5 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Buying Any Piece of Clothing

Even if you’ve already hit the fitting room and are convinced you need these new clothing items, here are questions to ask yourself before buying any piece of clothing.  Don’t get caught up in the shopping experience, or you might later learn that you’ve wasted your money on dud clothing items that collect cobwebs in the corner of your money pit closet.  Have you ever purchased a piece of clothing you thought you loved in the store and ended up regretting it?

5 questions to ask yourself before buying any piece of clothing

Just how trendy is the piece of clothing?

The issue here is buying something so trendy that it will turn into a Halloween costume a couple of months after you buy it.  Now, if you only plan on wearing the item once and it’s not too expensive, head to the cashier if you’d like.  But I wouldn’t spend hundreds or (yikes!) thousands of dollars on a pair of designer embellished jeans with embroidery all over them (like these Gucci ones.)  Chances are next year, they will be old news, and you probably won’t have an easy time reselling the item on a site like eBay.  So keep in mind the level of trendiness of each and every piece of clothing you consider.

early spring outfit ideas
These jeans are the perfect balance between trendy and classic, so they will never go out of style.

Is the fit really perfect?

If you are in the fitting room thinking, “If I just put a piece of double-sided tape here…” or “If I just suck it in a tiny bit…” chances are you should leave whatever it is on the rack.  We’ve all been there and made the mistake of buying something that was awesome only in theory.

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Also note the functionality of the item:  questions to ask yourself before buying any piece of clothingDoes it feel comfortable when you sit?  Can you drive in it?  I don’t know how many times I have had to put a top or jacket back on the rack because it was only comfortable if my arms stayed at my sides.  I don’t know about you, but I have a long to-do list each day, and I don’t have time to be a statue.

And lastly, does it itch?  If it itches, ditch it, no matter how cute it is.  Itching is never comfortable.

Would you drive back to the store to get it if you didn't purchase it right then?

early spring outfit ideas- hinge top and distressed black denim
If I didn’t buy these jeans when I first tried them on, I would have absolutely gone back the next day to get them or tracked them down online.

The answer to this question is a great gauge for figuring out how much you really do like the piece of clothing.  Sometimes, when I am shopping, I can get caught up in the whole experience.  Yes, shopping totally excites me.  It is one of my favorite things to do!  I have gone home with items that I have later returned because they weren’t as wonderful as I had initially thought.  And worse yet, I have wasted my money on such items because I only wore them once.  Instead, ask yourself if you would yearn for that clothing item if you didn’t leave the store with it.  If the answer is yes, head to the register!

Do you want to buy it just because it's made by your favorite brand or designer?

This can be okay if you really love the item, but are you buying it just because you love the designer?  I have done this before.  If I really just need some retail therapy but can’t find an item of clothing I really need or want, I might just purchase something by a favorite brand.  This is not the best decision if I don’t truly love the item by itself.  Be sure to ask yourself the questions in this post no matter what brand or designer makes the item!

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Does the piece of clothing fit into your lifestyle?

Okay, so you love the leather leggings or you’re really digging the cropped top.  Do you even have a place or occasion to wear these things?  And would you even feel comfortable wearing it?  If the answer is no, you should probably rethink your purchase.  If you have nowhere to wear such clothes, they are a waste (even if they make you look and feel extra amazing).

early spring outfit ideas- sweatshirt with statement necklace
My current lifestyle in one outfit.

That’s what’s up in lifestyle/shopping advice.  Consider these questions next time you’re about to head to the checkout line.  Have you ever purchased an piece of clothing you thought you loved in the store and ended up regretting it?  Tell me about it in the comments!




A fashion, beauty, and lifestyle blog written by Jackie Mikkelson, Instinctively en Vogue is a source of inspiration for busy girls, especially moms like her, who want to be chic while staying comfortable. #stayCHIComfy

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  1. 10.4.16
    Leslie said:

    Thank you for writing this! I wish all fitting rooms had a message on the mirror reminding me to sit down in the clothes and do a jumping jack while I’m at it. I can’t tell you how many times I wish I would have!

    • 10.4.16

      I wrote this because I struggle with all of these things! I paid way too much for a blouse because I thought the amount I liked it would trump the itchiness. WRONG. So glad I could help!

  2. 10.4.16

    xo yes!

  3. 10.4.16

    That is so true!! If it’s gone, it wasn’t meant to be. That has happened to me too. Thank you for reading!

  4. 10.12.16

    Oh thank you so much! I am working on a related post, so you will have to check it out. Thanks for the nomination- I’ll head on over to your blog!

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