Having a tight budget may make you feel like you can’t afford to look nice. Fortunately, that isn’t the case! Whether you need a new outfit for work or an entire wardrobe, you can look like a million bucks while finding style for less. Here are six tips to help you save money on clothing:
Only Buy What You Love
Consumer culture likes you to believe that you need a huge wardrobe, and that you should wear something different every day of the week. As a result, you may purchase a lot of things you don’t need or particularly love. A few weeks into owning it, you stop wearing it.
Next time you go shopping, only purchase the garments that leave a mark on you. For example, that dress that makes you feel like a million bucks is a better investment than the blouse your friends loved.
Hit the Sale Section
Beeline to the back of the store when you go clothing shopping. This corner is where you’ll make a miraculous discovery: the sale section. This little slice of heaven is a blessing for budget shoppers who still want to look their best because it’s full of discounted and quality items.
Read: Wasting Money on “Deals”
Avert your eyes from those fancy mannequins—they may be tempting, but they only sport the new (and expensive looks). As with anywhere else in the store, search the sale section for your size. Do note that if you find something you absolutely love that’s slightly too big, you can get it tailored. However, only spring for pieces that need fitting if they are high quality, otherwise they aren’t worth the service.
Shop at Discount Stores
Places like T.J.Maxx are a godsend. You save money because they sell designer labels for a fraction of the cost. How? Well, many of the pieces are either overstock or out of season and the designer is having trouble selling it.
Be aware of the quality of the clothing you pick out at these stores. Not all the pieces are high-end or well-made. Seek labels you know and love first before settling on a brand you aren’t familiar with.
Additionally, learn how to identify garments that are created well. Look at the composition of the fabric by checking the garment tag. One mark of a high-quality piece is that it uses natural fibers or strong blends. Cotton and polyester, for example, are a notoriously bad blend. Well-constructed pieces also have straight seams, extra notions (buttons), smaller hems, and are often lined.
Be Diligent with Deals
Sign up for your favorite stores’ email lists. They send out coupons and warn you about upcoming sales. If you know you need a new dress for that wedding next month or it’s time to get more slacks for work, plan your shopping around those dates.
Read: How to Find Deals Online
Bring coupons with you to the store and be sure you select garments that fit the fine print. For example, the deal might be “40 percent off sale pieces.” If you aren’t careful, you might think the discount applies to the whole store.
Know When to Splurge
Saving money on most of your clothing is a good thing, but there are times you might want to pay full price. Tank tops and other basics are great to buy at a cheaper store, because they’re really only meant for layering.
However, don’t purchase a sequin-covered blouse at an economy shop. Take special care with sequins and beading because a poorly constructed garment will fall apart quickly. These two types of items are good ones to splurge on to ensure the decoration remains in tact for a long time.
Care For Your Clothes
Once you have a quality wardrobe, take care of it! Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when washing your clothes—it will make them last longer and you’ll get more bang for your buck. After all, clothing that falls apart quickly will have to be replaced sooner, which could cost you more money in the long run.
When something rips or breaks, fix the piece; don’t throw it out. Your zippers and hems can be replaced, a torn lining can be remade, and garments can always, always be tailored. If you follow these steps, you’ll have a few pieces that will last for generations.