Author Topic: How to stop shopping at Target?  (Read 17445 times)

thepokercab

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 486
How to stop shopping at Target?
« on: July 18, 2013, 06:11:51 PM »
My family and I have been on the mustachian path for the past 5-6 months and have completely changed our lifestyle.  We used to save 0%-5% of our income, now we're saving 50%.  We were spending insane amounts of money on eating out and groceries, have have cut those down to a fraction of what they were  We've ditched the high price cell phones and we've ditched the car and are living with bikes.  I feel like a conquering mustachian lately....

Until i recently looked at what we were spending at Target for "Household Goods"!! (target is around the block so its convenient) We don't own our home, we haven't bought any new clothes this year and yet i saw we were spending on average $150.00 a month at Target.  When we dug deeper into it really didn't feel like frivolous spending we were doing- things like dishwashing detergent, clothes detergent, soap, disposable razors, toothbrushes and other toiletries, cleaning supplies like bleach or sponges, etc, a new frying pan, a couple new glasses etc..  But nothing that would scream out at you:  Why did we buy that??

My wife even makes linen napkins, so we never buy paper towels! 

Anyone else find their "household budget" creep up on them like this?  Any ideas on how to tackle it? Maybe i just need a face punch for going to Target for this stuff... 

adesertsky

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 78
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2013, 06:32:07 PM »
I used to buy all that at Target but I've switched to Costco for things I need like toilet paper, razors, sponges, clothes detergent etc. because they end up being cheaper and I have to buy them way less frequently.  I also switched from using the dishwashing detergent cubes to getting generic dishwasher powder- it is way cheaper and lasts a long time for a box (although handwashing dishes is the obvious better choice).  Our grocery budget (for 2) is $400/mo including household stuff and we manage fine.

mlipps

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1085
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2013, 06:50:00 PM »
I get a lot of that, especially toiletries for free from CVS with coupons.

KimPossible

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 111
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2013, 07:28:07 PM »
What worked for me was to stop going to Target unless I had a specific purpose, and then only buying what was on my list.  It's made a huge difference.  I can go months without going into Target now, and coincidentally, the amount of "house crap" I have has decreased significantly :).

grantmeaname

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4753
  • Age: 27
  • Location: NYC
  • Cast me away from yesterday's things
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #4 on: July 18, 2013, 07:48:44 PM »
Here's some relevant advice.

Just don't. Summon the willpower, and don't go.

footenote

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 801
  • MMMing in MN
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #5 on: July 18, 2013, 07:53:58 PM »
I used to buy all that at Target but I've switched to Costco for things I need like toilet paper, razors, sponges, clothes detergent etc. because they end up being cheaper and I have to buy them way less frequently.  I also switched from using the dishwashing detergent cubes to getting generic dishwasher powder- it is way cheaper and lasts a long time for a box (although handwashing dishes is the obvious better choice).  Our grocery budget (for 2) is $400/mo including household stuff and we manage fine.
+1  Costco will save you major $. (And I worked for Tar-ghez for seven years.)

olivia

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 770
  • From Consumerism to Minimalism
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #6 on: July 18, 2013, 08:21:18 PM »
Here's some relevant advice.

Just don't. Summon the willpower, and don't go.

Ditto! Do you have Amazon Prime?  I order a lot of my household items on Amazon which is a double whammy because Amazon is either the same price or cheaper than Target, and it keeps me from getting sucked into buying crap I don't need.  So getting rid of my car along with my hatred of errands helps me avoid Target.

MsSindy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 535
  • Age: 52
  • Location: Philly Burbs
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2013, 08:23:23 PM »
Target for me, was a real money suck.  Things aren't too expensive there, of decent quality, and so you think, "oh yeah, $19.99 for that, that's not bad, $24.99 for that...." and in it goes into the basket.  I only go once (or twice) a year now with the sole purpose of stocking up on all the staples.  I'm very purposeful when I go now and have been successful with eliminating the crapitis.  I'd like to go to Costco, but I'm kind of afraid of the same thing - lot's of temptations, and we're only a household of 2.

My suggestion, determine how long something lasts you and then based on your storage capabilities, buy a year or two's worth, so that you're not constantly having to go there.  And, if you need a staple item in between your large shopping runs, buy it elsewhere, where there isn't a temptation.

