Even though it is something like 6 bajillion frizz-inducing degrees outside, I am all about fall right now. After all, fall fashion is my favorite (isn’t it everyone’s?) and I’m so looking forward to slipping into a cardigan or two when the temps plunge below 75 degrees.
Unfortunately, the only windows of time I get these days seem to be when I have an hour or so to kill during one of my daughters’ activities, which means buying items without trying them on, and returning the rejects later. Many stores are still not allowing try-ons, which means more trying on at home, and although returns can be a hassle, there is nothing like the comfort of trying on at home and making sure you love something before you decide to keep it.
This video is the result of a few of these short shopping trips, as well as a Shein haul/review based on your many requests for info about the quality, fit, etc of items from Shein.
But before I show you what I bought, I wanted to share my 3 quick tips for buying off-price, outlet. and fast fashion stores.
1. Stay Focused
The only way to avoid overwhelm in these stores is to go in with a list. Mine included a long cardigan and wide-leg pants, for example, and I found both (although, spoiler alert, the cardigan went back). If you don’t go in with a list and a clear idea of what you want, you will leave with a bunch of random items and end up with a wardrobe that doesn’t serve you or make you feel beautiful.
2. Don’t Buy It Just Because It’s Cheap
Reverse sticker shock is a thing, and grabbing an item just because it’s $5 or $10 doesn’t lead to a beautiful, versatile, and flattering wardrobe. It leads to a cluttered wardrobe full of compromises. If you love an item and it happens to be inexpensive, then that’s a deal. Otherwise, leave it at the store.
3. Be Fussy About Fit
The difference between items you wear and those that you don’t is usually the fit and the way that the item makes you feel. An inexpensive item that fits your body perfectly is going to be much more flattering than an expensive item that is baggy and saggy. Go for a great fit, or love it enough to have it altered.
I hope you find these tips helpful, and that you enjoy seeing my shopping adventures (and, in some cases, misadventures).
Shein Haul & Review
I like a good fast fashion moment, especially when it comes to the occasional fun and frilly piece that you know isn’t going to be in your wardrobe forever. As I get older, however, my focus has definitely shifted away from these items and more towards higher-quality pieces that fit well and are more flattering.
Shein, though, is super tempting. First of all, the prices are insane, the shipping and customer service is decent and reliable, and the quality of the items, for the most part, is pretty good. Especially for the price.
I decided to buy one of everything from Shein, so I tried 3 items of clothing, 2 pairs of shoes, and 2 pieces of jewelry.
The Quick Verdict? I liked pretty much everything I bought. The jewelry was fun and comparable to the quality that you would get at H&M, for example. Same with the shoes and clothes. Sizing might be a bit inconsistent, but a pair of fitted tailored pants in XS was a bit snug, while a jumpsuit (admittedly slouchy) and a dress from a previous order were on the loose side. Overall, though, a favorable experience.
TJ Maxx Haul
TJ Maxx has an amazing assortment of items online, including high end items in the TJ Maxx Runway section and their special Runway stores. Unfortunately, there is no Runway store in our area, but the TJ Maxx nearby has been the source of some of my fave finds, including my Stuart Weitzman nude pumps. On this run, I picked up items from Nicole Miller, Young Fabulous & Broke, Rachel Zoe, and Banana Republic.
The Rachel Zoe blouse, which was a medium (I typically wear an XS) went back because it was too big, and sadly they don’t have any in my size, but I have kept (and love) the rest!
Like its sister store, TJ Maxx, Marshalls is hit and miss. Most of the time I walk out empty-handed, but on this specific evening, I left with an armful of finds, many of which I have kept. As I mention in the video, don’t be too drawn in by some of the brands, as certain labels design items specifically for off-price retailers. You will, however, find some true designer items from your favorite department store brands. On a recent visit, I found BLANK NYC, Free People, and Michael Kors. Not shown, my Blank NYC black leather joggers, which I kept, and a Free People wine velvet blouse, which I returned.
What did you think of the items in my fall haul? Let me know in the comments!