Confessions of a Shopaholic: How I support my shopping habits as a college student

Everyone always says I know when the sales are and how to get the deals so I thought I’d share a couple hints that I use to save money and still buy things that I want. This semester I’ve been an intern for CollegeFashionista.com as a Style Guru reporting on Men’s Fashion in the column Let’s Hear it for the Boys. Peruse through some of my articles  and see what you think! (I apologize for the Macy’s gif in advance. I found it funny)

1. Don’t shop just to shop. 

I really love shoping

My mom used to say that to me all the time, but she’s right. In Dallas, I find myself at the Mall for no reason at all. Just perusing through what I like and being tempted to buy things I don’t need. One of the glorious things about Lubbock is you don’t have as much temptation to shop. (Please put a Macy’s in the South Plains Mall)  As college students and young adults you need to figure out what you need. For example: As a business major and student leader I’m dressed professional probably at least once a week. I don’t need club dresses; I need suits, separates, fashionable but comfortable heels, flats etc.

If you’re a senior and you don’t own the items to be dressed professionally I hope you’re not in line to buy the newest Jordan’s or rocking the latest JCs. If it’s cold and you have no jacket you might want to get a better coat. It sounds simple, but you’d be surprised.

And going beyond just having the basics. I find pieces I like that reflect my style and personality so I’m not just another person in a drab suit.

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(I would not wear this to an interview, I was giving a speech to young girls about College & Fashion through the Girl University program.) (Shirt Vintage via Mom, Skirt Target $12, Heels Target. Statement Necklace: Dillard's on sale. Bracelet BCBG)

Focus on the staples you need then build on those.example Get a good blazer and pants now you can buy whatever shirts and accessories to pair with them.

My Tip: Invest in stylish loafers they look great with jeans and they look snazzy with suits. Very stylish right now for men and women.

2. Don’t buy it if it’s not on sale.

mofo macys

I don’t believe in full priced. After working for Urban Outfitters it’s hard for me to buy things fully priced anywhere. If it’s not at least 40% off I debate whether or not I really need it.  20 percent is basically tax and 30 is a tease. But just because it is on sale doesn’t mean it’s a good sale 30% of 300 dollars is probably still too much if you’re trying to save money. Know your stores and when they usually have sales. For example Black Friday & New Year’s are notorious sales at Urban Outfitters for 50% off of clearance. So this 15% with your college ID or 30% off of this isn’t really enticing me. HOWEVER if you really have your eye on something and they’re low on stock you might want to get it.

3. Shop Around

The thing about trends is they are widely used by many designers and stores. For example the Cap toe heel. All of these shoes look extremely similar, but are made by different designers.

I personally shop for the style not the label so I can get the $30 pair versus the $600 pair.

I recently bought these shoes from JC Penney for $11.00 earlier that day I found a pair similar at DSW for 3 times that much.

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Urban Outfitters had a Save Ferris Shirt for about 28.00 at Target it’s was 7.99.

Once you Identify what style you’re looking for, you can find deals everywhere.

4. Price Check

Sometimes things are on sale online, but not in person. Check on your phone or before you leave to make sure you’re not throwing away money. A lot of store honor the online price if it’s lower. I like Retailmenot.com or the app for coupons. I can just check on my iPhone if a store is having a sale and if there are any coupons available before I check out. Or just google coupons for this store.

5. Try things on

Some things look better in theory. I can’t tell you how many times I pick up something then try it on and it look awful on me lol. Conversely, If you try it on and fall in love now you watch to see if it goes on sale, if there’s a similar item at another store, or if you want to Treat yo Self.

6. Remix

Remix is a term I got from the lovely Daniela Ramirez from Nany’s Clozet. She’s the queen of remixing. Remixing is take a piece and basically styling it another way to double the size of your closet. Check out the rest of her remixes here and follow her blog.

Image Via Nany's Klozet

Nany’s Klozet – Sheer Maxi Skirt Remix

(Images Via Nany’s Klozet)

By figuring out new ways to style items you just made yourself a brand new outfit. Especially if you can transition it between seasons.
If you need a little help trying to figure out how to style an item try using Polyvore to try to see how people would style similar items.

