The Surprising Thing People Are Spending Their Tax Returns On

Photographed by Nicolas Bloise.
Tax season is about as fun as a waxing session, but if there's anything about it that's guaranteed to lift your spirits, it's the promise of getting a big fat check from the IRS once the painful filing process is over. After all, nothing can make you feel as if you've won a round of Wheel of Fortune quite like the sound of $1,500 hitting your bank account. (Refunds can feel like monopoly money in that way.)
How to celebrate Uncle Sam's kindness then becomes the question. You see, you could put your refund toward next year's taxes. You could be fiscally responsible and tuck a lump sum away in your savings. Or maybe, if you're a beauty fanatic, you could blow every penny in one place — on the likes of facials and lipstick and Botox, oh my. Because there's no better time to treat yo' self.
A survey conducted by RealSelf, the cosmetic surgery forum, revealed that four out of 10 people will be rushing to their derm's office for cosmetic treatments. More specifically: One-third of respondents want to put that little extra swag toward Botox, lip filler, or cellulite treatments. That's a huge spike from last year's numbers, when only 13% said they'd be splurging in that particular way. (Keep in mind that this survey is being done with people who frequent the forum, so it's not completely unbiased.)
For weeks, people have been sharing what they'll be doing with their refunds with the Twittersphere. One user asked: "Should I spend my tax return money on Beyoncé tickets or Botox?" Others openly declared their intentions and made no apologies.
At the end of the day, you do you. But quick reality check before you drop $733 at Sephora: It has always been your money — the government was just holding on to it for the year. As long as you remember that, let your "free money" flag fly.
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