18 Things We Won’t Buy in 2019

Our goal for 2019 is to be less of a consumer and more of a frugal minimalist. In a world driven by consumerism, we want to contribute less to the ever growing need to not be bored. We want new clothes, new books, new cosmetics, new cars… new anything and everything.

Our quest to be less of a consumer has been motivated by our minimalist journey and our frugal tendencies. D and I have curated a list of things that we no longer wish to purchase or be a part of. And we have good reasons too:

  • They don’t align with what I want to accomplish or hinder my goals.
  • The item takes away from my time that could be better spent doing something productive.
  • They just don’t fit in with our lifestyle.

This is a list that should not be considered the end-all-be-all list that no minimalist should buy. Each person that has embraced minimalism has done so for different reasons. Each item on this list might be something that brings joy to someone else.

If you’re on your minimalist (or even frugal) journey and struggle with bringing items into your home, read through this list and ask yourself if you need to continue to purchase these items or if you could do without.

Interested in reading more about minimalism and decluttering? >>>
Why I Choose to have a Minimalist Life
The Simple Guide on how to Declutter Your Entire Home
How I Eliminated Over Half of My Wardrobe

For the Home

  1. Air freshener – I’m talking about the aerosol variety here. All the chemicals contained in those fragrant bottles can contribute to allergies and other health issues. We purchase the air spray from Shabby Chick (a local Oklahoma company) that is all natural and smells amazing.
  2. Cleaning Supplies – One of my goals has been to become a “chemical free” house. I have stopped buying commercial cleaning products (think Scrubbing Bubbles, Lysol, etc) and opted for all natural cleaners that we DIY (like our dish detergent). I also heavily utilize my Norwex microfiber towels and Shabby Chick all-purpose (and all natural) cleaner.
  3. Home Decor – Man, I’m a sucker for Hobby Lobby and their rotating 50% off sales. One thing that I am beginning to embrace is the “blank wall”. Which is really just a wall in your home with nothing on it. It lets your eyes rest between the constant stream of information that is constantly thrown at us.
  4. Kitchen Gadgets – As much as we love to be in the kitchen, we absolutely do not need another gadget to go in it. We have pretty much everything a person could need to do cooking and baking in our kitchen.
  5. Books – During our big purge in 2017 we did away with the majority of our books. Most of which were purchased at a going out of business sale for 10 cents a book. I shamefully never read them (except one) and we passed them along to a friend and sold the rest at our garage sale. Now we love the library and read more often! Funny how we own less books now too!
  6. DVDs and Video Games – This is an area where we would mindlessly buy. A particularly bad habit was Black Friday shopping when DVDs are $3 each! We sold many at our garage sale in 2017 luckily.
  7. Small Trash Bags – This one might sound silly but we have always bought those little trash bags for our bathroom and bedroom trashcans. I recently put Command hooks on the sides of our bathroom trash can so we could use a grocery sack and it wouldn’t fall down into the bin. Win!
  8. Processed Food – healthy foods aren’t necessarily fast, and they shouldn’t be! D and I love to cook (he likes to cook more than I do!) and getting back to a healthier state is achieved by what we put into our bodies. No junk foods, no processed frozen food. Just from-scratch meals that are healthy and delicious.
  9. Soda – This goes for restaurants as well as bringing it into our home. No one needs that much sugar. We recently discovered that Aldi has a wonderful line of seltzer waters that have completely curbed our cravings for fizzy drinks!

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For Us

As our world has shifted to be more baby-centric, we have bought less and less for ourselves. That being said, I think less thought went into our purchases over the last year because we were so focused on what our Little Guy needed.

  1. Fast Fashion – If you have Netflix, I highly recommend watching ” The True Cost”. It is a heartbreaking documentary on the world’s demand for faster, cheaper clothing. So many of us are addicted to buying new clothes every week. This for us has stopped. If we need new clothes (in particular for my husband’s job) we will purchase them secondhand. Read more about how I eliminated over half of my wardrobeor how we shop secondhand.
  2. Cosmetics – Since I’ve been a SAHM, I haven’t worn too much make-up or any type of cosmetics. Sometimes I will do my beauty routine but often I just straighten my hair and go on about my day. I even have several unopened tubes of mascara, foundation, and eyeliner pencils. I think I’m good for a few years!
  3. Perfume – In our quest to be chemical free, we will no longer buy perfume or cologne. On top of it being full of chemical-y fragrance, it is another thing to store. We have created a spritzer with witch hazel and essential oil.
  4. Bottled Toiletries – I used to be a coupon addict several years ago. I had dozens of plastic bottles of body wash and shampoo lining the shelves of my hall closet. Now with all of the issues I’ve had with skin allergies, I can no longer use the cheaply made stuff from the drug store. We now purchase locally made bars of soap and will purchase shampoo bars once our current bottles run out.
  5. Jewelry – I used to be alllllllll about giant bangles and earrings. Now with a wee little fella that likes to pull and chew on everything, it’s hard to wear nice or really any type of jewelry. It also doesn’t match my simple style. I have silver earrings, a few simple silver necklaces, a watch, a silver charm bracelet, one Rustic Cuff, my wedding ring, and one statement necklace. This is more than enough for any occasion.

