amount of skincare for one person – most of which I purchased, have been opened and I don’t know if I can use them all up in a timely manner while trying to test out products to review.
So I have decided that for 2022 I am going to do a low buy. Although my content is mostly fixated around skincare – makeup, bodycare and such can definitely fall into this as well! So it’ll mostly be rules for the beauty realm in general, but for me it’s mostly about reducing my skincare spending.
Why I’m doing a Low Buy for 2022
Declutter Backburner Beauty Products
Simply put, I want to reduce the products I have. I have come to know my likes and dislikes and it’s obvious what I like reaching for and what I forgot existed. It’s not good to buy new products, put older ones on the backburner and let them be unused, expire, and ultimate become unnecessary waste.
Have Mental Clarity
I was surrounded by stuff that I felt pressured to create content about but wasn’t quite ready to share my thoughts on. I’ve come to understand what my testing/reviewing habits and methods are, and having a bulk of opened, unused skincare confused my direction. I wasn’t enjoying blogging and filming anymore because I felt like I was surrounded by stuff and I didn’t know where to begin. I’m hoping by decluttering, reducing my spending, I will have better direction and organization with my content in the future, and bring back more joy I had in skincare.
Have More with Less
Part of this interest in minimalism relating to my beauty product accumulation was lowering my reliance on the need to feel the best through products. Don’t get me wrong, my skincare is my self-care and applying makeup feels therapeutic. But I don’t want to feel a heavy reliance and be surrounded by skincare, makeup, things in general, to feel whole. It’s funny – I used to love seeing all my products on the bathroom counter and my vanity, now I just want clear surfaces and a bin of my trusty go-tos.
My Low Buy Rules for 2022
No More Freebies
I will not be accepting any more PR, gifts, participating in review giveaways, until I reduce my current collection. Freebies will be at a halt unless I get offered an item I planned on purchasing/repurchasing, or if it was gifted by a family member/friend.
Avoid what caused me to buy a lot in the first place! This all falls under “Online Window Shopping” because it’s so easy nowadays to access online retailers and make a purchase.
- Unsubscribe to emails – Always contains FOMO content like limited time deals, free shipping, limited stock.
- Unfollow social media accounts – I was moreso effected by brand accounts themselves for they created the prettiest content of their products, and would have giveaways.
- Uninstall shopping apps – I’ve already removed a couple from my phone, but the biggest one was Amazon. Us North Americans will know, that Prime delivery is dangerous for impulse shopping!
- Remove myself from my device when I’m “bored” shopping – If I have spare time at work or am feeling bored in general, I take a breather and literally look outside, take a walk, do a chore, something other than mindlessly shop.
Let it Marinate
Prevent impulse buying, give yourself time to think about this upcoming purchase. It can be 24 hours minimum up to a week to evaluate this. During that time, check your current collection to make sure you’re not doubling up on something already.
Empty Before Newbie
Be close to finishing what I own before considering purchasing something, or using up what’s in my skincare stash first!
I have been on a foundation free kick since 2019 and it’s helped me come to like my face and skin more for what it is. I hauled quite a bit of makeup in 2021, all products that cater to my current aesthetic and I’m very happy with what I have. Having said that, I don’t find a need to want more and am very content shopping my stash. The only items I would consider replacing are brow gel and mascara, but even then I haven’t worn mascara in a long time!
How I Will Hold Myself Accountable to my Low Buy Rules
As a content creator, how will my audience know I am holding myself accountable? It’s easy to just monitor myself but I do want those of you reading/watching to be in the know, especially if you feel like you’re in the same boat as I am.
Seasonal Empties + Check In
No better way to show I decluttered and used up my existing stash than to do empties videos! Instead of making it a monthly thing, seasonal seems appropriate. With the seasonal empties I’ll also touch upon my progress in general and how I’m feeling about the Low Buy year.
Empties and Newbies
This type of content will showcase what’s replacing what in my skincare routine. I find it will be a good way for those of you interested to keep track as to what I’m using, it’ll also point out whether the newbies are from my stash or purchases.
Speak to Someone Before a Purchase
I always speak to my husband before I pull the trigger and make a purchase. I have noticed in recent times however that I’m quite silent about my skincare hauls, and he always seemed surprised by the packages we had to pick up at our local post office 😀 He’s typically pretty supportive of my purchases, so I know I can count on him to tell me when I’m going out of line.
So friends, will you be doing a low buy year with me? Do you also cave to the skincare/makeup/beauty craze? If so, I hope my personal low buy rules for 2022 help you out as well.
Also – Happy New Year! Stay positive, be healthy, say “I love you” to your family and friends.