Think of the sales as a high-stakes international spying operation – and you’re James Bond. You need to approach it with calm, precision and a clear plan, otherwise you’ll end up with ill-fitting yellow shirts you’ll never wear, and another pair of black skinnies to add to your already dozens-strong collection. Whether you’re shopping in store or online, you need to keep your wits about you to ensure you get the best deals on things you’ll actually wear. Want to know how the pros shop the sales? We have all the insider tips and tricks…
1. KNOW WHAT YOU WANT
Don’t go in blind – go through your entire wardrobe and make a wish list of any gaps you need to fill. Maybe you’re trusty LBD is looking a bit well-worn, or you want to inject a bit of colour with a few new shirts. Don’t forget your underwear, socks and pyjamas drawers either. This way, you’ll know what to look out for and won’t feel so overwhelmed, which only leads to impulse shopping.
2. IF IT DOESN’T FIT, DON’T BUY IT
Make this your mantra. It doesn’t matter how much you love something, or how deep the discount is – if it doesn’t fit you, don’t buy it, because you’ll never wear it. Leave it for someone who it will fit, who will give it a good home.
3. ASK YOURSELF, WOULD I HAVE PAID FULL PRICE FOR THIS?
If you’re in two minds about something, ask yourself if you would’ve bought it full price. If the answer is no, put it back – you don’t really love it and you certainly don’t need it.
4. STOCK UP ON QUALITY BASICS
The sales are when you get to fill your wardrobe with quality basics at a fraction of the price – especially for those items we tend to skimp on. Brows shops you might not normally go into because they’re too pricey and look out for cosy socks, beautiful sleepwear and wardrobe basics like white and black shirts.
5. SPOIL YOURSELF WITH A FEW LUXURY ITEMS AT A CHEAPER PRICE
Love a scented candle? Grab a few fancy ones on sale. The same for bath products, perfume and luxurious body cream – if not for yourself, you can stock up your gift cupboard to spoil your friends with something indulgent on their birthdays.
6. LOOK FOR INVESTMENT PIECES
A camel coat, a leather handbag, quality boots and shoes – if you can score an investment piece on sale, do it.
7. DO YOUR YEAR’S BIRTHDAY SHOPPING
Make a list of people you need to buy birthday presents for throughout the year, and keep an eye open for things they’d like. This will also prevent the dreaded last-minute shopping dash!
8. WEAR AN OUTFIT YOU CAN EASILY GET OUT OF IN CHANGING ROOMS
Now is not the time to show off your layering skills – wear slip-on shoes, a loose-fitting dress that can easily be pulled over your head, and a crossbody bag to keep your hands free for rummaging.
9. CHECK THE RETURNS POLICY
If you can return something you’re not 100% certain about, rather get it and take it home to see how it fits into your wardrobe, safe in the knowledge that you can take it back. If you can’t do any refunds, be very sure you like something and it fits before buying it.