Tips to Keep Your Shopping on Track During Sale Season

dillards, west town mall, sale, how to shop a sale, shopping, semi-annual sale

Beginning Black Friday week through January clearance sales, its a workout just trying to hold onto your wallet and not buy every little thing you see on sale. At least that’s how I explain my brief absence in the gym *grimace face.

There are so. many. clearance sales going on right now with retailers tempting you with deep discounts so as to clear their shelves of merchandise and potentially clutter up your own. But we’re not going to let them! At least, not without forming a plan first…

I’ve put together shopping tips to help you navigate the sales and stay on track with both your budget and your style. And help you avoid adding more things to get rid of this spring when you’re no longer sale-drunk and ready to get rid of everything but your skivvies.

One: Look at what you own.
Devote as little or as much time to this as you’d like, but just be sure to get a good idea of what’s in your closet before walking out the door to shop.

This will do a couple things…It will dampen impulse buys because you laid eyes on the 4 leopard sweaters you already own (I’m looking at you, Elizabeth). And it will give you a clear direction of what you need especially if you’re passing a lot of pants but not a lot of sweaters or button up tops. One more thing it will do is show you how much room you have in your closet. If you’re already packed this will hopefully motivate you not to buy anything just because it’s on sale.

Two: Set boundaries.
Setting a budget is good, but take it one step further and carry that budget in cash. This will give you a tangible amount to spend and again help you avoid buying things just because they’re on sale.

Set a time frame for yourself as well. This is one of my favorite things to do because I can take forever making decisions sometimes, so the thrill of having a set time helps me become a hard-core decision maker. It really makes it into a game, which is fun and I always walk away with fewer impulse buys.

Take a friend! We all have friends we shop with that we know are going to get us to spend money – DON’T TAKE THAT FRIEND. Instead take the one that’s going to be realistic with you and ask the hard questions…”Do you REALLY need the sweater with the kitty cat floating in space??”

And remember the tried and true Walk Away Rule. If you walk away and you still think about it, go back. But if the item is forgotten the minute you spot pretzel bites then you didn’t really want it anyway.

Three: Know what to avoid…
Go into this knowing what your vices are. Mine? Black pants. Last count 17 pairs is what I own? SO knowing this and my love for leopard, anything I pick up in those categories have to go through a real strict process.

Again, take the sale goggles off and really look at something you’re wanting. Does it look cheap? Has it been tried on multiple times and look like it? Be sure you’re not drunk on the price scribbled in red pen and actually NEED what it is you’re holding.

Watch for overly trendy items. A cut or pattern that was super hot this season may not be by the time fall/winter rolls around next year.

Four: Know what to look for…
Basics like boots, blazers, jackets, button downs – those are all good items to load up on when they’re on sale this time of year. They’re usually high ticket items and if you get them at a quality store, they’ll last you a long, long time. So in your perusal of your closet in step number one look for anything that needs to be replaced/updated and shop for that.

Don’t be afraid to look for out of season items. Make sure they fit your style and fill a need and if so – go for it! You’ll love yourself when it comes time to switch over.

Whether you’re sale shopping or not, it’s always good to shop with these two things in mind that are really the basics for good style: does the item help you convey the message you want to send and does it make you feel good about yourself?

Sales going on:
Altar’d State: Extra 30% off sale (this discount will go even deeper, so look around now then if there’s something you’re on the fence about, check back later). This is a great place to stock up on jewelry!

Banana Republic: Extra 60% off sale styles and 40% off regular-priced items. The best place to get basics like good pants and button down shirts, sweaters, blazers (my favorite blazer came from them). If you need items for work – this is the place!

J Crew: 50% off sale items. Great place to get pieces for the holidays next year or (a swing in the opposite direction) items for your summer wardrobe.

Fiore Boutique: They are moving in the mall so they are having a moving sale with 70% off everything in the store! Start buying Christmas gifts for next year!

Dillard’s: They’re having a great sale on coats and boots and also a really good clearance event going on so check that out.

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