so i’m considering coupon fraud…

28 03 2011

and  i KNOW that its wrong, but the deal is really good, and i’m feeling the strong pull of temptation.

you need to talk me out of it.

or possibly talk me into it.

so, this week the $7 extrabucks on physician’s formula (are they going out of business or something?) deal is back at CVS, and better than ever. you do only get one per household, but if you borrow your boyfriend’s CVS card, you could probably grab 2 without suspicious (not that i know anyone who does that ever).

but that’s not where the real bad feelings settle in.

last week, physician’s formula was on sale for 40% off at CVS (seriously, something is going on with them) and my friend forwarded me this link to a $5.00 coupon! now, this would have been awesome if the coupon wasn’t already out of prints. but then i clicked on the image of the coupon in the post… and there it was- completely clar and printable, just BEGGING me to print 5. so i did.

i haven’t actually used any of them yet (i managed resist the 40% off temptations last week), but the $7 extrabuck deal might be too much to resist.

when there were still prints left on the website, it did pop out in PDF format- just begging to be printed out multiple times. theoretically, i could have printed a whole bunch and just been hoarding them this whole time, right?

i still have several days to decide what to do, but i’m finding myself very torn. are fraudulent coupon assholes like me the reason that physician’s formula appears to be struggling?  is it worth a little minor  infraction for the sake of the makeup project (my freebie cosmetics hoard has become a complete OBSESSION)?





i try it- coupon buying adventure!

25 01 2011

so last week when i was writing about coupon contingency plans when you miss a newspaper, i mentioned the possibility of buying coupons from an online clipping service. i’d considered it before, but always got big case of the lazy (with a side of cheap), and decided that it wasn’t worth the risk of buying a bunch of coupons that i might not ever have the occasion to use. but recently, the coupon stars have aligned in such a way that it finally seemed worth the minimal effort to take the risk (and by risk, i mean approximately $6 and a week worth of waiting).

there is a deal at CVS that has been quietly bubbling away over the last few weeks- seemingly unnoticed or unnoted by the usual local coupon clipping suspects (although, maine  just doesn’t have the shelf cleaner problem that’s rampant in other states). apparently, every year in january, they clearance down all of their cosmetics that are being discontinued. well the time has come, and there are tons and tons of little orange (75% off) and yellow (50% off) stickers (it’s breathtaking really) littering the beauty aisles. in general, i’m not really a makeup person, and i am FIERCELY LOYAL to the things that i do wear. for example, i presently have a fridge full of discontinued max factor foundation (11 tubes purchased on ebay) that i’ve been wearing since the late 90s. but since i started the makeup project and also began my burlesque career, i’ve found a greater need for such products in my life (i finally figured out how to apply false eyelashes!). biggest issue- COSMETICS ARE FUCKING EXPENSIVE! on the final day of the makeup project when i was trying to fill in the last few holes, the cheapest blush i could find was $4.99! so this year, i’m stocking up my burlesque sparkle stash and beginning the makeup project good and early (2011 will be bigger and better than ever!), so i never have to be saddled with the tragedy and shame of paying for full price blush ever again.

this is where the clipping service comes in. Read the rest of this entry »





worth the trip- full cosmetic takedown.

5 10 2010

so i’d never even heard of ulta before i drove by the mall a few days ago and saw that one had sprung up in the gaping void left by vinny ts (ok, maybe gaping void is a little dramatic- did ANYBODY go to that restaurant?). now generally, i would not entirely give a shit about a giant box store peddling makeup (sorry sephora, i’m just a low maintenance kind of girl), but they seduced me in with a $5 off $10 coupon in my sunday paper. i also did a little research and found out that in addition to their own lines and the high end lines they carry, they also carry all the drugstore brands, AND they take manufacturers coupons. SCORE! their flier showed a host of buy one get one 50% off deals on the drugstore brands, and i rounded up my very best coupons and headed over to see what i could do:

2 neutrogena blushes at $5.99 each with the BOGO50% sale, a $3/1 coupon (from all you) and a $2/1 coupon from this weekend’s paper= $3.99

2 NYC color nail polishes for $1.99 each with BOGO50% sale and a BOGO coupon from all you (seriously, if you don’t get all you, you’re doing yourself a profound coupon disservice)= $.99

