Bride Who Spent $1,600 of Wedding Savings on Beauty Products Sparks Debate

A woman who spent her wedding savings on "expensive makeup and skincare" has Mumsnet users divided.

Posting to the site's Am I Being Unreasonable? (AIBU) forum on Tuesday, user moneymortified said she was embarrassed to have "frittered" away her earnings, leaving her fiancé to make up the shortfall.

Although some users were happy to share useful advice, others warned the poster to curb her spending or risk losing her man.

Bride Who Spent $1600 Wedding Savings Slammed
A stock photo of a couple arguing about bills in front of an open laptop. The poster turned to Mumsnet for advice on making the situation up to her fiancé. fizkes/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Why Do People Overspend?

There are many reasons why people spend more than they can afford. Some issues, such as not budgeting correctly or underestimating expenses, can be easy to fix, while others are harder to solve.

An online survey of 1,000 American adults found that almost 50 percent "emotionally overspend." Conducted by NerdWallet, the study revealed that young adults in particular struggled with emotionally overspending—67 percent of millennials compared with 29 percent of boomers.

Stress was the No. 1 trigger among emotional overspenders (29 percent), followed by feelings of sadness (22 percent) and excitement (13 percent).

Women were more likely than male respondents to overspend due to stress (35 percent of women versus 24 percent of men), while men were more likely to overspend due to excitement (26 percent of males surveyed, compared with 18 percent of women).

"Lifestyle creep" is another common reason people overspend. Defined as petty purchases that rise steadily over time, it can account for unrecognized spending. A 2012 study also identified impulse buying as an issue, with 76 percent of decisions made in-store, leading to spending more than anticipated.

A 2021 poll by Personal Capital found that dining out was where people most frequently overspent, with 39 percent blaming restaurant trips for breaking their budget, followed by groceries (32 percent) and entertainment (22 percent).

'I Don't Know How It's Happened'

In her post, moneymortified said she and her fiancé had spent a year saving separately for their wedding. Although she has never been in debt, the poster describes herself as a "spender" and struggles to save money. After pooling together their savings, the poster wrote she was embarrassed to realize she was £1,500 (roughly $1,600) short.

"I don't know how it's happened," she wrote. "I just overspent every month and hoped it would all work itself out, and now it's come to it and I haven't saved enough.

"I honestly don't even know what I've spent it on, just frittered on expensive skincare and make-up and stuff."

Even though the poster makes more money than her husband-to-be, it has fallen on him to make up the shortfall. The couple will also have to use some of their "normal" savings to cover the costs.

"He's dependable and reliable and I'm useless," she wrote. "He's upset and disappointed but being quite nice about it."

Explaining that her fiancé grew up surrounded by debt, she wrote that he has encouraged her to be open about any financial troubles because he doesn't want her "hiding things and getting desperate."

"I'm just so embarrassed," she wrote. "How can I make it up to him? I never used to be so reckless, just lifestyle creep once my salary started going up."

Many Mumsnet users had little sympathy for the poster, with tenbob hoping the was situation a "wake up call."

"if I were your fiance I would be calling off the wedding," wrote the user WhileMyGuitarGentlyWeeps.

Hearthnhome advised the poster to "make it up to him by changing."

"When you make a commitment you stick to it," she wrote. "Not just ignore it until it's too late and rely on him to fill your gaps."

However, others offered the poster helpful advice and saving tips, with Dsisproblem recommending she set up a "realistic 'treat' budget."

"You don't have to stop spending entirely but once that month's money is gone you don't buy anything else," she wrote.

"Make a budget on excel or Google sheets and you limit what you spend," commented user Tiani4, while Chattycathydoll wrote, "[banning] yourself from buying anything on the spot."

"If you still want it in a few days, work out how it will impact your savings," she wrote. "This approach helped two of my similarly minded friends get out of debt."

Newsweek wasn't able to verify the details of this case.

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