Minimalism

Starting a low-buy challenge

Small cart on table of woman using laptop. Internet shopping concept

I have been wanting to try a low-buy challenge for a while, but I never fully committed to it. I’ve bought a little more things this past year, mostly in the form of clothes that I bought to replace items I’ve had in my closet for almost 10 years. It’s too easy to fall into a shopping mindset, so I want to put on the brakes for the next few months. Rather than wait until January to start a low-buy year, I’m going to start now, as this can help me avoid the scarcity mindset between now and then that could lead to unnecessary shopping.

Shopping fasts are common in the minimalism communities, so I’ve been exposed to plenty of methods and approaches. From these communities I’ve learned the importance of being accountable, so I will post frequent updates about my low-buy journey to help me cast a critical eye on my behaviour. I also want to make it clear that this is NOT a no-buy challenge; while I admire people like Cait Flanders, who have done this, I’m aiming for a more realistic and practical low-buy approach. This means that my shopping will be restricted to the following areas:

  • Groceries
  • Essential toiletries and cosmetics (no stocking up)
  • Cats: Food, litter, and vet visits
  • Medication and supplements
  • Car rental (every 3-4 months)
  • Hair appointments
  • Weekly visit to my local coffee shop
  • One take-out or eat-in meal at a local restaurant

I won’t need to buy any cleaning or laundry supplies, as I have enough to last me for several months. I plan on travelling to Europe in the summer of 2022, so I won’t count travel expenses in the low-buy, but when I get there, I will buy only essentials (food and transporation). If an emergecy arises, e.g., an essential appliance breaks down (e.g., the fridge), the low buy would not apply, of course.

I will report regularly on my progress. If anyone wants to join me, I would be happy to be your low-buy buddy.

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