2 cover girl eye shadows at $3.29 each with the BOGO50% sale, and 2 $1/1 coupons from the P&G brandsaver= $2.94

total= $7.92 minus the $5/$10 coupon from the paper= $2.92! i got all of the above makeup for less than $3! AND for joining their rewards club (totally free and painless to join), they gave me a sack of free goodies including a full size nail polish and eye shadow, scented body cream, and some fancy hair serum.  oh, and a 20% off coupon for next time. SUPER SCORE. also, the staff was super friendly and extremely patient with my crazy coupon ladyness. i’m hoarding this makeup for a secret project (details soon), so especially if they keep the coupon love flowing, i will definitely be going back again.

shaw’s- ok, i have never been a big fan of the “can-tastic savings” event, and this week was not particularly different. the only thing i deemed worth grabbing was the $.88 progresso soup. i had a $.50/2 coupon (doubled of course) from a coupon book i got in the mail, and considering they’re usually around $2 a piece, i thought that $.38 each was a good deal.

target sadly, all the clearanced all natural fruit roll ups & herbal essences 2 packs were already gone (who are you target shelf cleaner? reveal yourself!), but they did have a good deal on hunts diced tomatoes at $.82 a can (screw you can-tastic savings) and i had a $1/3 coupon. $.48 a can seems pretty good, especially because chili season is upon us. they also had the deluxe velveeta mac & cheese (i’m obsessed with mexi-mac) for $1.52, which is pretty much as low as i’ve seen it anywhere (including walmart). there was a good $1/2 coupon in the paper last week (i think!), so $1 a box for me at least, seemed like a score. although again, nothing amazing.

rite aid- the free crest toothpaste and nivea lip care are definitely on the top of my list, but that schick coupon they’re all talking about on the deal websites doesn’t exist up here (kind of like the revlon coupons that never show up in the maine papers). also, i’m gonna pass on the incontinence pads. otherwise, meh. decent deal on frosted flakes ($1.60 per box when you buy 5), and cottonelle 12 packs are only $3.99 after +UP (the only coupons i could find were $.50/2), which is a pretty good price for toilet paper (especially if you’ve ever paid $1 or more for a “desperation roll” at a gas station).

cvs- roughly as much excitement going on at the cvs, but there is a good $.99 revlon nailpolish deal (after ECBs- limit 6!), which would be free if you had any revlon coupons floating around. i didn’t, but i got it anyway because i didn’t want to waste the $4/$20 that the emailed me this weekend. however, the big deal to look out for is lurking in the magic coupon machine. $5 off all halloween decorations and costumes with NO MINIMUM PURCHASE! i bought a pair of striped tights and some purple hairspray for  $.99.  the big bummer was really getting the coupon (it’s a “one day only”) in a store that had kind of a minimal halloween section.

big lots- there is a 4/$10 movie deal goin on at the big lots right now on all regularly $3 movies. i couldn’t find 4 that i liked (my local store didn’t have deep blue sea as advertised- FAIL!), but i did find a copy of rocket science, which is a great movie starring portland’s very own oscar nominee, anna kendrick.  anyway, even though i didn’t buy 4 movies, it still came up as $2.50. they’ve got some decent horror, and the usual sub “straight to DVD” quality (heartbeeps anyone?), but if you like to dig through big bins of crap- there are occasionally some gems in there.





spending too little on too much.

14 06 2010

it was a spendy-ass sunday. took a little jaunt back to my hometown of augusta for brunch at the senator inn (a childhood fav that still holds up!), and a little light antiquing that turned into an entire day of shopping the town inside out. i got some pretty good deals that seemed necessary at the time… but seeing it all lined up at the end of the day (and added up), i start to wonder how much of my bargain shopping is really a bargain. i’m paying less for everything, but i’m buying more than ever.

shaw’s: 4 big G cereals @ $12.86 with $6 off when you buy 4 plus $4.40 worth of coupons ($.55/1 doubled from coupons.com) final cost= $2.46 for 4 boxes.

target: the liberty of london collection is on super sale at the augusta target and i snagged an adorable nightie for $8.98. there’s also a ton of zac posen stuff, but it’s not marked down enough for me to bother. give it another few weeks… i might have to go back to augusta and snag me a cocktail dress. i also found a mysteriously unblemished pair of striped espadrilles for $4.26 marked “AS IS”. their identical counterparts were just feet away in the full retail section for $16.99… maybe they’re going to explode in low speed collisions? i’ll keep you apprised if any defects should arise. lastly, i found a few boxes of puffs tissues with vicks vapo-rub in them (which i love but haven’t been able to find ANYWHERE- discontinued?) for $1.38 a box, and sacrificed 2 of my $.50/1 vocalpoint coupons. target total= an eerie $15.00 even.

