More Class, Less Cash: A Wise Mom’s Guide to Style and Beauty

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While you want to make sure you’re keeping up with the latest trends and looks in the beauty and fashion department, you don’t have to blow your budget just to stay stylish! Learning how to save money on makeup, clothing, shoes, and accessories might take some time but the extra effort you make will pay off in more ways than one. Once you get a hang of shopping on a budget, you’ll wonder why anyone would ever pay retail prices! And, you don’t have to compromise on quality or forego the latest trends to stay within your budget.

Here are some simple ways to save some cash on those much-needed style and beauty purchase:

1. Try before you buy. Make sure you have a chance to try on any new trend or item at the store so you don’t have to worry about the hassle of returns and exchanges. Remember that not all stores will give you your money back – sometimes you’ll only be eligible for a store credit. Even when you’re shopping for beauty products or makeup, ask for a sample size so you aren’t investing in the full-size until you’re absolutely in love with the product.

2. Shop the outlet malls. When it comes to buying clothes, shoes, and accessories on a budget, you can still find some great deals on designer brands when you hit the outlet mall. Outlet stores typically sell overstock items and slightly damaged (but new) goods. Head to the outlet mall to get some great discounts on some high-end designer goods and maximize your clothing budget!

3. Read makeup reviews online. If you can’t track down a sample size or trial of a beauty product you’re dying to try, read reviews online so you can get an idea of how well the product actually works on different skin types and people. Unbiased reviews can help you make a more informed decision so you don’t end up wasting your hard-earned dollars on something you’ll never actually use.

5. Request samples. When you’re scoping out the latest collections at the beauty counter, don’t be afraid to request free samples or even a free makeover. Those beauty gurus behind the counter are usually armed with a stack of trial-sized products and can give you a complimentary makeover and skin consultation on the spot. This can be a great way to try new makeup and narrow down the field of choices to items that really are a good match.

6. Sign up for store newsletters. Track down your favorite retail stores, boutiques, and brands online so you can sign up for their newsletter and get some exclusive offers, deals and coupons emailed to you. Some stores and brands also post special offers on Facebook and Twitter. Stay in the loop so you can snag some of these great deals and save money on that next purchase.

7. Clip coupons. You’ll be surprised how many coupons you can find for beauty products and even some department store deals in magazines, the newspaper, and online. Keep your eyes peeled for paper and electronic coupons so that you can save money on larger purchases.

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