ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Extreme Cheapskates Savings Tips For Frugal Living

Updated on February 14, 2016

These Extreme Cheapskates Practice Over the Top Techniques

Save like never before with these cheapskate tips
Save like never before with these cheapskate tips

Save, Save, Save

1. Toilet paper is a luxury item. From flushing the toilet just once a week with a bucket of used (gray) water to foregoing toilet paper and using a water bottle to rinse off (from the episode with the nutso Asian accountant in New York City who cut her own hair, washed clothes in the shower to save on laundry, cooked only with a hotplate and served guests dumpster diving goodies or episode which fascinated and horrified me!) Millionaire cheapskate Victoria asked her boyfriend to pee in a glass bottle which she used to water her plants or added to her compost pile. Other notable cheapskates have used family cloths (cut-up towels which are laundered after use) and even unrolled 2-ply bath tissue to get two rolls out of one (one of the more hated cheapskates Roy who also gave his wife dumpster flowers as an anniversary gift and asked for 10 plus free ice cream samples at a shop).

If it's yellow, let it mellow. Every time you flush the toilet, you are using 1.6 gallons of water. A great new product on the market is the Composting Toilet. There are small, portable compost toilets available at camping stores. They look like a standard 5 gallon bucket. This system is big in the Tiny House movement because it allows for easy, off-grid living. City water can be expensive. I'm currently researching composting toilets for use in my own home.

My Dream: A Composting Toilet of My Very Own

How to Start A Compost Pile

Keep a container near the sink for coffee grounds, used tea bags, and all kitchen scraps. You can use an old yogurt tub or a stainless steel compost bin with a lid. At my house, I like a large one gallon stainless steel bin because I put everything from junk credit card offers (the paper parts) to banana peels and popcorn seeds. When the container is full, empty it into your compost pile. If you hate the thought of such messiness, sprinkle some wet leaves on top of the pile. The wetter your compost pile, the faster it will break down and make compost. The earthworms will go to work and turn your waste into rich soil which can be used for your garden.

Nastiest Cheapskate Ever

Stealing From Local Businesses is Okay For Cheapskates

2. Why waste money showering at home? Save on your water bill and cost of heating water and electricity from drying your hair by showering at the gym. Mooch off your brother's gym pass if you're too cheap to purchase your own membership. While you're at it, don't forget to take several empty water bottles and fill those up with hand sanitizer while you're there so you'll have plenty for your own house. Duct tape your bathroom faucet at home so your family is forced to save water by washing hands and brushing teeth only using water pilfered from local businesses.

In one episode of Extreme Cheapskates, the staff members at the gym shrug it off when they see this Cheapskate man filling up his hand sanitizer supply. The guy doesn't actually have a gym membership but uses his brother's pass to slip in! Additionally, he doesn't work out but heads straight to the shower and proudly shows off his prowess by bringing back dirty towels he had previously gotten at the gym and refreshing his supply of clean towels.

At my gym, Planet Fitness, I use the White Pass which costs just $10 a month. I never purchase drinks at the gym. I am there to use the state of the art equipment, change out of my sweaty clothes and that's it. I have only tried to shower once at the gym but was too cold to stick my whole body under the water.

This cheapskate behavior at the gym is obnoxious. You can bet I would let this guy know that what he's doing is wrong and is considered theft. Stealing from businesses is wrong. I run my own business and know how important it is to keep my costs down. I get very irritated when I see someone stealing from a business. Our job as fellow consumers is to report this behavior. I've seen a young girl ripping off price tags at the thrift store and switching them with lower priced tags. I immediately reported her. Stealing is wrong. That is not being cheap, it's just plain wrong.

Plastic Wrap Your House to Preserve Value

Apply Plastic Wrap to Your House and Vehicle

3. Cover Your House in Saran Wrap to Prevent Wear and Tear on the Home. Daily life can be messy. Food spills and pets ruin and stain carpeting, upholstery and woodwork. Cheapskate Todd was so intent on saving money and ensuring his house stayed in pristine like-new condition that he chose to shrink-wrap every part of the house and used the bedroom closet for his living quarters. I can definitely understand doing this in one area or room of the house. I'm an animal lover and have adopted all the stray and feral cats in my neighborhood. I am constantly sweeping up litter and cleaning up accidents. I keep the doors to two upstairs bedrooms closed to preserve the carpeting, furniture and my sanity. I spend an hour a day cleaning my home and attempting to maintain order.

