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Marie Claire & Manilla: How to Shop Smart

Caroline Wright

Think you can’t afford that Marc Jacobs coat you’ve been eyeing? Think again. Living on $40,000 a year doesn’t mean you have to deprive yourself of the things you love — it just means that you have to be smarter about your spending.

1. Cut back

If your must-have coat is outside of your monthly clothing budget, look for other areas to cut back. Maybe you decide to eat in a few more times this month or push your haircut back a few weeks. Whatever it is, just make sure you’re not skipping on paying bills.

2. Search sales

As most avid shoppers know, there is a right and wrong time to buy things. Make sure you’re getting the biggest bang for your buck by paying attention to sales. Or, get alerted when an item you’ve been eyeing goes on sale with a free app, like Hukkster.

3. Avoid store credit cards

Store credit cards promise you extra discounts at the register, but they may actually hurt you in the long run. Not only will you be racking up debt, but you can also ding your credit score, which can have long-term consequences.

4. Look for other income sources

If you can’t cut back, then you’ll need to bring more in. There are tons of ways to make money outside of your regular 9 to 5. Try freelance writing, opening up an Etsy store, taking a seasonal job, or tutoring. All are great ways to generate a little more spending money.

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