Fashion

A Guide to Black Friday Shopping

by Katie Chester

Black Friday is a huge day for shoppers with access to amazing discounts perfect to treat yourself or others, especially with Christmas fast approaching. With access to so many deals, however, there is no doubt it can also be extremely stressful. 

To help combat any panic buying and ensure you really do get the best savings, I have put together some advice to help you bag a bargain:

  1. Compile a list of everything you want to buy before Black Friday begins. There is nothing worse than buyer’s remorse and so preparing what you would like to purchase in advance prevents any panic buying and gives you some time to think over whether the things on your list are what you really want. Don’t forget to add links to the corresponding items so you can buy them as soon as the discounts launch. Finally, make a list of different retailers selling the same product so you’re able to compare prices, as well as have a backup option if websites crash or products run out of stock.
  2. Research the products you want beforehand as its no bargain if the product’s rubbish. Make sure you read lots of reviews before making a purchase, especially if it’s something tech related. Which? is a reliable resource if you’re looking for trustworthy reviews.
  3. If you want to make the most of Black Friday it is best to make your purchases as soon as possible, so prepare to set your alarms for 12am! This saves having to worry about items going out of stock. If you’re planning on doing your Black Friday shopping in person, as here in Wales we have the luxury of being able to do that, it’s best to hit the shops early in the morning or later in the evening to beat the queues. Luckily in Cardiff most shops do not shut until around 8pm, so that gives you plenty of time to shop somewhat peacefully.
  4. Try to avoid fast fashion websites – this is because some have been accused of inflating their prices before Cyber Week, and so whilst it seems like you’re getting a bargain, it may not be as great a saving as it initially appears. You are more likely to save on these sites if you shop after Black Friday and wait for a good student discount code. You can research a products’ price history using CamelCamelCamel, a website which provides price history sold on Amazon, or PriceRunner for wider market coverage.
  5. Some shops such as John Lewis and Currys have a price match policy, so be sure to take advantage of that if you find products cheaper elsewhere and would prefer to shop with these retailers.
  6. Set up online accounts in advance and make a Wishlist to save the items you’re interested in. Having a pre-created list makes it easier to see when prices drop, which can be particularly useful on Black Friday when big websites will be flooded with deals: rather than trawling through every product on sale, you can click into your list to see whether anything you have your eye on is on offer.
  7. Check the returns policy – if you’re buying Christmas presents for family members, ensure they are able to exchange the item if it doesn’t fit or is not to their taste. 
  8. Although some independent businesses will not participate in Cyber Week, if you can, try to ‘Shop Small’ and ‘Shop Local’ this year. Small businesses are often overlooked every Black Friday, but no doubt will have faced more difficulty this year as a result of multiple shop closures due to COVID-19. Giddy Friday is a good choice if you’re looking to treat yourself or a friend to some affordable sterling silver jewellery. It was started by a fellow Cardiff University student which makes it even better!

Now for the fun part… Here are some of the best deals I have found to prepare you for Black Friday.

Technology/Gadgets:

Tassimo by Bosch Vivy 2 Pod Coffee Machine, WAS £79.99 NOW £29.99

GHD Platinum+ White Straightener, WAS £189 NOW £151

Amazon All-New Echo Dot (4th Generation), WAS £49.99 NOW £28.99

Fashion:

Missoma – 25% off here 

H&M – up to 50% off selected items here 

Office – up to 40% off seasonal styles here 

Gymshark – up to 30% off here 

Beauty:

Feel Unique – 35% off a variety of brands here 

Cult Beauty – up to 40% off selected items here. Also, their Starter Kit would make an amazing gift and is great value for money.

Beauty Bay – up to 30% off here

Things I’ll be keeping my eye out for this Black Friday:

Gilly Hicks Christmas Pyjamas – so unbelievably soft and perfect to get me in the festive spirit.

Hotel Chocolat Velvetiser – I have to admit I may have been influenced by TikTok with this one!

Zara Leather Ankle Boots – I’m a size 7 for any family members reading this 😉 Anything from The White Company as their products are always discounted and make excellent presents.

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