Being married to someone like this would be maddening and clearly his looming divorce is not enough to change this fanatic. At the time of the show, he is preparing to sell his well-maintained shrink wrapped castle. His wife tearfully tells producers how hard it was living with this nutcase. He didn't want to have to heat an entire bedroom, so he slept on an air mattress in the closet and heated and cooled with a fan and electric space heater. What woman wouldn't want such a thoughtful guy?

Despite knowing how cheap he was, the pretty red-headed lady he was married to, was willing to try her hand at living with the miser and his Saran Wrap. Shockingly, she could not take it. Even his vehicle was plastic wrapped, stereo knobs, steering wheel, upholstery an all. That way he never had to get his car detailed ad maintained its condition.

He even uses shrink wrap to cover the toilet seat. The home appraiser is a bit shocked when she sees this during her tour of the house to determine the value. When she asks the Cheapskate if that's sanitary he assures her that he changes the plastic wrap annually. I don't believe anyone would even attempt to live with someone so obsessed and you can tell his (ex) wife genuinely cared for the poor tightwad.

Dumpster Diving Treasure Hunt

4. Find free food in your local dumpster. Why waste money going to the grocery store to purchase food when you can find food behind restaurants that is pre-packaged and ready to eat? This method of freeganism is one I'm a bit skeptical of. Cheapskate Kate (who I refer to as the nasty cheapskate that rinsed herself off with a water bottle after using the toilet) prepares a meal for her guests using items she scavenged from a dumpster in New York.

That's where I draw the line on being cheap. I'll grow my own vegetables and make tea using herbs from my garden like lemon balm, mint, lemongrass, catnip, etc. I love saving money and getting items on sale, but I will not scavenge food out of a dumpster and serve it to myself or my family.

DIY Beauty Products

Make Your Own Fragrances and Cleaning Products with Essential Oils
Make Your Own Fragrances and Cleaning Products with Essential Oils

Essential Oil Starter Kit

DIY Shampoo DIY Perfume and Fragrance Oil

Most healthy home stores like Earth Fare have a great selection of essential oils. By combining a few drops of oil, like Wild Orange, with plain lotion you can create a great-smelling body lotion that is good for your skin and does not contain synthetic fragrances. You can also purchase a roll-on oil applicator and add essential oil to a carrier oil, like grape seed oil, for about ten dollars. Oils last longer than spray perfumes. Apply a few drops on your pulse points and bask in the compliments.

Homemade Deodorant- mix plain baking soda with several drops of tea tree essential oil and apply

Homemade Moisturizer- add several drops rosemary essential oil to bathwater (ahhh...)

Homemade Eye Cream--dab castor oil around each eye nightly

DIY Rosemary and Peppermint Shampoo

1/2 cup Castile soap

1/2 cup distilled or filtered water

16 drops Rosemary essential oil

4 drops Peppermint essential oil

Free Movie Popcorn For a Special Date

Cheapskate Tips For Big Savings

  • Borrow Instead Of Buying. This works great for infrequently used items like a rototiller for the garden, canoe, snow blower, and camping equipment. A good tent can easily be $300 or more. Before going on a camping trip, check your options. Some parks allow you to rent a tent or primitive cabin for $25-$100 bucks a night. If you divide the amount you would spend on purchasing a tent by the number of uses, it may be cheaper to opt for the rental. This also frees up closet and garage space which would be eaten up by storing your camping supplies.
  • Ask For A Discount. Always ask for and expect to get a discount. If you have been a good customer for several years, ask your cable or satellite provider for a loyal customer discount. Get rewarded for being a good customer. When my Dish Network bill recently increased from $36 to $66, I simply called up and stated that I would like my bill to be lowered. After reviewing my account and discussing the matter with his supervisor, the phone rep told me the maximum discount he could give me was $20 off for 6 months. I asked for a free movie channel, was rewarded with 5 pay per view movie coupon codes, and happily accepted the deal. You can be sure that I will call again after the 6 months are up. (Note: do not threaten or scream at the person to get a better deal...)
  • No Poo Shampoo
    Use baking soda and water to clean your scalp naturally without having to spend big bucks on fancy shampoo. Add a few drops of essential oil to your 1 tsp baking soda plus 8 oz water and get your hair smelling terrific for a few pennies per use. Great essential oils for homemade beauty products are peppermint, tea tree oil, lemon and lavender.
  • DIY Cleaning products Baking soda and vinegar are great for cleaning just about everything. Replace your over-priced chemical laden toothpaste with a dab of baking soda and add a drop of peppermint essential oil to give your mouth that fresh, clean taste. Scrub soap scum out of the bathtub with baking soda and lemon essential oil. That combo works as well as Soft Scrub without the harsh chemical smell.

