A lot of my friends ask how I have enough money to afford all my clothes, makeup and gadgets, on a part time retail salary, and still have enough to pay rent and eat. I have s few shopping tips I have learned over the years to help me save money, and be able to spend accordingly to help stay on top of the seasons trends.
Tip #1: SAVE AND BUDGET
The first and i think most important tip is to SAVE SAVE SAVE! And by that I mean put some of each of your paycheck away in a savings account for a rainy day, house or car. I usually take half of my paycheck and put it away in a savings account. Getting paid every 2 weeks helps to build up some cash, as well as fund your spending habits. With the other half of your money left over, budget out necessary costs like rent, food, bills etc, as well as what you have left over to shop
Tip #2: GO THROUGH YOUR CLOSET
After saving some of your money, really go through your closet. Take out things that you don't ware anymore and give them to goodwill, sell them, or do a swap with friends! That's a great way to really know what you need, what you have, and how you can mesh new trends in with items you already have.
Tip #3: PLAN
If you're like me, you like to know whats going on in fashion, and you like to stay up to date with your wardrobe. One thing I do to help me stay ahead in fashion as well as finances, is to make of list of you 10 must haves for the season. This will help you focus on spending your money on only those items and not going crazy buying everything in fashion, which can get insane and pretty pricey.
Tip #4: BUDGET 2
Even though we've already budgeted out money once, you want to do it again for each item on your must have list. Split up your spending money based on how much you are willing to spend on each item, and if you need sooner or later. If its something you can wait on, that gives you time to save for it, and also to really think if you need it.
Tips #5: SECOND HAND, MALL OR DESIGNER
Another question you have to ask is whether you need to have the newest designer item, if you can find it in a mall or if you can visit a thrift store, and get the same look for much much less. I do have some friends that only buy name brands and designers, where as i could care less, and get the same wear and look for much less. If its a fashion item I say go for the knock off. Ya it might only last throughout that season, but how often does that fashion last longer then that? If your going to spend alot of money, it would be better to put it towards a basic or long lasting functional item.
Tip #6: PRE-SHOP
Before even leaving the house to find those 10 wonderful items, do a little pre-shopping online. No, don't actually spend any money, but shop around online for those specific things. Check the prices, the different styles, and also it will help you to plot out whereyour going to shop to spend your money efficiently and without getting side tracked by other outfits. All that's really left to do is find them in real life, try em on and see weather they work for your vision.
Tip #7: LEARN THE RETURN
Always know what the return policy is for each store, and item you buy. This will help in case when you bring the item home, you get that pang of buyers remorse. Also find out if the store has any other policies like price adjustments or no cash back.
Tip 8: KEEP THOSE RECEIPTS
Keep all of your receipts when shopping. I keep all of mine in a little organiser I got from the dollar store. It really helps if i ever need to return something, or need to remember what different stores return policies are.
Tip #9: DON'T BE AFRAID
Alot of my friends think I'm bold or shameless for taking back things that I don't want, or end up not wearing. Don't be afraid to return items, since that is what a return policy is for. The worst waste of money is buying something that you end up not liking or something that you need to buy more items to match with. Being stylish is all great and such, but its better to be able to pay the bills.
Tip #10: EXPENSES
At the end of each month, add up all of your expenses, any and everything that you have bought, and see if you've stayed within your budget. Its a great way to see if your managing your money well, or if you need to work a little harder to stay in bounds.
Speaking of new toys and shopping, I bought a new computer today! The 13 inch Macbook Pro and the Bamboo Splash<3! Now i will be blogging regularly, and also figuring out how to do some awesome drawings! Stay Tuned for more later! :D