Friday, April 22, 2011

Frugal Fashion Friday - Never Pay Full Price

The other day, I watched the TLC show, Extreme Couponing.  Saving is an amazing concept and getting items at a discount is an aspiration of mine as well. What floored me about this show is excess under the guise of saving.  The people profiled spend tons of time each week collecting coupons, clipping coupons and scouring sale flyers.  I understand the thrill of the challenge to save. However, when you have a stock pile of toilet paper, deodorant and other items that your family won't be able to use in three lifetimes, I'm baffled that these people don't take that chance to save. The coupon savers got many of these items for mere pennies or in some cases, free.  That's fantastic for a family budget, but most of them shop like this weekly, further stock piling items. They shop three, four, five, times a week and more, every week.

One of the people featured donated hundreds of boxes of cereal to his local food bank.  It made me wonder why the other people weren't doing the same instead of stock piling items they won't ever use.  It's like organized hoarders.

I know what you're thinking. That's not fashion.  Well the show made me think about using coupons in general.  I've mentioned before that I'm not a coupon clipper.  Sitting with the paper clipping coupons isn't my idea of fun and to be honest, I'm not that disciplined. However, I do love to save money on items and get things at a discount. I've developed a few strategies for getting what I want without breaking the bank.

There are so many way to get the items you love at a discount.  Below are some of the ways I get new and on trend items for less than retail.

Sign Up
Not the Army silly. I mean email. When the retail market fell with the rest of the economy, most stores jumped on the discount code band wagon.  If you love a specific store, website or product, sign up for their email list.  You'll get sale notices and discount notices and coupon codes sent right to your email box. If you opt in, you'll also get coupons and offers mailed to you.

It's an extra step that's worth tons. Always do a Google or Bing search before you buy something online and even before you go to the store.  You never know what kind of discount you'll find. You may get a huge discount, free shipping or and in-store coupon.

Send an Email or Call
Don't be shy. If you love a product but can't find a coupon or code, write to or call the company.  I recently got a coupon for a beauty product I love, sent right to me.  When I couldn't find a discount, I sent an email to the company telling them how much I loved their product and asked if they had any discounts or offers that I could get online or that they could send to me. They were happy to oblige. They want to keep their loyal customers.

Look for Suitable Alternatives
You've seen my Moment of Lust feature. I am not a trust fund baby. Unfortunately, that means I can't buy everything I really want and some items will always be out of reach.  If I love a high end item that I can't afford, I either live with the disappointment or look for an alternative.  In our carbon copy society, there is always someone making a similar item for less. Please don't get me wrong. I'm not talking about buying a fake.  The money made from purchasing fake bags, shoes, etc. goes to support some horrible crimes, including terrorism, human trafficking, and drug trades. If you want to learn more go to the Harper's Bazaar site: Fakes are Never in Fashion. It has lots of information.

Shop Around and Be Patient
Take the time to look around at other sites and stores before dropping your hard earned cash on your first love.  Most mass produced items are sold at many stores, both online and brick and mortar. Look around for the best deal.  Wait a little while for a sale and a discount.  Yes, you take the chance of not getting your item but it's rare.  This also gives you the time to make sure that your love isn't really just lust.  You'll figure out in that time, if you just kind of want it or can't live without it.

Happy shopping Real Girls!  

Pin It!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...