5 Ways to Curb Impulse Buying

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Surrounded by cute clothes, amazing apartment accessories and candles that smell like fall, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of it all. Without realizing, you may pull out your credit card more than a few times to buy something you just "had" to have, but a week later realized you don't even like.

If you're prone to clothing cravings and impulse buys, these tips may help:

1. Never buy it the first time around

If you live close to a store and have the ability to go back with minimal-mild inconvenience, don’t buy anything the first time you see it. Leave your wallet at home if you have to;  this way, you have the opportunity to go home and reflect on whether you really want that item or not.

Give it a day or two before you make your decision. It takes a surprising amount of energy and will-power to drive back up to the store a second time, and unless you are absolutely in love with the item, odds are you will choose not to make the effort.

2. When shopping sales, look at the price tag last

It’s so easy to get caught up in sale prices. I can’t even count the amount of times I’ve bought a shirt or pair of pants because it was a great price, only to get home and realize that I never really wanted it in the first place.

Whether you are shopping in stores or online, look at the items first. If you decide it’s something you would buy regardless of sale status, then you can evaluate the price tag.

3. Unsubscribe from all retail mailing lists

This one took a while for me to figure out. At first, I subscribed to mailing list because I wanted to see when the sales were happening, that way I could always get my clothes at a lower price. In reality, I found that receiving these emails brought shopping to the forefront of my mind.

If you are really keen on receiving the discount codes, download the Coupons at Checkout plugin for chrome. It detects when you are checking out in an online store and automatically applies the best coupon it can find online.

You don’t have to take half an hour out of your day to manually unsubscribe from everything— I do it as they come. When I open a Madewell email, I make sure to unsubscribe before deleting it. It only takes a second, and by doing it that way you’ll most likely be unsubscribed from everything within a week with minimal effort.

4. Do not save your credit card information online

Please, please do not do this. Not only does it create huge security concerns, but it is so much easier to buy things when you don’t have to get off the couch to get your wallet. It’s unbelievable how much less I order online now that I don’t have my credit card number memorized.

 

5. Dial back on the online shopping

I know, for people who live in small towns it’s hard to access some of your favorite stores, but shopping online can do your wallet a major disservice. Online stores offer tremendous amounts of options with incredible quality photos that make every item look amazing. You end up buying things you wouldn’t normally buy in person, not to mention the guess work when it comes to size.

There’s novelty to being able to shop in person-- the day out with friends, the relaxation, the instant gratification of being able to take your item home with you that day, having nice sales women compliment your shoes. Treat shopping as a gift to yourself, not just something you halfheartedly do while you’re watching Netflix. I guarantee you’ll have a lot more fun.

Photo credits: Header, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

About The Author

Elyse is currently a senior at American University studying foreign language and communications with a focus in Spanish and print journalism. She is originally from Scranton, Pennsylvania and in her spare time she likes to do yoga, read, and binge-watch Netflix when she's supposed to be studying.