It’s hard to ignore a good deal. As a shopper who always asks myself if I can find the thing I’m about to buy cheaper somewhere else, you can imagine how unlikely I am to be the person that says “no” to something that’s free.

In general, I still wholeheartedly support budget-conscious shopping. Most things involve little risk (worst case is, you won’t use/wear it), and the irking reminder that your savviness didn’t quite work is easily fixed by going out and buying the initial inspiration.

There is, however, one thing that I will never, ever nickel and dime: Getting my hair cut.

Two exceptions to this rule: If you are a man, or if you are going to Supercuts. If you are a guy, I’m a firm believer that you should not pay more than $30 for a haircut. There’s just not much there to do, and after a certain point, there’s only so much “fancy” work that the barber can do to justify a heftier bill. If you frequent Supercuts (I do), you’ll see that you’re getting a great trim/cut for what you pay and therefore, aren’t trying to haggle down.

Not Everything Free is Good

A little background, first. When I first moved to Los Angeles, I was starstruck and wanted to do everything to belong. I wore Uggs with shorts, sunglasses indoors, and ran at the beach. I often spent afternoons wandering through clothing stores that sold pants for more than I paid for a month’s rent. I thumbed through magazines to follow fashion, and tried to copycat celebrity makeup and hair.

And then one day, my dream came true. I was discovered on the 3rd street promenade in Santa Monica by a hairdresser’s assistant. She stopped me, actually, and in one full breath announced that I was beautiful and had great hair. Blushing and thrilled, I took her up on her offer for a free haircut by Fred Segal’s lead hairstylist–the only stipulation was that it would be done in front of an audience for his three-day hair convention.

At nineteen, all I heard was “free” and “hair model.” I was in, and followed her back to the studio for a consultation. The lead stylist was thrilled. My thick dark-brown hair was down to my armpits and had very little remaining cut or layers. I explained to him my “vibe”–that is, I’m beachy, don’t “do” my hair, and I like it long. He nodded and said that I would love it.