Black Friday shopping has been a tradition in my family since I can remember. In fact when I was really young (3 and under) my mom would actually purchase my christmas presents for me on Black Friday…with me there! I am not a morning person (even then) so I would be too sleepy to even realize.

As I got older and started to have interest in clothing instead of toys the deals were less incredible year after year, but shopping was tradition. And when I worked retail it became a part of my life in another way. I got the inside scoop on Black Friday. With my years of experience as a customer coupled with my experience as the seller, I have compiled all my tips & tricks for a successful Black Friday shopping experience.

layering

Let’s start with what to wear cause this is a style blog after all…A huge part of Black Friday shopping is trying on clothing! (and that is coming from someone who never wants to try anything on, but trust me just do it) So here I have a few tips for your Black Friday shopping style to help make the day fun, like it is meant to be!

1.  Wear your hair up!

hair-up

Trying on tops one after another can cause your hair to have static…which is irritating and never looks great. Avoid this by tying your hair up (ponytail or bun)! Trust me, it’ll be worth it in the end, when your hair isn’t standing straight up.

2. Dress in Light Layers

black-friday-outfit

Layers, Layers, Layers!!! I can’t stress this enough. I know shopping at midnight makes for a cold setting, but when you’re rushing around that 3rd store you’ll be working up a sweat. No need to make it worse by wearing a big winter coat and winter sweater.

Light layers are key.  Wear an easy breezy tee or tank as a base, something that is easy to take off or easy to layer things over to skip the fitting room altogether. Opt for a light jacket that can be tied around your waist or easily stuffed in a bag when you get too hot (something light to not weigh you down). If you still feel cold with just a light jacket, add an in-between layer like a flannel or light cardigan. Again something that can be tied around your waist or easily stuffed away when you’re over it.

I love just a plain white tee, a men’s flannel for some extra warmth, and a light weight bomber for any weather interference (rain) that might occur (outdoor mall).

3. A Smaller Cross-body Bag

crossbody-purse

As women our instinct is to pack our whole life into our purses. Trust me, you won’t want to lug around a carry on bag when you’re doing your shopping. First of all, it will get in the way with all the crowds you will encounter; so make yourself a lean mean shopping machine.  Second, it will be an added weight or another thing to carry with all of your shopping bags. And third, there are some grabby people around these days; so a small cross body will ensure your purse and things stay with you. Also you’re less likely to set it down while shopping (a problem I always encounter with a larger bag). Just pack the necessities (money, keys, phone, chapstick)! This fringe cross-body is not only the perfect size, but it adds fun with all those tassels!

4. Easy On/Off Comfortable Shoes

comfortable-walking-shoes

Chances are you will be trying on shoes during your shopping excursion.  Therefore you will want a shoe that can be easily put on and taken off, a.k.a. skip the knee high lace-up boots. On the flip side you also want something that will be comfortable for your hours of walking. A slip-on sneaker is the perfect match for these needs. It is supportive and comfortable while easily removed. I love these Free Run Flyknit Nikes (they have laces but stretch like a sock to be slipped on and off).

mall-walking

Most of all….just be comfortable! If you’re comfortable you’ll be able to last all night and day, which is the point of Black Friday (marathon shopping). Well…that and all the great savings deals!!

Now for some pointers on shopping Black Friday:

1. Do Your Research

Some stores start their sales earlier in the week (Wednesday) and some stores have 0 special sales. Finding out which stores do what is important. You don’t want to take a full trip and rush through all the crowds for full price items. And why battle the crowds if the sale started two days ago.

You’ll also want to find out what times your planned-for stores will be opening. Some participate in Thanksgiving day opening, some start at midnight Black Friday, some just open earlier on Friday…it’s best to know…hit up your stores according to their opening time perhaps?

Check for coupons! Some deals can be coupled!! MORE SAVINGS! Cause that’s what it’s all about right?!

2. Make a Plan

Plan where you will be going: Figure out what malls (in which order), what stores (per mall) etc. before you head out. This will make for a smoother trip. You won’t be running around like a chicken with your head cut off; you’ll have a game plan to follow. This will make for a shorter and more organized day! And it’ll help you not to forget or leave out any favorites.

3. Go Early

The early bird gets the worm…so true for Black Friday shopping. Some stores change their deals at a certain point in the day (they get worse as they go). So if a store opens at midnight their sale will most likely be the best at midnight. Thus you’ll want to go as early as possible.

Also go early because of the availability and organization of the merchandise. Not only is a store picked over after a few hours of hordes of people flooding through them, but they are DESTROYED! It’s hard to shop through a pile on a table. Going early will not only ensure the store will still have what you want in your size, but that you will be able to find it!

If your stores open Thanksgiving night,  you should go then (if it’s possible). I know it’s a family holiday, but usually it’s all over around 9 anyways, right? Crowds are smaller this night because most people prefer to stay home. Even if you only go late, late night, it’s still better than fighting the crowds.

4. Money, Money, Money

“I don’t check the price. All I do is swipe” is not the motto for everyone. If you’re working with a budget, take cash!! This will ensure you don’t overspend. Because it is increasingly hard to keep track as those receipts build up, but you can’t spend what you don’t have!

And if you’re not on a budget…let me know how you do it in the comments below!

This will also help just in case of any pesky computer malfunctions (and yes they do happen). Everyone will be left standing in line, while you’ll skip to the front and be in and out!

5. Charge Your Phone 100% 

Fitting room lines, cash register lines…lines, lines, lines! Make sure your phone is fully charged for a day full of waiting. Play games, troll social media, chat with a friend…anything to help make the time pass.

You also never know with social media what kind of offers the store may be offering via Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Online etc.. You’ll be prepared for any savings deal!

It’s also great in a group to make sure no one gets lost because you will undoubtedly get separated at some point!

taking-a-break-from-shopping

Now go! Shop ’til you drop! Well, not really, remember it’s ok to take a break and make the day last! It only comes around once a year….HAVE FUN, it’s only shopping!