Whether you’re prepping for back-to-school or stocking up on fall essentials, it’s always beneficial to be a smart shopper. Planning ahead will not only prevent you from bulk purchasing clothes you don’t need, but it’ll also serve as a reminder of what you already own. Follow these three steps to save yourself time and money next time you head to the store.
Check what garments are in the back of your closet for the upcoming season. Has your situation changed since this time last year? For example, did you start a new job that has a more formal dress code? Or, did you move to a location with a warmer climate?
Our bodies constantly change and, unfortunately, our weights fluctuate. So even if there are staples you think will fit again this year, try on those questionable pieces. There’s no shame in needing to move up/down a size. During this process, check that the items are in good shape – no holes, pit stains, or other cosmetic issues. No one enjoys having to say goodbye to a past love – like that broken-in sweater you’ve had for a decade – but use this opportunity to clean house of pieces not progressing your wardrobe.
Make a list
Now that you know what your closet is lacking, it’s time to refine what you need to purchase. Instead of making a laundry list of things to buy, set specific goals. The most important goal involves determining a budget you can actually afford and will stay within.
Then, separate the “needs” from the “wants.” What are the must-haves? Basic t-shirts, undergarments, and pieces you’d wear 1-2 times a week fall under this category and should be priorities. What items would be nice to find but aren’t necessities? Trend pieces compose most of this group. By thoughtfully creating this shopping list, you can enter each store with a mission. This approach will proactively squash your desire to impulse buy.
For you busy bees, try dedicating a certain day or few hours to conquer your shopping. This way you’ll be mentally prepared and willing to try things on.
While browsing through racks or in the fitting room, ask yourself if you LOVE the item and could see yourself wearing it. If you cannot confidently say yes to both questions, chances are you won’t miss that piece once you walk out the store. A day or two after the spree, sift through your purchases in the comfort of your home, without sales associates, visual merchandising, or a time crunch influencing your opinions. If you’re just as excited to wear what you bought – success! On the other hand, if you’re still unsure about a piece or forgot you have a similar garment in your closet, rethink the items and consider returning them.
No matter what’s on your list, confidence and well-fitting clothes are a killer combo.