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How To Stop Shopping: Minimalist Tips

Jane Marsh - February 25, 2023

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If you want to practice sustainable shopping and begin to live a minimalist lifestyle, there are a few ways you can try to reduce your spending habits. Shopping can be addicting, especially when you shop as a coping mechanism or to treat yourself. Let’s explore some ways you can minimize your shopping and practice minimalism. 

Minimize Your Spending

If you love to shop but hate clutter, there are ways you can cut back on your shopping habits and live a more minimalist lifestyle. You can reduce clutter and get more organized when you learn how to stop shopping.  

Minimalist Shopping Phases 

When you shop, you can practice minimalist shopping phases to help you minimize your spending and extend your budget. There are three shopping phases in minimalism– the pre-buy phase, the buy phase and the post-buy phase. Here are some ways to practice these phases and use them to your advantage to live a minimalist lifestyle. 

Pre-Buy Phase

In the pre-buy phase, you should start making shopping lists to ensure that you have a guideline of what you’re going into the store before you begin shopping. This can help minimize buying things you don’t need. 

Buy Phase 

The phase of buying consists of shopping around to compare prices and find better deals. Avoid using your credit card out of convenience and only use what you can pay off each month. Trying to avoid debt is critical to a minimalist lifestyle. Prioritize your spending and don’t forsake something you want for something cheaper just because the price is right–it’s not always about the money. 

Post-Buy Phase 

The post-buy phase is tricky because it consists of a bit of self-reflection. Are you guilty of spending money as a form of therapy–because it makes you feel better? Emotional spending is rewarding and can improve your day, but it typically only works short term. Assess your spending habits and focus on only buying what you need rather than wanting or feeling like you deserve it. 

Begin by unsubscribing to your favorite shopping brands. It may be challenging to hit that unfollow or unsubscribe button, but you will be less tempted to purchase items simply because they are available or on sale. 

Sustainable Capsule Wardrobe 

You can also practice removing existing items in your closet every time you purchase something new and have a sustainable capsule wardrobe. You can try shopping second-hand or at thrift stores and paying more attention to what you already have in your closet. 

Capsule wardrobes can offer staple pieces you can wear with various outfits, like a tank top that goes with different skirts and can double as an undershirt. Shopping for sustainable brands can help keep versatile clothing options that will last in your closet for years. If none of that works, try to put yourself on a spending freeze where you don’t buy anything for a certain amount of days that you don’t need. 

Minimalist Shopping Tips

You can use various tips to minimize your spending and cut back on unnecessary purchases. Limiting yourself when it comes to spending can be challenging, so suggestions for spending less can be helpful. Let’s explore some shopping tips you can utilize to decrease your spending. 


Try to limit your spending by taking cash out of your account and only using cash. When you don’t have enough money in your wallet, don’t make the purchase. You can use envelopes to separate your spending money from your bills money and so on. This can help you cut down on buying things you don’t need. 

Use a timer

The timer method can help you make better decisions about the money you spend. If you want something, consider setting a timer before you buy it. Set a timer for an hour, and if you still want to make the purchase, then run your card and complete the transaction. 

Write Down Your Purchases

If you start writing down your purchases and making a record of things you buy, it can help you track your spending. Writing down what you’re buying can help hold you accountable and keep you on track with your budget. 

Buddy System 

Using the buddy system can also help hold you accountable. A family member or close friend can help keep you on track with your shopping habits. An accountability buddy has many benefits that can help keep you on track

When you feel tempted to splurge on a sale at your favorite store or brand, you can call your buddy, and they can talk you off the ledge. If they have similar spending habits, maybe you can do the same for them. An accountability partner can help tremendously when trying to change your practices. 

Benefits of Minimalism

Minimalism has myriad benefits, including spending less money and time shopping.  More money means more freedom to do the things you want to do. You can gain a new sense of independence and release when you rid yourself of things you don’t use or need. Minimalism can help you declutter your life and help you get organized. Less stuff typically means less stress and less to clean and worry about. 

You can also make more time for the things you love when you own fewer material possessions. Having something you love on display can bring you joy and promote calmness and an overall happier state of being. Minimalism can help you be more sustainable and align with your core values. The act of minimalism means surrounding yourself with the things you love that make you happy, so eliminating all of the extra fluff can ultimately make you more comfortable. 

Minimalist Shopping Tips

Minimalism is a lifestyle choice that practices sustainable behavior and can begin the necessary steps to a greener environment. You might be surprised at how something as minuscule as your shopping habits can play a vital role in saving our planet. You can find so much joy in minimalism and lead a healthier and stress-free life.

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About the author

Jane Marsh

Starting from an early age, Jane Marsh loved all animals and became a budding environmentalist. Now, Jane works as the Editor-in-Chief of where she covers topics related to climate policy, renewable energy, the food industry, and more.