big lots: to my credit, i did put back one movie and a $6 box of diet granola bars. but a $3 copy of funny face?! i have a list of movies on my iphone that i’m looking to buy. the problem being, that my price point for DVD buying is $5 of less, usually less. today i encountered 3 of those titles in the $3 bin. is there really anything else at big lots that’s even worth looking at? funny face, art school confidential, & confetti= $9.00.

goodwill: i used to own and love this jacket in another size that i am not officially too fat to wear. lo and behold, here it is at goodwill in brunswick for $4.99! oh wait, is that a yellow barb? make that $2.49!

cvs: i had $14 worth of extrabucks expiring tomorrow, and this evening was my only chance to cash in.  with the gillette proglide razors already sold out, i had to improvise a bit and use a few more extrabucks than i otherwise would have preferred. i ended up with a bunch or random crap (most of which will get donated), but it felt like a good haul considering the circumstances:

2 john frieda root awakening shampoos @$5 each with $3 ECB back when you buy $10 + $5/2 coupon= $2
2 right guard total defense deodorants $4.49/ea. on BOGO + $3/2 coupon from coupons.com= $1.50
1 covergirl wetslicks amaze-mint @ $4.99 with $3 ECB back, and $1/1 coupon= $.99
1 colgate proclinical toothpaste @ $3.99 with $2 back in ECB, and a $1/1 coupon= $.99
2 gillette bodywash @ $8 with $8 back in ECB and a $4/2 coupon= +$4 ECBs (the flier said limit 1, but it turned out to be limit 2!)
total OOP= $17.47 (paid $17 in ECBs + .$.47 in cash plus tax), received $16 ECBs

total spent this weekend (for all above pictured goods, not actually counting meals, groceries for the week, and a ridiculous failed dinner party that will never speak of again)= $29.42 of stuff that i didn’t actually need. on one hand, i could have spent a whole lot more on a multi-store shopping binge, and gotten a whole lot less. on the other hand, is spending $30 on anything that i don’t need really a bargain? it might be time to put the debit card away for a while and think about what i’ve done.





weekend drugstore dash.

15 05 2010

i’m a chronic overscheduler. between the job and the blog and friends and other related and non-related nonsense, i don’t have a ton of free time for things like couponing. which is kind of ridiculous and stupid, because i write a blog about couponing, which probably means i’m not doing a very good job. but anyway, i finally managed to steal a pocket of time this week to filter the expired crap out of my coupon folder and see what i had going on that i might not want to waste (like i usually do- see copious incidences of me being a coupon asshole below). shit, is my rite aid allergy rewards check already expiring on the 15th? i feel like the last one they sent me stayed fresh for way longer. too bad there’s not really anything amazing worth blowing $20 on this week at rite aid, and of course i’m hitting the stores on SATURDAY after everything good has probably already been cleaned off the shelves… but i didn’t buy $75 worth of allergy medication just to throw my rebate away. and well, a girl has to make do:

28 count prilosec that i require for life (and also because i’m an asshole who missed the 42 count sale last week), $18.99 with $3/1 coupon from the most recent P&G insert, and $4 SCR= $11.99.

2 boxes of kotex U tampons (you know, the hipster tampons with the crazy colors and wacky commercials) for $7/2 with 2 $1/1 coupons (they’re everywhere these days, especially if you got any of the rampant free samples), and $3/SCR= $1 each. according to the lady behind the counter, stacking is no longer an option at rite aid. you get as many coupons as you have items. to prove said theory- 3rd rite aid video values coupon was rejected. boo-urns 😦

speaking of video values, i rarely actually pay attention to the commercials you have to watch, but was totally intrigued by the tresemme dry shampoo. as a girl who often oversleeps on work days and ends up poorly camouflaging her dirty hair in pony tails, this seems like a pretty interesting option. even if it can just take the edge off the dirt, it will still be an improvement. review forthcoming. tresemme products on sale for $3.29/1, and i used my $2/1 rite aid video values coupon= $1.29.

