Happy belated Thanksgiving to all US-based readers! I hope that everyone had a wonderful time, and for all those who are inspired to do a spot of shopping this time of year, I hope that was productive too.
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I've put in more than my share of Black Friday online sale orders in the past few days, though it remains to be seen how much, if anything, I will keep. There was that J.Crew Stadium-Cloth Cocoon Coat I wrote about, at their fairly dramatic 40% off everything sale price. (The Ellen Tracy Cocoon Coat that was a possible alternative has also dropped down to close to the price I got on last year's version.) I also put in an Uniqlo order that just arrived, mostly for items I normally omit from my monthly budget, underwear (which holds up much better than Calvin Klein or Natori ones I purchased at Nordstrom at significantly higher prices in the last year or two) and Heattech leggings (extra warm or normal) as long underwear. I added some long-sleeve, boat-neck blouses (some rayon, some polyester, the rayon fabric feels nicer) for work, but the designs just didn't work for me, too boxy and sort of cropped. Nordstrom was also offering the black or brown leather Sam Edelman Petty booties at a very good sale price, and I may pick up a second pair identical to my first for when my current pair finally give out (not likely to happen this year or the next, so this may be a silly notion). I won't make final decisions about the on-budget items until later, so they'll appear in next month's shopping post!
At the start of the year, I set a $170/month budget ($2040/year) with the understanding that I didn't necessarily expect to spend it all, and that certain items (the J.Crew Factory Suits I discussed here) would be off-budget. I'm actually doing pretty well, with $715.13 technically remaining for December, though this does not, of course, give me license to use up the entire amount just because it's there! I don't expect to make any really large purchases outside of the J.Crew Coat, if I decide to keep it, so I'm hoping to be well "under budget" for the year in the end. The math is as follows: $2040.00 - ($77.88 + $49.50 + $158.90 + $106.95 + $104.92 + $109.37 + $127.00 + $252.99 + $65.27 + $160.00 + $112.09) = $715.13.
Fashion - (TOTAL: $77.88)
- College Logo Tote Bag (similar L.L. Bean pictured) - $26.54 - I asked someone to pick up a canvas tote bag from my undergraduate alma mater when they were passing through, and they were kind enough to do so. I used to have the exact same tote, but culled it out of my closet as it was looking quite worn and I had other canvas totes at the time. These days, though, I'm a bit nostalgic for my undergraduate school, and I don't currently have another canvas tote for grocery shopping-type outings.
- White and Warren Cashmere Wave Stitch Sweater (now sold out) - $51.34 - I got this during Gilt's extra 40% off Black Friday promotion, the way I did another White and Warren cardigan last year. Size S was sold out again, so I picked up a M, and it's likely that this will be an oversized casual-wear sweater on me. This one is final sale, so while I haven't received it yet, unlike with my other Black Friday purchases, I'm already committed.
Beauty and Skincare - (TOTAL: $ 42.68)
- I made these purchases during the recent Sephora VIB sale. I originally ordered more, including the Maison Martin Margiela REPLICA Discovery Set for Her, as I am a fan of Beach Walk and had some interest in exploring more of their scents. While Lazy Sunday Morning (smells like a very subdued version of Narciso Rodriguez For Her or Sarah Jessica Parker Lovely) and Tea Escape (smells like a matcha latte) are both nice, I rarely wear perfume, so it wouldn't actually have been a good purchase, and I sent it back. I haven't been wearing makeup often either, so I also returned a refill on my NARS tinted moisturizer, as I wouldn't need it for another six months, at the earliest.
- Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Concealer - Refilling something that I use frequently. I find this concealer to be the easiest to blend out of the few that I've tried.
- NARS Pro-Prime Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base - Also a refill for something that I use frequently. I get an allergic reaction to the Urban Decay eyeshadow primer and the Too-Faced Shadow Insurance primer sometimes separates in the tube, so I'm sticking with this one for now.
I'm $180 dollars of spending short of re-attaining Sephora VIB status this year. Because the vast majority of my skincare products are now from other sources (mainly Amazon), I don't expect to get there. I can't exactly describe this as a minimalism or frugality-related achievement of any sort because my beauty and skincare expenditures were already well under control before. Also, I do still accumulate some backlog of skincare products and beauty products, I'm not just buying things only when I need them. This year, I've been tracking my beauty and skincare expenditures quite faithfully in these monthly budget posts, with the exception of the handful of items I bought while traveling in Taiwan in May, so you can see everything I've purchased domestically.
Linking up with Franish and the Budgeting Bloggers this month, as usual! Be sure to check out what everyone else bought this month.