Joanie Demer | 

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

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H&M is known for their high fashion at low prices, but with these tips, you can save even more.


1. Bring in old clothes to save 15%.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

H&M isn’t trying to hide this, but it still seems to be one of the best-kept savings secrets. You can bring in your old clothes—any brand, in any condition—and get a 15% savings certificate. That’s 15% OFF YOUR ENTIRE PURCHASE!!! The donation bins are located near the cash registers. Simply locate an employee and let them know you have some clothes to donate. They will watch you put the clothes in the bin and reward you with a coupon good for 15% off your next in-store purchase. The coupons even work on sale items! (But not on special promos like BOGO or special combo promotions.)

You can donate up to two bags a day, and the coupons are good for several months at a time. Each bag should contain at least three to five articles of clothing. You can even donate non-clothing textiles like sheets and towels.

Read more about how H&M repurposes textiles to further their sustainable mission.


2. Save around 30% with discounted gift cards.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

Discount H&M gift cards are plentiful, and the savings are amazing! At, there are dozens of gift cards in or around 16% off face value. And at, there are hundreds of H&M cards available, with savings of up to 30%. This is the easiest way ever to give yourself some more room in your budget. The best part is, you can use these on any item in the store, including sale items, and you can combine them with other discounts.


3. The best time to shop H&M is end of season.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

This is one area where H&M mirrors a typical clothing retailer. As the seasons change, the sale sections become flush with new products. Check in early and often for the best selection, as even the employees don’t know when an item will be moved to the discount rack.



4. Read the secret price-tag code to know when to buy.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

H&M clothing has nine seasons. Four seasons seems kind of boring in comparison, eh? A quick look at the price tag will tell you what the current season is. If most of the clothes are in season four, and you find a season three item, odds are good it will be marked down soon. The season is the seventh number in the first line of numbers under the bar code. You’ll see the tag above is for a season two item.


5. Fast production time means fewer markdowns.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

It takes most clothing retailers an average of six months to get clothes from concept to rack. H&M has refined their process so much that in some cases it only takes them two weeks. Their whole philosophy is to produce high-fashion items in limited quantities. This feeds the “gotta have it now” frenzy but, unfortunately, reduces the number of markdowns.


6. Turnover is high, and price adjustments are nonexistent.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

If you see something you can’t live without at H&M, you’d better grab it now, or prepare to be sorry. The inventory at H&M is designed to fly off the shelves quickly, so nothing sticks around for long. The high turnover means they always have a good sale section, but you can’t predict what inventory will be there long enough to even go on sale. If your favorite item does go on sale after you buy it, you’re probably out of luck since H&M doesn’t offer a price matching guarantee. The only way to recoup the discount is to return it (if it’s unworn) and buy it again.


7. The return policy is strict.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

Because turnover is so high, they are sticklers with their return policy. Unwashed and unworn items accompanied by a receipt can be returned within 30 days for a full refund. If it’s past 30 days, or if you don’t have a receipt, you’ll only be refunded the current selling price of the item in the form of store credit.



8. Download the H&M app for exclusive discounts.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

Any employee will tell you that the best way to get discounts at H&M is to download the app and sign up for the newsletter (we’ll get to that one in a second). The app is free (available on both iTunes and Google Play) and offers exclusive deals and coupons including free shipping and percent-off coupons. It’s not uncommon to find a 30% off coupon waiting for you in the app. If you have your push notifications turned on, it will alert you of new deals.


RELATED: 19 Freaking Amazing Ways to Save at T.J.Maxx


9. Stack coupons with discounts where possible.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

Most H&M discounts can’t be stacked. If an item is on sale, you generally can’t use a percentage-off discount, and you can’t stack multiple percentage-off coupons for a bigger discount. The major exceptions to this rule are the 15% recycling coupon, which can be used on sale items, and free shipping codes. The H&M app frequently has a free shipping code offer, and this can be stacked with other percentage-off codes as well.


10. Scan bar codes in-store to find out-of-stock sizes online.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

The app can also be used to find items that are out of stock in-store. For example, if you can’t find your size in an item, simply scan the tag with the app, and it will pull up the product online, if it’s available. Sometimes it will pull up a close match, if the exact product isn’t available, or sometimes you’re just out of luck. It’s still the best way to track down an item and get a discount as well.


11. Buy multiples to save an average 30% per item.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

The best way to get discounts without coupons at H&M is to take advantage of ‘stock-up’ sales. Watch for sales like “buy 3 get 1 free,” “two for $10,” or “two for $20.” Instead of paying $6.99 for a tank, pay $10 for 2, a 29% savings per shirt.



12. Save 25% with an employee discount.

H&M offers great employee benefits. Not only do they pay better than the average retail job, but they also offer paid time off and other great benefits—even for part-timers. That’s in addition to the 25% employee discount. Not too shabby if you’re looking for a little extra work. Or, if you know someone who works at H&M, you can still save like an employee. Every employee is given vouchers to give to friends and family. These are good for the same 25% employee discount.


13. Follow H&M on social media for sales and events.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

Following H&M on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat will not only get you great fashion inspiration, but it will also snag you an occasional extra discount. Twitter is especially prone to having a discount code thrown out every now and then. Facebook is also a great way to find out about grand openings and special events in your area. These events are usually accompanied by a giveaway.


14. Save 20% on one item when you text your email to 70703.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

You can save 20% on one item plus get free shipping just for signing up for the email newsletter. Our employee insiders also confirm that the newsletter is one of the best ways to be in the know about exclusive discounts and sales.


15. Shop in-store for best selection, and online for convenience.

15 Brilliant H&M Shopping Tips You Need to Know

H&M joined the online shopping game fairly late. They didn’t even have a shoppable website until the summer of 2013. Today, the online selection is still limited, probably because everything turns over so fast, so maintaining it on the website would be a nightmare. If it’s selection you’re looking for, your best bet is to stop by the store. If you’re lucky enough to find the item you want online, then the .com version is certainly more convenient, and they do offer some unique discounts through the app that could save you money too.

Overall, with a little bit of know-how, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be saving at least 40% every time you shop at H&M.


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