i needed a few more filler items to make sure i got my $20 worth, so i grabbed a nivea bodywash for $5.39 (again, i missed it when it was free last week- fuck me), and used that $4/1 coupon that everyone was so excited about= $1.39. i also grabbed a box of puffs plus for $.99, and used a $1/1 coupon that i got from vocalpoint (i also have 3 $.50/1 coupons i’m hoarding until they got on sale at shaw’s and i can get more freebies).

i’m too tired/lazy to do the math, but somehow i got $.80 back in change after the $20 gift certificate, and $5/$25 that i got for activating my wellness card. btw, you should totally get one of those. and don’t forget, i’ll also be getting $7 back in single check rebates. AND there was a sweet $1/1 NYC cosmetics tearpad that i pillaged. i did leave a few behind though, so if you’re in the sketchy east end rite aid area (follow the trail of empty high gravity beer cans), go and grab them!

as it turned out, cvs was having some incredible deals this week, and since i never go there anymore, they’re presently trying to win me back with $/$$ coupons. this week i got $3/$15, which is good- because it’s a no pressure kind of amount.

crest pro-health toothpaste for $3.50 with $3.50 back in extrabucks! i had one coupon for $1/1, but the limit was 2, so i went for it anyway= $1 moneymaker.

again with the hipster feminine hygiene! this time $4.99 for a box of neon pantiliners- with $4.99 back in extrabucks and a $1/1 coupon= $1 moneymaker.

right guard something or other with the number 5 on it was on sale for $2.69 each with $2 in extrabucks. the limit was 2, and i also had a $3/2 coupon from coupons.com, and ended up yet another $1.62 richer.

probably my most impressive find (since is wasn’t mentioned on the majority of the coupon blogs) was a use for my stash of $2/1 pantene coupons from vocalpoint. on sale for $6.97/2 (random!) with $3 back in extrabucks, i again made $.03 on the deal.

with the $3/$15 and $9.50 in extrabucks, i paid $5.75 oop, and got a whopping $19 back in ecbs, hot damn!

with the exception of 15 very unfortunate minutes spent dressing room wrestling with a cheap lauren conrad for kohls zipper that made me bleed in not one but 2 places (and almost required that i call for help to get me free from its clutches), these are the kind of days that help me remember why i started this crazy blog in the first place. paying retail (or paying at all) is for suckers. i made money buying things today and there isn’t a side eye in the world that could make me stop.





spraying the crave away.

20 01 2010

i would like to confirm that as of yesterday, the cvs crave-nx ECB deal at cvs was still working. there were no shelf tags to confirm, but it is likely that iheartcvs was correct in reporting that it is a monthly deal. i was able to roll$8 of my $1o expiring extrabucks (i could do worse!), and get a chance to try something new and exciting. on the downside, it tastes like citrus scented air fresheners and baby aspirin had a baby.  yucky.  no thank you, i will not be “aiming for the cheeks”.  actually, i will more than likely be aiming for the trash instead. to its credit, it made me a little nauseous, which in turn made me not want to eat anything.  that is of course until i rinsed out my mouth, and now i’m mowing down a family size bag of smartfood popcorn. oops. not to mention the fact that it’s only a week’s supply! unless they’re planning on giving them away forever, i am not at all interested in adding $8 a week to my bottom line- especially for something that tastes like complete ass.





emergencia!

18 01 2010

cvs has sucked out loud so much the last few weeks, all those extrabucks i worked so hard to earn (after i lost the $14 during the burlesque) are now already about to expire. and of course, this is the worst cvs week ever. crap!! i’ve got $10 ECBs to unload, and literally nothing to buy! i think that the crave-nx deal is over too. (anybody know if it runs all month?!).

here’s my master plot:

crest & oral b multi-packs starting @ $4.99 with 3 extrabucks back… i have a couple of crest and oral b $1/1 coupons- but will they work for multi-packs?

blistex DCT has a $.50 clipfree coupon, and i have a $1/2 coupon… not sure how much that will cost- but i like lip stuff…

kotex pads & liners also have a $1/1 clipfree coupon this week, and i have a $1.50/2 coupon that could work. i think the liners are $3.49, so i could get 2 boxes for $1.25 each. meh!

dawn dish detergent @ $.96 each. i have a couple of coupons from $.20/1 to $1/1 depending on the varieties available. could be good?

wow. that’s really not very much, and there is a great deal of uncertainty. maybe i’ll just fuck it and blow it all on snack cakes and trashy magazines. this is garbage cvs! garbage!