Saturday, September 6, 2008

I Totally Get It, Michael Corleone

CVS, man. Just when I thought I was out, they pull me back in. I hadn't set foot in a CVS in three weeks. Then tonight I noticed that this week--the week ending 9/06--was the week to spend $15 on Neutrogena skincare and get $5 "extra care bucks" back. I actually happen to use their Anti-Oxidant Age Reverse Day Lotion with SPF 20 Helioplex every day, and I'd just this morning cut the end off the old tube with scissors to get one more squeeze out of it, so I was stoked. I bustled over there. I took Hank with me, because when I said I was going out, he fell down on the floor crying, "Don't leave, Mama! Don't leave! That's not right!" He says that now: "That's not right." We think it's hilarious, mostly.

So to cut to the chase, at CVS I purchased:

  • the Neutrogena lotion, $17.99 (spend $15 and get $5 ecb's)
  • a Covergirl Wetslicks "Amazemint" lipgloss, $5.99 (and get $5.99 in ecb's back)

  • Total was almost $26.
  • minus $10 ecb I already had from something (it was expired but they took it anyway)
  • minus $5 ecb from the Banana Boat deal a few weeks ago (in which I used what turned out to be one of those sketchy coupons from Facebook--that was my only one but I still feel like a criminal)
  • minus a $2 off a $10 purchase coupon
  • Paid $9 out-of-pocket
  • Received $10.99 back in ecb's.

So I turned 9 bucks of my cash into $11 of money I can spend there, and gave up my ecb's on something I buy anyway. Seems like a good dip into the CVS pool.

I was really not in the game anymore. For the last couple of weeks, I was either out of town or had so much going that I didn't want to think and plan any CVS raids. There is only so much thinking, planning, and caring that I can do. Anybody else have this cyclical burn-out thing going? I even let my ecb's expire. That's right. I let $10 in ecb's expire. I didn't even run in there and spend them on diapers or paper towels like you're supposed to. I just let them sit in my wallet. For a while back in the summer, I knew what deals were coming up weeks in advance and I hoarded coupons to match them, so letting those ecb's go was huge for me. (But they took them anyway, woohoo!)

So tomorrow is a new CVS week, and I'm going to take a look-see around the web and see what the experts are buzzing about. I need to get back in the loop, actually, because I just realized I have only two rolls of paper towels left. Eek! If none of the above has made any sense to you, but you are curious, here's where to go for a primer. Iheartcvs is encyclopedic when it comes to the weekly deals and what coupons are out there; Carrie at Shoplifting With Permission has a great battle plan for this week; and the venerable Money Saving Mom has a CVS 101 AND weekly deal explanations, plus a whole ton of other stuff.

I am but a humble acolyte in this world, but I do recommend it--when you are on the ball, you figure out that you can pretty much pay nothing for the stuff they sell at the drugstore--toiletries, baby stuff, household paper goods and cleaning products, and some groceries like cereal. You just have to wait for the time to strike, be willing to stockpile, and not care what brand you get. Then, when your neighbors get a peek at your garage stuffed with Charmin, they will think you're unstoppable. And you are.

Edited to add Sunday's hot CVS action:

  • 3 Revlon nail polishes, $3.99 each and Sun and Mon only, get 3 ecbs back each
  • 1 newspaper, $2
  • Total, almost $15
  • Minus $2 off $10 purchase coupon
  • Minus $6 in Revlon coupons (3 x $2 off any cosmetic--I successfully hoarded AND used these!)
  • Total $6.61, paid with the $5.99 ecb from yesterday's Covergirl deal.
  • Total out-of-pocket, fifty-something cents.
  • Received $9 in ecbs

So basically I turned the $5.99 in ecb's into $9, and as my friend Brenda would say, the nail polish was just sediment. I have a whole other deal in mind involving L'Oreal and Chex Mix, but I'm not really a two-transactions-a-day girl, which is what I would need to do to maximize the $2 off 10 coupon. Then I went to Publix and practically robbed the place, spending $27 and "saving" $37, according to the receipt. Lots of good coupons in the paper today. (For Publix logistics, Fiddledeedee is the queen--check her out.) The baggers crowned me with laurels and carried me on their shoulders to my car. Then I came home and took the kids to the pool.


Nicole said...

Don't forget that covergirl sometimes has B1G1F coupons in the paper for their products. I always clip the coupons with the plan to use them at CVS when Covergirl goes on sale there, but I never get around to it! Good for you for using CVS to make your money work for you!

Becky said...

Nicole, I am terrible about getting the right coupons, then not using them the right week! I have even bought coups from and then never used them. The shame!

But this is better than how I used to shop!

Carrie said...

Thanks for the plug!

CB said...

Back in the saddle! I love it!!

(And great work, by the way.)