This is such a HOT topic now especially since we are a cost-of-living crises. As the season heats up with all our shows, I am inundated with questions of where to spend and where to save when it comes to a competing.
These are my top tips on where to spend money and where to save money if you are competing this year or if you are competing in multiple shows.
This is a 10 minuteread.
Splurge : Registration Fees
You will have to spend money on your category fee and entry registration. This is a no brainer, so make sure plan ahead using the bodybuilding show calendar to plan well in advance of your show dates so that you do not leave registering to the last minute.
Splurge : International Show Travel
If you are doing an international show, then expect costs to RISE quite substantially as you will need to book for flights and other travel to and from the airport.
Save by booking hotels with a partner or another competitor.
Splurge : New Bikini Purchase
If this is your first year of competing, you will most likely be purchasing a new bikini. We find that most new competitors get swept into the waves of competing and will purchase a new bikini anywhere from £400 to £650. This will be on of your MAJOR EXPENSES for the year.
If you are purchasing a season bikini and you plan on doing more than one show in a different federation, I suggest purchasing a bikini top with two different style bottoms that will be appropriate for the various shows you decide to compete in.
We work with Angel Competition Bikinis based in the USA (use code: BUFF for 10% off) and we also work with BKB Bikini Mama based in the UK.
Save : Rent a Bikini
You can save expenses by renting a bikini. Rentals will usually cost around £120 per week. If you plan on doing X3 shows this is £360 for the year and slightly less than what you will pay for a fully crystallised bikini. We work with Bikini Mama in the UK who stocks over 100 rental bikinis. UK rentals only.
Save : DIY Tanning
Okay so this is one of my competing gripes. I personally love a DIY tan, but some shows prefer you to have the show day tan service, and this will cost anywhere from £45 to £120 depending on the federation.
If you can DIY tan yourself, this will cost around £40 and a DIY tan kit will last for X2 maybe even X3 shows.
If you are unable to DIY tan completely due to show regulations, then check if the tan service offers a topcoat only option. This way, you can then DIY tan yourself and get the show topcoat to match to the competitor’s colour. This topcoat option will be cheaper than the full tan service.
If you are new to bodybuilding competitions, we suggest getting the full tan service until you get more experience with how to DIY tan yourself for show day.
Save : Hotels & Travel
If you plan your shows carefully, you can travel to the venue and back in one day, however if you live more than 2 hours away from the show venue then we suggest booking a hotel. Hotels are at your discretion but sharing a room with another competitor is way to bring the cost down.
We love train rides, but they are very unpredictable given strike action so driving is your best option. Personally, I always find it more fun to travel with a show supporter or fellow competitor and you can split the fuel costs. If one of you drives to the venue and the other on the return journey you can split travelling journey.
Save : Jewellery & Heels
You will need posing heels for every category apart from WPD and Women’s Bodybuilding. If you are on a budget, clear heels are perfect and can be upgraded in the future. You can find a selection of our posing heels which range from £60 to £75 here.
Jewellery is easy as there is a lot of options on the website. We love our collection of earrings which you can find here. For most categories, one pair of earrings, two bracelets with one being thin and other thick and a ring will do.
Save : Makeup & Hair
I have a rule, if you cannot do makeup, then get it booked. If you can do makeup, then save here where possible and always use fake lashes. If you are looking for an MUA we work with Ray Ray, please see her dates for makeup shows in the UK.
Hair, nails, and other grooming is at your discretion, and this can be done as DIY or booked as part of your show day look.
Choose Wisely : Coaching
I have left this last because most competitors are now coached and coaching expenses range anywhere from £145 to £300 per month depending on the coach and what service is offered. I would say that more expensive coaching is not always better and new coaches who have done one season of bodybuilding are not yet experienced enough to assist with this kind of prep programme.
Do try find a reputable coach but someone you can work with for at least a year because 12 months is the minimum time you will spend with a coach.
We hope you have enjoyed the basics or where you can save and spend. If you have found this helpful then please like, share and send to a friend.