Your 20s is that weird, in-between stage where you're still sort of living like a teenager, but are on a seriously fast track to true adulthood and all the responsibilities that go along with it. And once you graduate college and get a job, things get real quick, so it's important to be smart and start thinking about your future — especially when it comes to your vices, like shopping. There are some shopping habits a woman should develop in her 20s that will make you a more responsible and fiscally smart shopper. Old habits die hard, so it's better to start young!
Whatever shopping meant to you when you were younger and doing it on your parents' dime, forget about it. Everything changes when you're paying your own bills, and no matter how much you're making, you want to be responsible and not spend frivolously, because you never know what could happen in the future, and you may have other things you're saving for, like a car, paying off loans, a house, or vacations. That's not to say you can't shop at all, you just need to develop some better habits that you will carry through the rest of your life so you shop smarter. Believe me, when it's your credit card and not your parents you're swiping at that register, you'll be thankful you did.
1. Buy Timeless
Invest in timeless pieces — a great pair of skinny jeans, the perfect white button down, a classic trench coat, go-to ballet flats, etc. Spend your money building a wardrobe that can last you for years and years, and that can go with most items in your closet.
2. Save On Trends
Those pink leopard print shoes may look cute now, but you're going to be kicking yourself six months later when they go out of style and you never wear them again. That was money you'll never get back, so if you want to buy something trendy, don't shell out big bucks for it. Realize that you may only wear it for a few months out of your life, so if you have to have it, go for the least expensive version you can find.
3. Sleep On Your Purchases
Don't impulse buy. If there's something you see that you love, go home and sleep on it. If you really want it the next day, it might be worth it, but chances are you will forget about it, or realize you didn't want it all that much.
4. Be Aware Of Return Policies
There is nothing worse than buying something, getting home to realize you actually hate it, but the return deadline has passed, or the store only allows for credit and not a refund. Before you buy anything, pay attention and make sure you know what your options for returning are.
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5. Only Buy What You Need (Or When You Need It)
"Browsing" is the curse of death. You end up seeing a million cute things, none of which you need, and spend money that you never intended to. Instead, wait until you know there is something you need or want and then go shopping so you have a focus.
6. Be Wary Of Deals
Buy one get one half off is a deal, but it's still buying more than you intended to if you only went to the mall to get one thing. Don't succumb to a "great deal" just because it's there, and stick to what you intended to buy.
7. Pay Cash Or Debit
Getting yourself into debt is the worst thing you could do in your 20s, so when shopping, pay cash or with a debit card, that way you are paying it off as soon as you buy it, rather than racking up credit card bills that you may not be able to pay off when the deadline comes.
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