I'm not a couponer, so places like CVS don't appeal to me for buying staple items, but you can get some great deals that way if you're vigilant.

Russ

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2213
  • Age: 28
  • Location: Boulder, CO
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2013, 09:48:14 PM »
Should be obvious, just stop going. Maybe try doing without some of the things you regularly buy for a while. If you decide you really do need to buy this stuff, try somewhere less distracting.

onehappypanda

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 238
  • Location: Columbus, Ohio
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2013, 10:10:36 PM »
For me, it was always little extras snuck in with the toothpaste and TP. For some reason I always do that more often at Target.

I'm with the others: find a different way to source what you need. We try to keep track of our levels of soap, razors, etc. and just get them at the regular grocery store when we're getting food to save us a trip. The prices are about the same. You could probably save a bundle getting them in bulk at Sam's or Costco, assuming you have a membership and the storage.

I love the idea of Amazon Prime, didn't even think of that.

Erica/NWEdible

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 881
    • Northwest Edible Life - life on garden time
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2013, 11:07:32 PM »
My "household stuff" sourcing:

dishwashing detergent - costco
clothes detergent - costco
soap - dish soap? costco. body soap? possibly overrated. hand soap? dilute dish soap works for me.
disposable razors - costco, plus this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOa1lGZMnqY
Strapping (is that the right word?) your razor on your arm backwards hones the blade. Hightly recommended trick to make those blades last a lot longer.
toothbrushes - from the dentist. free with checkup.
other toiletries - baking soda and coconut oil from costco will make everything else. seriously.
cleaning supplies like bleach - bleach: costco. All other cleaning supplies can be made from baking soda, vinegar, dish soap and / or water in some combination.
sponges - sponges are generally gross after 2 uses. Try a nylon scrubby that can go in the dishwasher. Lasts a long, long time.
A new frying pan - cast iron. thrift store. $5. Lasts several lifetimes.
A couple new glasses - well, we are beer drinkers over here. I can't judge. But in a pinch, mason jars. :)
etc. - depends on what the etc. is. My last glasses I bought from a friend for $2 per 6 after she bought them on craigslist from a gay bar that started to open, then didn't. True story. Brand new in box. Restaurant durable and stackable too.

....all that said, I can't get out of Costco for under $200, so maybe I need to start a thread "how do I stop shopping at Costco?" :) Good luck.

ChicagoGirl

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 84
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2013, 12:25:41 AM »
Erica is right....baking soda, vinegar and some hot water go a long way and eliminate a good majority of cleaners needed. 
Invest in a good set of pyrex storage dishes with lids in few different sizes, I prefer the rectangle shaped ones since they stack up great in the fridge...this will eliminate any need for plastic wraps and baggies.
I purchase toilet paper by the case from Amazon.
I also make a majority of my beauty products, household cleaners and laundry detergent from scratch to save money and eliminate harmful chemicals, but hey I understand that's not for everybody.

Do an inventory of what you already have in the house and really ask yourself if you need that particular item or cleaner...you might be surprised how little you need.   

kh

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 46
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2013, 05:24:22 AM »
Totally agree with the Amazon Prime suggestion. $6ish/mo is totally worth it to not get sucked into buying random crap at Target. Also, the ability to buy basics in bulk (paper goods, canned food, etc.) allows me to go without a car, since it's just delivered to my house. Only need one light bulb and a flat of tomatoes? That's all you need to get, nothing can jump in the cart if you don't have a cart!

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3125
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2013, 07:08:03 AM »
I get most of my cleaning supplies at Target. I have not compared to Costco. Target is near my house. Costco would involve a long drive, so I choose Target.

Bleach--Target or local grocery
Swiffer refills (Yeah. You can successfully argue this is a money suck. Target)
Diswashing--liquid soap (Trader Joe's)
Diswasher soap (Target) (Good to know that powder is generally cheaper. Maybe I'll stick to powder from here on out.)

Dust cloths--old cloth diapers (have not replaced them in 7-8 years)
Cleaning supplies (I use bleach for the toilet. I use vinegar and water for the windows.)
Sponges (replaced these with cloths that I can throw into the laundry basket after a day of use)
Shampoo/Soap (I am using up all the hotel shampoos and soaps we've accumulated over the years. Eventually, I will need to buy some and will prob get them at Target or Trader Joe's).

