'Real Housewives' star Bethenny Frankel goes holiday shopping at Dollar Tree: 'You don't need to spend a ton'

The entrepreneur became a self-made millionaire after founding her Skinnygirl lifestyle brand

Bethenny Frankel is showing her fans how to shop for the holidays on a budget.

The "Real Housewives of New York City" alum, who became a self-made millionaire after founding the Skinnygirl lifestyle brand, shared an Instagram video in which she set out to discover hidden gems at DollarTree.

"Can you find upscale holiday gifts at the DOLLAR STORE? Let’s find out together…," Frankel wrote.

bethenny frankel

bethenny Frankel took her fans inside her holiday shopping trip to Dollar Tree. ( Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Glamour / Getty Images)

"I'm at Dollar Tree," the television personality said while sitting in her car at the beginning of the video.


"The name of the game today is holiday gift ideas," she continued. "You don't need to spend a ton of money on holiday gifts. I've never been here at  Christmas time. Let's go."

Upon entering the store, Frankel spoke with a customer who expressed her doubts that the entrepreneur would succeed in her mission.

"She says it's a mess in here," Frankel said. "We're not going to find anything. I disagree with you."

Frankel's first find was a red and gold glass candleholder. "To me, this is a good gift. You could do these and buy little tea lights and put them in. We're going to do it together."

The former reality star next discovered a set of Christmas plates. "Yes. Set of holiday China, of course. What are we pairing it with? How are we packaging it? That's for later."


Among Frankel's other finds were Christmas gift tags, wrapping and wrapping paper. "Why are we buying these anywhere else," she asked as she looked for the "most sophisticated" picks.

However, she instantly dismissed a wall hung with Christmas colored-leis. 

"That's an immediate no. That's for getting off a plane in Hawaii," Frankel said. "Don't do it. They're not it."

Items that made it into Frankel's shopping cart included decorated socks, coffee ramblers, candles, kids' toys and Christmas decorations.

The "Celebrity Apprentice" alum also began selecting items to include in categorized gift baskets including beauty and bath products, hot chocolate, coffee mugs and candy.

"I'm going to do an assorted licorice basket," she noted..

Frankel gasped upon discovering a freezer filled with Talenti ice cream. "This is the biggest find of the day," she declared. 

bethenny frankel

"The Real Housewives of New York City" alum became a self-made millionaire after founding her Skinnygirl brand. (Bruce Glikas/Bruce Glikas/WireImage / Fox News)

The New York native explained that she planned to serve the ice cream to her guests at a Christmas party along with Pirouette cream-filled wafers. 

"Tons of stocking stuffers here," Frankel said. "I'm getting dehydrated now. This is what happens. I get excited. I don't breathe."

Frankel concluded her trip to Dollar Tree with a full shopping cart and the total cost of her purchases came to $137.82.


"We're going to show you how many gifts we make out of that. Insanity," she said. "I think it's going to be a lot of gifts and also stuff to decorate. Amazing."

"Moral of the story you don't have to spend a lot of money to create upscale gifts!" Frankel wrote at the end of her video.

Bethenny Frankel Business is Personal Book

Frankel previously expressed her enthusiasm for shopping at dollar stores during a June appearance on Fox Business.  (Celeste Sloman / Fox News)

Frankel previously expressed her enthusiasm for shopping at dollar stores during a June appearance on Fox Business. The author explained that she used to shop at the 99 Cent store when she was living in Los Angeles in her 20s.


"I remembered thinking that there were good things there," she said. 

Frankel continued, "And now knowing so much about marketing and packaging and so many different things being made in the same exact factories but packaged differently, I just wanted to sort of visit different dollar stores and see if they were at the level"

"Especially when it came to things we're buying all the time, like tape or pens or school supplies or gift bags, things for your teacher, your kids, teachers. Halloween. Easter. It became stupid. Why would you not buy it there? It's like, it's really the same. And they have great things there."