If you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking about college, and by thinking I mean stressing out. There is so much to consider it’s mind-blowing: applications, college road trips, SATs, saying goodbye to friends, and last but certainly not least, money. It always seems, and in most instances, there is more to spend money on than there is money to spend. In this economy, with tuition, dorm furniture, and spending money to worry about, one needs to save money in any place possible. The problem is figuring out what is easiest and what is worth putting on the chopping block. Although as a teenager, most want to look their best and fit in, one of the easiest ways to save money by being a smarter shopper. Here are some quick tips:
Invest in accessories– Try matching solid colored shirts with accessories. Accessories are usually less expensive and it is easy enough to find inexpensive plain shirts from brands like Fruit of the Loom. Every time you pair a fun necklace or headband and earrings with a shirt, it gives it a fresh new look perfect for class, the library, or a night out with friends. If you’re like me, accessories may not be you’re favorite thing in the world, so you may want to try the next tip.
Spend a little more money on something you really love– When shopping, try to avoid impulse buys as much as possible. Think through your purchase asking yourself these questions:
Do I really need this?
Do I have other clothes or accessories to match?
Would I wear this more than once?
Will I still like it next week? How about next month?
If the answer is yes to all of these questions, and especially if the piece of clothing is high quality, it would be a good buy (even if it is a little bit more pricey) because it is something that could both last a long time and you’d be willing to wear it this long.
Sell your clothes- If they are lightly used, sell your clothes and accessories to Plato’s Closet (check out http://www.platoscloset.com/ to find a store near you). This way you either get cash back to spend elsewhere or a store credit, allowing you to renew your wardrobe however often you want.
Have a clothes swap with friends– I recently had one of these with my friends, and it was a great success (I got, what are now, my two favorite shirts). It lets you get rid of clothes that don’t fit or you don’t like anymore, but it is likely that clothes that your friend doesn’t like, you will. Because remember: Sometimes in like one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
Shop at discount stores– Stores such as T.J. Maxx and Marshalls sell name brand clothing and shoes at big discounts. Although some may regard the clothes as “so last season”, let’s get real: It’s college, not a runway.
Rent your clothes– No, this isn’t a Senior Prom tuxedo rental. We’re talking high-end clothes that you rent for an event (a New Year’s Eve party, a Graduation Party, a wedding, or anything else you can think of). Just sign up and go! Ever look in your closet and feel like you have nothing to wear? Here are some options to fix that:
(to learn more go to: http://www.renttherunway.com/faq)
There are always other ways to get clothes instead of buying new ones. Be creative with saving your wallet and wardrobe from disaster when you’re on a budget.