5 Secrets to Successful Clearance Sale Shopping!

Happy Friday! Today I am excited to share with you five of my best tips for scoring big at clearance sales. I was recently scouring the racks at the mall looking for some new pieces for my spring wardrobe, and I realized that some of the tricks I implement when shopping can be helpful to others. Not only do I always buy things on sale, but I also worked in retail clothing stores during high school and college, so I learned my way around the clearance racks from the inside! Let me share with you my top five secrets to successful clearance sale shopping!


All of the tips I’m sharing with you today are based on shopping for clothing on clearance. However, feel free to adapt them to whatever product you are hoping to buy!

SECRET 1: Look through ALL of the clothing racks no matter the size!

Clearance racks get very disorganized at clothing stores no matter how many times the associates organize them, and items get put back in the wrong place all the time. I’ve gotten in the habit of looking through the entire clearance section of every store so I don’t miss out on amazing pieces that are just stuffed into the wrong place. Plus, sizes range dramatically from brand to brand, and sometimes even within the same brand. Make sure you don’t limit yourself by just looking through one size rack!

SECRET 2: Use a coupon to save even more money! 

Many stores allow customers to use coupons on clearance items. I like to plan out my shopping trips, and try to search for coupons at home before I go to the store. That allows me to read through the fine print on the coupon and see if there are any exclusions. However, if I end up in a store unplanned, I simply whip out my iPhone while shopping and do a quick search for coupons online. You can easily show the cashier the coupon right on your phone without needing to print it. This saves paper, too!

SECRET 3: Only buy items you will actually wear! 

I know first hand how tempting it is to buy clothing just because it’s cheap. This is especially true if it’s from a name brand I really like. Always make sure the item you are buying is in good condition, and that you will actually wear it. If you can’t visualize yourself wearing the item regularly (or for a specific event if it is a fancy dress, for example), don’t buy it. It’s better to buy an $80 blouse that you wear every week than ten $10 blouses you don’t really like and end up living in your closet.

SECRET 4: Try items on in the store! 

I always try on clothes in the store, but this is even more important when you are buying clearance items, as some stores do not allow returns or exchanges on discounted merchandise. You do not want to be stuck with ill-fitting jeans even if you did spend just $20 on them! Of course, some items can look very different on your body than they do on the hanger, so it’s always helpful to see how it fits your shape, too.

SECRET 5: Look at each item of clothing! 

In addition to looking through the entire clearance section, I recommend looking at each individual item of clothing. This is going to be a time consuming process, but I always find more hidden gems when I go through the clearance racks carefully. At my first retail job, my manager taught me how to tidy the hangers by pushing all of the clothing down to the end of the rack, and then moving each item to the other side to neaten it. This is now the technique I use when shopping! You never know what is hidden between bulky sweaters, or falling off a hanger in the middle of a stuffed rack.

That wraps up my five secrets to successful clearance sale shopping! While these tips do require you to take your time looking through the clearance racks, I think it is worth it in the end. You won’t find a hidden gem every time you shop, but I know when I implement these tricks I usually find much more! I hope that you found my shopping secrets helpful, and that you can use them the next time you go shopping! Feel free to share your finds with me on social media using the hashtag #PolishlandSaves!

What are your shopping secrets?! Share with me in a comment!