Fountain Pen Mistakes All Beginners Make & How To Avoid Them

Unlike a ballpoint pen, fountain pens can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars and they’re an accessory that enhances your handwriting and make it more unique. At the same time, they demand a certain amount of care and attention.

In the US, most people are rarely exposed to fountain pens unless they actively pursue them and if they do, however, most people fall in love with them and always prefer them over regular pens.

When you start out, you’re very prone to make those mistakes and all the people I’ve met who just started the fountain pen when they were an adult, made those as well. 

Fountain Pen Mistakes Beginners Make

Fountain pen paper and a Lamy Safari fountain pen

Fountain pen paper and a Lamy Safari fountain pen

1. Not Using A Fountain Pen At All

Even if you own it, you may just have it in your desk drawer and it never sees the light of day. In my opinion, a huge advantage of a fountain pen is your signature. Not only does it make it look more sophisticated but it’s actually much harder to fake because the lines vary in thickness depending on the pressure you put on to the nib. Of course, it’s easy to forget about handwriting in a digital world, you can take notes with your phone, you can use Google home assistant or Alexa but at the same time, it has been proven that writing down things by hand especially if you take notes, enhances your memory and you learn faster. As Murphy’s Law has it, you never have a pen when you need it so it really pays to make a fountain pen part of your everyday carry so you always have it handy when you need it.

Ink bleed

Ink bleed

2. Using The Wrong Paper

Because of the nib and the ink feed, you get more ink onto the paper. Now most regular paper is rather thin and sometimes flimsy and when you use a fountain pen, you encounter something called bleeding. Basically, it’s just ink bleeding into the paper leaving a very undefined line that doesn’t look as nice as if you write with the same fountain pen on a thicker paper that absorbs the ink better.

Fountain pen paper

Fountain pen paper

So instead, go with a slightly thicker cardstock or go with fountain pen paper which hardly costs more at all but it’s specifically made for fountain pen ink. If you don’t want to bother about the kind of paper you use, I suggest you get an extra fine or a fine nib because with those, you get less ink on the paper and it will look good no matter what paper you use. That being said, if you write a note to someone, they always feel extra special if it comes on a thicker cardstock or even a cotton paper because it’s just a wonderful experience.

The more pressure you add, the wider your pen stroke gets

The more pressure you add, the wider your pen stroke gets

3. Pushing Too Hard On The Nib

If you have a regular ballpoint pen or a rollerball, you can really push hard even push holes into your paper. Now with a fountain pen, you can also add pressure and the more pressure you add, the wider your pen stroke gets. That can be really nice for a signature or you want to get a calligraphy effect when you write. Now with nibs, you have to pay a little more attention because they’re split in the middle so the ink can get to the paper and if you push too hard, you may damage or break the nib and then you’ll have to exchange it.

Pushing too hard may damage the nib

Pushing too hard may damage the nib

Also if you push too hard, it scratches on the paper, it tires out your hand, and it’s just hard on the paper as well as the pen. In general, I say a softer touch is better. If you want to write long letters, it pays to have a pen that’s slightly heavier but not too heavy so you can just have it glide over the paper when you write something without having to push on it very forcefully.

Fountain pen ink comes in many colors

Fountain pen ink comes in many colors

4. Using The Wrong Ink

When you start out, you might think that all ink are alike and you can just buy the cheapest one out there and it’ll do a good job. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. If you have calligraphy pens, they use a different ink. If you have a fountain pen, you should always go with a specific fountain pen ink. Why? Basically, they have a different chemical composition that is best for fountain pens. If you get something that is too thick and it dries too quickly, it will clog up your fountain pen and you’ll have to constantly clean it. The great part about fountain pen ink is that it comes in hundreds of different colors and it’s a great way to express your personality through your ink.

Sven Raphael Schneider's signature green ink

Sven Raphael Schneider’s signature green ink

For example, I usually have a really dark green ink which is still contrasting on white paper, at the same time, it’s different than royal blue ink which is probably the number one sold color in the world today. So if you choose a special color, be it your favorite color or maybe the color of the logo of your company, you really underline the whole message, make it unique and special and even harder to fake.

If you have a fountain pen that you don’t use a lot, you leave it in the drawer, or you only use it for signatures, chances are that the ink on the inside of the fountain pen will dry in and then it won’t start when you want to write. If that sounds like you, I suggest to look for a specific ink that is supposed to not dry as quickly and that way, you don’t have to clean your pen and it’s more reliable at the few times you actually use it.

5. Not Cleaning Your Fountain Pen

Generally, if you keep writing a pen and you use high-quality fountain pen ink, chances are you hardly ever maybe never have to clean your fountain pen, over time, however, there may be dust or something gets clogged up and then it’s time to clean your pen.