For Baby

My sweet little guy is spoiled beyond belief – in love and in material items. We have been very fortunate to not buy a whole lot on our own which is why the following items are listed below.

  1. Toys – We were graciously gifted a shelving unit (seriously, a WHOLE shelving unit) filled with bins of toys. Most aren’t age appropriate yet, but Little Guy loves dumping the bins of blocks out and banging everything around. We also have toys that haven’t been taken out of the package from Christmas as well as plenty of toys that are just waiting to be played with at the grandparents’ houses.
  2. Extra Clothing – I use “extra” here as to avoid buying more than what he needs. We buy plenty of clothing for him secondhand (baby stuff is plentiful at the thrift store!!! just wash it when you get home 🙂 ) and receive a lot as gifts. He isn’t even one yet and he has clothes to last him through the end of 2019. The only clothing we will most likely buy will be a coat and a few more pants.
  3. Baby Gear – Just like kitchen gadgets, baby gear tends to accumulate and a lot of it you don’t even need.
  4. Books for Baby – I love a good children’s book as much as the next mom but there is no reason to buy all of them. Children crave routine, so with our rotating system of a small selection of books we are able to provide that to him. Any extra or new books we want to read will be checked out from the library.

I hope this inspires you to spend less in 2019 and avoid being held captive in our consumer driven world. What are some things you aren’t buying this year?

18 Things We Won't Buy in 2019 - an experiment in being less of a consumer, more minimal, and ultimately frugal. 
#frugalliving #minimalism #chemicalfreeliving #minimalistlife

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  1. This was a great read to help my mind set for the start of the new year. As I’ve gotten older (29) Ive been trying to not have such excessive things. I also am trying to get my family to cut down on how much waste we have. Slowly but surely we are getting there!

    1. I’m so glad we aren’t alone on our journey of having less waste. We’ll all get there!

  2. This is great! Something I don’t think a lot of people consider is what they’re NOT going to buy. Some of my goals are to minimize our trash, and natural cleaning as well! I make my own laundry detergent and it was the best decision!

    1. That’s awesome! What recipe do you use for your detergent?

  3. I understand wanting to eliminate the need for the small trash bags. It’s great to reuse the plastic bags that stores almost insist they give us when you’ve got them. I’ve gotten into the habit of taking my own reusable cloth bags everywhere I shop so I never have to take a plastic or paper one. I hate that plastic is less recyclable, either because of the technology to do so, it’s not available in our city, or that we just don’t do it. If you forget to bring your reusable bag with you, opt for a paper bag if that option exists. Paper is much easier to recycle.

    1. That’s so true. Plastic bags are difficult to recycle in our city too. There just aren’t places to take them! I too take my reusable grocery sacks and produce bags to the store whenever I am not in need of a plastic sack for my trash. I’ll have to test out paper bags in our trash cans instead of plastic… they may just fit! I hadn’t thought to try no plastic in our little cans altogether – it was more of a frugal swap.

      1. We only use a plastic trash bag in our kitchen trash. For bed or bathroom little trash cans, we don’t use bags at all. On trash day (or as needed) we just dump the small trashcans into the bigger bag. Our kitchen bag usually ins’t full anyway, so it feels like it eliminates a bit more plastic.

  4. I have gone Green in my home and I have thrown or given away all toxic cleaning products and other toxic products in my home. I drink water only. I stopped buying garbage bags. I use a garbage bucket which I dump often. I started making changes in my life and home environment because I want to eliminate the health risks that I can control.

    If anyone would like a great resource for Green eco-friendly/organic/gluten-free products, feel free to contact me.

    1. That’s great! It is the same for us – we want to make less of an impact on the environment and on our health.

  5. This makes me happy! I am a senior, now on a limited budget, and have been forced to live this way, but rather enjoy it! And reading this makes me enjoy it even more! If only I could recoup all of the money spent on my huge wardrobe :(. Live and learn.

    1. I’m so glad you’re enjoying living more with less! Clothing was always my downfall. I worked in retail for years and it was so cheap and easy to buy! I have had a little bit of luck selling clothing on eBay and on Poshmark. It’s a little bit if work, but worth it for the extra income.

  6. I want to decrease or eliminate plastic storage sandwich and gallon baggies. We have some tupperware that is all mismatched but some is really nice some is even glass…so i will just use those more. I need to make a plan for cat litter, and bathroom trashcans, Ive finally started remembering reusable bags more so we are finally running low on plastic grocery bags!

    1. That’s great Andi! I got some reusable zipper bags for sandwiches and snacks as a gift last year. They work great when we don’t have enough free containers. For kitty litter, we use paper bags. Sometimes in the grocery size bags sometimes in those brown bags you put lunches in. So far so good!

  7. I got rid of soda, processed foods and books. I realized for books I don’t read them because when I buy them I think i have time. Then I never read them and they are still on the shelf. Instead, I rent them from the library and actually read the book! I stopped drinking soda and have cut out meat. You save money and realize that a simple dietary is better to living. Thank you for your article!

    1. I’m the same way with books too! The library has been my favorite place recently. And I’m so glad you’ve been able to cut soda AND meat! That’s so great for your health.

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