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Clothes shopping.


One of the odd activities that stimulates both dopamine and stress simultaneously.

But if you’re lucky enough to get through the venture stress free, you may experience the post-spree crash, days, weeks, or even months later.


This is due to regret.


Woman in regret.
Woman regretting a clothing purchase.


Have you ever bought something only to, soon after, think ‘why the hell did I buy that?’ – in other words, waste your money?


If so, then it’s no secret that it sucks big time.


You’re not only left out of pocket, but now have an item of clothing in your possession, that you’ll never wear, to keep stored away.


Well, you unfortunately can’t go and get your money back from those dud purchases (unless you have a receipt and a great returns policy!), so all that is left to do is to make sure that you don’t waste your money again in the future.


Today, I’m going to outline 7 ways to stop wasting your money on clothes shopping, so you will know how to spot a bad purchase in the future.


Stop Buying Unnecessary Items

I suppose it would be fitting to start with the most general point:


if you don’t need clothes, then don’t buy them.


woman with many bags.
This lady has probably bought unnecessary items.


Now, this isn’t necessarily saying that you shouldn’t add an epic piece to your wardrobe once and a while, but there is a stage when purchases become unnecessary, as you really don’t need any more clothes.


Unfortunately, I know this all too well – I’m very guilty when it comes to ties, and have too many to feasibly wear them all.

Therefore, any more purchases of ties would be unnecessary and, more than likely, a waste of money.


Think next time you’re buying something if you really need it or not. If you don’t, then you will just be wasting your money on clothes.


Leave it if it has a Bad Fit

Regardless of what item you’re trying on, one thing that consumers consistently waste their money on are bad fitting clothes.


Stop wasting your money on clothes baggy suit
A, deliberately badly fitting, Balenciaga suit.


They’re a waste because:

  • You won’t want to wear them. You will get less use out of them, which will make them less cost effective than something that you enjoy wearing.
  • As you’re holding onto something that doesn’t fit you, you’re taking away the opportunity for someone, who actually fits them item, to buy it, who would perhaps use the resource more frequently (and thus less wastefully).


The fix is to try on as many sizes as you can, to find the best fit possible.


You’ll love the way the item looks on you, and know that you got the best one there for you. You will have no regrets.


It’s not always easy, and is most definitely time consuming, but getting things right first time is better than buying first, and asking questions later.


Don’t buy it JUST Because it’s ‘On Sale’ – 7 Ways to STOP Wasting Your Money on Clothes

Sales are a manipulation, and are probably the number one thing that consumers waste their money on.

We have already covered that you should resist buying unnecessary items – I must reiterate this point here, as buying random toot is especially tempting in a sale.

You must again think to yourself: ‘do I really need that?’


a table of sale sunglasses.
Think to yourself ‘do I really need that?’


If the answer isn’t a definitive yes, then give the potential impulse buy a second thought, and question yourself more on it: ‘how often would I wear it?’, ‘what would I wear it with?’, ‘are there any aspects of the item that I don’t like?’

Just because you don’t need something that’s in the sale, it doesn’t mean that it won’t make a good addition to your wardrobe.


But the key is being selective and smart in only buy pieces that you think you’ll wear, and will combine well with the rest of your clothing.


A good indicator that a piece in the sale is worth a purchase is if you think you would pay full price for it.

However, an important point to remember is that you must resist buying something in the sale that isn’t perfect for you, such as not fitting you correctly, or having styling options that you don’t like.

A low price point does not justify a compromise in the enjoyment of an item.


Don’t buy too Many ‘Bold’ Pieces

This point is all about interchangeability.


Buying a pair of dark wash jeans will allow you many, many wears, perhaps even a few (or more) a week.

However, if we swap the ‘dark wash’ for ‘bright pink’, is the proposition as attractive?

You may be able to pull off pink jeans, but you wouldn’t want to every day – they are too bold, and extremely memorable.

Therefore, naturally, you will only want to wear them occasionally.


Two men in bold suits. Stop wasting your money on clothes.
Would you actually wear these pieces frequently?


The idea of bold items being a waste of money comes down to ‘cost per wear’.


You can wear a dark wash piece of denim conservatively perhaps 3 times a week, every week for a year. As 3*52 is 156, you would get roughly 156 wears of the dark wash denim per year.

In contrast, you would probably only want to pull out the pink jeans once every month. As 1*12 is 12, you would get roughly 12 years of the pink jeans per wear.


Assuming both pairs cost $100, the dark wash jeans would 64c per wear for one year, whereas the pink trousers cost a whopping $8.33.


That means that the bold pink jeans, per wear, cost you 13 times more than the classic dark wash denim.


Although it’s cool to have a few bold items, you may be wasting your money by buying too many of them, as you won’t get much use out of them, and simply aren’t cost effective.


Forget about Rentals – 7 Ways to STOP Wasting Your Money on Clothes

Rentals suck, not only because they are more often than not going to make you look bad, but also because they’re not cost effective in the long run.


In my opinion, it’s not worth paying $70 to wear a garment once, when you can buy one to keep for around $200-400.


a badly fitting tuxedo. Stop wasting your money on clothes shopping.
Avoid looking bad at events due to rentals.


Now, of all of the points on this list, this one is the most controversial and up for debate.


But I seriously believe that the better fit and enjoyment is well worth the extra cost.


On top of this, you won’t have to go through the hassle of renting the clothing again when required, which would cost you more and once again leave you looking like you’ve borrowed your dad’s size 44S suit.


Don’t buy Low Quality Goods

Low quality items waste your money.


Why’s that?


Well, weeks (and sometimes even days), after you’ve bought them… they break!

And sometimes, sadly, the incident occurs just outside of your returns window.


broken plates.
Low quality items tend to break prematurely.


A relatively safe remedy for this is to purchase from reputable brands.

The extra price tag, usually, means that the garment is of superior construction than something half of its price.

However, this is not always the case, so still be weary.


Shop Smart

Even if the specific item that you’re looking at purchasing fits the criteria of not being a waste of money, you may end up spending more than you have to.


This is, by definition, ‘wasting money’.


Typically, you can find discount codes on the retailer’s website, or by signing up to their mailing list and waiting for discounts.


items on sale. Stop wasting your money on clothes.
Shopping smart can save you big bucks over time.


On top of this, if it is a seasonal item, it is very likely that it will, at the end of the season, go on sale, sometimes saving you big bucks in the process.

However, this isn’t the safest method, as your size may be sold out by the time it comes on sale.


In Summary – 7 Ways to STOP Wasting Your Money on Clothes

Good Purchase Checklist:

  • Make sure the item isn’t unnecessary, and that you will actually use it.
  • Ensure the item fits you properly.
  • Make sure that you aren’t just buying the item because ‘it’s on sale’.
  • Only buy a bold item if you don’t have many of them in your wardrobe.
  • You are buying clothes as opposed to renting them.
  • The item is of high quality.
  • You have acquired the item for the lowest price possible.


Conclusion – 7 Ways to STOP Wasting Your Money on Clothes

The truth is, shops are designed to increase conversion.

So, there are all manner of influences going on, trying to pressure you to buy the blatantly horrendous, badly fitting, overpriced, low quality and unnecessary pink blazer you, for some reason, are feeling.


You have to resist, and ask yourself if the item ticks all of the boxes of the ‘good purchase checklist’.


So, now you know 7 ways that you may be wasting your money on clothes.

Keep them in mind, and make sure that you never buy with regret again!


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