How to grab a bargain all year round.

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Expert stylist, shopper and blogger Belinda Janis gives Bondi Beauty the inside tips on how and where to get the best bargains all year round.

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It’s all about outlet stores. Just because the city stores are on sale a lot at the moment, don’t write off the outlet stores – they are packed with bargains, especially for fitness gear, you just need the right strategic approach.

Shopping at outlets is all about timing. You’ll either find loads of everything in every shape, style, size and colour or possibly nothing at all. Having a game plan in place can be the difference between winning and losing, especially if you are shopping for Fitness wear.

  • Get in early

You want to be fresh, and ready to beat the crowds. If you can plan your strategy before you get to the outlet this will save time. View the outlet web site so you know what shops and brands are available. Get there when it open if possible. Monday is often the  best day to go, as the stores receive deliveries that day. You can always call ahead and ask.

  • Know what you are after

Aside from a bargain, what gaps do you need to fill in your wardrobe? Are there pieces that need replacing due to wear and tear? Have a list and even images saved in your phone or from pinterest if it helps with your game plan.

  • Don’t spend for the sake of it

You’ve worked hard for your money, don’t throw it away on a bargain just because it’s on sale. Shop for what you need, not what you want.

  • Dress appropriately for your outlet workout

Wear comfortable shoes and an outfit that is easy to slip in and out of when trying on clothes. If you plan to try on trainers take along a pair of your regular sport socks, and wear a sports bra. Ask to go for a quick run in trainers to see how they really feel.

  • If it doesn’t fit DON’T buy it.

The plan is to get fit, happy and healthy but if something doesn’t fit, don’t justify the purchase with a promise of losing weight. You need to be comfortable and not fussing in your outfit today – right now..

  • Be price smart, do your research

Whilst you might be purchasing something on sale know what the item is worth when it is full price. Research your favourite brands before you hit the outlets, and if necessary use your phone to look an item or brand up on the spot on ebay for a price guide.

  • Investment pieces

Wardrobe basics are great and never go out of fashion. Think support bras, leggings and socks for fitness, and by day;  plain pants, skirts and tops that fit well and look good.

  • Be 100% sure or don’t buy it

You don’t want a wardrobe full of clothes you never wear, so if in doubt, don’t.

  • Think through your purchases

What do you currently have at home that can be worn with your potential bargain?

  • Take a friend you trust

Shopping is always better with a friend who will be honest with you and make sure you don’t buy things that don’t work, or that you don’t need.  You may want to set a budget with them to ensure you don’t overspend.

  • Don’t fret if you don’t find what you need

Don’t be disappointed if you return home with nothing – it’s ok. There’s always next time.

Outlets like DFO Homebush and Birkenhead Point Outlet Centre are great places to start as there are a number of brands like Authentic Factory Outlet (Converse), Lorna Jane, Puma and Nike in the one location with plenty of parking and public transport services.

Many online fashion brands have outlet stores built in, they are another option if you know your size in the brand.

Remember you win some and you lose some – so good luck.

Belinda Janis Personal Shopper & Stylist from B styles U www.bstylesu.com

What was your best ever bargain buy?

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Renae Leith-Manos

CONTRIBUTOR

Renae Leith-Manos travels the world writing (www.renaesworld.com.au). She has had a colourful media career as a journalist in many magazines and newspapers, and spends her time writing, consulting to new businesses, running, doing yoga, swimming & cycling.
She's likes healthy eating, but thinks chocolate cake is just as important as kale chips.
She spends most weekends hanging out with her gorgeous twins.

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