Cheap Tricks and Thrifty Tips

Use talcum powder instead of dry shampoo

I don’t know why I didn’t figure this one out sooner, as dry shampoo is basically just talcum powder. Nik mentioned using cornflour on Twitter a while ago, which got me thinking and inspired me to dig out an old bottle of baby powder, which worked wonders. It put more bounce in my bonce than dry shampoo ever did and a little goes a long way. Plus, a bottle of talcum powder generally costs about a pound and seems to last forever.

Save ribbons and wrapping

I save ribbons and wrapping from absolutely everything. From gifts and parcels, to those wee ribbon loops attached to the sides of clothes (yes, really), I save it all and it comes in handy when wrapping gifts or even making things; for example, if a zip tag (or whatever it’s called) breaks off, I just tie a wee ribbon round it and the same goes for broken necklaces and stationery tidying. Ribbons everywhere.

Stockpile cards and gifts

I confess, I already have about half of my Christmas shopping done and it’s only May. I don’t understand why anyone would wait until December to make a start on it, when shops are busy and pricey and everyone’s skint and stressed. I don’t go out hunting for gifts, but I keep an eye out when shopping and, if I spot something that’s perfect for a particular person, I pick it up and stash it away. I keep a wee note in my diary of what I’ve bought and who it’s for, as it’s easy to lose track and end up buying too much, especially in the frenzy of the festivities. I also pick up cards here and there, usually when they’re on offer, which balances out my lack of organisation and forgetful nature when I realise it’s someone’s birthday TODAY. That also goes for gifts – it’s worth stocking up on a few generic gift sets and bottles of booze, when they’re on offer, so you’re never caught short when it’s gift-giving time.

Make banana ‘ice cream’

Personally, I don’t have a problem eating overripe bananas and I actually quite like them when they’ve gone a bit brown and spotty on the outside. Some people would throw them away when they get to this point and often, uneaten fruit goes to waste and it really is a waste, because you could make ice cream! This is a good tip for vegans, raw food fans, health-lovers and banana fans in general. Simply freeze chunks of banana until you’re ready to use them and then blend them. They turn wonderfully creamy when blended and just like soft-scoop ice cream. It’s cheaper and healthier than ice cream and is a great way to use up a bunch of bananas – even better if you pick up some on the cheap that are past their best. You could get creative and make different flavours with fruit, chocolate, or peanut butter! Mmm, peanut butter, there’s an idea. I’m away to buy some bananas.

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