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There are few things in this world that make us happier than getting a good deal. And as you shop for birthday, anniversary or just-because gifts, you’ll notice you can get some great bargains at local shops this time of year, as the winter inventory gets marked down to make room for new spring items. Here are a few of our favorite cheap thrills (we kept it under $25) that you can buy for yourself and not suffer the guilt of buyer’s remorse.

For the Body

Body Glide

If you’ve started to hit those New Year’s resolutions, you may be heading to the gym quite frequently. And all that running, climbing and squatting may have left its mark on your poor, chafed body. Reverse that raw skin and grab a small stick of Body Glide, $7, from Big Peach Running Co. The balm forms a dry, invisible barrier to protect skin, either from clothing, shoes or other skin (or as I like to call it, Thunder Thigh Burn).

Cheap Thrills 2016: Body Stick

Remember that episode of “The Office” when Andy’s nipples were rubbed raw during the Rabies 5K? He probably should’ve visited Big Peach Running Co. and picked up this antiblister balm for $7.

Gel nail polish duo

It’s always nice to treat yourself to a manicure or pedicure, but let’s face it, that pampering can add up. Get the salon quality at home with Sally Hansen’s gel nail polish duo, $16.29, from CVS. The pairing comes in multiple colors and has the long-lasting qualities from gel polish (plus, you don’t need a special light to have it dry).

Cheap thrills: gel nail polish duo

Give yourself a manicure at home with this awesome gel nail polish and top coat duo, $16.29, from CVS.

Bath balls

Finding a few minutes for yourself between making dinner, working, walking the dog, etc., can be trying, but these luxurious floral bath balls, $5, from Hello Gorgeous Boutique & Café will have you slipping away every chance you get. In scents like lavender bud and rose petal, these fizzy balls will turn your bath into a day at the spa (without that hefty spa price).

Cheap thrills: bath balls

These locally made bath balls, $5 each from Hello Gorgeous, will have your skin cheering for this relaxing treat.


Fine chocolates like those from the sinfully delicious Maison Robert Chocolate can be rich — for your wallet and your scale. Get a taste of their delicious confections with these individual froggie pops, $2 each, and you’ll put your sugar cravings to rest without ruining the old diet.

Cheap thrills: lollipop

Underneath that gold foil lies delicious dark chocolate-y goodness in the form of a froggie lollipop, $2 each, from Maison Robert.

For the Wardrobe

Illusion belt

For us hippy ladies, finding a pair of pants that properly fits is tough — our waists are too small for the size of our nonproportionate backsides. Put a nicer way, our hourglass figures are just too hourglass-y. Welcome the hip hugger, $8.99, from Straw Dog in Marietta. Slip this illusion belt through your back belt buckles and voila, it cinches the back so there’s no longer a gap. No more fear that someone will try to toss a grapefruit in that large gap while you’re sitting with your back to a crowd ( … that might just be my own fear).

Cheap thrills: hip hugger

Hug those hips with the Hip Hugger, $8.99, at Straw Dog.


Showing your fashionable taste in wallets doesn’t have to empty your wallet. This colorful, outdoor-friendly wallet, $19.95, from High Country Outfitters, will cheer up your purse and makes a great carrier for personal items needed on a walk or during a visit to the gym.

Cheap thrills: wallet

Kavu’s Big Spender wallet in a colorful, tribal pattern called woodland art, $19.95, at High Country Outfitters


We Southerners love a good monogram, and these delicate necklaces from Francesca’s fit the bill. Choose between two styles: a flashy individual letter, covered in sparkly goodness, or a golden rectangular bar with a letter stamp. Both cost $16 and are a total bargain when looking for a simple, everyday necklace to dress up your wardrobe.

Cheap thrills: monogram necklaces

Obviously, I was focused on the M necklaces, $16 each, at Francesca’s. I love both styles!

For the Home

Ring dish

This ring dish, $9, from steve mckenzie’s is a great way to keep track of and store your jewelry, all in a modern design. The dish comes in a neutral shade, which goes well on any bathroom counter, nightstand or anywhere else you need to lay your rings down without completely forgetting where you put them … and subsequently assuming you have some type of neurological condition.

Cheap Thrills: ring holder

Never lose your rings again with this fabulous little holder, $9, available at steve mckenzie’s.

Water bottle

The path to better skin, weight loss and pretty much anything else connected to good health always seems to lead to water. Up your water intake with this cute Contigo bottle, $15.19, from Target. Besides all the good you’ll be doing for your body, you’ll be helping the environment by filling up with a reusable, recyclable glass bottle. Bottoms up!

Cheap thrills: glass bottle

Contigo’s Purity Glass Bottle, $15.19, at Target

Greeting cards

Show someone how much you care with adorable greeting cards, $3 each, from Sugarboo & Co. The whimsical cards are cute, unique and, most importantly, affordable. The best part? Since you won’t break the bank on the cards, you can pair your greeting with one of the many adorable gift items located throughout Sugarboo.

Cheap thrills: greeting cards

Tell your boo how much you love him with Sugarboo & Co. greeting cards. These adorable cards are $3 each.

Bottle opener

Just because you’re a bit older now and can afford top shelf alcohol and catered appetizers at your parties doesn’t mean you still can’t have a little juvenile high jinks. Enter the Beerfoot bottle opener from The Cook’s Warehouse. Use this zany guy, only $9.99, to open beers and spark up conversation at any gathering.

Cheap thrills: bottle opener

We spotted Beerfoot! He’s only 3 inches tall, costs $9.99 and lives inside the barware section of The Cook’s Warehouse.

Candle holder

As the months (hopefully) begin to warm up, we love these adorable seashell tea candle holders from Pier 1 Imports. These candle holders would be the perfect addition to a seaside table setting, an outdoor clambake or just a romantic dinner for two. Plus, at $4.95 each, you can afford lots of them and create the perfect ambience of soft candlelight.

Cheap thrills: candle holder

Shell candle holder, $4.95 each, at Pier 1 Imports

Have more cash in your wallet to burn? Take a look at our amazing FINDS for some great ideas on where to shop and what to buy!

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