Clothes shopping is synonymous with impulse buys, which tend to drain your account.

But if you’re stacking a sale price, promo code, cash back rebate, and steep store discount on your favorite clothing designers — maybe impulse buys aren’t so bad?

I keep my clothing budget on point with these five commandments for clothes shopping:


1. Only shop sales, friends and family events, or with a coupon.

Sign up for emails and store loyalty programs to get year-round coupons and promo codes. You’ll also get notified of special friends-and-family events worth checking out.

Then, get up to 80% off when you shop toward the end of a season. Can’t wait until then?



Shop Children’s clearance on Monday, Women’s on Tuesday, and Men’s on Wednesday for at least 30% off. Use your REDCard to drop the price another 5%. Get more Target clothing hacks here.



Shop Power Hour specials from 3 p.m. Friday until 1 p.m. Saturday and during Kohl’s Cash promotions to maximize discounts. Learn the secrets to saving at Kohl’s here.


The Children’s Place

Shop as soon a Place Cash promotion starts to earn both Place Cash and Rewards Cash. You’ll save up to 90% on every purchase with our TCP hacks.

Check out your favorite retailer’s store hacks to save at least 40% every time you shop.



2. Stack cash-back rebates with sale prices and coupons.

Use the following tools when shopping for clothes online for up to 40% off plus cash back:

  • Download the Honey widget. It’ll automatically apply the highest value promo code to your order.
  • Download the Ebates widget or app for an automatic 6% cash back at Forever 21, 3% cash back at Macy’s, 7.5% back from Zulily — the list goes on.
  • Shop through Ibotta for rebates from Foot Locker (5% back), American Eagle (2.5% back), ThredUp (7.5% back), and more.

TIP: Because Ibotta and Ebates are both shopping portals, choose the one with the highest cash back offer. Both can be used with Honey.


3. Learn which discount store stocks your favorite brand at the lowest price.

Stores like Marshalls, T.J.Maxx, Ross and Nordstrom Rack stock high-end brands at bargain bin prices, but did you know these stores also specialize in certain brands? I found Gap jeans at T.J.Maxx for $13!

Go to T.J.Maxx if you’re looking for Gap, Banana Republic, The North Face, Under Armour, American Eagle, Nautica and Lucky.

Shop Ross if you like Adidas, Aeropostale, Calvin Klein, Carter’s, Converse, Fabletics and Marmot.

Hit Marshalls for Coach, Guess, Kenneth Cole, Juicy, Steve Madden and Michael Kors.

Also, learn how to spot true Nordstrom collections versus items that were made for Nordstrom Rack.



4. Get your favorite designer jeans up to 75% off.

I might be on a budget, but my designer jeans don’t have to be.

Get Joe’s Jeans up to 70% off from

Buy Silver Jeans on Thursday or Saturday from Maurices for up to 75% off. If you strike out, check Macy’s Last Act section for up to 72% off.

Get Hudson’s from Nordstrom Rack for up to 70% off.

Love another brand? Learn how to get your favorite designer jeans up to 75% off.


5. Know the return policy before you pull the trigger.

Because 100% of what I buy is on sale, I ask for the return policy to make sure I can take something back if I hate it once I get home (hey, it happens!).

Amazon recently launched Amazon Wardrobe that allows you to try on up to eight items at home before you’re charged — as long as you send back whatever you don’t want within seven calendar days.

Target brands have a one-year return window (including kids’ brands like Cat & Jack).

Athleta has a Give-It-A-Workout Guarantee, which actually encourages you to sweat in their workout gear and return it if you didn’t like it. (Ew, but OK!)

Meanwhile, Athleta’s sister stores (Old Navy, Gap, and Banana Republic) won’t accept items that have been worn or washed.

The 5 Commandments for Buying Clothes