Target gets expensive when non-essential crap gets put into the cart. I went there recently to buy some camping supplies for the kidlet. $2 for a pair of socks! REI had socks for $8/pair. Egads. I paid the $2, but the price was a shocker.

The point is that I did not let myself put other crap into the cart when I only needed socks and flashlight batteries. Sometimes, when I am smart, I take a few moments before checkout to remove all of the items that I may have put in there and do not really need.

Those stores are created to overstimulate people so that they buy more things. That's my theory anyway. So, I just take a quiet moment at the end to correct for that. Saves me a lot.





aaronpct

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 25
  • Age: 38
  • Location: Jacksonville, Florida
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2013, 07:12:29 AM »
I have to definitely agree with the costco advise, you pay more in the short run but your unit cost is usually 1/2 price than your publix, cvs, target, [insert random department store] for similar products.  I cringe to think what my food bill would be if I purchased everything at a target/walmart instead of getting it at costco.

Simple Abundant Living

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 580
    • Simple Abundant Living
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #15 on: July 19, 2013, 07:33:24 AM »
It sounds like you are doing awesome!  Here are some things I do to save in the household department:

I have started making my own laundry soap and using white vinegar (2 pack at Costco is $3-4) instead of softener.  Pretty good results, and better for the environment.   There are tons of tutorials and recipes for the soap on the internet/pinterest.  For an average family, you could spend 20 mins making soap that will last you the year and cost $10.  For general cleaning, I like simple green, which I get at Sams Club by the gallon concentrate.  It lasts a really long time.  I also use water and vinegar for a lot of cleaning and for a fruit/veggie wash.  Toothbrushes- Costco on coupon or local grocery store when they are $10 for 10.  Toothpaste- it's hit or miss which is cheaper grocery store (Kroger store) or Costco.  Last time I was in the dollar store they had a good Colgate for $1 and I stocked up.  We have really cut out paper products unless we are entertaining.  I use bar mop cloths (Walmart) to wipe down counters and clean.  By not buying paper cups and plates, we have been able to cut in half our garbage, which allowed us to return the second can we were paying $8/mo. for.  Soap for foaming hand soap containers I buy at Trader Joes (Brommers).  One tablespoon of soap mixed with the rest of the container of water is all you need, so a bottle of that will last a long time.  Bar soap-Costco, but I would love to learn to make my own.  I don't use a ton of makeup.  I get moisturizer at Costco- Oil of Olay w/sunscreen.  Eyeliner & Mineral powder - friend sells Mary Kay (50% discount).  Mascara- whatever is 50% off at the grocery store. 

Costco is where I buy a lot, but it's not always the best price.  Like Target for you, it is super close to my house.  I try to figure out the price per use, so I can recognize when the grocery store (or Target) is cheaper.  First I would ask yourself:
1)Do I really need it?
2)Is there a better way to get the same result?- DIY, reusable items- look at Pinterest for ideas.
3)Can I save if I buy it in bulk-Costco, Sams Club, Amazon?- If you don't have a membership, find a friend that does and see if it would make sense you shop there.
4)Can I get it elsewhere?  (If Target is your "trigger" store where you pick up a lot of unneccessaries)

Costco is my trigger store so I am trying to become more disciplined when I go in there.  If a non-food item is not on the list, I have to wait 24 hrs to get it. 

BPA

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1191
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2013, 07:45:19 AM »
Like others have said, I use baking soda and vinegar for household cleaning, and use half the recommended amount of laundry detergent when washing clothes. 

I also shop sales using flyers.  I shop at a store that has a rewards program, and buy stuff when it's on sale, so essentially I make money back on already inexpensive goods.

Dulcimina

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 182
  • Location: Maryland
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2013, 08:42:01 AM »
I was reading a book called "The Power of Habit" that breaks habits down into a cue, a routine and a reward.  For me the cue was the colorful store flyer, the routine was to go to CVS or Target and buy what was advertised, and the reward was having all the things I thought I needed.

I didn't plan it deliberately, but the  way I broke the habit was by eating paleo. I used to drink a lot of soda, and eat junk food like peanut M&Ms and Cheez Curlz.  I'd go to the store that had the best sale.  I'd also go after Halloween or other holidays when they'd mark down holiday candy that hadn't sold. While I was there, I'd stock up on other things that I "needed" because I couldn't afford to miss the sale.

