Save Stylishly: How to Resist Retail Therapy

By Jamie Ducharme
Photos: Flickr user MurderWithMirrors

After a bad day, there are three things you can turn to–chocolate, wine or shopping. And while these are all wonderful, wonderful things, there comes a time when you must admit that your waistline, liver and wallet sadly aren’t reaping the benefits. If shopping is your vice of choice, it’s time to make a change with these five ways to resist retail therapy. (If you chose the other two, you’re on your own.)


Go on Pinterest.

Nothing can match the rush of actually purchasing an item, bringing it home and staring at it for hours (don’t act like you don’t do that), but Pinterest is a pretty decent substitute. Scrolling through pictures of beautiful things can satisfy your urge to shop, and pinning something kiiiind of makes you feel like you bought it, right?

Play dress up.

Yes, this sounds pretty stupid, but it works. Sometimes all it takes to resist a day on Newbury Street is falling back in love with your current pieces, and finding new ways to wear them is a great way to do that. Next time your roommate is gone for the day, blast some Top 40 hits, open up your closet and put on your own private fashion show.

Keep a running shopping list.

In times of strength, make a list of things you actually need/genuinely want. If you know what you’re looking for, it’ll be that much easier to resist buying yet another top with leather accents—seriously, enough already—when a day of retail therapy is calling your name.

Use the 24-hour rule.

A good rule of thumb is to never buy anything the first time you see it. Instead, wait a day and see if you’re still thinking about it. If you are, buy it with no regrets. If you aren’t, you just saved yourself spending $20 on a trashy sequined party dress. You’re welcome.

Never make accounts on your favorite online shopping sites.

Sure, it saves time. And sure, it’s great for feeding your laziness. But it’s five times harder to follow through on a purchase when you have to look your debit card in the eye, silently apologize to your bank account and type in those torturous digits. Put the card down and walk away.

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