Cleaning Your Fountain Pen

Submerge your pen in water to clean it up

Submerge your pen in water to clean it up

  1. Simply drop your entire pen in water. If it has several parts that you can take apart, take it apart, try to let it soak in so the dry spots can soak up and then put it all together and see if it writes again. If that’s not the case, you may want to use a little toothbrush, maybe you want to blow water from the bottom part through the ink feed throughout the nib just to make sure it’s not clogged up. Definitely only use water to clean your fountain pen and don’t use alcohol or acetone as they may damage the pen.
  2. Use an ultrasonic cleaner. It’s very gentle, it works with water and sound waves that make the parts vibrate and clean them. You can use it for jewelry or all kinds of other parts even for clothes if your cleaner is large enough. All you do is simply add cold water to your ultrasonic cleaner. You immerse the pen on the inside, maybe you make sure that you get the water into the inside chamber if it’s a piston filler or you just fill it up with water and take everything apart so the water can reach all the parts that are dry and dirty. Keep in mind that an ultrasonic will heat up the water and in combination with the vibrations can cause especially older pens that are made of materials like celluloid to actually expand. In fact, I once ruined and old Montblanc Meisterstuck fountain pen with the casing of a celluloid because it had metal parts on the inside that came up. I can still use the pen, however, for collectors, it lost basically all of its value. So keep that in mind and always take a look, shorter is always better. Let it run for five minutes rather than ten. Take a look, see where it’s at if it’s already clean, you can just take it out.
The best way to clean a fountain pen

The best way to clean a fountain pen

The anatomy of the nib

The anatomy of the nib

6. Dropping A Fountain Pen On The Nib

I know you don’t drop your pens intentionally but unlike with a ballpoint pen, if it falls right on the tip of the nib, it may break or it may deform and then it’s time to have the nib replaced. If you just have a steel nib, it’s actually quite inexpensive. If you have a more expensive fountain pen with a gold nib, just the nib alone can cost anywhere from $ 200-$ 500 which is quite costly. In any case, I’d always suggest going to professionals to have it replaced because you yourself will likely screw it up and the ink feed and the flow won’t work after you repaired it. To protect your pen, I suggest you always put on the cap when it is not in use and you can also have an extra pouch in leather where the pen is protected.

Keep the nib of your pen up so you do not have to worry about ink stains

Keep the nib of your pen up so you do not have to worry about ink stains

7. Not Keeping The Nib Up When Traveling

Especially if you’re on a plane, the cabin pressure changes over time and if your nib faces down or if it’s horizontal, chances are ink is pushed outside of the pen and either you get a stain on your jacket or the next time you open your pen, all your fingers are going to be full of ink. Now a good ink is very colorfast so you can’t just go to the bathroom and wash it off. You’ll have ink stains on your fingers for a few days. What should you do? Always keep the pen with the nib up and you’ll be just fine and do not have to worry about any ink leaking or ink stains on your fingers.

CONCLUSION

Overall, you have to pay a little more attention to a fountain pen and you have to be a little more deliberate than with a ballpoint pen or a rollerball. On the other hand, a fountain pen enhances your handwriting and the look of it in a way that no rollerball and ballpoint can compete with. Are you guilty of these mistakes? 


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5 Best Inexpensive Fountain Pens For Beginners

Over time, I’ve used many different fountain pens, expensive and inexpensive ones. Today, I’ll highlight the 5 best value pens that won’t break the bank. It’s particularly good if you don’t know if a fountain pen is right for you so we focus on low price, easy maintenance, easy writing, and overall, a good experience at a minimal investment.

Even though it might seem different, fountain pens need not be intimidating, expensive, or maintenance intensive. You can really find a lot of fountain pens that are inexpensive. The problem is some are bad and some are good.

In the US, most adults never get acquainted with fountain pens unless they intentionally seek them out. In Germany where I grew up, it’s part of the school curriculum so I first wrote with fountain pens when I was 5 years old.

Fountain Pen Terminology

Just like with any hobby, there’s a lingo in the fountain pen world that you need to understand so you can distinguish between the different pens.

Various fountain pen nibs

Various fountain pen nibs

The Nib

The first important and probably the most important part is the nib. The nib is this little metal piece at the tip of a fountain pen that you write with on a piece of paper. Basically, a fountain pen uses capillary action as well as gravity to get the ink from the inside of the pen through the nib onto the paper.

Ink feed

Ink feed

The Ink Feed

Right below the nib, you can find the ink feed which helps the capillary action and to get the ink onto the paper. Unlike ballpoint or rollerball pens, nibs come in different widths. The finest ones are EF which means extra fine then there’s F for fine. The most common nib is M for medium. If you want a broader nib, you get a B, an even wider is a BB nib, and if you want it really broad which is usually only used for signatures, you get a 03b nib. Sometimes, you can also find oblique nibs which means they’re angled at the tip and that would, for example, be an OB which is an oblique broad nib. When you start for the first time, I suggest you maybe go with a medium nib, a fine or an extra fine nib, because they’re easiest to learn with and later on, you can upgrade and invest in more pens with broader nibs.

Converter

Converter

The Converter

Unlike a ballpoint pen, most fountain pens don’t come pre-loaded with ink and you can either get cartridges but they’re more expensive on a per-use cost and instead, you can use a converter so you can choose from any kind of ink you want and you can just fill the ink into it. Usually, they cost anywhere from one to five dollars but you’ll save money over time compared to a cartridge which is usually a one-time use.

Piston filler

Piston filler

The Piston-Filler

This one doesn’t have a cartridge and you simply turn the knob at the end of the fountain pen to basically suck ink in or push it back out. Normally, you find this kind of mechanism in more expensive fountain pens. Personally, I am a big fan of the piston fillers or the converters because down the line, they’re less expensive than cartridges and they’re also less hard on the environment because you have less waste.

5 Highly-Recommended Beginner Fountain Pens

1. Pilot Metropolitan

The first really inexpensive fountain pen is the Pilot Metropolitan which retails at around $ 15. It was introduced in 2012 and it was universally praised as a really good fountain pen especially at the price point. It comes in a nice gift box, has a nice weight, very clean lines, and you can even choose between different nib widths which is not something you often find in this price range. It uses proprietary cartridges and converters but when you buy a new one, it comes with a converter where you just have to squeeze and let go which sucks up the ink into the fountain pen.

