I am the queen of sales.
I pride myself on buying things at a steal, never giving anything that is full-price a second glance. Designer brands? Don’t even try.
But it still happens sometimes, if I’m honest.
The feeling pops up when I see someone with a $384 Kate Spade purse or a $110 Michael Kors dress, the automatic mental calculations of my finances kicking into gear, crunching numbers this way and that, searching for some way that I could possibly afford those this month.
A few moments later, I’ve come up with some solutions:
1. Save money by kicking my coffee addiction.
2. Become an Uber driver.
3. Get a sugar daddy.
Considering how without a constant stream of coffee I turn into Grumpzilla, communicating solely through icy glares and dramatic sighs, giving up coffee is a no-go (it’s for the sake of the people, really).
When it comes to Uber, my GPS laughs a little every time I put in an address and think I will actually end up in the correct place, so that might not be the best idea.
And as for the sugar daddy… I’ll keep you updated.
But unfortunately, as of right now, it just isn’t going to happen.
I’m a broke college student, and that’s just the way it is. However, if you’re a lover of all things clothes and shoes like me, you don’t want to give up having stylish clothes just because you can’t afford name brands. Luckily, you don’t have to. Here are 7 stores every college girl on a budget needs to keep in mind:
ASOS can be all over the board with its prices, but its wide selection of affordable clothing, shoes and accessories is renowned for being one of the top available online.
Like its prices, ASOS has a wide range when it comes to style, but you can always count on it featuring the latest trends. From cute crop tops for your next music festival to classic pieces you can wear to work or class, ASOS has it.
Target has a wide array of clothing styles that cater to various tastes and body types/sizes, partnering with brands like Who What Wear, which features easy, chic streetwear, and A New Day, which features trendy and affordable pieces (as in they’re ALL under $50!).
From swimwear and activewear to sweaters and blazers, you’ll leave Target with what you’re looking for (and if you’re like me, a few pieces you weren’t).
Zara is one of those stores that you either absolutely love or you absolutely hate. I LOVE how it carries the latest trends. Often, these are pieces that you would imagine seeing splashed across the cover of a magazine or are the basic wardrobe staples, but sometimes they include clothing that you can only stare at in wonderment, not really sure what you’re looking at, and try to figure out just what exactly the designer was smoking while they were sketching.
So, word to the wise—when shopping at Zara, don’t get overwhelmed. Don’t be afraid to branch out, but be confident in what you like and what best fits your style.
For styles a little more tame than Zara, Mango is a good choice. Featuring a subtle style, Mango offers clothing that is both sensible and stylish. In other words, it’s the more adult version of Zara’s expressive pieces.
Mango also is more size-inclusive than Zara, with clothing up to a size 22, making it the store to try if you want a more muted, classic look, no matter your size.
3. Old Navy
While I really could rave on and on about Old Navy (and you think I’m exaggerating), I will try to contain myself... try being the operative word.
Simply put, Old Navy is the classic store, the reliable go-to for anything from jeans (for literally every shape) to irresistible sweaters or cute dresses for every season.
They also have a killer activewear selection, with stylish and functional workout gear like leggings, shorts, sports bras, tank tops and more for various occasions.
Plus, they ALWAYS have some sort of sale going on, so you pretty much have to buy it (or that’s how it works in Sarah Land).
2. Forever 21
You knew it was coming. Being one of the most popular discount clothing stores in the US, Forever 21 is the ultimate (and massively extensive) stop for college girls wanting to find trendy, low-priced options.
With its low prices can often come the inevitable poor quality, but for clothing that won’t break the bank and will allow you to stay on top of the latest trends—from preppy to sporty to boho to whatever your little heart desires—Forever 21 is your store.
Bless you, Hennes & Mauritz, for gifting us with fashion heaven.
H&M really is the store for all, having something that will satisfy everyone. Seriously, they have everything. With primarily quality clothing that ranges in style from the most current trends to classic pieces you can wear for years to come to styles you had no idea even existed, H&M is the place to look! (I’m not obsessed, OK?)
If you still think of target first as a grocery store and THEN as a place to find clothing… you might need to get out more. It’s basically the best friend of any female on a budget.
Now here’s the ultimate (way-too-hard) question: which store do you go to first?