By changing that one habit of buying junk food, I stopped going as much.  I haven't bought shampoo since last year (I still have four different bottles in my shower).  I'm halfway through the toilet paper I bought in January. I'm 2/3 through the huge dishwashing liquid that I bought at Costco last year (I've diluted it some).  I'm down to two bottles of body lotion.  I've been using the mop since I ran out of the swiffer sheets. I still use paper towels, but I buy the ones with perforations at half the sheet. I also dabble in making some of my own toiletries.  I get a toothbrush from my dentist. So honestly, as a single person with no kids, I never really needed to keep stocking up every week.

I didn't make a deliberate decision not to go to Target as much.  However once the reward changed (health vs. soda and candy), the routine had to change too.

hybrid

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1669
  • Age: 52
  • Location: Richmond, Virginia
  • A hybrid of MMM and thoughtful consumer.
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2013, 08:59:10 AM »

sponges - sponges are generally gross after 2 uses. Try a nylon scrubby that can go in the dishwasher. Lasts a long, long time.


Yes it does get gross.  So I throw the sponge/scrubby in the top of the diswasher every time, and it comes out clean.  They go a lot further now.

Rebecca Stapler

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 907
    • Stapler Confessions
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2013, 10:13:42 AM »
I get a lot of that, especially toiletries for free from CVS with coupons.

+1.

Just don't go. See how long you can last without visiting at all. After monthly $150 runs, you probably have enough stockpiled in your house to last a while.

Or, if you do, go with an explicit list and bring enough cash for just that list. Even better, a list you made after matching coupons to sales on a site like www.livingrichwithcoupons.com or www.couponmom.com. Once you get in the habit of paying $0-$1 for toothpaste, etc, Target retail prices will seem crazy.

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3125
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2013, 10:32:52 AM »
I get a lot of that, especially toiletries for free from CVS with coupons.

+1.

Just don't go. See how long you can last without visiting at all. After monthly $150 runs, you probably have enough stockpiled in your house to last a while.

Or, if you do, go with an explicit list and bring enough cash for just that list. Even better, a list you made after matching coupons to sales on a site like www.livingrichwithcoupons.com or www.couponmom.com. Once you get in the habit of paying $0-$1 for toothpaste, etc, Target retail prices will seem crazy.

A bit related to the above, I've been slowly putting together a list of the cheapest prices on certain items. Parmesan cheese is less expensive at a store than is more expensive for most things. The latino market is cheaper for many items that are more expensive at Trader Joe's (TJ). TJ is so much cheaper for many of the items we buy. Crazy cheaper.

I would never grocery shop at Target. The selection is tiny, and the prices are not good.

Since so many of you speak of Costco, I might look into it at some point. It's a haul in terms of driving--and we dislike crowds--but maybe we could do one shop a month to minimize the driving part.

I'm going to look into making my own laundry detergent. Cool!

StarryC

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 283
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #21 on: July 19, 2013, 11:45:50 AM »
  So I throw the sponge/scrubby in the top of the diswasher every time, and it comes out clean. 

I go through a nylon scrubbies, sponges, and brushes too fast too, Maybe 1 nylon scrubby a month, a sponge a week, a brush 4 times a year.  But I don't have a dishwasher, so I can't clean them with the dishwasher and I use them to do all the cleaning of the dishes.  Any suggestions for that problem?

Rebecca Stapler

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 907
    • Stapler Confessions
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #22 on: July 19, 2013, 11:49:34 AM »
  So I throw the sponge/scrubby in the top of the diswasher every time, and it comes out clean. 

I go through a nylon scrubbies, sponges, and brushes too fast too, Maybe 1 nylon scrubby a month, a sponge a week, a brush 4 times a year.  But I don't have a dishwasher, so I can't clean them with the dishwasher and I use them to do all the cleaning of the dishes.  Any suggestions for that problem?

If you don't already, rinse out the sponge when you're done and set it aside somewhere that it will dry out (or at least not sit in water). At the first sign of stink, zap it in the microwave and see if that rescues it.