Metropolitan pen Nib

Metropolitan pen Nib

Personally, I think it’s a very good pen that comes in different finishes so you can personalize it to your taste. The nib is made out of steel, made in Japan, and I think for what it is, it is really good, it’s not harsh, it is definitely a pen that we recommend to anyone who just wants to start out and who’s not sure if he wants to invest hundreds of dollars into a fountain pen.

2. Pilot Varsity – The Most Inexpensive Fountain Pen

Usually, it’s sold in a five pack for ten dollars and it has a nib, it looks pretty cheap like a typical rollerball and it is all plastic. It’s considered a disposable fountain pen that you can’t refill once the ink is all gone. Now if you look at YouTube, you may find people who have actually hacked that and were able to refill it. That being said, the plastic is so cheap that over time, it will probably break anyway, so if you think that you might use the pen for a longer time, I suggest going with the Metropolitan over the Varsity. The good part about it is that it has a great nib, consistency, and it’s not scratchy.

3. Jinhao X450 – Huge Bang For The Buck

These pens cost approximately $ 5 each and most people are shocked by how low the prices are and how valuable it seems in comparison. If you want a huge bang for the buck, Jinhao is definitely worth a look. Unlike the pilot Metropolitan, the Jinhao pens are larger and the 450 is also a lot heavier. Now if you write a lot, that can tire out your hand more quickly but if you just use it for signatures, it’s really nice to have a certain weight. The nib of the X 450 looks pretty similar to a Montblanc nib, however, it’s just gold-plated and not made out of solid gold. Right out of the plastic bag, it even comes with an ink converter which is rather nice and unexpected in that price segment. Overall, it doesn’t look like a high-end fountain pen, at the same time, it doesn’t look like a five-dollar pen either.

4. Jinhao X750 – Inexpensive Fountain Pen Made in China

On the other hand, the X 750 has kind of a brushed stainless steel look in platinum color the nib is likewise in the same color. It has a nice lid that clicks on and seems quite tight even though over time, I don’t quite think it will stand the test of time. The name engraving on it looks rather cheap but at the end of the day, it is a cheap fountain pen. In my opinion, it’s very similar to the x450. It’s just lighter in weight and frankly, if you want to try them out, you get both for just about 10 bucks which is really inexpensive.

5. Lamy Safari – Inexpensive Fountain Pen Made in Germany

It’s made in Germany in Heidelberg which is very close to my home state and when I was in third grade, this is the fountain pen I used. Because of its sleek design and look, you can even see sometimes people today wearing it with their bespoke suits which I find quite ironic because it was a school pen that I used. For the same reason, I just can’t get myself to use that pen today because it always makes me feel like a little school pupil.

The standard version of the Safari is made out of plastic. You can also find different versions of metals such as aluminum but in my experience, they dent very easily and scratch so they don’t look very well. Going with the original plastic version is just fine. The styling is definitely the most industrial one but it’s very comfortable in your hand and it’s very easy to grip for small hands as well as medium hands. If you have really large hands, I find the Lamy Safari is not quite the right pen for you. Lamy was quite smart and they introduced the proprietary ink cartridges which are much larger than regular ones but also more expensive.

Lamy Safari in action

Lamy Safari in action

They also have ink converters but you have to buy them separately and they are not part of the package as for the Jinhao. Unlike the other pens in our line up, the Lamy Safari has a convenient ink window so you can see if the pen is dried in or if you simply ran out of ink. The Lamy Safari nib is smooth right out of the box and it comes in different nib widths as well. It’s also easy to exchange the nibs in different widths and because it is such a popular pen, it comes in many different colors and patterns and varieties.  The Lamy Safari is most expensive of the bunch and cost between $ 20-$ 25 dollars depending on where you buy.

CONCLUSION

If I had to choose just one fountain pen out of the five, it would probably be the Pilot Metropolitan in a F or fine nib because medium is something that you find in a lot of nibs so fine is a little different. It also has an ink flow that it’s not as strong so you can basically write on it with any paper without risking it to bleed and it also has a heavier weight than the Lamy Safari and to me, it’s a more professional looking pen and it doesn’t have that schoolboy image.

All the Pens mentioned here can be used by right-handed and left-handed people but it’s really a personal preference and so I suggest you go out and try them out, you can even buy two or three different ones to see which ones you like more and then write it up for a little bit. If you really fall in love with them, you’ll probably want to invest in a more expensive piece that has nicer materials and a nicer nib because that way, it remains a good investment.

Do you use fountain pens? Feel free to share the ones you used when you started out.


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Lactic acid for skin: The complete guide for beginners

When it comes to skincare, not all acid exfoliators are equal…

lactic acid for skin

Like many other chemical exfoliants, lactic acid is an increasingly popular skincare ingredient in many a beauty lover’s regime.

Like glycolic acid, it’s an alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA), however, it’s far more moisturising to the skin than glycolic, and less likely to cause irritation. It’s therefore an excellent choice for more sensitive complexions.

Naturally present in milk, lactic acid has a larger structure than glycolic acid, and doesn’t affect the thickness of your skin (not that that means you can skip using your best SPF moisturiser in the morning).

Unlike salicylic acid, beta-hydroxy acid that penetrates deep into your pores, AHA sloughs off dead skin cells leaving a more radiant, smooth complexion underneath.

