We’ve all heard the refrain, “fake it till you make it.” If you’re anything like me and millions of other millennials out there, you aren’t really close to making it yet. You’re probably underpaid, just staying on top of your bills each month and trying to have a good time.
When you’re tight on money, nice things and good times often seem out of reach. Want to know a secret though? Fancy is in the eye of the beholder. You can easily make it look like you’re living the high life while saving yourself some cash.
When I need to feel fancy I do a couple of things:
First, I put on Drake’s “Fancy” and dance around a little. (When he says ‘Oh you fancy huh’, I always answer yes. Out loud.)
Rethink Your Routine
Second, I imitate the fancy lifestyle in my own way. Faking it is all about making trade offs and rethinking your regular routine. Rather than get a new outfit for a special occasion, do something with your hair or make-up. Use YouTube tutorials to try something totally different from your normal style.
I used one to learn how to do smoky eyes for New Year’s Eve this year, a big change from my usual make-up free face (and if you use Wherewithal, you can get 9% cash back on the most affordable make up brand out there, elf). The best part? No one noticed I was wearing my only fancy dress, the same one I wear to all my big, important parties.
Be Honest With Yourself
Be honest with yourself. If you can’t drop $150 for a concert this month, think about hosting a music night at your house. Play music videos all night, buy a 6-pack or a couple of bottles of wine and have an air-guitar or lip synch contest. (Choreographed group dance moves are mandatory.)
Make it Personal
I don’t usually buy birthday presents. It’s just too expensive. Instead, I make my friends personalized birthday cards and write a funny poem on them. If you can’t give with your money, give with your time! I invested about $15 in a TON of card stock a few years ago and have been making holiday and birthday cards off of that since then. I pick colors I know my friends like and the poems I write let my friends know I love them, and are more sincere than a present.
You’re a sexy friend, the hottest there ever was/Wanted to say I love you, just ‘cuz/You know, you’ve totally got that one thing/I bet everyone wants you, even Ryan Gosling.
See, aren’t you jealous you’re not my friend? (I’ll let you think on that for a moment.)
Hack everything that you can. I scored six tilapia fillets for $2.00 with coupons the other day and made my boyfriend and I blackened tilapia, roasted cauliflower, broccoli and brown rice for dinner. I almost never cook full meals (#teamramen), so it was a nice treat for him and cheap for me! Try taking an action that you normally don’t as opposed to simply reaching for your credit card.
Blame Your Schedule
The ultimate fake-it-till you make it move is to utilize your schedule to benefit your wallet. Maybe you can’t go to that happy hour because you’re staying late at work once a week, trying to get a promotion. Or maybe you miss brunch because you started a side hustle until you pay off your credit card. An air of mystery will keep people wondering how you do all the things you do! Just remember to prioritize your financial goals and everything else will fall into place.
Do you try to fake a fancy lifestyle even if you make nothing? How do you do it?