As soon as winter rolls around and holiday shopping rapidly approaches, I always find myself getting sucked into the sales and being tempted to spend waaaaay too much money. A new season means a semi-legitimate excuse to indulge in a few new pieces for my wardrobe, just to keep things interesting. With every shopping temptation comes the question – should I splurge on this or should I save my money? I have some general rules I personally use to make the smartest shopping decisions possible, and I find that having these provisions allows me to satisfy my shopping craving by intelligently splurging on certain items while also spending my money wisely.
A high quality, warm jacket is essential for fall and winter. Having a nice coat is something that will always be useful, and you’ll want something that is warm, comfortable, and cute. It’s worth it to splurge on a nice jacket or two that you can depend on to actually keep you warm, not fall apart, and last you for years. Go with something classic that won’t go out of style. If you want a trendy jacket that you might be embarrassed of in ten years, save your money and hit up Forever 21. Personally, I think it’s best to invest in a nice leather jacket for edgier looks, a trench or peacoat to keep things classy, and a jacket for casual wear, like a jean or military jacket.
Plain Shirts: SAVE
There’s nothing like a super soft plain tee, but that’s not something worth splurging on. I find that I wear plain long sleeve shirts almost every day in fall and winter, using mostly outerwear to switch up my looks. I also wear plain camis every single day of my life because they go with everything and are essential for layering. You don’t need to spend $70 on a plain white shirt when you can get the exact same thing for less than $20. Spend your money elsewhere!
Sweaters: SPLURGE & SAVE
Sweaters require a bit more thought because some are worth splurging on, and others definitely are not. If you find a cute sweater but probably won’t wear it very often, don’t spend a lot of money on it. Buuuut if you’re like me and live in sweaters, it’s worth investing in ones that can go with most outfits. I’m talking neutral colors, cozy material, and transitional from season to season. If you wear them all the time, then they’re worth the money. You don’t want your favorite sweater to fall apart on you!
Dresses often have striking patterns or something else that’s unique about them, making them very memorable. Because of that, you’re probably not going to be wearing every dress you buy as often as you might wear a nice pair of jeans that work with every outfit. There are so many cute dresses available for ridiculously low prices, so save your money and go with a knockoff instead of throwing away precious dollars on that sparkly gold strapless dress that you’ll wear once on New Year’s Eve and then toss in the closet for all of eternity.
Shoes are going to be on your feet all day long. The last thing you want to be worried about is being uncomfortable when walking around throughout the day or getting horrible blisters from cheap shoes. Investing in more expensive boots, heels, or flats usually pays off big time because your feet are much more comfortable and your shoes won’t fall apart. With footwear, you usually get what you pay for. Plus, your feet probably won’t fluctuate in size from month to month or year to year the same way your body might, so good shoes will last you forever. I’ve owned the shoes I’m wearing right now for five years, and they still look brand new. And I get compliments on them all the time. Score!
I used to waste my money and time buying cheap jeans because I didn’t want to pay for a designer pair when Forever 21 had some that looked the same for $10. However, I eventually saw the light and realized that investing in a pair (or a few) of designer jeans is worth every penny if it means my jeans will actually fit me correctly, last for years, and be comfortable. You only need a few pairs of jeans in your wardrobe, but they’re a staple and are something you are going to wear the hell out of. It’s definitely worth paying for a pair of jeans that you can depend on and feel good in.
Purses: SPLURGE & SAVE
Purses are easy – splurge on neutral, go-to bags that you’ll use every day, and save on the brightly colored handbags that only go with 2 of your outfits. Switching up your purse can be a great way to update an outfit, but you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a bag you’ll only use three times a year. The ones that you throw all your crap in and carry around everywhere will get a lot of wear and tear, though, so invest in high quality material that will last you a long time and will pair with any outfit.
I’ll never understand why someone would spend $100 dollars on a plain gold necklace with a small gold bar on it when I can buy the exact same thing from H&M for $6.95. I have that $7 necklace, and I’ve gotten compliments on it for years. No one can tell the difference between your $5 jewelry and your $200 jewelry, I promise. Jewelry is the easiest way to switch up your outfits. Instead of buying a million shirts that are $30 each, buy a plain shirt and a bunch of different affordable necklaces, rings, bracelets, and earrings to achieve a completely different look every time. It’s much more cost-efficient, and honestly, it’s much more fun. P.S. Forever 21 is a GOLD MINE.