Lactic acid peel

Max-strength chemical peels are performed by a professional, but it’s possible to buy slightly weaker AHA peels you can perform in the comfort of your own home. Kate Somerville’s Exfolikate Treatment, for example, is a mega tingling formula that sloughs all the dead skin cells from your face, leaving you positively glowing.

Don’t fancy the fuss of applying a peel and sitting around waiting for it to do its thing? Peel pads, like those made by Skyn Iceland are an easy way to exfoliate fuss-free both morning and night.

Lactic acid serum and cream

These are leave-on formulas enirched with AHA exfoliating prowess; for example, Sunday Riley’s Good Genes serum can be left on overnight to smooth out the skin, or a thicker layer can be applied as a 10-15 minute wash-off treatment.

Similarly, lactic acid cream gently resurfaces the skin while you moisturise for a smoother finish to your complexion over time. If you have sensitive skin, higher concentrations of lactic acid may still cause your skin to become irritated, so always do a product patch test beforehand.

Keep scrolling for team Marie Claire‘s top five favourite lactic acid skincare products you can shop now. Happy peeling!

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A beginner’s guide to eco-friendly vacation planning

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When planning a vacation, there are a lot of things you need to account for. One of the major ones is the fact that you may want to have a green vacation wherever possible. When we say green, we don’t necessarily mean an outdoor experience, we’re talking more about enjoying the most eco-friendly vacation you possibly can. Naturally, this takes work, and you’re going to need to plan it out.

We are much more conscious of looking after the environment these days, and this is a big part of that. When you go on vacation, there is a lot you would naturally do that can have a negative impact on the planet – but you may not even have realized it. Here is our beginners guide to planning the ultimate eco-friendly vacation experience, right now!

Choose the right destination

You might not think it, but choosing the right destination can play a big role when it comes to helping you have a greener trip. For instance, choose a country or city that is committed to being environmentally sound. Places like Namibia, Ecuador, and Uzbekistan are some of the most environmentally friendly nations on Earth – they are also much more unusual, so a great place to consider.

Green mode of travel

Think about how you can travel in a greener way as well – this is a really important step, and will give you plenty of food for thought. Try to avoid flying as much as humanly possible, and, when you get to your destination, think about greener ways of getting around, such as walking or cycling. Every little helps, and you’re going to be boosting the environment as much as possible by choosing to do this, so yay for you!

Eco hotel

Another thing you might choose to do that is going to help you enjoy a more eco-friendly trip is to stay in an eco-hotel. The good news is that these days these have become more and more popular, and more widely available. Of course, every hotel these days claims to be eco-friendly, and this, of course, is not true. So, make sure you focus on the issues that matter the most to you and find the hotel that ticks those boxes.

Green activities

One of the biggest things you can do to ensure a more eco-friendly vacation is to undertake green activities. This means doing as many things as you can that don’t involve adversely affecting the Earth. Some of the great examples here include things like cycling, going for a walk, swimming, sailing, hiking, bird watching, you get the picture. And wherever you’re visiting, there will be plenty of choice in terms of things to do.

As you can see, there are plenty of things you can do that will help you to enjoy a greener vacation experience. It’s so important to look after Mother Earth, and any little thing we can do to help with this is really great. By following this guide, you will understand how much you can actually do to help the planet when you’re vacationing.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Condo Fees

A condominium can be a great option for homeowners who want a low-maintenance property that may include some amenities.

Condos are usually single units in a large building or complex that are individually owned, but connected by jointly-owned common areas, like hallways, parking lots, and sidewalks that form a community. Each condo owner pays condo fees to maintain these communal areas.

If you’re thinking about purchasing a condo, it helps to start the process knowing the basics of how condo fees work and how they stack up with your other living expenses.

What Are Condo Fees?

Each condo owner is required to pay fees (in addition to mortgage payments and property taxes) to their community’s condominium association or homeowner’s association (HOA) to take care of everything related to building maintenance and repairs.

Essentially, condo owners choose to pay additional fees so that they don’t have to worry about the upkeep of their property or the surrounding common areas (like shoveling snow or mowing the lawn) or deal with larger repairs for the building (like repairing an elevator or the roof).

What is Included in Condo Fees?

Since you’re already paying property taxes and a mortgage, you’ll probably want to know exactly what’s included in your condo fees to budget accordingly.

What’s covered in your condo fees can vary widely depending on the building the condo is in and what amenities the condo owners have access to.

Generally, condo fees include basic things like:

  • Building and common area maintenance such as lawn care, snow removal, road and parking lot repairs, and upkeep of common areas
  • Waste removal for the building
  • Pest control, including regular inspections and treatments
  • Insurance for the building itself and the surrounding property

In some cases, condo fees can also include all or part of the cost of utilities (i.e. water and gas, but not electricity) and operational costs for amenities like gyms or swimming pools.

Reserve funds are also sometimes part of condo fees. This money is saved as a sort of emergency fund in case major repairs to the building, common areas, or amenities need to be made.

Condo associations that have reserve funds avoid having to demand that condo owners pay large sums of money for emergency repairs. If the reserve fund can’t cover the cost of the repair, then, generally, each condo owner is still responsible for covering the difference.

Before you purchase a condo, it is important that you understand exactly where your condo fees are going and how they are going to be used. The HOA for your condo community should be able to give you a clear breakdown of the costs, as well as explain what happens if major repairs to the building or common areas are needed. You might want to discuss with the HOA or whomever you’re purchasing the unit from if the calculation of condo fees could be included in your Real Estate Purchase Agreement.

How are Condo Fees Calculated?

