I am actually not much of a sales shopper, I’ve never truly loved what I’ve found in the sale and to be honest, most of the (expensive) stuff I like never goes into the sale! But as a Fashion Editor and having written tons of articles in this vein in the past, I feel it’s my duty to offer some advice if you did want to brave the sales.
Only buy something you were after pre-sale
Let’s start with the obvious here, what I’m basically saying is ‘don’t get caught up in the hysteria’. There may be 75% off that particular item but if you weren’t interested full price, have no place to store it etc, don’t buy it.
Give yourself a financial buffer
I play by this rule a lot. I see something I love and don’t buy it straight away, I think about it, if I’m out I go for lunch and aim to come back, or if it’s online I potter around the house or go back to it in the morning. If I still can’t stop thinking of the item, then it’s potentially a good buy. 9 times out of 10 I decide it was probably a bit silly and I didn’t really need that Japanese scrubbing brush that looked essential at the time.
Look to interiors
So not everyone is as interiors obsessed as me, I know, but generally interiors last longer, the majority is ‘one size fits all’ and you’re more likely to get larger discounts the bigger the item.
A lot of people have a ‘one in, one out’ rule and I think it’s great, helps make these purchases more circular. I try and sell items first if I want to purchase something big to help pay for it – you’ll be surprised at what sells, trust me!
Let’s face it, most items in the sale are because they don’t have as much longevity. But there are certain brands who simply replenish stock and reduce old season’s prices to clear the old. Brands that I would look to (and have done in the past) for (reduced) items that last are: The White Company bath towels and bed linen, classic knitwear from brands like J Crew on Net A Porter, a great winter coat from somewhere like Whistles (remember my navy coat from around 5 years ago? It was a £100 sales purchase).
Look for higher quality pieces
We’re all slowly looking towards better fabrics that last, correct? I try and use the sales to afford the best quality item I can buy, which I couldn’t quite afford at full price (or didn’t want to prioritise, anyway). These brands for me are the upper end of the High Street: J Crew, Sandro, Madewell etc.
Turn off social media
Even I won’t be offended! It’s okay to mute people or decide to not look at your phone in triggering times. I have really stepped back from the buy buy buy culture on social media, and being on social media less and changing who I follow has really helped balance this for me.