10 Ways to Treat Yourself (For Less Than $10)

In honor of the massive February 14 gift-buying bonanza, here are 10 things you can do–whether or not you have a Valentine–to treat yourself.

Honestly, you can try the things on this list whenever you want, Cupid be damned. These are quick, cheap, quality-of-life improvements. You deserve them.

Quick note: With the exception of a couple of low-maintenance suggestions, there’s nothing on this list that you actually have to do. So if you’re looking for stuff like, “Try a new fitness class/hairstyle/hobby!”…well, find another list. We’re lazy around here.

1. Make your bed.

Made bed
Though if you really want to treat yourself, get a bigger bed.

Nothing makes you feel more put-together than a made bed. Do it, and go to work. The workday stress will wipe your memory–and when you get home to a nicely made bed, you can pretend you have a maid!


2. Dish gloves.

Dish gloves
Playtex Handsaver Gloves. What are you doing to that poor towel?

For most of us, doing the dishes is a serious drag. A cheap pair of dish gloves makes the whole stupid, terrible, repetitive process easier on your hands and nails. Channel Grandma and slap on a bright yellow pair. Dish gloves also help prolong the joy of the next item.

PRICE: $1.33 from Amazon

3. Nail polish.

Essie Butler Please
Essie’s “Butler Please”. I’m obsessed.

I recently learned to polish my nails (without making it look like I’m a toddler who broke into a salon, that is). It’s such a nice surprise when I catch a glimpse of a bright color on my nails. Why not treat yourself to a fancy new shade?

PRICE: $5.65 from Amazon

4. Wash your feet.

Bare feet
You won’t be able to stop suggestively running your toes over your leg.

Every night before bed. No, you don’t need to spend an hour on ritual ablutions. But you walk around all day, and then you shove your cold, dirty feet into your (hopefully made) bed. Spend five minutes washing your feet with warm water and scented soap. It makes a difference.

PRICE: Free, y’all!

5. Flowers.

If you’re really broke, pick ’em from somebody’s front yard.

I can hear you already. “Flowers are expensive!” “Flowers are wasteful!” “Flowers are a tangible manifestation of the botanical bourgeoisie!”

Calm down. A couple of cut flowers brightens up a room like nobody’s business. Often, floral shops will throw out flowers that have been around for a few days, or lower their prices. Nab a small bouquet and enjoy it while it lasts.

PRICE: Try smiling at the florist.

6. Pills  A daily tiny treat.

Pill box
Ezy Dose Weekly Pill Reminder in size Humongous. Now imagine it full of jellybeans. Hurray!

I cannot have chocolate in the house, because I have no self-control. BUT, using one of these old-people-style pillboxes, I can at least try to restrain myself to one small chocolate a day. Think of it as a slightly creepy advent calendar.

PRICE: $5.98 from Amazon

7. Read this.

Charm School
Full disclosure: I wrote it; you’ll like it.

PRICE: $2.99 from the Maven Store.

8. Nice pens.

Micron pens
Micron pens. So sexy and precise.

When was the last time you wrote something and thought, “Holy shit, I want to make out with this pen”? Most people would say that’s never happened. I feel sorry for most people. Grab yourself a Micron or six, and start your lovefest.

PRICE: $9.50 from Amazon

9. Buy a pop song.

A song is cheap. Good headphones, not so much.

There’s a reason they’re so catchy (hint: they’re manufactured to be catchy). Spend a buck on the latest noise to take over Top 40. You might find yourself nodding along.

PRICE: $0.99 on iTunes

10. Take 10 deep breaths.

You are here.

The positive benefits of breathing deeply can’t be overstated–and yet, it’s something we all forget to do. Before you go to bed tonight, take 10 long, slow breaths. Time your exhales and inhales evenly, and remember: You got this. You’re awesome.

PRICE: So incredibly free.

Happy Valentine’s Day! <3 The Maven