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Shopping is something that many people enjoy. It can be exciting walking out of the store with a new piece to add to your wardrobe. It can also be frustrating when you get home and realize you should’ve gotten a size up and you can’t return it because you got it on sale (I’ve been caught in that situation way too many times). There are many little things I sometimes forget to do that can help with getting the most out of your shopping experience. Ever since I became a conscious shopper, I find myself feeling a lot more satisfied with my purchases. The tips below are for in-store shopping; online shopping is a lot different.
Consider your closet.
When you’re walking into a store, mentally go through your closet and see what you need, want, and have. Keep all of those things into mind while choosing what to buy. If you see yourself wanting to buy something, but you have the same thing at home in a different color, you most likely shouldn’t get it, unless it is something that you already wanted before you came, or shoes. Shoes are a different story LOL.
We all have a mental checklist (or physical) of different clothes we want to buy. Be sure to keep those in mind too because you don’t want to go home and realize you had the opportunity to buy something you’ve been wanting for a really long time and you didn’t.
Another thing is to only buy things that you can match with what you have. Unless you are going out and buying a complete outfit, make sure you have something to go with it. Sometimes I’ll see something that is super cute and I plan out an outfit in my head. Looking back at those outfits I planned, I only owned one piece of clothing from that outfit so I never wore it.
Choose a “category.”
This one is especially useful if you’re shopping on a budget. When you go shopping, it’s tempting to want to grab everything you find appealing. This probably isn’t the best strategy because you can end up spending money on things you don’t need while you urgently need something else.
Choosing a category just means that you’re choosing a certain type of clothes to buy and sticking to it. The category doesn’t have to be anything fancy or specific, it can just be as simple as “I need more workout clothes” or “I need more sweaters/shirts/etc.” It really helps when it comes to choosing what to buy.
Try it on.
This one is pretty self-explanatory. I used to think that after a certain amount of time, I would “learn” what my body looks like. I almost never get the right size. I would buy something with the intentions of it being oversized and it would be too tight and vice versa. Dresses can also get tricky because the school I go to has a really strict dress code. I’ll buy a dress thinking it is long enough, and then I put it on and realize that there is no way that I’ll be able to leave the dorm in it.
Set a spending limit.
Setting a spending limit will help you make sure that you are getting the most out of your purchases. When you just spend money without taking into consideration the limit, you can easily end up buying things you don’t need. If you have a limit to the amount of money you want to spend, then you will be forced into buying only the things that you really want/need, making sure you're getting the most out of your purchases.
Thrifting comes in very handy when it comes to saving money. You can find many quality pieces for half the price. It is also a really good way to find unique clothes that you probably won’t be able to find in store anywhere else.
If you don’t love it, don’t buy it.
There are times when you see something that you like and you might even have the perfect outfit at home to wear it with. But the thing is, you don’t LOVE it, you just really like it. Most of the time if you buy something you don’t love, you won’t wear it as much as you plan to. Sometimes, you can get home and end up not liking it at all. The other times when you do buy something that you do love, you will find a bunch of different ways to wear it. And even if you go over your spending limit, you won't regret it because of how much you love it.
I hope that these tips will make your trips to the mall more successful and fulfilling. Shopping, believe it or not, is an art. The way you dress is a form of self-expression. Be sure to keep that in mind while shopping. Don’t buy something because everyone else has it, buy it because YOU want it.