You could also buy dishtowels that are made for washing dishes. After each wash, rinse it, hang it on the faucet or over the laundry bin or somewhere to allow it to dry out, and then toss it in the laundry. We use rags and dishtowels for a lot of things in our kitchen, instead of paper towels, and have a small laundry basket in the kitchen so we can cycle through them without them getting nasty. I just wash them every week with the bath towels. I do use extra water in the wash though, to prevent them from staying stinky.

starbuck

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 360
  • Age: 34
  • Location: Small Town Connecticut
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #23 on: July 19, 2013, 11:54:05 AM »
I go through a nylon scrubbies, sponges, and brushes too fast too, Maybe 1 nylon scrubby a month, a sponge a week, a brush 4 times a year.  But I don't have a dishwasher, so I can't clean them with the dishwasher and I use them to do all the cleaning of the dishes.  Any suggestions for that problem?

For years now we've used the microfiber cloths from Trader Joe's. They sell them in two packs for $5-8 or so, and called 'super amazing cloths' or something like that. Can't remember, it's been so long! They're on the large side, so I cut each towel in half, and they're great for all sorts of cleaning, including dishes. I just toss them in with the towels when needed. I swear, they are indesctructible. Highly recommended.

TrulyStashin

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1030
  • Location: Mid-Sized Southern City
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #24 on: July 19, 2013, 12:14:44 PM »
I'm amazed I haven't seen it mentioned yet but.......

BIG LOTS is absolutely amazing for all household needs and even groceries. 

GoStumpy

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 243
    • YNAB = The ultimate budgeting software
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #25 on: July 19, 2013, 12:34:18 PM »
Quote
Topic: How to stop shopping at Target?

Don't go in the store.

/thread

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3125
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #26 on: July 19, 2013, 12:40:14 PM »
  So I throw the sponge/scrubby in the top of the diswasher every time, and it comes out clean. 

I go through a nylon scrubbies, sponges, and brushes too fast too, Maybe 1 nylon scrubby a month, a sponge a week, a brush 4 times a year.  But I don't have a dishwasher, so I can't clean them with the dishwasher and I use them to do all the cleaning of the dishes.  Any suggestions for that problem?

A sponge a week. That is a lot. Pour some bleach on the sponge or use washable dish cloths and avoid sponges.

MountainFlower

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 276
  • Location: Colorado Mountains
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #27 on: July 19, 2013, 03:23:54 PM »
I go through a nylon scrubbies, sponges, and brushes too fast too, Maybe 1 nylon scrubby a month, a sponge a week, a brush 4 times a year.  But I don't have a dishwasher, so I can't clean them with the dishwasher and I use them to do all the cleaning of the dishes.  Any suggestions for that problem?

For years now we've used the microfiber cloths from Trader Joe's. They sell them in two packs for $5-8 or so, and called 'super amazing cloths' or something like that. Can't remember, it's been so long! They're on the large side, so I cut each towel in half, and they're great for all sorts of cleaning, including dishes. I just toss them in with the towels when needed. I swear, they are indesctructible. Highly recommended.

YES YES YES to Microfiber cloths.  Buy them in a 36 pack at Costco and you'll have them for years.  They are in the automotive section.  If you don't do costco, get them at Walmart, also in the automotive section.  They are also high quality.  Cheap microfiber clothes suck.  We use them for our dishes and have a separate set for mopping the floor.  It's so incredibly easy to wet down a microfiber cloth and mop until it's dirty, then grab another.  They all go into the washing machine for the next time.   I use a dutch rubber broom to actually push the cloth around.

I highly recommend the book Organic Housekeeping.  I go to it regularly to get recipes for furniture polish, sink cleaners, etc.  I got the dutch rubber broom idea from that book.  I LOVE the system.  Super fast and easy.

Also, yes to the foaming soap dispensers.  I bought some made by Dial at the grocery store for about $2.50 each.  They came with super perfumed anti-bacterial soap that I wanted to throw out, but we used it until it was gone.  Now  I just put a little soap in it and fill with water.  Any soap will work.  Walmart sells big soap refills for about $3.50 that would probably last you a year...or more if you don't have kids who think they need to wash Barbie's hair with half a bottle of soap once a week!  LOL!

