Fashion Friday: Outlets 101

Like a lot of people, I like name brands. The main reason is because I love the quality of the items, and how they can last for several years to come. One thing that I don’t love about designer brands? The price tag.

Enter in my love for the outlets. I am fortunate enough to live near not one but three outlet malls. Well, they are about a 30 minute drive away from me, but it’s worth the extra trip.

Many people often diss the outlets, because they have last season’s style or maybe be not what the original stores have. I think that may have been true in the past, but nowadays, I think they have evolved to being just as comparable as the same items as you see in Macy’s. The only difference is that they are cheaper. At least, that’s the only difference that I could find.

And, the savings is substantial. I often find Micheal Kors purses, normally prices at $398 for as little as $80. Furthermore, I also have found Coach Wallets, normally priced at $275, for $60. The same with clothes. I go to the Banana Republic outlet, and often walk out with shirts that are about ten dollars.

Now, with that being said, it can be easy to go crazy with your wallet with all of these good deals. Therefore, here are some of my secrets on ensuring that you get the best deals.

  1. Check out the clearance bins: One of the best things about the outlets? The clearance rack. Many of the ones that I go to often have save an extra 50 percent off in addition to the already reduced price. For example, last weekend I went to the Banana Republic outlet. I found a sweater that was marked to $50, something that I need because I lost a few pounds since my mom died, and none of my clothes are fitting properly. Clearance that day was marked to an additional 50 percent off. So, I paid $24 for a heavy sweater that actually fit.
  2. Log into your phone: One of the cool things about the outlet malls is that many of them are online now. And, if you create an account — which is free, you can access many of them have save an extra ten percent if you spend this. So, if you’re already buying that amount anyways, why not pile a few of the extra savings?
  3. Bring cash: This is what I do to stick to my budget. I get cash, and leave my debit cad at home. Once I’m out of cash, I’m done for the day. This way, I can make sure that I am staying within my means without going overboard.
  4. Do your research: I try to go once every few months, but I try to have a game plan of places that I want to go. If I know I want jeans, I go to the Gap outlet, since they have them for twenty dollars. If I know I want sweaters or dresses, I go to Banana Republic, because the clearance rack is the best place to score them. If I want a new crossbody, I go to Micheal Kors, since I love theirs. I also try to look up those items online so that way I know if I am getting a good deal or not.
  5. Shop around before buying: I often make a few rounds around before actually purchasing something. That way, I know what I want after I see everything and can make purchases I truly love. Last year, I went to the outlets the day after my birthday, and I wanted to treat myself to a purse. I found I liked, left and walked around for a bit. Once I realized that was the one I wanted, I went back and got it. I often find that if you need to think about it, you probably don’t want it. But, if you fall in love with it the second that you lay eyes on, it probably is something you’d be disappointed if you walked away from.
  6. Only shop outlets: Almost all of the items I purchase are from the outlet because I like to save. Therefore, I only shop there. This is already a great way to save, because chances are, you’re not paying regular price for any of it? See, already smart shopping.

Hopefully these tips can help you score some major deals the next time you head to the outlets!

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