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56 Almost Effortless Ways to Save Money

How to be cheap without really trying.

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Separate your bananas

This keeps them yellow longer. Bananas produce ethylene, a gas that causes them to ripen, and separating the bunch can slow down that process. Here are 10 creative ways to save money that you never thought of before!

iStock/Otmar-Winterleitner

Make lettuce last

Seal lettuce in a zip-top bag with a moistened paper towel to add days of leafy goodness.

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Extend the life of your razor

Shake the excess water off your disposable razor, then dip it in rubbing alcohol and store it in a dry place (do not leave it in your shower). This will clean the blade, stave off rusting, and add weeks of shaving life. (Try these 12 tricks that every great money saver uses!)

4_win_frugal_Hakan-YeşiliStock/Hakan-Yeşil

Flip and rotate your mattress

Flip your mattress and rotate it every three months to extend its life span. As for couch cushions, don't just flip them—swap them with one another so they don't become molds of your family's backs and butts.

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Use less

Halve the amount of soap, toothpaste, shampoo, and detergent you use—you probably won't notice a difference. And your clothes should feel just as fluffy with only a quarter of a dryer sheet. These sites for coupons will really help your wallet.

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Avoid the dryer

Unplug your dryer. That lint you see is from your clothes slowly being disintegrated by all the tumbling. Stick with our gentle friend the clothesline. If you do use a dryer, zip up metal zippers, before they mug other garments. (Don't miss these incredible ways to save money without feeling the pinch!)

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Save your lipstick

Scoop out that remaining bit of lipstick from the tube with a lip brush. You'll be surprised at how many applications remain.

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Maintain your shoes

Have the soles of your leather shoes lined with rubber to prevent them from wearing down. And don't wear them two days in a row. Leather shoes are susceptible to moisture and will last longer if you give them a day off.

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Air your soap

Do you air your bar of soap before using it? Many frugalistas swear this will allow it to harden and last longer, without affecting the lather.

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Be a rewards hog

Sign up for free custom rewards programs. No matter where you live, plenty of retailers offer rewards and discounts by earning points on purchases, saving you big bucks even when you spend. (Here are 20 things amusement parks won't tell you about saving money!)

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Originally Published in Reader's Digest