Monday, 1 February 2010

Using up odds and ends in the bathroom cabinet

Partly as an exercise in postponing buying anything, and also in the interests of de-cluttering the bathroom, and the cupboard under the kitchen sink, I am trying to use up all sorts of odds and ends before buying new toiletries or cleaning products.

I keep reading frugal tips suggesting that all you need to clean your house - and possibly yourself?! - is a tub of bicarbonate of soda and some white vinegar, but I haven't reached that stage yet.

I do, though, avoid name-brand house-cleaning products, and buy supermarket own brand instead, often from Lidl, and in as large a pack as possible. I also try to buy a small number of fairly generic products - i.e a cream cleaner, multipurpose cleaner, bleach and glass cleaner, but despite my best efforts the cupboard contains various other odds and ends. My aim is to use, or throw away, all these, and try to replace only those that are really necessary.

On the toiletries and cosmetics front, I tend to buy those things that I think I need, but pick up a lot of freebies on my travels. I often think that I'll use them next time I travel, but of course then I pick up more, so it is time to use up the odds and ends, and make a fresh start. I also sometimes buy extra bottles of shampoo on 'buy one get one free' offers, and it is time to catch up with those, before acquiring any more. I've emptied out the drawer containing these bottles and tubes, and begun to work my way through them, throwing out those that are no good to me.

I don't expect to save very much money doing this, but it is better than nothing, gives a virtuous feeling, and will clear some space.


  1. I grew up in Moscow and soviet union was not the place with a lot of different cleaning products to choose from, so I've learned from my mom and my granny to use ... bicarbonate soda for cleaning!:-)) It does work really well, cleans ceramic sinks and dishes very good, really!

    One reason we used it a lot was that in our summer house we didn't have hot water for a while and the only way to get rid of fat of your plates was to use soda...

    anyway - bicarbonate soda rules!

  2. Thanks very much, Anastasia! In that case I will definitely give the bicarbonate of soda a try. How do you use it? Neat, or diluted in water?