There's something you don't know about me.
I get a ton of stuff from CVS (major pharmacy/drug store, in case you didn't know) all the time and I never pay for it. My husband says I steal from them all the time. So, now instead of asking how much I paid for something when I get home from a CVS run, he's like, "So, what did you steal today, honey?"
In the future, I'll have more posts about my love of coupons and good deals, and I'll tell you all about how a couple months ago I literally spent $27 (yes, twenty seven) dollars on groceries for an entire month.
But, for now - I shall tell you about one of my favorite stores, and I how I manage to steal from them all the time and haven't ended up in handcuffs in the back of a cop car just yet.
So...CVS has this sweet thing called Extra Care Bucks (known from here on out as ECB's), and ECB's are WAY cooler than sliced bread. If you don't know about ECB's and they are not a part of your life yet, you are seriously missing out, and you need to flick yourself on the side of the head for being such a cotton headed ninny muggins. Go ahead. Flick yourself real quick. I'll wait.
So, ECB's print out at the end of your receipt on certain products, and you can find the products that generate ECB's by reading the weekly and monthly CVS ads. Not hard.
Before we begin, let me tell you before I forget...you'll need a CVS card. It's free, and it's like those shopping cards you get at the grocery store to get the good deals. So, anyway, head to the counter and ask for a CVS card, or you won't get the sale prices.
Alright, now let's get down to the nitty gritty. Let's say you want to buy a new lip gloss and it's on sale for $5.99 and you get $3.99 back in ECBs (which you will know after reading the ad, right?). So, you plan to fork out $5.99, but lo and behold! You have a coupon for $2 off this exact lip gloss. My lucky stars! So, you give them your coupon for 2 bucks off and they tell you that your total is $3.99. You pay them $3.99 and then get $3.99 back in ECBs. It's like an instant refund.
You're going to have to spend money initially, unless you happen to need drugs and have a prescription transfer coupon. I had a new prescription, and I had a CVS coupon (found in a weekly ad - they do it every so often) for a $25 gift card if I transferred a new prescription to their pharmacy. So, I took some of that money and bought my first CVS products.
The sweet thing about ECBs is that nearly every week they have things that are free after ECBs, which means they'll sell it for a price like $2.99 and give you $2.99 back in ECB's.
Right now I've got about $21 of ECB's (they don't expire for one month, by the way). So, within the next week or two I'll be making another CVS run.
Last time I went to CVS I came home with 5 Listerine mouthwashes, 2 L'oreal lip glosses and a Sally Hansen nail polish, and all I had to pay was tax, so just a few cents, really, and I'm just using the remaining balance on my gift card, so that will last me a long time.
Not only did I get all those things for free, but by combining my coupons with the ECB deals, I generated the same amount of ECB's that I spent. So, I'm supporting my CVS habit and not dipping into our slim monthly budget.
We no longer pay for things like toothbrushes, razors, deodorant, toothpaste, mouthwash, nail polish, fun cosmetics, feminine products, and basic health and hygiene items. And we all know those can add up super quick!
I love, love, LOVE to shop and CVS lets me shop (often getting fun things like 2 new lip glosses a month that I could never justify otherwise) without actually paying for anything.
So, maybe it's not technically stealing, but we call it stealing at our house just because it's fun to pretend, I guess. (We're weird. I know this!)
Now, I realize this post was rather boring and a heck of a lot more technical than any other post I've written, but I wrote it with the intention of being instructional and helpful.
Go check out www.iheartcvs.com to learn more about how you can have a blast shopping at CVS for free. If you've got questions about what I said above (it was rather complicated), please email me! I love sharing good deals and helping people save money! It's firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, if you STILL haven't gone over to check out Mama Kat, you need to do that. Right now. Stop what you're doing, do yourself a favor, and go on over there. This post is a part of her Writer's Workshop Thursdays, which is something I look forward to every week. (She gives bloggers several prompts to choose from, and this week I chose to write about a time I stole something). Mama Kat is a total riot, and she makes me crack up DAILY. She's a phenomenal writer, and an incredible mama. Please go check out her blog. You'll be glad you did.
(And if you look at silly things like the times on blog posts, NO. I did not write this post at midnight. I am not a crazy person. Midnight is for sleeping, people. Blogger has a sweet feature where you can schedule posts for the future. Click on post options and you can pick the date and time you want the post to go up, and Blogger posts it for you. And don't mention it - you're welcome for the tip.)