Savvy Library

How To Dress On A Budget

Shopping makes us happy, that’s scientifically proven. But sadly, that moment of joy doesn’t often last long – so we then consume and buy more and more, even if we do not need anything. The good news is that not every fashionable person is rich; many still manage to carry the right trendy pieces with spending very little money every season and seemingly have endless outfits in their closets.

If you want to look fashionable on a budget, here are a few tips and tricks to help you consume less, save a lot of money and still be on trend.

Create A Wish List

If you see something that you like and that you would like to have, do not rush right away; rather just take your time and create a wish list, in which you write down everything that you find interesting and add them to your budgeting list. This can be a pair of trousers with a specific cut or a larger purchase such as a bicycle or a food processor. Your list can also include all the items you saw at a particular store, then you can use sites such as The Stylinity for styling inspiration on putting together the items. Find out more about them here.

With this method, you will avoid unnecessary purchases. You can then complete and edit the list regularly. You’ll see, there are often things that you delete from the list after a few days. Then the first buying impulse has passed, and you can decide more rationally.

Sell, Exchange And Borrow Clothes

There are now many online portals, such as Etsy, eBay and other classified ads websites where you can sell or trade garments you can no longer carry. For special occasions, you can also borrow clothes for a fraction of the actual purchase price. Evening dresses are available that can be styled to look like new. No one will ever notice it is second hand.

Imagine Having Something

Many of us are pretty bad at forecasting future happiness and tend to overestimate some purchases. With these new jeans, would you finally feel so confident? And with the new camera, could you finally shoot the best pictures?

It can help to imagine in detail what it would be like to have certain things; that’s how you find out if you really need it. Does this camera really meet all the demands you place on it? Would you really use them so often? Or do you just like the idea of it? Do you have any other clothes that match these jeans? Does the material feel good or pinch it somewhere? Do not compromise on shopping and only buy what completely convinces you.

Never Buy For A Specific Event

Never buy clothes and accessories for a specific event, such as a wedding or birthday party. Invest in pieces that will last for a long time. So, before you buy, ask yourself quite realistically when you will be wearing the dress again or how you can style it for the office.

Shop Out Of Season

Shopping out of season is worthwhile and is especially rewarding when buying from already affordable brands. At the end of each season, the prices of your favorite clothes may be drastically reduced, and there may be many discounts on offer. You should strike in these closing sales phases; even though it may feel weird to buy bikinis in December and thick winter coats in May, you will be able to save a lot of money with this strategy.

Take A Look At The Men’s Section

You can also easily buy basic parts such as T-shirts in the men’s section. There you get them much cheaper, and the cuts look cool, casual and oversized for women.

Visit A Flea Market

Second-hand items are not for everyone. But when it comes to vintage or trend parts, you should overcome the fear. Because at flea markets you can get real treasures for little money. Think of belts, designer handbags, and vintage jeans; all the cool trends that have ever happened. With a little luck and applying some good flea market shopping tips, you will find them at the next flea market.

Only Shop If You Really Need Something

If you really want to save money from shopping, it helps to go only when you really need something. That sounds pretty simple, but it is often difficult for many people to implement. So start off by writing a list of the things you really need the next time you want to go shopping.

Try to make sure that you do not deviate from your list even if you then see something that you want or need; just add it on your wish list, just so you avoid impulse and bad purchases and save a lot of money.

Pay With Cash

Paying with bank cards seem less real to many of us because we do not see our money changing hands. That’s why we’re willing to spend more on card payments than paying in cash.

A simple trick to consume less is, therefore, to always pay with cash while shopping. This way, you not only keep track of your expenses but also, you keep track of what you actually do not need.

Do Not Be Afraid To Miss Out

How many times have you seen the ”Only two in stock” message, only to find that the item is still available one week down the line? No doubt the feeling of missing a good opportunity is definitely unpleasant, which many of us want to avoid. This then leads us to buy faster when we realize that there is only a small amount of a certain product left. The same applies to limited product series, one-time discounts or offers that are limited to a short period of time.

Be aware of such offers and make sure you have read the sales pitch, and then consider whether you really need the product, whether you feel pressured to buy it and what would happen if the product really did not exist. Probably nothing, right?


  • Tamra Phelps

    I am not a person who wants people to think my clothes are expensive. I will brag about the bargain I got, lol. That said, I want quality for my buck and a bargain, so this is good advice.

  • Beverly Mckinley

    i have always been able to dress myself on a budget but men’s clothes are so hard to find at a discount. maybe you can teach us about that?

  • Judy Thomas

    Brilliant tips! We have 2nd hand clothing shops that we call Op Shops ( oportunity shops) in New Zealand .You can get some great bargains 🙂

  • Lauryn R

    These are great ideas! I personally love to shop used clothes, especially since I am never one to follow fashion trends. It can also be frustrating to shop new when everything is not your style. I also love that I save so much money, I do it for my kids as well! They grow so fast, and a lot of times you can find really nice items and they even have online buy/trade stores now as well.

  • Samantha SULLON

    As a shopping lover, I can tell you that there were times where it was hard to stay in budget. I definitely used to spurge but now I’m thinking if shopping smarter. I was in the most need of these tips!

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