TIPS FOR SHOPPING ONLINE
I much prefer to retail shop than online because I am a tactile shopper and do not like to buy without trying on. This post was inspired by my recent adventure looking at some clothing outlets on facebook. I felt inclined to investigate what they had on offer because the outfits were representative of my own style / clothing preferences – creative, unusual designs and construction. While looking at these sites and enjoying the clothing range a voice inside my head was saying – “Buyer beware – what you see may not be what you get.” The alarm bells were ringing because the clothing quality and style did not correspond to the low cost. After reading quite a few reviews my initial thoughts were realised. I have to say I was very disappointed because I had already visualised myself wearing many of these outfits.
Here are some helpful tips for making considered purchases online that can add value to what you already have in your wardrobe. No matter whether you shop retail or online a purchase you don’t wear is not adding any value to your life.
BEFORE SHOPPING – BE PREPARED
Your reasons for shopping can have a positive or negative impact on the outcome of your shopping journey. When you shop do you have an expectation that you will purchase something and feel disappointed and let down if you haven’t made a purchase.
ASK yourself these questions to lessen the chances of purchasing items that you will not wear:-
- WHY am I going shopping online? (The following also applies to real life shopping.)
There are many reasons why we shop:-
- Just stumbled across an interesting post on my feed.
- I am filling in time.
- Feel like I have nothing to wear.
- Bored with my wardrobe.
- Nothing fits me.
- Want to see what is available.
- To fill a gap in my wardrobe.
Knowing why you are shopping can set the direction and expectations of the outcome of this experience. Not every shopping experience has to end in disappointment if you have not purchased something. I call this going on a shopping safari.
- WHAT are you looking for?
Self knowledge and awareness is very important when shopping as it can lessen the impulse to buy for the sake of that shopping rush. You can gain more self knowledge by looking at the clothes that you already have and enjoy wearing. Take a look at the clothes you enjoy wearing and make you feel comfortable and confident.
Important information to know includes identifying:-
- Clothing types that you prefer to wear- skirts, tops, pants, shorts, jeans, suits, dresses etc
- Styles and silhouettes you find most flattering and comfortable.
- Types of fabrics which feel right for you. Take a look at the fabric composition of clothing that feels just right for you.
- Colours & patterns you like to wear and how you combine them.
- Level of detail in your clothing – do you prefer simple, classic and uncluttered clothing or frills and more details.
- Identify the brands that you most like wearing.
The above elements outline your style preferences and relate to your Personality Style. Identifying your preferred Personality Style gives you power when shopping as it becomes a road map to choosing clothes that work for you.
QUESTIONS TO ASK
Ask these questions when you find something that appeals to you to help you make informed decisions.
- What attracted me to this item?
- Where can I wear this? / Does it fit with my lifestyle needs?
- How does this item fit with my personal clothing preferences?
- Do I have anything like this already?
- What detail does it have that will enhance or be less flattering on me?
- Why am I buying this?
- Will I return it if it isn’t right?
DO SOME RESEARCH
If you are buying a brand that you haven’t worn before or from a new outlet it is important to check the reviews.
Also remember to check the returns policy. Ask yourself whether you are likely to return it if it isn’t right.
Ask friends about their experiences.
HIT THE PAUSE BUTTON
Before you hit the BUY NOW button take some time out to consider why you are buying this and how it will add value to your wardrobe.
PITFALLS OF ONLINE SHOPPING
- Shopping online is very one dimensional as we are just looking at an image on a body that more than likely bears no resemblance in body shape, body proportions and body variations to ourselves. Everything online looks appealing on the model.
- Wearing clothing involves how we feel as well as how it fits. There is only one way to know if something is right for you and that is trying it on.
- If you are not the type of person to return items then online shopping may not work for you unless you have already tried the item on in the shops. I am that type of person.
- Online shopping does not allow us to touch, feel and examine for quality.
- There are no standard guidelines for sizing across the clothing and fashion industry. This can make it very difficult to choose the correct size. Some sites will have body measurements for bust, waist, hips etc. This is not always helpful because we can have similar body measurements but our body shapes can be very different. Some body shapes are curvier whereas others are straighter. Clothes will fit and look very different even if body measurements are similar.
Being an empowered shopper involves having the knowledge of how your clothing needs relate to your:-
- Personality Style
- Body Shape
- Body Proportions
- Body Variations
- Lifestyle Needs.
MAKE EVERY PURCHASE COUNT
Contact me to discover how we can work together to take the frustrations out of shopping, creating outfits and a wardrobe that supports you every day.