Since each condo community is different, you’ll want to consider everything that the building has to offer, and then determine if the condo fees you need to pay match your expectations and budget.

In general, condo fees are calculated based on the percentage of ownership that you have of the overall condo property. The calculation to determine how much of the overall condo property you own generally includes the square footage of your unit, plus any outside storage or parking space that belongs to you. The amount you pay (either monthly or annually) is calculated from the estimated yearly operating budget that is set by the condo community’s HOA.

In other words, if the estimated yearly budget for your condo is $ 100,000 and you own 5% of the overall condo property, then your condo fees will be $ 5,000 per year or about $ 417 per month

Additionally, if the property includes shared amenities like a gym, pool, or tennis court that you have access to, you’ll need to pay a portion for these collective spaces as well.

It’s important to keep in mind that your HOA may have other fees that you need to include in your monthly or yearly payment (like a reserve fund) so be sure to include these in your calculations if necessary.

Purchasing a Condo

When deciding whether to purchase a condo, you’ll need to weigh the pros and cons of having to pay monthly or yearly condo fees. The most important thing is to find a building that is managed by a good HOA that is transparent with outlining how they calculate their condo fees, and how the money is used.

Would you purchase a condo? Let us know in the comments!

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The Best Financial Books for Beginners

the best personal finance books for beginnersIt’s been YEARS since we’ve talked about the best personal finance books for newbies, so we figured today we’d discuss the best financial books for beginners. Paying off debt, saving for retirement, and managing your money in general can seem overly complicated and intimidating no matter what your age — but especially when you’re a young professional — and these books use simple rules and straightforward concepts to educate people who are new to personal finance. What is your favorite personal finance book (or blog, or magazine, or podcast)? What was the best advice you took from it? 

Psst: In the past, we’ve shared our money roadmap, offered financial tips for women lawyers, pondered how to make a budget, discussed the pros and cons of cash savings vs. retirement savings accounts as well as paying down debt vs. saving, and much more. We also included several recommendations for finance podcasts in our podcasts for working women post.

Here are six of the best financial books for beginners:best personal finance books for beginners - image of book covers including Get a Financial Life, You are a Badass at Making Money, You Need a Budget, The Financial Diet, I Will Teach You to Be Rich, and The Total Money Makeover


This post contains affiliate links and Corporette® may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!

The Best Financial Books for BeginnersGet a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties by Beth Kobliner (latest edition 2017)

Get a Financial Life was first published in 2000 — the same year the dot-com bubble burst — and was aimed at Gen Xers, while this fourth edition (“completely revised and updated”) came out early last year and was written for millennials. The book shares advice on the basics and the more complicated aspects of personal finance, including filing your taxes, buying insurance, making a budget, investing, buying a home, saving for retirement, paying student loans, and much more. It’s been called “a life’s worth of smart financial advice” and currently has a 4.5/5.0 rating on Amazon.

The Best Financial Books for BeginnersYou Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth by Jen Sincero (2017)

A followup to Sincero’s You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life (which has 3,000+ reviews on Amazon), You Are a Badass at Making Money shares tips on achieving financial success in a financial newbie-friendly way that’s been called “accessible,” “hilarious,” and “cheerful.” Sincero includes personal essays about her journey from being broke to becoming a successful business owner, as well as real stories from others who improved their finances by starting to look at money in a new way. The book has a 4.6/5.0 rating on Amazon.

You Need a Budget: The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle, Getting Out of Debt, and Living the Life You Want by Jesse Mecham (latest edition 2017)

First published in 2010, Corporette reader favorite You Need a Budget (YNAB) also has companion budgeting software (including an app) that you can try free for 34 days — it’s $ 6.99/month thereafter. (Mecham actually created his company and the YNAB software before writing this book.) The book’s strategy for people trying to make a budget and take control of their money includes four rules: (1) Give Every Dollar A Job, (2) Embrace Your True Expenses, (3) Roll With The Punches, and (4) Age Your Money. A couple of Corporette comment threads about the software are here and here. The book has a 4.7/5.0 on Amazon.

The Best Financial Books for BeginnersThe Financial Diet: A Total Beginner’s Guide to Getting Good with Money by Chelsea Fagan (2018)

The Financial Diet, a brand-new book, grew out of Chelsea Fagan’s popular website and YouTube channel (note: autoplay video). It aims to help readers handle their money better, make a budget and stick to it, learn how to invest, negotiate a raise, and more — and it offers lifestyle tips that include “how to take care of your house like a grown-up.” Reviews of the book have praised it for its “practical, no-nonsense financial advice” and “concise, clear advice on fundamentals.” As for reader reviews, The Financial Diet has a 4.7/5.0 on Amazon.

The Best Financial Books for BeginnersI Will Teach You to Be Rich by Ramit Sethi (2009)

Written to help 20- to 35-year-olds master their money situation, I Will Teach You to Be Rich (another Corporette reader favorite) structures its six-week program using the four pillars of personal finance: banking, saving, budgeting, and investing, as well as building wealth through entrepreneurship. The six weeks are (1) Credit Cards, (2) Bank Accounts, (3) Investing Accounts, (4) Conscious Spending, (5) Automatic Money Flows, and (6) Investing Choices. (Note that the style has been called “part frat boy and part Silicon Valley geek, with a little bit of San Francisco hipster” — some Corporette readers have said that they liked the book but weren’t crazy about the tone — and also note the book was published in 2009.) I Will Teach You to Be Rich has a 4.5/5.0 on Amazon.

