As we all know, shopping big retail can be very stressful and overwhelming. The carts, the screaming kids, the aisles, and the smell of pizza! Well, that’s where I come in. I shop at these stores almost everyday to find items to use on my blog.  I’ve done the ground research for you and I’ve learned the hard way. Here are my 6 tips for achieving a successful, efficient and stress-free shopping experience:

1. Prioritize Your “Needs”
Always write a list of what you need that your closet lacks, in order of importance. Now, break that list down by what you want to cross off this shopping trip. This is not a “wish”list, this is a need list. When you’re deciding what to write, try and choose things that you can wear multiple ways so you can kill two or three pieces with one stone. For example, if you need a black mini skirt and a strapless tube top, choose one that can be worn as both!

2. Set a Budget
Analyze that list and give an estimate of how much everything should cost. Compare that amount to how much you can actually spend without being irresponsible. Don’t bring more cash than you can spend and bring a calculator with you so you can add everything up as you’re shopping. If you find something that requires the majority of your budget then you should either pass on it or pass on everything else on your list.

3. Schedule Your Shopping
Look up the business hours for the store you’re going to and try and go as early as possible so you can avoid the crowds and be the first to hit the sales rack! Set a time limit for yourself so you don’t over do it and expend all your energy in one trip. I recommend capping it at an hour and half per store. Once you have numbers 2 and 3 organized, shopping should go a lot faster!

4. Come Armed and Ready
Wear something comfortable, espectially when it comes to your footwear. I’d recommend either flats or sneakers. Big box stores have a lot of ground to cover and the floors can often be slippery so this is not the time to be running around in heels. Bring a purse you can wear across your shoulder. If not, you’ll be tempted to put your bag in the cart as you’re looking around and you don’t want to risk it being stolen!

5. Be Open Minded
Don’t get sucked into how stores present the clothes. Give the clothes a chance. One of the ways discount stores can offer such affordable prices is by cutting back on merchandising and display costs. YPick something off the rack that initially calls to you and try and picture it out of the store and in the hands or closet of someone whose style you admire.

6. Buy What You Love
If you didn’t love it on your first try, chances are you never will. “Kind of” liking something is no excuse to buy it! If you can’t decide, walk away. Sometimes a little distance can help you make the right decision. The item will most likely be there the next day, and if not, trust that it wasn’t meant to be. If the store permits it, put the item on hold for as long as possible and come back if you decide you can’t live without it.

Hope you enjoyed these tips!



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