Where & when to buy high end designer things at reasonable prices!!

Yes we all adore high end things, but can we afford it?  Starting with makeup: drugstore makeup is usually not exciting; that’s why they’re always seeking to have the most innovative & versatile products in the market. My blog is usually dedicated towards more affordable things, & you CAN buy luxury items if they’re within your budget.  But just keep in mind, ANY product can be a dud.  Whether it be expensive or not.  And when it comes to clothes, just because you have a label on your back, doesn’t necessarily mean you look good.  I have seen ghastly things on the runway.  Here I’m going to tell you how to get high end products inexpensively.

Makeup: Best to buy them in a set.  Amazon.com sells bags of Estée Lauder & Clinique really inexpensively.  Do a search on Amazon like ‘Estee Lauder makeup set’ and you will find lots of them all under $35.  Another place?

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Sephora & Ulta.  Sephora quite often has makeup sets, but they are most popular during the holiday season.  The below sets, Meet your Match costs only $25, and the Smashbox Try It Kit costs only $18.  The below Bare Minerals One Hot Mama makeup kit is only $39 at Ulta.  Not so expensive.  And I’ve bought whole sets & they include higher end makeup mixed in there.  THIS is where you get a good deal & save some money.  Sometimes they give you a smaller version, but why not?  If you love 1 product in particular you won’t feel so guilty about spending $20 on a lipstick.  It’s just ONE lipstick, you love it, & it’s something that you’re going to use again & again .

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Another place?  You can also check out hautelook.com, or ideel.com for high end makeup.  Never heard of them?  They’re websites that sell things at discounted prices online, but they specialize in weeklong sales.  You have to sign up for their membership, but don’t worry, they’re free!  I’ve seen makeup by Lancôme & Dior at ideel.com.  But if you see something you like, you better snatch it up quick!  For these sales last a week & then they’re over.

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Hair products: best place to buy them on a discount?  Marshalls, TJMaxx, & Nordstrom Rack.  I don’t have hard to maintain hair, but girls with fine, damaged, or curly is harder to maintain.  Don’t buy them whole priced, when you can buy them discounted.  (TJMaxx does offer online shopping, but not on their beauty products.)  Also check out Ulta, or Ulta.com.  Sometimes they have sales on hair products, i.e. buy 2 get 1 free.  Check it out!  No one brags about buying things whole price.

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Tip on Beauty Products: If there is a new brand / product you’re curious to try, consider buying a travel sized.  This allows you to sample without buying a whole jar / bottle.  For example, a perfume called Parfum D’extase by Marchesa has a mini rollerball of their perfume that costs only $10, whereas a whole bottle would cost $85.  Also you can test it out for yourself if it really is worth the money or really a dud.  Check out on the website of the brand & see if they sell a travel size.  Or check on the ‘On the fly’ section of Sephora or Ulta.  They sell lots of travel sizes!!  Check it out online at: Sephora’s Travel sizes or Ulta’s On the Go.

Nail polish: again TJMaxx, Marshall’s, & Lot less. Again best to buy in a set.  You’re not going to find Chanel, but you will find Opi & Essie at cheaper prices.  And you can always find sets of nail polish from different brands that are usually under $20.

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Sephora is also a great place to hit again for nail polish sets.  However, the sets that they carry are brands like Formula X, Nails Inc, Butter London.  They do have higher end nail polish like Marc Jacobs, Dior, & Christian Louboutin, but their sets will be smaller & more expensive.  Both sets below of Nails Inc. & Butter London are $30 at Sephora.

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This below Dior nail polish & Couture stickers cost $30, while this Marc Jacobs set costs $55.

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Clothes & bags: best to buy these discounted.  Outlets are great for these; and best to go during a time there’s a SALE.  One of the last times I went to an outlet near me, I almost bought a dress by Valentino for only $400!!  I don’t remember the original price, maybe it was $1,000?  Don’t know of an outlet near you?  Check out outletbound.com.  Century21, hautelook.com, ideel.com, bluefly.com & beyond the rack all have designer things on sale.  I’ve seen Coach & Fendi bags at ideel.com.  If you want really high end, you can head over to net-a-porter.com or YOOX.COM.  They have ridiculously expensive designer clothes, but watch for that sale!!  Always bookmark you favorite items & wait for that discount.  This is the smart way to save money when shopping.

Also consider: Consignment stores.  What are they?  All over the US, there are thrift stores that sell second hand clothing.  And I’m not talking about Salvation Army stuff; some of them sell very high end designer things.  Because they are used, they are discounted.  Something that was $800, might be $300.  Still a lot of money, but you’re getting it at a discount.  This is great especially for women who love to shop vintage.  You might find something rare, or discontinued.  That’s like hitting the jackpot!  You can get your hands on something that no one else can buy!  There is no nationwide store: the closest I can think of is called Second Time Around, which is in 12 states across the US.  Especially in big cities like NY and LA, there are lots of consignment stores.  Also, this is a great way of selling things you don’t want!  To find out, you will have to google ‘consignment stores’ in the nearest city.  Here are 2 links: Consignment stores in NY, Consignment stores in LA.  

Tip: when buying designer clothes or bags, best to go with something practical, instead of super trendy.  If it’s something practical, it’ll be something you wear again & again & you won’t feel so guilty about the price tag.

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Perfume: if you’re just looking for a sampling or something small, best to buy a coffret or rollerballs.  Rollerballs are great because they can go in your bag & travel with you anywhere.  Coffrets usually cost $30 or more, whereas a rollerball is usually around $20.  Coffrets they usually sell at Macy’s or your local department store, the duty free section of the airport, and some at Sephora.  Rollerballs you can get at Ulta or Sephora, where the latter one carries over 300 of them!

Coffrets at Sephora,  Coffrets at Macys,  Rollerballs at SephoraRollerballs at Ulta

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If you want a whole bottle the cheapest place? Ebay.com.  I’ve mentioned this in a previous post, but on Ebay they’re usually people looking to sell testers, or presents they got that they didn’t like.  Some people are afraid to buy a fake off of Ebay.  The trick?  Never go with a buyer less than a 95% approval rating.  I’ve bought lots of perfume off ebay & have never bought a fake.  And quite often I get them half price than I get them in store!

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Is there anything wrong with buying designer items?  Of course not.  The only time when it’s wrong is when you can’t afford it.  But if you find something you love,  (& especially get it discounted) will use it for a long time, THEN I think it’s worthwhile.  I have a Chanel dress that my aunt gave me years ago & I still have it, & every once in awhile will bring it out & wear it again.  Get those coveted items you want but be SMART about it.

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