Vacation season is fast approaching, and most of us just wish that we can have a little more than what we currently have in our pockets. I mean, it’s summer… it’s the time to go out and be seen by everyone. You wouldn’t want to be caught like a deer in headlights when you meet an old friend at the beach, looking drab in the same clothes that you owned three years ago, right?

But what if you have a limited budget, or if you have to spend for other things? As much as you want to go all out and splurge on yourself, you have to pay attention to your current financial situation. To help you out, here are some tips on how to make the most out of your money when shopping:

  1. Make a list of the thing that you NEED to buy and stick by it. Impulse buying always ruins the budget, so it’d be wise to think about the mere necessities first. If there’s something left after your purchases, then that’s the only time to let yourself go.
  2. Shop in your parents’ closet. It’s free, and you’ll even find precious, fashionable items in mint condition. Don’t worry about the trend; after all, much of what’s in right now are just variations of the trends from the last few decades. Plus, you get to make them happy by paying them a visit.
  3. Keep your ears open for sales and promotions. No need to explain this further, I’m sure you get the drift. While you’re at it, it’d be a good idea to scour for coupons as well, so you can save even more.
  4. Browse the net or scan magazines for fashion advices and DIY tips. There are a lot of blogs and web pages that teach people how to look more fabulous by improvising and accessorizing. All it takes is a little resourcefulness and a dash of imagination and you’ll be donning expensive looking outfits at a fraction of the cost.
  5. Remember that price is just what it is – price. It does not reflect the value of the piece of clothing that you’re buying. Expensive does not always equate to beauty and quality. Search for cheaper alternatives to designer brands and for clothing that could easily be matched to the other ones that are already in your closet.
  6. Bring cash. Leave that credit card at home, because it will be just too easy to hand it over to the cashier when you suddenly feel the urge to buy that pair of beautiful heels – even though you won’t be wearing them at the beach.


Bear in mind that while looking good comes at a price, it does not have to cost too much. With a little research, creativity and discipline, you’ll find that even little money can go a long way.

Amy Fountain is a working mom who likes shopping as much as she likes getting paid.  She also owns the Tabletop Fountains and Home Décor Art websites.