Christmas isn’t even here and we’re already feeling a whisper of the post-Christmas guilt that comes from overindulging in wine, glazed ham, and shopping. When Boxing Day finally rolls around, any sane person would be sleeping in, feasting on Christmas leftovers or hitting up the beach for some much-needed R&R after Christmas with the family. But, if you insist on going shopping with the millions of other people who are all fighting to nab a bargain, we’ve got a few cheeky hints to help you make the most of the Boxing Day sales. Because seriously, the last thing you want to do is blow your budget and enter the new year on a sour note…

If you want to make it through the Boxing Day sales with your sanity and budget (relatively) intact, read on to discover everything you need to know to manoeuvre your way through bargain hunters like an absolute pro.

1
You can’t just waltz into Westfield and expect to grab a new season Zimmermann playsuit for a fraction of the price without doing a bit of research beforehand. Before recklessly diving into the sales and grabbing everything you see, make sure you take a second to plan out what you’re hoping to buy. Making a list of what you’re looking for will help avoid impulse buys (you already have five pairs of gym tights, you don’t need any more); while checking out the centre’s opening hours will ensure you don’t rock up late and miss all the good buys.

2
This might be our best-kept secret. Ahead of the big day, make sure you sign up to receive e-newsletters from all your fave stores so that you’ll be notified of all their offerings leading up to Boxing Day. When the sales finally start, you’ll have a good idea about which stores you want to hit up, what you want to get your hands on, and how much you’ll need to budget. Never underestimate the power of an e-newsletter!

3
Repeat after me: just because something is on sale is not a good enough reason to buy it. After all, buying something on sale doesn’t make it a bargain if you never actually use it… If you honestly don’t see yourself wearing that off-the-shoulder crop top in hot pink, then don’t spend $40 on it. Alternatively, if you’ve got a pile of clothes and are stuck trying to cull the excess (because somehow you’re standing in the change room $250 over budget), consider the three-outfit rule. If you can’t think of three different ways you could style that piece for different events, it might not be the best investment. Unless of course, you’ve specifically wanted to buy a sequined mini-dress. In which case, go for it!

4
Have you ever tried to get a table in the food-court during Boxing Day sales? You’d have an easier time finding Stella McCartney flatforms for $100. If 12:00pm rolls around and you’re feeling a little peckish, you’ll find yourself a) standing in line for a feed for a lot longer than you’d like, and, b) probably wandering around the food-court for at least 15 minutes looking for somewhere to sit down, in which time your food has either gone cold or you’ve nibbled on most of it anyway so there is no point sitting down. So, to avoid this catch-22, make sure you start the day with a hearty and filling breakfast and have some easy snacks on hand for when you start to feel your energy failing. A sneaky granola bar in your purse will be an absolute godsend when you’ve been standing in line for the change rooms for 20 minutes!

5
Once you finally make it into the change room (granola bar in hand), the last thing you want to do is have to unlace your Adidas and wrangle yourself out of a pair of skinny jeans, especially if you’re hitting up Zara, H&M, David Jones and about 17 smaller boutique stores. Basically, you want to be wearing the easiest possible outfit to take on and off. If you’re happy to wear a muumuu à la Homer Simpson then power to you, but otherwise we have a few tried, tested and approved alternatives that will make your shopping experience easier. Fair warning: some of these aren’t super chic, but what are you here for? To look good or score a bargain?

  • A shift dress
  • Shorts and a sweater
  • A maxi dress
  • A kaftan (add a bikini for an extra beach-chic look).
  • Loose playsuit
  • Anything you’d wear to the gym (excluding a sports bra! They are like elastic prisons).
  • If you’re happy to go for broke, track pants with flip-flops (hey, we warned you this wouldn’t be pretty!).

Feature image: The Devil Wears Prada 20th Century Fox

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