Friday 6 November 2015

My 28 Days Shopping Rule

My 28 day shopping rule is coming quite famous amongst my friends, so I thought I would explain a little further. An old friend from primary school posted on Facebook saying she's just found £600 of clothes in her wardrobe with tags still on. I quickly explained my 28 day rule, and she said shes going to take it on, as she knows I am a 'shopaholic'. My other friend then commented saying that shes incorporated my rule, and it has worked a treat, so I thought it was time to share it. Having £600 worth of clothes with tags on is an extreme example, but it can be easy to do when you get drawn in. A lot of my friends have graduated this year, so they have just gone into full time work for the first time, and I'm already looking forward to that pay myself. Is it sad that I'm already planning out a year in advance what I'm going to buy? I ain't going to be earning thousands, but it will be a lot more than what I get currently. I took a gap year before I came to uni and worked practically full time in retail. I remember getting £600-£700 in my wage and literally not knowing what to spend it on, as I had previously got £200 from just working the weekends. On pay day I would always take myself into town, and go a little manic. Topshop was always my go to, and my motto was I've earned it, I can treat myself. It didn't help that my best friend was on a gap year too, and it was our little monthly treat to ourselves. I was naive, but it was my money and it was always only going to be for one year. But after a few months I  had piles of clothes which still had labels attached, and  had never been worn. I had a uniform which I would wear 5 times a week, and I simply didn't need a mountain of new clothes every month.

 Thankfully I learnt quickly, and me and mum invented the 28 days rule. Every 3 weeks or so, I would go through my wardrobe and anything with a label on would be taken out and put on a pile. I would look at the receipt and the date in which I bought it. If it was getting close to the last return date usually 25/26 days it would be returned by the 28th day for a full refund. They was a few rule exceptions including  - unless I had an item for a planned occasion, it would be returned that weekend. This rule works an absolute treat now, if I've had lots of opportunities to wear an item and I haven't then I simply don't love it. I only keep things which I love, and I know this as I don't return many things now. If I love an item I want to wear it straight away so it will never make it anywhere near the 28 days anyway. How many times have you looked in your wardrobe, found an item, and looked at your receipt and it ran out yesterday! It's so infuriating and you just end up keeping an item for the sake of it.  Incorporating some simple rule for yourselves works a treat, and honestly you will save money which you are currently wasting.

Now, I don't know how you store your receipts, but I used to have that scattered across 5 different handbags, in my purse, coat pockets and across my bedroom. But now I have a plastic wallet which I keep all my receipts in, so if you need to return it you can, and with ease. I also think this is really important for faulty items, as having proof makes your case so much simpler.

I have changed a lot since three years ago on that gap year when I was 18, and it has differently done me some good. I differently think that I still treat myself a lot, maybe even too much still, but that is how I choose to spend my money. At the start of the month, I think about how much I want to spend that month on myself. I think about all the plans which I have made, to see friends and planned days out, as this can totally differ from month to month. Obviously taking into account all the important things like bills and all other necessities. I also look at how much I had left from last month, and usually move it into my savings account, as I love knowing I have that as a safety net for when I need it. I then set aside a certain amount, my mum always calls me a 'careful christian', or in my dads words 'tight'. I just hate the idea of wasting money, I thoroughly think about big purchases. My sister is the total opposite she's on a much bigger budget compared to me currently, but she really does not have a care in the world. I sometimes think I wish I was a little more relaxed, but I hate the idea of being literally penniless. I hate not being able to do anything at all because your down to your last tenner, because you went on a night out and bought a new dress which you obviously could not afford. I simply like to set myself a little budget, say £50 a month to spend on clothes and makeup. Like I say everyone's budget is completely different and when I'm working full time this will obviously increase. This is only a guidance, and if I've not bought much within a month I will treat myself to something extra. 

I hope this inspires some of you shopaholics to be a bit more thorough and ruthless with your shopping habits!!

Do you have tips and tricks to help you save?

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