Are You Making These Common Mistakes When Shopping the Sale Section?

There's an art to shopping the sale racks. Are you doing it right?
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Sale sections are a fashion girl's paradise, but can be full of potential pitfalls. With the internet making shopping even easier, every store's sale section is bursting with pieces that are as accessible as a tap and a shipping confirmation email. 

With such unrestricted freedom, that power can get to your head. Before you know it, you can end up with a maxed credit card and a closet stuffed with clothes -- none of which you actually want to wear. How did this happen?

Read on to see the three mistakes you're probably making when shopping on-sale items - and how to fix them.

1. You're Shopping at the Wrong Stores

The hallmark of a good sale section is that you can find pieces you would love to wear, that you could technically afford, at a discounted price. 

I'm not saying shopping a sale section isn't a time commitment -- but I am saying you're wasting your time at certain stores. 

You're wasting your time at the sale section of a Forever 21 or an H&M. Those clothes are already pretty cheap, so if you're shopping their sale sections, you're wading through picked-over items from last season that didn't sell for some reason. Your time and money are better spent elsewhere.

Instead, you should peruse the sale sections at mid-range price stores. Think Revolve, Urban Outfitters, Nasty Gal, Nordstrom Rack. These are stores that have (mostly) quality clothing, so if it's on sale, it's not because it's defective, hideous, or stained. You're not going to find out that the shirt is torn in two places or the jacket doesn't zip by the time you get home.

But what about luxury stores? There, it's too easy to blow a lot of money on a "good deal." Yeah, so what if that $500 top is now fifty percent off? It's still about $200 more than most college students can likely afford. Respect your wallet and unless you're flush with cash and ready to invest in something timeless, do some digging for a good dupe.

Of course, miracles happen and a Forever 21 skirt on sale becomes a wardrobe staple or a killer Gucci dress is somehow marked down to $100. But if you're looking to make sale sections a bigger part of your wardrobe, the majority of your attention should be focused on your mid-range stores.

2. You're Too Fixated on "Deals"

"One-day only," "70% OFF," "3 Items Left!" How many times have we heard these slogans attached to a sale and bought into it? 

All of these slogans are thrown out by the manufacturer to make you want to buy something RIGHT THEN. Some stores have one-day sales that extend into three. Others have 70% off sales every week. 

Don't allow yourself to be intimidated by the threat of imminent markup. In other words, don't impulse buy.

3. You Don't Shop Like You Normally Would

This is perhaps the biggest problem that affects sale shoppers. People become less picky than usual in the sale section and this is the absolute wrong approach.  

Too often, people look at a marked-down piece and overlook its flaws. Maybe they only kind of like it. Maybe it doesn't go with anything they own. Maybe it fits wrong. But because it's on sale, because the price is right, or because there's only one left, they buy it. 

You should never relax your standards for a piece, no matter what it costs. Otherwise you will end up with a wardrobe full of pieces you don't wear. And that is an even bigger waste of money than spending a little extra for something you WILL wear.

Be picky about your wardrobe, clearance section or not. No matter the price, if you don't love it, don't buy it.

Now, for some good deals...

blue floral blouse, white sneakers. leather jacket, lipstick, red shorts, orange bag, striped shirtdress

Products: Blue Top - Revolve, Sneakers - Hunter, Leather Jacket - Nordstrom Rack, Lipstick - MAC, Shorts - Revolve, Bag - Dooney and Bourke, Shirtdress - Revolve

Every piece is on sale and, in my opinion, worth your money. Shop away!

What Do You Think?

Are you a sale section maven? Love a good deal? Have any pro tips? Let us know in the comments!

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