Improving purchasing habits – what I learned

With not much else going on at this time, I’m probably not the only person who’s been browsing a lot online. This got me thinking about how my purchasing habits and what I’ve learned about mine.

Analyze your post-purchase regret

Let’s face it. We’ve all bought things we later regretted. It’s easier to just shove the post-purchase regret into the “don’t think about it” box. But if we have to analyze that regret if we want to know our spending habits better and prevent future regret-purchases.


As an example, I’ll analyze a regret purchase of mine- a large colourpop order I got as a birthday present for myself last year.

Why I regretted it:

  • too many items I just ended up barely using
  • some of the things don’t suit my skin tone
  • instead of the colourpop order, I could’ve gotten a high end fragrance I’d probably enjoy more
  • I got three new highlighters, why do I need that many new highlighters??

What I learned:

  • don’t use a sitewide sale as justification for buying more things
  • although “trendy” makeup looks tempting in marketing photos and I love experimenting, I don’t actually use them that often
  • it’s better for me to spend more on one thing I really want than to get a good deal on a bunch of things I only kind of want


No-buy isn’t for everyone

Everybody’s purchasing habits are different. So going cold turkey is not going to be helpful for every single person in every single situation.

I talked about my beauty product no-buy in my stress shopping post. It was helpful for me back then because I needed to use up more of what I already owned. It also helped me face my emotional attachment to beauty products. However, if I forced myself to go on another no-buy now, I’d only make myself miserable and go crazy buying things once it’s over.

A no-buy could be a great way to get some insight on your spending habits. But don’t force yourself to do it or continue doing it if it’s not actually helping. If you’re looking to improve your spending habits, it’s better to test out a variety of methods and see what works for you.




Do you want these things or do you want to shop?

If you’re a stress shopper like me, this is the hardest hitting and most important question. Not everybody has psychological attachments to shopping, but for those who do, it’s important to know ourselves.

I’ve been watching this series called Spendaholics on Youtube. In some ways, it’s so dated and cheesy. But it’s an interesting take on why people shop and when it becomes a problem.

For me, I like shopping for both the things and the happiness boost. Seeing a sale can be dangerous territory for me, but I’ve gotten better at stopping myself from shopping for the sake of shopping.



Sending virtual hugs,

~ Jin

You can also find me on my personal blog

Author: Jin Cao

I am a multi-faceted designer, fashion blogger, makeup enthusiast, lover of cats, and connoisseur of ramen! Writer of Main fashion writer of Find my work at

4 thoughts

  1. Your comment about the “happiness boost”, I can totally relate to. Buying $19.99 tee shirt can lift me out of bad mood is worth every pennies, or loonies:)


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