Cookie banner

This site uses cookies. Select "Block all non-essential cookies" to only allow cookies necessary to display content and enable core site features. Select "Accept all cookies" to also personalize your experience on the site with ads and partner content tailored to your interests, and to allow us to measure the effectiveness of our service.

To learn more, review our Cookie Policy, Privacy Notice and Terms of Use.

clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

5 Spending Swaps for the Cash You’ll Blow Anyway

Breaking down the annual sum of your daily habits, like coffee or SoulCycle.

Racked has affiliate partnerships, which do not influence editorial content, though we may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. We also occasionally accept products for research and reviewing purposes. See our ethics policy here.

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

One of the most common New Year's Resolutions is to spend smarter. (Truly ambitious individuals even save money, but we can discuss that in 2017.) Last year, we broke down the exact numbers of investment shopping; that old "quality over quantity" adage applied to coats, bags, denim, and more. This year, we're going beyond the closet to break down the annual sum of your daily habits, like coffee or SoulCycle, with suggestions for spending that cash on more impactful buys. Read on for five common areas of overspending with ideas for swaps.

Daily Coffee → Espresso Machine

If you drop $2 a day grabbing coffee, you're throwing $730 into your caffeine habit annually. You could throw down on a home espresso machine with those kinds of funds. This well-reviewed Breville model comes in at $700, leaving you a little extra cash for beans.

SoulCycle → Personal Trainer

A single SoulCycle class will run you $30 to $34, depending on your region. Tap it back three times a week, and you're looking at $4,680 to $5,304 over the course of the year. Alternatively, you could join a gym for $10 — $150 per month (depending on how fancy we're talking), coming in at $120 — $1,800. Even on the highest range ($1,800 per year in membership versus $4,680 for SC in a less expensive market), you'll still have $240 per month leftover, a fine sum for a few personal training sessions.

OTC Skincare → Regular Facials

Are you regularly self-diagnosing your skin issues with home treatments? Quit dropping money into scrubs, serums, and masks and invest that money into facials timed with the change of season. If you're spending $10 — $20 a month on new skincare remedies, you can justify a facial around $40 — $50 four times a year, plus you'll have an expert on hand for targeted product recommendations (we're not telling you to not buy moisturizer, just be strategic!).

Fast Fashion Binges → Investment Shopping

As we covered in-depth last year, it doesn't take long for cheap clothes to add up. Do a search of your bank statements last year for Forever 21, Zara, ASOS, H&M, or whatever your other inexpensive wardrobe vices are. Do the tally, recover from shock, and think about what your closet really needs: A seriously-warm parka? A not-flimsy swimsuit? A quality bag that fits your laptop?

Uber Habit → Baller Vacation

If your lazy/cold/drunk ass depends on Uber to get you home from late nights at work or late nights on the town, you're looking at anywhere from $20 — $50 shot per week. That's $1,040 — $2,600 over the course of the year, enough money for a real trip!

Love shopping? Check out our need-to-know hacks on our Pinterest board:

Follow Racked's board Shopping Essentials on Pinterest.


Man, It’s a Hard One: Why Can’t I Find a Vintage Santana ‘Smooth’ T-Shirt?


These Beaded Bags Are Fun as Hell


Your New Pet Rock Is This $2 Pumice Stone

View all stories in Shopping