If you want to be stylish on a budget I’d suggest shopping at my favorite boutique Targét. They do a phenomenal job of providing stylish clothes for fairly affordable prices. It’s a college kid’s best friend! Asos is also a great website that has some amazing sales! If you’re not familiar with Asos think H&M and Urban Outfitters but at a lower cost and FREE SHIPPING! (they’re also having a sale right now)

For your die hard shop a holic’s here’s the tough love. Once you research what you need take cash in the amount of roughly what you will pay for it so you’ll only get that item. No debit card, no extra items no extra spending.

Style On,

Paige

@Paige_Nash
Follow Me on Pinterest.Com/That_Nash!

Forever 21 Trench , Target Turtleneck, Jc Penney Oxfords, Leopard Print Scarf Aldo, Ear rings Aldo

Red Peplum dress from TJ Maxx – Steve Madden Heels from Ross

Vintage Shirt via Mom Green Jean’s – Marshall’s Leopard Print Peep toe Wedges – Forever 21

Moto Jacket – Burlington, Bow Tie TCampCollection (A student owned clothing line from some friend’s at Morehouse!) Spiked Bangle – Forever 21

Moto Jacket – Burlington, Bow Tie TCampCollection (A student owned clothing line from some friend’s at Morehouse!) Spiked Bangle – Forever 21

**UPDATE***

I recently discovered Soletrader.com and they’re having a phenomenal sale right now! I just got a pair of 195.00 shoes for about 60 + shipping

sole trader

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What Natural Hair products taught me about Supply and Demand

I was at Target in Cedar Hill , Texas and I noticed how big the ethnic hair care section was.  I stopped and stared. The section in Target was not this large before I left for school, and the section in Lubbock, Texas isn’t this large.

This was what I remembered not too long ago, an endcap at the end of the aisle.

Now it’s in two places the end cap and the entire row with full product lines.

this is only a section of the products, but as you can see a significant increase from the endcap.  (Sorry for the blurriness, it’s awkward taking pictures of products)

Nubian Heritage has its own row, Shea Moisture has its own row, Mixed chicks has its own row that goes all the way down as well as a lot of other brands.

It’s not that they had a lot of hair products, but a lot of  it was for Natural hair and was even broken up into two sections “Natural and textured” and “relaxed”. This takes detail. If you go to Walmart it simply says “Ethnic Hair”  one aisle full of Ampro, Blue Magic, and God knows what else. These labels mean they did some research; They know who they’re targeting, what they want, and they’re not just gonna buy it because there’s a brown person on the label. Someone paid real attention to it.

Why?

Because Target is awesome, but besides that I believe it has to do with demand. Taking care of your hair is trendy right now. Women are going in droves to the store to get natural and organic products for their hair. If you’ve watched commercials for any type of hair they’re featuring natural ingredients. “with honey extract” “olive oil” and “grapeseed oil”.  L’oreal launched their “sulfate free line and have even expanded it (EverStrong, EverySleek, EvereCreme, and EverPure). (I love the EverStrong  in the green bottle) Consumers are more informed and more adamant about what they will and won’t use in a hair product. This is a perfect example about how consumers feel about multicultural marketing. It takes real work, consumers want companies to be authentic in trying to reach them.  It made me think of an article I read in Adweek a long while a go by  Robert Klara.

Which made think, if we were to show the companies that we as a minority community made it known to the companies that we wanted better for ourselves they’d be forced to fill that demand. Who remembers when you could only buy certain hair brands online?  Why is there a Central Market, Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s  within spitting distance of each other in North Dallas, but in other areas only dollar stores, Popeyes, and liquor stores are the only thing that seem to be placed in our areas. It has a lot to do with demographics, but let’s not forget we have a voice outside of what statistics say.

What do you think? Comment below or tweet me at @Paige_Nash!

Top Five hair products from Target: 1. Fekkai Shea Butter Conditioner & Shampoo 3. Shea Moisture Anti Breakage Masque, 3. L’oreal EverStrong No Sulfate Shampoo 4. Neutrogena Triple Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner. I also purchase the majority of my oils there.

1. Castor Oil
2. Olive Oil
3. Lavender Oil
4. Tea Tree Oil

If you would like to know more about my staple hair products visit  (pinterest.com/thatnash/paige-s-staple-hair-products/)