Frugal chill-outs: Ten ways to pamper yourself in the credit crunch

Thanks for your suggestions this week for frugal luxuries. They demonstrate that credit crunch or no credit crunch, you don’t have to spend a fortune to pamper yourself now and then! Here are some great ones to try out over the weekend:

  1. 1.  Give yourself a home beauty treatment. Fill up the bath with cheap bath salts or make your own using Epsom salts or sea salt – here’s a great recipe. Put some music on, light some candles and relax. Why not take a book into the bath with you, as long as you don’t mind getting the pages soggy?! Then afterwards spend some time moisturising or painting your nails (guys –Brad Pitt moisturises so you’re in good company – nails are optional!). Make yourself a face mask too. Isla Marie likes to mix some aloe vera with a cheap moisturiser, rub it in and then relax in front of a borrowed DVD.
  1. Borrow a good DVD from a friend or if you have a VHS player pick up a cheap old movie from a charity shop (our one sells them for 25p). Curl up on the sofa with a cup of tea and enjoy.
  1. Get nostalgic. Spend a few hours going through old family photos or make up a scrap or photo album. Isla Marie loves to do this with her fiancé. A photo album of old pictures makes a great cheap Christmas present for family members.
  1. Linger over a coffee in your shopping centre café with a friend. The staff probably won’t hurry you. Christine says there are so few customers in the credit crunch that the staff don’t mind if you outstay your welcome. They need some punters inside to tempt other customers in.
  1. If you have countryside, the seaside or a nice park nearby enjoy a leisurely stroll there with friends or family. Turn your mobile phone off so nothing can disturb you. It can be chilly now, but if you have a back garden sit out there for an hour and watch the birds. Borrow a library book about meditation. There is nothing more relaxing than quietly meditating in a green space – don’t worry, you don’t have to sit cross legged and hum – no one has to know you’re doing it! But it gets rid of workplace stresses and strains.
  1. LGreaves enjoys watching a roaring fire on a cold night. They’ve had their gas fire removed and replaced with a fire grate bought second hand for a fiver. LGreaves says: “I love looking everywhere for logs and watching them burn. There is nothing nicer than a roaring fire on a cold night. Especially when it is completely free!”
  1. Cook one of your favourite meals for you and your partner or friends at home. Get dressed up as if you were going to a restaurant and make the table look pretty so it feels really special. If you’re feeling decadent then pick a night when everyone is out and cook a special meal for yourself! DJ likes to do this when I’m out.
  1. Go to a busy WHSmith’s – ones by big railway stations are always good – or your library and read the magazines there for free at your leisure. This is one of my luxuries. If you like celebrity gossip, buy – or borrow – the National Enquirer. It’s only 99p and it’s packed with great stories, there’s no boring cosmetics adverts or fashion photos padding it out and there’s always plenty to read about movie stars. Lots of the stories end up in the UK gossip magazines a week later so you’ll be getting them first. It’s trashy but I love it.
  2. Take down that book from the shelf that you’ve been meaning to read and take the time to enjoy it. Few things are as great as a really absorbing book.
  1. Got pets? Spend time enjoying their company and their funny ways. Take your dog for a long walk or give your cat a good grooming session. Pet owners are thought to have lower blood pressure so let Fido help you to chill out! I love sitting in our back garden watching the chickens run about, it always brings a smile to my face.

Have I missed any out any other frugal ways to relax? Leave a comment and let me know.

Have a great weekend, Piper xxx

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5 Responses to Frugal chill-outs: Ten ways to pamper yourself in the credit crunch

  1. Kerri says:

    I\’ve just finished watching an episode of Spenaholics and there was a great tip for entertaining. Invite friends round for an evening and make your own canapes, the ones they showed were baby baked potatoes with sour cream and cavier (ie. baked new potatoes, cooled with sour cream and lump fish cavier), mini fritatas and other easy to make \’posh finger food\’. I\’m sure there are loads of recipies on the internet. Allow approx 10-12 canapes per person for a  3hr drinks party. This worked out at about £3 per head. If you provide the food, as each guest to bring some drink.

  2. Christine says:

    It\’s a lovely time of the year to walk in the local park or where there are trees – a simple pleasure and one that can\’t be bought. Get out your camera and have a session taking pictures of the changing seasons. If you are digital with the camera the pictures can be shared with the family you don\’t see often by way of a photo album such as the Yahoo Flickr one. Improving your photo skills is great fun as there are lots of websites which give good tips and hints. With camera in hand it\’s free too. You can practice just around the outside of the house and then learn to tweak/improve the pictures. It\’s a way to keep the mind active too. And perhaps those pictures could be used for Christmas or birthday cards.

  3. Unknown says:

    Re pampering yourself.  This is not necessarily a "pamper" unless you enjoy it – but in my opinion it is very necessary.
    Exercise.  We must all do it.  I am now 66 and am fitter and slimmer and healthier than I have ever been.  I go to a local keep fit class and also exercise regularly at home.  The benefits are amazing and  are very cost effective:
    You look better
    You feel better
    You have lots more energy
    You are a lot stronger (especially if you buy a pair of 3kg hand weights)
    You don\’t have "bingo wings" anymore or lumps and bumps all over the body.
    I am told I look 55.
    So come on everyone – get up and do it.
    Gill garraghan

  4. Kiki's Girl says:

    Talking of DVD\’s and books, your local library has a weatlh of entertainment, including CD\’s at very reasonable hire prices. I am hooked on audio books (usuall cost around £1.30 to hire unless you are visually impaired in which case they are free)and have an ancient walkman being of the pre-ipod age. Plug a book in, take a walk and just lose yourself – no better pampering I can think of, and it beats taking a walk and talking to yourself 😉

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