The Best Financial Books for BeginnersThe Total Money Makeover: Classic Edition: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness by Dave Ramsey (latest edition 2013)

Dave Ramsey has created a personal finance empire, including books, a radio show, live events, webinars, and more. His book The Total Money Makeover (which has sold more than 5 million copies) explains how to get out of debt and reach your financial goals by following his seven simple steps. They include paying off debt quickly, building an emergency fund, and investing 15% in retirement accounts. Be aware that Ramsey is definitely not a fan of taking out loans and consistently encourages readers/listeners to buy with cash. A couple of Corporette reader threads about Ramsey’s advice are here and here. The book has a 4.7/5.0 on Amazon.

What do you think are the best financial books for beginners? Was there a particular book that has made a big difference in the way you handle your money? Do you read any personal finance blogs from the authors above, or from others? 

The post The Best Financial Books for Beginners appeared first on Corporette.com.

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Credit Cards For Beginners

Credit card companies entice you with zero interest rates for the first year or six months of spending. But it’s exactly those zero interest rates that entice you to spend money you don’t have because you feel like there won’t be consequences. Keep in mind that if the first year’s interest rate is zero, it’s typically because, when interest rates do kick in, they’ll be high. So having $ 3,000 of unpaid credit card bills when, let’s say, an eight percent interest rate kicks in means you pay $ 240 in interest fees.
MadameNoire

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Paradise Cay My First Book of Knots: A Beginners Picture Guide

Paradise Cay My First Book of Knots: A Beginners Picture Guide


Paradise Cay My First Book of Knots: A Beginner’s Picture Guide While knots may not be easy to learn, My First Book of Knots simplifies the craft and brings the reader into the world of knots through beautiful, detailed illustrations. Learn how to secure knots for use in outdoor activities such as fishing, camping, ranching, farming, and many more. You will learn how Santa Claus ties up his sack of presents, or how to tie a knot that will help you lift heavy objects. Each knot is illustrated step-by-step, with clear, engaging instructions. Wow your friends with a double figure eight bend, or save the day with a square knot
List Price: $ 9.95
Price: $ 9.95

Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Ebay, Adobe Reader

Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Ebay, Adobe Reader


A new edition of this title is available, ISBN-10: 0789737833 ISBN-13: 9780789737830 eBay, the world’s largest online trading community, has over 125 million registered users. According to the New York Times, more than 500,000 people make a full- or part-time living on eBay. On any given day there are close to 4 million items listed for auction on the eBay site. Want to make your mark on the eBay world? Absolute Beginner’s Guide to eBay, 4th Edition, is the perfect guide to help you conquer your first auction. The first three editions of this book were huge sellers, so it’s only natural we would update this great book to reflect eBay’s most recent upgrades and enhancements. This new edition is completely revamped to cover the way eBay is used today. It’s more than just online auctions-users also buy and sell via fixed-price listings, Buy It Now, eBay Stores, Half.com, Trading Assistants, and more. You will find everything they need to know to get started in this book!

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Working Portuguese for Beginners (w/CD)

Working Portuguese for Beginners (w/CD)


Working Portuguese for Beginners enables English speakers with no prior knowledge of Brazilian Portuguese to develop the basic communication skills and cultural knowledge needed to visit Brazil and to function in a work environment in which Portuguese is spoken. This language program presents not only all the situations and grammar normally covered in an elementary Portuguese textbook but also includes situations set in a business context in every lesson. Major Features: Twenty-four lessons, the last four concluding with a special independent project in which the student applies the language to his or her area of professional interest Clear objectives for acquiring language skills, grammar, and cultural understanding Lessons cover the important basics normally covered in any beginning Portuguese textbook such as introductions and greetings, counting, making travel plans, taking public transportation, and asking for directions Lessons cover business tasks such as negotiating a contract
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Pyrography Basics: Techniques and Exercises for Beginners

Pyrography Basics: Techniques and Exercises for Beginners


New – If you’ve ever wanted to take up the creative craft of pyrography, all you need is this book and an inexpensive woodburning tool to begin adorning furniture, carvings, jewelry, ornaments, greeting cards and more with beautifully burned patterns. Nationally recognized pyrography artist Lora S. Irish makes it easy to get started, with step-by-step instructions and skill building exercises.

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Beginner’s Guide to Reading Schematics, 3e

Beginner’s Guide to Reading Schematics, 3e


Translate schematic diagrams into today’s cutting-edge electronics Navigate the roadmaps of simple electronic circuits and complex systems with help from an experienced engineer. With all-new art and demo circuits you can build, this hands-on, illustrated guide explains how to understand and create high-precision electronics diagrams. Find out how to identify parts and connections, decipher element ratings, and apply diagram-based information in your own projects. Beginner’s Guide to “Reading Schematics,” Third Edition, also contains valuable appendices covering symbols and resistor color codes. “Featuring detailed coverage of: ” Schematic, block, and pictorial diagrams Resistors and capacitors Inductors and transformers Switches, conductors, and cables Diodes, transistors, and logic gates Electron tubes Cells and batteries Voltage dividers and reducers Breadboards and wire wrapping Electronics troubleshooting

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Working Portuguese for Beginners [With DVD ROM]

Working Portuguese for Beginners [With DVD ROM]


