Tips and tricks: How to avoid binge shopping

How many times have you walked in a store to buy a pair of jeans (or whatever you need), and found yourself almost drooling at a THE cutest pair of shoes you’ve ever seen in a long time (seems like forever)? Then you’re thinking “Oh my god, I need those shoes, I don’t know when I will wear them, but they are just so cute and on SALE!! Should I get them? I’m getting them.” and then you go home, all happy and content, and even try them on and wear them around for the next few hours, adoring them (like I do 😛 ) But then they’re just kept for ‘storage till the right time’ in that shoe closet, when it gathers dust, cracks, fungus (whatever makes you tick). And when the ‘right time’ comes along, you realize that either it doesn’t go with that particular attire, it doesn’t fit you anymore, it’s out of fashion, or it just lost it’s ‘spark’.

I used to find myself in similar situations when I was in my early teens, and I had already started breaking away from what my mom picked for me. After buying and getting scolded for many things that I didn’t use at all, I realized that I have a responsibility of buying things, whether they are gadgets, jewellery or even stationary items responsibly (staedtler pencils are expensive).

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So, I worked out a way to stop doing that over and over again: having a rapid fire round in my head and throwing questions like:

1. Is this my style? Will I actually wear this? Just because that pink kitten tee is cute doesn’t mean you’ll necessarily wear it.
2. Do I need this? If you already have a watch, or a similar pair of shoes, you probably don’t. Additionally, that doesn’t mean that you buy that GPS enabled watch to avoid ‘getting lost’ in college.

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3. Did I keep my wallet in my bag? This one is a no-brainer.
4. If I buy this, will I have to starve myself for a week to patch up the hole in my pocket? We all can’t be on the Forbes list now, kid.

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5. Is it even worth that much? Note: most sellers label their products with prices ending in 9’s, like 799. Make sure you see that as it is rather than jumping with joy and throwing it over the cash counter as soon as you read the first digit.

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6. Is it versatile? If it is a classic, or goes with most of the other things you ALREADY own, then it is probably a good buy.
7. Is the material sturdy/real? Don’t get ripped off, guys. Literally.
8. Can you find something similar somewhere else or even online for a lower price? There are two sides to this: good part – you can get a better bargain; bad part – it probably isn’t unique (if you’re particular about that thing)
9. In case you’re shopping online, be sure of the size and fit. Returning stuff can be disheartening. The model wearing that ‘god-like’ stuff is probably taller, thinner, and photoshopped. Stuff like crop tops look better on mannequins than on pot bellies. Be real.

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10. Divide your finances and stick to your limit of expenditure on shopping unless you want to go back to #4.

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11. Is that style a ‘new trend’? If it’s in right now, it probably won’t stay on the same pedestal next season. Be sure to be ready to deal with it.
12. Do I have similar products? Buying another white shirt is just stupid, unless you have a rather rigid dress code at work.
13. Do I have space to keep it?
Will my closet really explode if I try ‘squeezing’ it? Do I have space for another hanger?
14. Will I regret not buying this if I walk out and end up thinking about it the entire day?
If yes, congratulations! You have found yourself a winner!

These questions help me refine my cart… maybe a bit too much (I ended up becoming too choosy. People who come with me end up shopping for themselves).

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But hey, at least I get what I really want/need!

Till next time.
Cheers!