Living Well On Less

The deepening recession is touching everyone's lives.

In a poll on the new RealSimple.com, 89 percent of respondents told Real Simple magazine they've cut back on their spending due to the economy.

But the magazine came up with 71 ways to cut corners without really noticing. If you follow all the advice from the article, you could save as much as $19,000 this year alone!

On The Early Show Tuesday, the magazine's Kris Connell shared some of the tips from the piece.

PERSONAL CARE PRODUCTS

The average person spends $588 per year on these products, and we often use them up before we know it. Be mindful of portions; you can cut your cost in-half by sticking to the following measurements: Sunscreen toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, and facial moisturizer should be measured from about a dime size to quarter. Sunscreen should fit into your palm.

WARDROBE

In a poll on RealSimple.com, readers said shopping for clothing was the second place they're cutting back, after eating out. The average person spends $749 per year on clothing. Invest in a statement: Make a necklace to update your look this year instead of blowing your budget on a shopping spree. We found great-looking necklaces for $60 or less, and some were even as little as $25. If you buy one or two necklaces this year and nothing else, that's a savings of $650.

ENTERTAINMENT

Fifteen percent of RealSimple.com respondents said they've cut back on entertainment as a result of the economy (this was No. 3, behind eating out and shopping for clothing). Redbox.com offers new releases for a dollar a night. Considering that the cost of a movie is as high as $12.50 for adults, that's a big savings. A family of four can watch a movie for 25 cents each, rather than spending $50 at the theater! With the price of a movie ticket hitting $10.50, look to iTunes for special deals. You can find $3 movie rentals and the free Single of the Week, which is posted every Tuesday. While you're at it, enjoy your favorite TV shows for less on hulu.com, a video service that offers free downloadable hit TV shows and movies. You can choose from more than 900 prime-time TV hits, as well as classic movies. Then, of course, there's always iTunes, where you can find $3 movie rentals and the free Single of the Week, which is posted every Tuesday.

EXERCISE

Most large gyms will let you put your membership on hold for up to 3 months. If your gym costs $100 a month, that's a savings of $300, leaving you with more than enough left over to buy a great exercise DVD, which averages around $15, and will last forever! Or, consider renting exercise videos through Amazon or Netflixnetflix instead. Or find other ways to burn calories at home or outside. Use water bottles in place of hand weights; find a bench and do step-ups, and swing from the monkey bars when you take your kids to the park!

TRANSPORTATION

Embrace public transportation. If you blow tons of money taking a cab to and from the airport when you travel, book a ride on Super Shuttle. You'll share a van with other airport-goers for as little as $12 one-way. Obviously, it depends on your location and distance, but you can save up to 60 percent of the cost of a cab. Or carpool to and from work (check out eRideShare.com). If you carpool with just one other person, you'll save 50 percent on gas and parking. To find the quickest route from one place to the next, visit HopStop.com, which covers metro areas' train, bus and public transportation -- the quickest ways to get from point A to point B.

CHILDCARE

If you split the cost of a babysitter with a neighbor, you can save up to 50 percent on childcare per month. Depending on where you live, this can mean a savings of about $400 per month. Plus, your child gets a built-in playmate. Check out care.com to find a sitter share in your area.
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