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Ten Hacks to Look Expensive On A Budget | Shopping Tips

Shop Like A Pro!

One of my goals is to help you save time and money. So I’m VERY excited to share these top 10 shopping hacks to help you look expensive on a budget. These are tips I use all the time to save money while shopping online! If you’re looking for styling tips to look more luxe and expensive on a budget, check out this post. For more ways to shop like a pro, make sure you watch this video.

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury, look more expensive

Tip #1 | Promo Codes & Deals

For easy ways to find promo codes and deals, make sure you’re using browser extensions like Shoptagr and Honey. They both have a website and an app that are very easy to use. Shoptagr allows you to save items and then be notified when the items go on sale, find deals, and offers promo codes. With the Honey extension on your computer, it automatically finds and tests promo codes to get you the best deal! Retail Me Not is another great resource for promo codes, deals, and cashback!

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury

Tip #2 | Outlet Stores

Outlet stores are a great way to get discounted pieces. Some of my favorites are…

Nordstrom Rack
Hautelook
The Outnet
Saks Off Fifth
Neiman Marcus Last Call
Saks Off Fifth
Century 21
YOOX

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury

Tip #3 | Flash Sale Websites

These are different from outlet stores because it’s a sale on a specific brand, with specific items, for a specific amount of time. They’re usually only up for three days but you can get up to 75% off! My favorite flash sale website is Rue La La. I’ve bought a lot from Rue La La, but my Prada belt bag has been my biggest steal! Another great site is Gilt (great for home décor). For UK readers, I came across a flash sale website called Secret Sales that looks like a nice resource.

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury

Tip #4 | Consignment Stores

Next…consignment stores! When I lived in NYC, I loved going to consignment stores. You have to have time and patience to look, know what you’re looking for, and be smart about what to look for. The beauty of an online consignment store is that it’s much easier to shop! One of my favorites is eBay. I’ve probably purchased the most from eBay and I love that they authenticate luxury handbags now! Another favorite is The RealReal. I’ve had wonderful experiences shopping on this site and it’s where I bought my Celine belt bag! Another favorite, similar to TheRealReal, is Vestiaire Collective. Italist is also great for lower cost mostly Italian designer pieces. I recently found LuxeDH…it’s a beautiful website and seems easy to use. It looks like they have a lot of Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Gucci!

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury

Tip #5 | International Websites

If you know exactly what you’re looking for, check international sites. Sometimes they offer the same items for less! I bought a Veronica Beard blazer from My Theresa, which is sort of like the European version of Neiman Marcus, for a lot less than it was on other sites in the US. Other sites I’d suggest are Farfetch, LuisaViaRoma, and MatchesFashion.

Shopping Tips from an expert including flash sale websites, consignment stores, outlet stores, rent luxury

Tip #6 | Rent It!

Your next option for looking expensive and saving money is to rent it! If you have something special coming up like a reunion, wedding, gala, etc., and you want a luxury handbag or designer dress, rent it! You can also rent jewelry! Three sites I’d recommend for renting…Bag Borrow or Steal, Rent The Runway, and Switch. This is an easy way to look luxe on a budget!

Tip #7 | Comparison Shopping

Comparison shopping is a no-brainer. You want to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck! Google is an easy way to comparison shop. I also love Shop Style. You can type in exactly what you’re looking for and it will show you a ton of options and prices, where to buy it, and it has filters so you can narrow down your search.

Tip #8 | Earn Cash Back

You can literally earn money back when you’re shopping. I’ve used Rakuten and love it! Shop and get cash back from retailers like Nordstrom, Sephora, Bloomingdale’s, Express, Target, and more!

Tip #9 | Sign Up For Emails

I know you don’t want more emails in your inbox, but signing up for emails from your favorite stores is easy and keeps you updated on their sales! You can sign up for a Gmail account and they sort it all out for you, or you just use a completely different email for those types of emails. When you’re signing up, be sure to keep an eye out for a new customer promo code. A lot of times, when you sign up for emails, they give you a percentage off! A lot of places also give you a discount on your birthday too!

Tip #10 | Sample Sale Sites

Sample sales were a huge part of how I afforded to look stylish while living in New York! But there’s a site called 260 Sample Sale that sends you emails for sample sales that are happening and you can shop the sample sale online! Normally you go to the sale in New York or Los Angeles and rummage through tables, racks, and bins to find what you like. This makes it more civilized because you can stay home and shop online!

Do you have any shopping tips to help save money? Please share your tips in the comments so we can ALL benefit!

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Thanks for stopping by!

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How To Manifest Anything, Fashion blogger Erin Busbee of Busbee Style wearing an orange and blue Staud Ina dress with white sunglasses walking around in Telluride, Colorado
Erin Busbee
After a decade in TV news, a desire to help women "look pretty" sparked a career pivot. I started my own wardrobe consulting business, styling "real" women for many years. In 2014, I changed direction again, using my TV background and styling expertise to launch this website and my YouTube channel. We are now a community of nearly 700,000 dynamic, vibrant, amazing women over 40... who know that age isn't something you need to hide from. For us, life is just getting started!!
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6 thoughts on “Ten Hacks to Look Expensive On A Budget | Shopping Tips

  1. I just found your site . and I am so excited It’s such great help for the 40+ gals i sometime wonder if I’m trying to hard to stay youthful and at my best. Your site has put me at ease and empowered me as my style taste is similar to yours mostly the casual looks. I thank-You for all the time and effort you put into busbee STLE !!! and your guidance. blessed are you among women !! debra j..

    1. I’m SO glad you found me, Debra! And, thank you for your kind, supportive words. Let me know how I can help you… Erin xo

  2. Great job again. Sorry This will only lwt me type im caps ???? love your posts! So helpful!

    I need help finding the post you did on where a jackets buttons should hit you. I guess i didnt save it. I want to Get a slighlty Oversized check blazer but at 5’5” and short wasted… i want it to hit me right. I cant RememBer what blog post that was in.

    Keep up your hard work! Thank you for all of your help!

    1. Are you looking at a one-button blazer? Somewhere between underbust and belly button is great! Sleeves should fall between wrist and first thumb joint. Hemline length should be at least hipbone length (can be longer). Hope that helps! Erin xo

  3. Hi Erin… thank you for all you do to help get us on track. IvE been derailed for some time but now im catching up and feel extremely thankful to you. I love your style, personality and drive.you deserve your sucCess!! My best to you and your family!!

  4. Very helpful post! I too love ebay and PUrchase a lot off of their site. I always compare with Amazon and have found ebay to be a lot less and always free shipping. my son is getting married in manhattan and i just might check out those rental sites you listed. why not?

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