Crash87

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 165
  • Age: 32
  • Location: St. Louis
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #28 on: July 19, 2013, 04:59:59 PM »
As a single 20-something year old man I find a monthly household goods budget of $5 is about right :)

NumberJohnny5

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 626
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #29 on: July 19, 2013, 05:54:27 PM »
Make a budget, and stick to it. Most of our household goods are bought under the grocery budget (things like vinegar, toilet paper, sometimes shampoo, food containers, etc.). $80/wk. Once it's spent, that's it. Well, my wife doesn't mind a -$5 balance showing, but it freaks me out a bit. Anyways...either you'll stop buying so much stuff you don't need, or will find a cheaper way to buy all that stuff (probably a mix of both). If you want to keep going to Target multiple times a week, that's fine; as long as you're within budget.

EMP

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 344
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #30 on: July 19, 2013, 11:50:08 PM »
I'll second not looking at the flyer. Once I stopped that there were all kinds of things I could do without.

I also made myself stop going shopping after holidays. I don't need five pounds of half priced Peeps and a bunch of St Patty's Day decorations. As an added bonus, it has saved me from my post Easter chocolate migraine two years in a row.

naners

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 172
  • Age: 38
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #31 on: July 20, 2013, 06:35:20 AM »
Re: scrubbies

Ditch the scrubbies altogether and switch to a dish brush. They don't get gross and a good one will last a looong time. I use a sponge for teflon pans and a scrubbie for the occasional cooked-on gunk, but that's a couple times a week at most.

The bristles on cheap dish brushes will wear out very quickly, so don't bother with the ones from the store. I bought this one about two years ago and aside from a few flattened bristles it's still going strong:
http://www.amazon.com/OXO-Good-Grips-Dish-Brush/dp/B00004OCIZ/ref=sr_1_3?s=home-garden&ie=UTF8&qid=1374323470&sr=1-3&keywords=oxo+dish+brush

Paul der Krake

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4548
  • Age: 11
  • Location: USA
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #32 on: July 20, 2013, 07:02:37 AM »
Laundry detergent: I run every single load on cold/delicates and use about half of the liquid the manufacturer would like me to use. Clothes look impecable, never shrink, never transfer colors. 50% savings right there and less chemicals going down the drain.

DocCyane

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 390
  • Location: USA
  • Keep going. You're doing just fine.
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #33 on: July 20, 2013, 07:09:08 AM »
I've trained myself to have a negative reaction to the consumer frenzy I sense in most large retail places and therefore act like a hunter rather than a gatherer.

I have my list. I've usually checked Amazon and U-Line and a few other online prices before venturing into Target. I buy what's on the list. Look at massive sales or clearance. And then I'm gone. Whoosh. Like a whisper.

Don't forget U-Line. I happen to work on the same street as the one in Los Angeles so I can do pick-ups. Don't know how much their shipping is.

I enjoy the thrill of the deal more than random consumerism. It's like runner's high but without the short-shorts.

SunshineGirl

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 740
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #34 on: July 20, 2013, 08:56:39 AM »
I, too, seldom get out of Target for less than $100, so I try not to go very often.

Why don't you start posting items from your receipts here and let us nitpick? Since it's right around the corner and you don't have a car, it makes sense that you'll continue shopping there, or online, so it's a matter of figuring out how to spend as little as possible to get what you need. It doesn't sound like you're being frivolous, from what I can tell, and you didn't say how large your family is, either, which surely influences what you spend.

A couple of ideas:
1. Try to stock up on major things in six-month cycles. Have a list of everything you might conceivably need for your household, and buy a six-month quantity at once. Amazon subscribe & save is a good place to comparison shop. 
2. Confine yourself to ONLY the household goods section at Target. Just tell yourself the rest of the store doesn't even exist. That tends to be where the trouble starts.
3. Use cash. If you go twice a month and take $50 cash each time, you won't spend more. (this goes against my other advice, but I'm just giving you options here!)

Good luck!

FrugalZony

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1430
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #35 on: July 20, 2013, 11:26:16 AM »
Avoid going to Target unless you absolutely have to!
I agree if that is the convenient store and you have to drive other wise, by all
means get your stuff at Target, but make sure you use coupons.
You can stack a Target coupon (found on target.com) with a manufacturer coupons
for bleach and laundry detergent etc.
I recommend reading totallytarget.com for matchups on which deals to stock up on

As someone mentioned you can get a lot of those things for very cheap or free at CVS if
you are willing to put in the time and play the game for a while.
I did a few months of CVS shopping since the beginning of the year and we are
set on cleaining supplies, paper towels and toilet paper, plus razors, soap, deodorant, shampoo,
tooth brushes, toothpaste etc...for the rest of the year. I don't need any more of that stuff, so
I am taking a break until we are so low that I have to get back into the game.
It's not hard to do (a bit harder to get stuff for free at Target compared to CVS)

Good luck!

