Ah fast fashion. It’s what most retailers rely on us buying into- and most of us do (including me). I mean, you’re talking to a gal that just impulse bought a Love Island tee knowing the slogan emblazoned on the piece will probably be out of use within the next few weeks… But what if you’re feeling those tight purse strings mid-month, but the dress of dreams just so happens to appear in your inbox?! (those darn e-commerce emails get me every time). Here are my tips on how I buy new clothes, and save a little dollar in the process.
Dress: Lazy Oaf at ASOS
Bag: Skinny Dip (similar)
This one may seem a little obvious, but it has to be said. A number of retailers will end up designing similar dresses at a variety of different prices! For example, this year’s embroidered lace IT dress from H&M was around the £70 mark, where as I found a number of counterparts for almost half the price in shops like New Look and TK Maxx. It really is worth looking in several places, and if it comes to a brand you love, they may be supplied elsewhere at a different price. Smaller companies like Monki have products on their website that also sit on ASOS at a different price- I always check both before I commit to buying one- just make sure you factor in shipping too!
SAVE ON ACCESSORIES
Accessories can often make the outfit, but they can add up. You might think the odd choker here and there isn’t too bad, but before you know it, you’ve got 10 pairs of statement earrings and you’ve spent almost £150! Costume jewellery discolours and doesn’t last long, so treat them thus. Stores like H&M and Primark have really good value jewellery, it’s also worth having a little look in their sale section, as pieces can be reduced to crazy prices like 50p.
WAIT FOR THE SALE
I know, I know, there’s that phrase “once it’s gone, it’s gone” for a reason- but sometimes it really is worth waiting a little while longer. The perfect time to wait for a piece is when the mid-season sales are creeping in. A lot of stores tend to bring in extra stock, or past season stock, but they do also reduce the current season stock too. You might be able to bag your dream piece for a fraction of the price!
PETITE? TRY THE TEEN SECTION
Something I’ve always done is had a little look in the teen sections of a number of stores, especially New Look. I really like their 915 shoe section (see my pictured sandals!) and their shoe sizes are exactly the same as the adults. Teen clothing can offer a variation on womenswear, for a more reasonable price so if you’re petite (by this I mean short, haha) like me, try it out!
EBAY IS YOUR FRIEND
Seriously though. The finds on there in recent times have been amazing. Sometimes I want a piece that’s a little quirky and eBay really blows me away- take for instance my flame socks. Hello £1.68 with free shipping! Just watch out for the location of the item- mine came from China and took a couple of weeks to arrive- if it’s from China, you can rest assured it will take up to a month- but to me it’s worth it for something a little unique.
MAKE A DEAL WITH YOURSELF
I often make a deal that I will sell my old clothes to the value of the product I want to buy. For example if there’s a £40 Henry Holland tee I REALLY NEED, I’ll sell my old clothes on Depop until I reach the value. It makes you really feel like you’ve earned it, and you’ve potentially gained a whole load of wardrobe space. It’s a win/win really.
CHECK OUT THE MEN’S SECTION
Yes, really. The amount of Justin Biebs tees I’ve seen in the men’s and women’s sections that are miles apart in terms of price are astounding. I’m someone who loves an oversized piece, and you can often find that a large men’s tee could turn into your new favourite dress and be half the price. I recommend Boohoo Man for cheap and cheerful alternative to womenswear, they also do 50% everything, A LOT.
GOOGLE THE OFFERS
The mistake I’ve made time and time again is to impulse buy something before then finding a useful web code afterwards that could have saved me a few bucks. Before you think about pressing purchase, have a wee google for vouchers- check the retailer’s social media accounts too- Twitter is a good place to start for temporary codes they might have on, and their Instagram Stories is growing popular for advertising savings they may have. Another idea is to leave your shopping in the basket. Sometimes you receive an email with a small discount to give you an incentive to checkout- try it out!
Do you have any tips or tricks?
Photos by the wonderful Lelore