"Working Portuguese for Beginners" enables English speakers with no prior knowledge of Brazilian Portuguese to develop the basic communication skills and cultural knowledge needed to visit Brazil and to function in a work environment in which Portuguese is spoken. This language program presents not only all the situations and grammar normally covered in an elementary Portuguese textbook but also includes situations set in a business context in every lesson. Major Features: – Twenty-four lessons, the last four concluding with a special independent project in which the student applies the language to his or her area of professional interest- Clear objectives for acquiring language skills, grammar, and cultural understanding- Lessons cover the important basics normally covered in any beginning Portuguese textbook such as introductions and greetings, counting, making travel plans, taking public transportation, and asking for directions- Lessons cover business tasks such as negotiating a contract, presenting a new product, writing a business memo — all in Brazilian Portuguese- Lessons provide dialogues and vocabulary lists for reading and listening, grammar, cultural reading, and interactive homework- Portuguese-English and English-Portuguese glossaries offer additional help with vocabulary- Course can be combined with affordable online access to self-grading exercises (available through Quia.com, .95 per student for 18 months of access) Student’s Book- Includes MP3 tracks of vocabulary, dialogues, and audio exercises on CD- Lessons are valuable to the classroom student as well as self-directed independent learners Teacher’s Edition- Includes a CD-ROM with all MP3 tracks of vocabulary, dialogues, and audio exercises found on the student’s disk- CD-ROM also provides quizzes and a midterm, materials for special activities, and approximately 300 supplementary PowerPoint slides for classroom presentation Online teaching features at Quia.com – Instructor-managed class activities and exercises – Monitoring of student progress – Customized grading options online – Students can complete exercises online, submit their answers electronically to their instructor, and receive automatic feedback – Teachers can also use Quia templates to build their own exercises or use exercises developed by other instructors to provide added help for students – Motivated self-directed learners can also access the self-grading online exercises at Quia.com (no instructor feedback will be provided) SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS System Requirements for Student’s Edition Textbook Disk- Windows 2000 or later or Mac OS 10.2 or later- DVD-ROM drive on a computer or conventional DVD-ROM with MP3 player- Sound card and speakers or earphones for audio- An MP3 player, such as Windows Media Player or iTunes (available as a free download)System Requirements for Teacher’s Edition Textbook DVD-ROM – Windows 2000 or later (including Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7) or Mac OS
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The Essential Beginners Guide To Acupressure

The Essential Beginners Guide To Acupressure


The Essential Beginners Guide To Acupressure This book covers several topics including: Chapter 1: What Is Acupressure Chapter 2: Acupressure Or Acupuncture – Fingers Or Needles Chapter 3: Acupressure For Headaches Chapter 4: Acupressure For Nausea Chapter 5: Acupressure Techniques To Induce Labor Chapter 6: Acupressure Treatment Chapter 7: Acupressure For Back Pain Chapter 8: Acupressure Techniques Chapter 9: Acupressure The New Cure For Acid Reflux Chapter 10: Acupressure For Weight Loss Chapter 11: Acupressure Weight Loss- Alternative Route Of Managing Health Chapter 12: Acupressure Wellness Mat Chapter 13: Pressure Points Of The Body Chapter 14: How Can Acupressure Therapy Help Chapter 15: Human Body Pressure Points Chapter 16: Reflexology Chapter 17: Benefits Of Acupressure Chapter 18: Tapping Therapy Chapter 19: The Power Of Healing Fingers Chapter 20: Maternity Acupressure Scroll up… and click on “Buy Now” to deliver almost instantly to your Kobo or other reading device.

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The Vegetarian Sports Nutrition Guide: Peak Performance for Everyone from Beginners to Gold Medalists

The Vegetarian Sports Nutrition Guide: Peak Performance for Everyone from Beginners to Gold Medalists


The Vegetarian Sports Nutrition Guide: Peak Performance for Everyone from Beginners to Gold Medalists

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Art Auctions For Beginners: Secrets To Getting Quality Fine Art For Discount Prices

Art Auctions For Beginners: Secrets To Getting Quality Fine Art For Discount Prices


Art Auctions For Beginners: Secrets To Getting Quality Fine Art For Discount Prices This book covers several topics including: Chapter 1: Art Auctions: Grotesque Art Chapter 2: Art Auctions: Early American Art Chapter 3: Art Auctions For Drawings Chapter 4: Art Auctions For Sculptures Chapter 5: Art Auctions On Ebay Chapter 6: Art Auctions: Greco-roman Statuary Chapter 7: Books About Dale Chihuly Chapter 8: Art Auctions: Contemporary Art Chapter 9: Art Auctions: Vintage Photography Chapter 10: Art Glass Paperweights Chapter 11: Art Poster Auctions Chapter 12: Art Auctions For Vintage Posters Chapter 13: Breweriana At Art Auctions Chapter 14: Christie’s In Amsterdam Chapter 15: Mixed Media Art Auctions Chapter 16: Decorative Collectibles At Art Auctions Chapter 17: Finding Maritime Items At Art Auctions Chapter 18: Finding Vintage Disneyana Chapter 19: Native American Art Auctions: Art Antiques Chapter 20: Looking For Collectible Postcards Chapter 21: Unique Faberge Eggs Chapter 22: Collecting Enesco Chapter 23: Quilts From Art Auctions Chapter 24: Special Hummel Figurines Chapter 25: Stained Glass Art Auctions Chapter 26: Folk Art Auctions Chapter 27: Upcoming Trip To Sotheby’s Scroll up… and click on “Buy Now” to deliver almost instantly to your Kobo or other reading device.

