Monday, November 21, 2005

Frugal Review: Real Simple Magazine

Every month, a frugal friend shares her subscription of Real Simple magazine with me. Thanks Leah, but I think I need to sign up for my own copies. This magazine is a real keeper.

Here are my 5 Top Reasons for Loving the November issue of Real Simple

5. The Frugal Duchess Assisted Living Award of the Week:

Real Simple’s Know How section (page 43) is superb. Great tips on finding a pet at an animal shelter and on really stashing household items from would-be thieves. Hint: Crooks always scrutinize fake (hollow) rocks and bogus cans of food. Solution: Use carved out wall spaces hidden by outlet plates or vents. Written by Kelley King Heyworth, with additional reporting by Karen L. Smith, and photos by Gemma Comas, this section is a rip-and-save.

4. The Frugal Duchess Problem Solver Award:

The Solutions section (page 63) offers well-chosen words from writers Melinda Page and Elizabeth Wells. (photographs by Jim Franco.) Reading this section, I had spasms of why-didn’t-I-write-that envy. The tips on “Double-Duty Household Items” include using planters as table bases and other bytes of info. This piece ranks high on the cool & practical scale.

3. The Frugal Duchess Consumer Guide Award:

The Buy or Rent feature offers an article (with charts) by Adam Bluestein and photos by Wendell Webber. Excellent overview of the pros and cons of renting baby equipment, heavy appliances and other trinkets. Tip: Rent the fancy frig while posted on a long out-of-town temp-work assignment, but buy your own when you really want to settle down

2. Frugal Duchess Etiquette Award:

Signed, Sealed, Delivered by Sarah Engler and photos by Wendell T. Webber. Great tips for those of us who have trouble getting our notes and cards written and delivered. Hint: Establish a card file of addresses and break your writing chores into a few time slots. Make it a date and get your kids (cute) to address the envelopes.

1. Frugal Duchess Beauty Award:

Undercover Agents by Bora Chang (with photographs by Sang An). This is a super buying guide for facial products. Recommendations include Neutrogena Deep Clean Invigorating Cleanser/Mask ($7) and other affordable goodies.

Honorable Mentions:
How to be a Better Person by Cindy Chupack
Foul-Weather Friends (Boot guide) by Ashley Tate
Slow Down by Peter Jaret (A relaxation guide)

There's lots more, but I’ve exhausted by frugal time budget for the day.


Caitlin said...

I enjoy this mag too when I have access to it, but I think it's overly bloated with ads right now's HUGE this month. Won't keep me from reading it though ;)

SMB said...

I'm a little surprised to find that this magazine is popular with other frugal folk--I love it too, but have come to think of it almost as a dirty little secret. :)

Frugal Duchess: Sharon Harvey Rosenberg said...


I like the magazine because it has a lot of recycling tips and ideas about getting extra use out of everyday items.

And I really like the philosophy:
streamlining life. Simplify.

Kay said...

I like this magazine too... I dont buy it though, I just glance through it at the library.

I found a tip about using a grocery store bag on countertop, next to the cutting board, while chopping vegetables. All the veggie peels and stuff go on top of the plastic bag and it is just rolled and thrown when the job is done. Easy clean up in minutes! I use this idea every single day and am so glad, that I found this tip!