You know that sinking feeling when you get home with a new purchase, only to realize it’s not quite right? Maybe you end up returning it. Or maybe it’s laid to rest in the back of your closet, tags still on. Either way, it’s not long before it happens again. You have an event, you need a new outfit, and the same sense of disappointment arrives once you realize your items won’t work. As your unworn purchases pile up, so does the buyer’s remorse. How do you deal with it?
The Antidote To Buyer’s Remorse
The key to avoiding buyer’s remorse is to prevent it from happening in the first place. This means making better choices when you shop. I realize it can be a rush of excitement when you find something new, but often that adrenaline is misleading. It can lead to impulse purchases that won’t serve you best.
So slow down! Be thoughtful with what you buy so you end up with pieces you’ll wear on repeat. As a personal stylist, I’ve spent over 10K hours in the stores, shopping for other people, and I’ve discovered some key steps to help you avoid buyer’s remorse. I’m excited to share what I’ve learned so keep reading!
Quality Over Quantity
As we’ve discussed, slowing down is essential for avoiding buyer’s remorse. With that in mind, let’s dig deeper into the first step, which is to carefully examine every aspect of a potential purchase. Whenever I’m preparing a client lookbook, I always check the size charts to confirm the measurements because every brand sizes differently. Also, the washing and care instructions are super important! Many people buy something without realizing it requires dry cleaning or special care, and then they end up not wearing it.
But the most important thing I inspect is the fabrication as this reveals a lot about the quality and longevity of the garment. Fabrics like wool, silk, and linen are generally higher quality and more durable than synthetics or cheaper blends. Choosing high-quality natural fabrics will help your clothes last longer and look better over time. Plus, they often feel more comfortable and luxurious!
After you’ve gone through these specifications, you’re ready for your next consideration.
Purchase For Purpose
In order to avoid shopping regrets, it’s important to determine if your new purchase will be a valuable addition to your wardrobe. Your purchases must serve your personal style.
When considering the value of a new item, it’s helpful to think about the cost per wear. This is determined by dividing the price of the item by the number of times you’ll wear it. The lower the cost per wear, the better the value. A high-quality, timeless piece may have a higher initial cost, but the cost per wear will be much lower in the long run.
Before buying anything, ask yourself ‘Why am I buying this?‘ Is it a pair of shoes to replace an older, worn out pair? Or is it a gray sweater that will go so well with what you’ve already got in your closet? If your ‘why’ doesn’t hold up, it’s a sign that you might regret the purchase. So make sure your ‘why‘ is strong and you’re clear on the purpose your new item will serve.
Next, consider versatility. One of the biggest issues I see with women is they buy orphan items. They see something, fall in love with it, and bring it home only to find they never wear it. They don’t have anything that matches! To avoid this from happening, think about what you’ll wear your current prospect with. Try to come up with at least 3 outfits that you can create to guarantee this new item becomes well worn in your wardrobe.
Also think about what else you have that’s similar. While it’s nice to have a signature style with common themes, you don’t want to buy items that are too much the same. Be sure to find some differentiating details in your new piece.
Plan Your New Piece
Now you’re getting into the practicality of your purchase. Think about how you spend your time to discover when and where this item fits in. Look at your calendar, and see what’s coming up. Are there any occasions that this item is perfect for? The last thing you need is to buy a sheer, lace slip dress because you loved it in the store, but once you got home you realize you have no place to wear it.
Love It Or Leave It
Finally, make sure that whatever you buy is something you love. If you kind of like it, or feel that it’s good enough, don’t buy it! You want to LOVE everything you buy.
To avoid buyer’s remorse and end up with clothes you’ll wear on repeat, be more mindful with your purchases. This includes ensuring the item is good quality, it serves a purpose in your wardrobe, and that you can wear it with other things you already own. (If you’ve got a big pile up of unworn clothes, click here to get my free closet cleanout guide!)
With Black Friday just around the corner, I’m excited to share a new way to shop that helps you choose pieces uniquely suited to you now so you end up with a wardrobe you’ll love. Stay tuned for more details on my upcoming workshop!
Click play to watch the video where I share my stylist tips to help you avoid making shopping mistakes so you always end up with clothing and accessories you want to wear.