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6 Ways To Improve Your Shopping Strategy

Whether it be clothing, accessories, shoes, beauty products, or electronics we all have our guilty pleasures which we find excuses to spend that last dollar on when payday approaches. My personal guilty pleasure is clothing (obviously). 

Last year around this time I came to the realization that I could not stop thrift shopping, not to be confused with shop lifting lol, but It became a regular hobby of mine and it hit me hard as I saw there was a MAJOR problem with this. 

Most items I bought I either A. liked for one day and then never wore it again B. didn't fit because I couldn't try it on or C.  just wasn't practical and it was completely out of style. Eventually, I was stuck with all of these items in my closet taking up space to the point where I literally had no room and no time to organize it. 

The harsh reality I had to face was that my entire room was now turning into the closet. It felt like a virus was taking over my life! There was no organization, things were cluttered, there was dust in places I never thought possible, and it took me hours to find/think of an outfit to wear. 

By the time I was done choosing an outfit, I had a huge mess to clean up and a stress headache. A little like Kim Kardashian's recent instagram picture trying on outfits in front of the mirror with clothes sorted everywhere. Yes, I could relate. 

If you watched me trying on outfits it looked like pure hassle, and that's what you get when there are just TOO MANY OPTIONS and not enough space. Not attractive or cute if you have friends or even a bf over, especially if you have no time to keep up with the mess. Neither was it a convenience either, actually a hindrance on my style image. This really had to stop.

I had to come up with a different shopping strategy rather than collecting thrifted items I may have worn 2 percent of the time. I mean, thrift shopping does give us that instant gratification because if you do find that one piece that works for an incredible price, it pays off.  

In my case, it was creating more havoc than I could bear, so thrifting became my demise. Now, I usually just look for that one item that I cant seem to find at the regular retail stores, so I'm not loading my closet with charity items that are better off for someone that truly appreciates them. Bunch of problems solved, but my mind was still in need to shop.

I live in South Jersey and even though it seems like were in an interesting area of the world with cities and beaches and mountains nearby,winter is long, and gets a bit monotonous for me. Clothing/shopping can really inspire me to be more active sometimes. Whenever you look better, you feel better. 

An exciting outfit can make me want to go out and mingle around at a local sports bar, work out, or visit Atlantic City with a couple girlfriends.  Its easy to become addicted!  As far as clothing goes, I eliminated the excessive thrifting bouts to condense my wardrobe to something less time consuming and messy and came up with 6 ways to improve my shopping approach that Id like to share with you.  These tips I'm about to share are saving me the precious space needed in my closet,  time I should be spending with friends & family, and most importantly myself from looking like I always "woke up like this" .

#1. First things first, when focusing on shopping, find clothing/stores that match your overall "personality". There are different tests that can point you in a specific direction you can take online in about 2 minutes. They tell you whether you match the grunge, androgynous, bohemian, hipster, urban, sporty, romantic sense of style etc if you answer the questions truthfully. You could also just stick to light colors or dark colors. Whichever work best for you.  Then after you found your style personality/mood, find a store you like that sells multiple quality items or similar items.  I think this is a truly helpful tool if you have an issue figuring out where to start with your own unique style.

#2. Next, focus on a favorite color or scheme you find looks best

with your skin tone.  Then build your outfits off if it. Most people do this by identifying their undertone which is either warm or cool & then refer to the color wheel against their skin tone. You can also use trial and error, but this is a great article to find in depth info on using the color wheel and skin tone to complement you and your outfit. Visit it here.

#3. Check your favorite clothing websites at least every other week to keep up with the latest styles. Most retailers update their clothing periodically & seeing items on the model gives you a general idea of how the items fit and look, so you don't have to waste hours in the store searching for things you like once you're actually ready to buy. You can also get a better idea of what you'd wear vs not.  Lastly, this helps to keep your wallet in check! Just looking at websites is a trifecta for shop and style strategy.

#4.  Also, consider your build and what you want your clothing to do for you.  This will help you choose the flattering stuff. Do you want them to make you look shorter? Taller? Thinner? Sexier? Consider how loose or tight the garment fits and what parts of your body you think could use a little concealer or a little exposure. This forces us to see our imperfections and our assets, so its important. I tend to show curves with tighter fitting clothes and hide chub with flowier fitting items.

#5.  Bulk the basics. Get a bunch of basic tops with jeans, slacks, or a skirt that match your fav colors to wear. Then all you really have to do is worry about statement items and pieces to make the look more interesting. (such as watches, blazers, jewelry, jackets, shoes etc). This helps if youre going to be out all day and need to transition into night with the same outfit.

#6.  Lastly, pick items that fit your budget and wait to make a purchase if you don't have the money. Supply and demand is important now days, so chances are you'll find the item somewhere once you do have the money!

When it comes to my own closet I have to admit I am a sucker for black and I try to find statement items that will last me in this color. It goes well with my skin and it makes me feel more sophisticated.

I stay away from items that purely trend because they just go in and out like the wind. I like clothing that lasts and can be noted as "timeless" but also trending, so I'm not totally out of the loop.  It can be nice to switch up your style with some new trending item, but its sustainability isn't worth the price tag at times.

 Make sure to try and keep these items limited. It will save you the cash for the more high priced quality pieces!  I know this is cliche after what I mentioned about trends, but Kendall and Kylie Jenner are my latest inspiration for styling black items with different textures.

Black is my favorite color to wear day and night and makes it a no-brainer for matching other items to it. It looks classic, classy, sexy, and slimming! What else does a woman need? For me its perfect. 

As far as my personality goes, I think of myself to be stereotyped in the "plain jane" category (Im working on it). It works well for me because It makes shopping and styling simple.  I use unique statement pieces to brighten things up, dress things up, or make it fun such as a cool pop of color with interesting glasses, a nice watch, or a unique pair of shoes. 

I have found that anything plain with statement pieces can actually give your look a more classic or edgy feel. It also makes your outfits practical for wearing from day to night( accessories are great for transitioning too).  

Another one of my major priorities is to buy items that elongate my figure, especially my legs.  Everything black works perfectly for this. If I follow this new flowy crop top/bf jean trend I'm just adding 10-15lbs of weight and losing 3 inches of height.Sorry Zara, its a total nix for me. 

I found my color a long time ago, and it was when everything started to get easier when I was shopping. I could eliminate a lot of confusion and focus on what truly looks the best.

Its your turn to tell me what works for you!  If you fell into a shopping pit, stop buying when your closet gets full, do a closet cleanse, and start performing this strategy to your own closet and new items you purchase. 

 It helps me keep tidy, more organized, and less stressed when it comes to my wardrobe or a fun night out. I really hope it will help you and all your shopping adventures in the future. Let me know if you use any parts to my strategy and what has worked best for you!

Happy shopping & holidays




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