Scissors Are Your Best Friend

  • Keep a pair of scissors handy to cut open tubes of toothpaste and bottles of lotion. MYou can easily get several DAYS worth of extra lotion out of what's left inside a bottle that most people would throw out.

Give Clothes the Sniff Test Before Doing Laundry

Do not wash clothes that aren't dirty. If you only wear a pair of jeans once or a short for a few hours, it's perfectly fine to use the "sniff" test to determine if it's clean enough to wear.

Wash clothes only one day per week or once every two weeks. As Americans, we take simple luxuries like having a washer and dryer in the home, for granted. Does every house need its own washer and dryer? Ask a friend if they'd be willing to let you wash some clothes at their house.

Liquid Detergent is Mostly Water

Huge bottles of liquid detergent are a major waste of money. Same with liquid fabric softener. Read labels. If the first ingredient is water, the product is a ripoff. I switched to powdered detergent when we purchased a High Efficiency washing machine. It's a front loader and my family uses Tide powder. We don't use those overpriced laundry pods. Just a giant orange box of Tide detergent.

Manufacturers include a huge plastic measuring scoop in detergent boxes. The amount of detergent the manufacturer recommends is way more than enough for a few loads of laundry. I measure a very tiny amount in the scoop and add that in. My clothes always come out clean. Besides the ripoff factor of water-based liquid detergent, another gripe I have with those giant plastic bottles is the amount of waste they create. When I moved to Charlotte, I was surprised about the lack of interest in recycling. Most households where I live do not recycle. This gets me upset. Recycling is easy to do, requires little effort and gives you a rewarding feeling. So why don't folks in the south recycle? Part of it is laziness and part from a lack of education.

Make Your Own Dryer Sheets

Got an old towel or washcloth that's seen better days? Cut your towel into squares, dampen the cloth and add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. No good cheapskate will pay for dryer sheets. Most cheapskates roll their eyes at these overpriced, chemical laden sheets. Other cheapskates will gladly collect your used dryer sheets and lint, whip up a great firestarter and sell the repurposed dustball right back to you.

Watching Extreme Cheapskates is great entertainment. Clearly, the show is staged to boost ratings. Even knowing that the cheapskate behavior is turned up to attract viewers, I love watching this show. It gives me great ideas on ways to save and helps me realize there are plenty of frugal people willing to embarrass themselves on national TV simply for my entertainment. Thanks guys!!

Cut Back On Shopping

Do you already have something that works just as well? A lot of times you don't really NEED an item. Think hard before purchasing big ticket items, especially if you already have something that works fine. Tired of the bulky, outdated TV set upstairs? No need to donate it yet if it still works. Save your money and make items last.

The Frugal Chick

I love watching Extreme Cheapskates even if it's just for entertainment.  It inspires me to get the most value out of items I purchase.
I love watching Extreme Cheapskates even if it's just for entertainment. It inspires me to get the most value out of items I purchase.

EBay is a Goldmine For Selling Brand Name Clothing

Brands like Hollister, Abercrombie and Fitch, Levi's, and American Eagle are some of my top selling brands on Ebay.  Be selective when picking merchandize to resell.  Feedback is extremely important to maintain Top Rated and Power Seller status.
Brands like Hollister, Abercrombie and Fitch, Levi's, and American Eagle are some of my top selling brands on Ebay. Be selective when picking merchandize to resell. Feedback is extremely important to maintain Top Rated and Power Seller status.

Other Ideas

Rent out your property fast on Craigslist and increase your cash flow
Rent out your property fast on Craigslist and increase your cash flow

Other Easy Ways to Save Money

Instead of focusing on making more money, make a conscious choice to save more of what you already have. With a bit of creative thinking, you can easily dream up more easy ways to save money. Embrace unconventional ways if you want to live the cheapskate life.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)