Rebecca Stapler

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 907
    • Stapler Confessions
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #36 on: July 20, 2013, 07:50:55 PM »

Also, yes to the foaming soap dispensers.  I bought some made by Dial at the grocery store for about $2.50 each.  They came with super perfumed anti-bacterial soap that I wanted to throw out, but we used it until it was gone.  Now  I just put a little soap in it and fill with water.  Any soap will work.  Walmart sells big soap refills for about $3.50 that would probably last you a year...or more if you don't have kids who think they need to wash Barbie's hair with half a bottle of soap once a week!  LOL!

Ditto. The ratio for DIY foaming soap: 20% soap, 20% air, 60% water

I also made myself stop going shopping after holidays. I don't need five pounds of half priced Peeps and a bunch of St Patty's Day decorations. As an added bonus, it has saved me from my post Easter chocolate migraine two years in a row.

Thank you for the laugh! (I need to follow this advice myself)

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3125
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #37 on: July 20, 2013, 10:14:50 PM »
Stan--Since you coupon, I thought you might be able to answer this question. I was at Target today to get Brita refills, and they were on sale. I had bought the cheaper Target brand for Brita, but they do not actually fit my pitcher.

I was wondering if, in your experience, you have found sales like that take place on a regular cycle. Is there a way I could know that a certain item would go on sale at a certain time. Brita filters are not seasonal, so that is why I am wondering. We know beach towels are on sale in late summer and so on, but what about the less seasonal items?

Or, is the smart thing to write down the lowest price I paid and then keep track and try to find the closest price to my lowest-ever price?

Any thoughts?

FrugalZony

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1430
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #38 on: July 20, 2013, 10:25:53 PM »
I'm not Stan ;) but I'll chime in anyways.

The best way is to follow the various matchups, but you could wait for quite a while until a deal pops
up on a particular item you want. Right now there's several coupons out for Brita.
I just bought a brita water bottle with a filter in it as a gift for someone.

Another, more targeted way would be to sign up on one of the typical deal sites (slickdeal, fatwallett etc.) and
set up an alert for the item you need. So you would get a notification each time someone posts a deal with that item. You then choose if the deal is good enough for you to either act on it or wait.
It also helps to watch prices fluctuate over time. 5 packs seem to go for 20 ish $, and 3 packs for 10-12 online
But I often see lower deals on markdown



Stan--Since you coupon, I thought you might be able to answer this question. I was at Target today to get Brita refills, and they were on sale. I had bought the cheaper Target brand for Brita, but they do not actually fit my pitcher.

I was wondering if, in your experience, you have found sales like that take place on a regular cycle. Is there a way I could know that a certain item would go on sale at a certain time. Brita filters are not seasonal, so that is why I am wondering. We know beach towels are on sale in late summer and so on, but what about the less seasonal items?

Or, is the smart thing to write down the lowest price I paid and then keep track and try to find the closest price to my lowest-ever price?

Any thoughts?

MrsPete

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3519
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #39 on: July 21, 2013, 06:55:12 PM »
1.  I have a friend who refers to Target as the $100 Store.  She says she can go in with the intention of picking up a prescription and buying toothpaste, and she'll come out with an extra bag of groceries, a new shirt and -- as others have said -- unnecessary household crap.  It always costs her $100 to go into the store.  Why?  Because they are masters of marketing and staging.  Their decorations, their sales, the location of things, their music, their clean and wide aisles are all laid out to make you buy. 

2.  The Catholic Church has a concept -- not being Catholic, I don't know the name of it, but a friend told me about it, and it makes perfect sense:  basically, you should avoid places that cause you to sin.  So if you're an alcoholic, you should not frequent bars.  If you have a problem with pornography, you should not have a computer in a private place.  And -- more to the point -- if you overspend in Target, you should stay out of Target.  If you know you're going to give in to temptation, just avoid the pace. 