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Crocheting: Learn to Crochet for Beginners –Discover Where to Find Free Crochet Patterns for Everything from a Crochet Baby Blanket to Crochet Hat Patterns

Crocheting: Learn to Crochet for Beginners –Discover Where to Find Free Crochet Patterns for Everything from a Crochet Baby Blanket to Crochet Hat Patterns


One of the fastest growing trends today is teenagers learning to crochet.  While the word “crochet” used to make you think of grandma sitting in her rocker knitting a baby blanket or baby clothing for some distant relative, this is just simply not the case anymore.  Today, millions of teens and young adults everywhere are learning to crochet.  And, they are creating some amazing garments and decorative items as well! Today, there are many crochet books published which are targeted specifically at teens and young adults.  These books are flying off the shelves in record numbers.  Many of the crochet books today come with some really hip and colorful projects which appeal to teens and young adults.  Add to that the amazingly cool yarns and fibers available today, and you have a winning combination.  As the popularity of crochet grows, there are even starting to be after school clubs dedicated to the art of crochet.  In these clubs, teens get together and learn new crochet techniques, share ideas, and show off their latest completed projects with each other.  While crochet is usually seen as a very solitary craft, joining a crochet club allows you to share your works with others and gain inspiration.  Crochet clubs also bring a social aspect to the art of crochet which has never been there in the past.  While teen crochet is the most popular with girls, an amazing number of boys are learning to crochet as well.  It is no longer considered taboo for a boy to learn to crochet.  And, if he is interested in girls there are plenty of them at the local crochet club.  Many a teen romance has started over a crochet hook and yarn.  Many boys are making laptop covers and gifts for the special people in their lives.  What teen girl wouldn’t love to get a handmade item from her boyfriend?

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Long Distance Running For Beginners

Long Distance Running For Beginners


This book covers several topics including: Chapter 1: Distance Running – Tools Of The Trade Chapter 2: Building Towards Distance Running Chapter 3: Crossing Countries In Distance Running Chapter 4: Distance Running And The Olympics Chapter 5: Distance Running – Random Tips Chapter 6: How To Become Successful In Distance Running Chapter 7: Distance Running And The Marathon Chapter 8: Before One Starts Distance Running Chapter 9: Getting Set For Distance Running Chapter 10: How To Avoid Injury During Distance Running Training Chapter 11: Distance Running – Injuries And Errors Chapter 12: Hows Distance Running For Your Kid Chapter 13: Ironman Triathlon – Distance Running Swimming And Biking In One Chapter 14: The Good Things You Get From Distance Running Chapter 15: Positive Body Effects Of Distance Running Chapter 16: Post-distance Running Tips Chapter 17: Training For Distance Running Chapter 18: Running The Distance By The Basics Chapter 19: What Is Distance Running Chapter 20: Things You Can Learn From Distance Running Chapter 21: Nutrition And Distance Running Chapter 22: Training Methods In Distance Running Chapter 23: Water Intoxication From Distance Running Chapter 24: Reaping The Rewards Of Distance Running Chapter 25: Women’s Distance Running Apparel – Not Just For Fashion Scroll up… and click on “Buy Now” to deliver almost instantly to your Kobo or other reading device.

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Essential Oils for Beginners: The Guide to Get Started with Essential Oils and Aromatherapy

Essential Oils for Beginners: The Guide to Get Started with Essential Oils and Aromatherapy


Essential oils are a natural and safe way to improve your health, cure ailments, and soothe your body and mind. Essential oils come from natural sources, and have been used for centuries for medicinal and cosmetic purposes.  Essential Oils for Beginners is the comprehensive guide to harnessing the power of essential oils. Recent scientific research has proven that essential oils can truly prevent and heal disease, and they are far more affordable and safe than modern medical treatments. Essential Oils for Beginners will show you how to create your own recipes to cure all of your ailments, and improve your overall well-being. Essential oils are also amazing tools for relaxation, therapy, and beauty treatments. This book will show you how to expertly blend essential oils to create your own aromatherapy mixes, and effective treatments for healthy skin and hair. Essential Oils for Beginners will teach you to use essential oils for any purpose, with: Over 85 recipes for essential oils remedies Easy-to-follow recipes for curing ailments, enhancing beauty, and sprucing up the home 10 helpful tips for blending essential oils correctly and safely Advice for to buy the best essential oils, and how to store your collection Detailed information on the benefits of essential oils and aromatherapy Using Essential Oils for Beginners, you can start living a healthier and more sustainable lifestyle right away through the power of essential oils.

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Twist, Turn & Tie 50 Japanese Kumihimo Braids: A Beginner’s Guide to Making Braids for Beautiful Cord Jewelry

Twist, Turn & Tie 50 Japanese Kumihimo Braids: A Beginner’s Guide to Making Braids for Beautiful Cord Jewelry


The traditional Japanese art of cord braiding–known as kumihimo– has been around for centuries. The technique, which uses a loom and several strands of silk thread, was once used to create the strong, slender cords that reinforced samurai warrior armor. Today, it is primarily used to make beautiful, color-drenched cords for jewelry and other decorative items. In “Twist, Turn, & Tie 50 Japanese Kumihimo Braids,” readers will get everything they need to get started in this ancient craft, including a mini braiding loom They’ll also find: An overview of tools and materials from looms to bobbins to glues to beads Step-by-step instructions for basic loom braiding, handling threads, beads, and more 50 gorgeous projects from simple beginner braids to complex beaded cords 400 full-color photographs for inspirations and instruction With details on kumihimo terminology, starting and finishing braids, and calculating thread and bead counts, this book is an ideal guide for new braiders.

Price: $
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