Woman holding envelope with dollars


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The "money-saving" envelope challenge is a trend that's been swirling around on TikTok for the last two years, and although it presents itself as an easy way to save a bunch of money, all we can see are the gaping holes in the logic. Where some watch videos of the challenge and feel inspired to go forth and save, we watch them and say to ourselves, "How in the actual hell do people think this is the secret formula to a bulging bank account?"

Here's the idea: You label 100 different envelopes with numbers 1-100. On day one, you grab the envelope labeled "1" and add $1 to it, and so on. By day 100, you'll have $5,050. You can also number your envelopes by 2's (from 2-200) if you're aiming to save $10,000 in 100 days. Makes sense. It's simple. It's straightforward. We just have one question that we can't hold back, no matter how hard we want to let these lovely TikTok savers have their moment and bask in bills: "Where in the bloody hell is the money coming from?!" 

If you're living paycheck to paycheck and you've taken to TikTok in search of creative ways to save money, scroll right on by the envelope challenge. We hate to break it to you, but if you don't make thousands more than what you need to pay your bills over the course of 100 days, this challenge is not within your realm of possibility.

Gallery: 31 Simple Ways to Save Money Every Day of the Month

Now, we will admit that the envelope escapade might work for a specific group of people — and those people look a lot like TikTok influencers with beautiful homes, millions of followers, and flashy endorsements. If you're someone who makes a lot of money, and you have plenty of excess cash but spend rather than save it, this challenge is feasible. But if you can't pull a Benjamin out of your ass on a random Wednesday to stuff it into an envelope, this one's a resounding "nope."

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