3.  Has any one read The Tightwad Gazette?  It's a bit dated, but it's full of excellent strategies for frugal life.  One of the best is the concept of keeping a price book, and it's particularly good at keeping me from spending at the wrong stores  The author suggests putting together a loose-leaf notebook listing the prices of all the consumer goods you buy on a regular basis AND their prices at the store near you.  It'll take you a good year to complete such book, but here's what kind of information I have discovered:

Food Lion has the best prices overall.  They have the best price on frozen chicken / goes on sale OBGOF every six weeks.
Target has the best prices on paper products, especially store brand toilet paper.
Walmart beats them all for canned goods, dried beans, peanut butter, and baking items.
Harris Teeter has excellent sales but awful everyday prices. 
I also have entries for the Asian grocery store, a health food store, Aldi's, and a food salvage store. 

By having this information recorded -- all specific to my area -- when I go to Target, I know whether an item is a good price or not.  Everything that's labeled "on sale" isn't really on sale.  When you KNOW that a product is cheaper elsewhere, it's easy to leave it on the shelf.


thepokercab

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 486
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #40 on: July 21, 2013, 09:37:36 PM »
Thanks everyone for all the replies and suggestions! You all have given me the face punch i needed, along with some other good alternatives.   For starters, i'm going to stop shopping at Target :)

oldtoyota

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3125
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #41 on: July 22, 2013, 09:10:25 AM »
Sounds like a price book is, indeed, the way to go. Thanks!

Rebecca Stapler

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 907
    • Stapler Confessions
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #42 on: July 22, 2013, 09:59:58 AM »
Stan--Since you coupon, I thought you might be able to answer this question. I was at Target today to get Brita refills, and they were on sale. I had bought the cheaper Target brand for Brita, but they do not actually fit my pitcher.

I was wondering if, in your experience, you have found sales like that take place on a regular cycle. Is there a way I could know that a certain item would go on sale at a certain time. Brita filters are not seasonal, so that is why I am wondering. We know beach towels are on sale in late summer and so on, but what about the less seasonal items?

Or, is the smart thing to write down the lowest price I paid and then keep track and try to find the closest price to my lowest-ever price?

Any thoughts?

Oh man, Brita filters are my white whale! I just cannot get a good deal on those things! I hang my head in shame every time I think about the amount of $$ I paid for those things last time. I did use coupons, but I don't find coupons for more than $2 for filters, and they're always at least $3.50 each -- unless I can find a good one-off sale (2 years ago, I bought my pitcher at CVS for free after rebate, but since then, haven't found any free filters). For Brita, just keep your price point in mind and if you see something better, snap it up. You could also register at couponmom.com and use their price matching guide when you need to buy one. Compare the lowest sale price to your best price and go from there.

For most other items, there is a sales cycle. For foods, it can be a 3-5 week cycle and/or a seasonal cycle. Ex: cleaning supplies in the spring, condiments in early summer, school/office supplies in late summer, baking supplies in late fall. Does this PDF help? http://cdn.livingrichwithcoupons.com/wp-content/uploads/pdfs/grocery-sales-cycles.pdf I know I've seen a simple list over on www.hotcouponworld.com, probably in the "Couponing 101" section.

Rebecca Stapler

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 907
    • Stapler Confessions
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #43 on: July 22, 2013, 12:13:26 PM »

As I've mentioned before, I've used coupons and price matching at Walmart and other stores to walk out with a negative grocery bill - I've been handed back cash when shopping. You can't do that at Costco. You might be able to do that with Target.

You can't walk away with cash at Target. Their coupon policy is to discount the coupon to the price of the item. This regularly shows up with the floss that's on sale for $0.99 and you have a $1 coupon. The register will ding, you suggest they mark the coupon to $0.99, they give you a side-eye, maybe call a manager, and eventually you get the item for free. The only way to walk away effectively paying less is to buy items that offer a Target gift card for buying a certain # of items -- they will give you the $5 GC even if you paid $3 total.

At a store like Walgreens, you can have the item ring up at a negative amount after coupons, but they won't hand you cash. You have to spend the balance of the negative by putting more items in your order. That said, you might get register rewards with your purchase -- in which case, you are walking away with effectively paying less (as long as you spend the RRs before they expire).

Taryl

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: How to stop shopping at Target?
« Reply #44 on: July 22, 2013, 07:46:14 PM »
I use amazon prime too.  Prices are great and it keeps me out of the stores. Of course it's just as easy to browse amazon so log on and off as quickly as possible.