Never Pay Retail Again

Natural Hair for the Holidays

One of the biggest problems with being a fashion enthusiast is the cost. When you have very specific taste, finding the things you want can be expensive and it's not easy on the wallet. At the same time, one of the greatest advantages of being a fashion student is knowing cost of production, markup percentages, and the power of a brand name.

On average, everything you buy at the mall is marked up 40% from wholesale prices. This is done so that the retailer selling the product makes a profit after buying it from the wholesaler. Knowing this, paying full price at an average retail store makes me cringe but I always know that I don't have to spend that kind of money. 

Winter Fashion Inspiration

I have been known to stalk items until they're at a price I like: returning to stores periodically to check on a particular pair of shoes may look strange to others but I think it's smart.

If you love fashion but hate paying an arm and a leg for it, read my tips for shopping on a budget.

1. Know your stores and their markdown schedule. For example, Target marks down women's apparel every Tuesday so if you have something that you've been looking at, check on a Tuesday.

2. Know your numbers. As someone who has worked retail I always know that an initial markdown is NOT the final markdown. Generally speaking, if a price ends in a 9 or an 8 it will be marked down again but a price ending in 5 or 4 is probably the final clearance price.

3. Ask yourself, "Is this a good deal?". If you're looking at a shirt and it's two dollars off a thirty dollar price tag, it's probably not a great deal.

4. Sign up for store loyalty programs. If you shop at a store religiously and you continue to turn down their requests to join their loyalty programs you are losing money! I know the emails can be annoying but the store also sends you coupons and you can receive points for every dollar spent which will eventually lead to money off future purchases.

5. Shop off price stores. I'm not a huge fan of thrifting as I can never find what I like but I love shopping off price stores like T.J. Maxx and Marshall's. The fur jacket featured in this post is a Michael Kors piece from T.J. Maxx. The original price was over three hundred dollars but I was able to purchase it for only ninety nine dollars.

jeweled top and faux leather pants

Hopefully these tips will help you guys with some bargain shopping this season. What are your favorite places to look for a deal.

Until Next Time...