How to Stop Buying Clothes You Don’t Need (10 Tips)

Stop Buying Clothes You Don't Need

Here I want to talk to you about the 10 ways that you can stop wasting money on clothes that you never wear.

As a stylist, I work with a lot of women and one of the things that I find is that there’s lots of clothes in the wardrobe that just aren’t worn.

So I’ve put together my top 10 list of things to help you stop buying clothes you don’t need.

Review What You’ve Got

Number one is always review what you’ve got before you go shopping.

It’s really common for people to just buy things haphazardly and not actually think about what they’ve got in their wardrobe.

Before you do any shopping, it’s just worth every now and again to have a flick through and remind yourself what you’ve already got, because sometimes you can just think, oh, I forgot I have that, I don’t really need anything new.

So review your wardrobe from time to time so that you’re clear on what you’ve got in your wardrobe.

Basic Wardrobe First

It’s really important that you have a basics wardrobe first.

What I mean by that is just to make sure that you’ve got those things that are kind of boring, the stuff that makes everything else work.

Personally I love basic clothes. I’ve got a really simple style, I love minimalist style. But that isn’t everybody’s cup of tea.

If it isn’t your cup of tea, it’s really important that you’ve got those things in your wardrobe. Often they’re the things that people don’t really buy when they’re shopping.

If you’re someone that doesn’t really enjoy shopping, you’re much more likely to find things in your wardrobe that caught your eye, they’re a little bit interesting and not the things like the plain black top or the white t-shirt.

So you might find that you’ve got a wardrobe that’s devoid of any of those boring pieces, inevitably leads to money wasted on clothes that are hanging in your wardrobe and not worn.

If that’s you, please follow this advice and get those basics in first.

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Don’t Shop Spontaneously

Number three is to make sure that you don’t shop spontaneously.

I know it’s fun going out with you friends or shopping if it’s a hobby for you, but don’t shop spontaneously. Even if you’ve got a plan to go out and shop for fun, have an intention of what it is that you’re looking for and what you need.

Yes, sometimes you can buy the odd thing, but if you’re going to do that, make sure that you’re buying it for the right reasons and not because you’re emotional and you want to treat yourself.

It’s those kind of shopping trips that often end up with lots of things in your wardrobe that have never really been worn. They’ve just been bought to satisfy that craving to get that dopamine hit.

So be careful not to shop spontaneously.

Make a List

That leads me into tip number four which is to make a list. If you shop with a list, you’ll end up buying things that you need and not just things that are going to hang there.

Think about what it is that you need before you go. Write it down and shop with intention, one item at a time.

Only Buy Complementary Pieces

Number five is only buy pieces that have got something in your wardrobe already that will make it work.

If you’re buying things that then require something else to make them work, again it’s wasted money.

If you think I’ll buy that and then I’ll go and get that extra piece, often that’s the piece that you can’t find and then they end up sitting around in your wardrobe.

So if you can’t find that extra piece, I urge you to just take the thing you first bought back, because it will just sit there.

I really urge you to not shop unless you’ve got the thing that will make it work already.

Unsubscribe From Newsletters

Tip number six is to unsubscribe from newsletters of brands that you follow and like.

This is something that people get caught out by all the time.

You’re at work, you’re a bit bored and the newsletter pings, promoting the latest thing. It’s usually Buy Now thing, it’s going to sell out.

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Don’t be caught out by that!

It’s just not where you end up with things that you wear.

That’s the surefire way to end up with lots of things with the tags still on hanging in the wardrobe.

I really urge you not to do that.

If you want something and you’ve got an intention, then you can go to that brand’s website and look at what they recommend.

If you are constantly getting emails telling you to buy now, you’re gonna be caught out and often will buy things that you just don’t need.

I urge you to unsubscribe from newsletters.

Stop Impulse Buying Online

Number seven brings me back to online shopping.

Stop impulse buying online. It’s really a huge problem for ending up with things in wardrobe that you don’t wear.

You buy the piece, it comes, it doesn’t fit you, you can’t take it back, the queue at the post office is too long, you’re off on holiday. Finally, you forget about it and it ends up in your closet.

I know that some people really do need to shop online because they don’t live near any stores, but I urge people to be really careful about that because that is wasted time and wasted money on things that are not worn.

I really urge you to start thinking about not shopping impulsively online, especially if you’re someone who shops when you’re bored.

Know Your Size

Number eight advice is know your size.

This sounds like a really obvious one, but so many people are shopping in the dark, with no reality of their present size.

They might have labels in their clothes of other brands, but we don’t know all the time what’s going to fit us from different brands.

So I urge people to measure up. Have your sizing in front of you if you are shopping online. Find out what you are in that particular item before you put it in your basket and make sure that your size tallies up with that brand size.

Equally if you’re going to be going around the stores, know your size, look at a size chart, look at an international size chart, and know that in different countries brands can have different sizing.

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Knowing where that brand comes from, and knowing what that means and knowing your size, and then you are less likely to buy things wrong and you’re less likely to have items hanging in your wardrobe and wasting money.

Know Your Signature Style

A lot of this spontaneous shopping is obliterated when you know what you like and when you know your signature style.

Many of my clients are in their 40s, and they know what works for them, they’re not trying to follow the latest trend, most of them don’t even care about the latest trend.

They simply want stuff that’s going to last a long time.

When you know what works for you, you know what your uniform is, you can buy much easier. It’s when you go away from that that you end up having clothes in your wardrobe that just don’t work.

Ask 3 Questions

Before you buy anything, ask yourself the three Ws: when, why and what.

When are you going to wear it?

Why do you need it?

What do you need it for?

When you’re going to look at new things outside of your signature style, if you ask yourself those questions, you can really see whether it’s going to fit in.

That’s my top 10 things that you can do to stop wasting money on clothes that you never wear, left hanging in your wardrobe.

how to stop buying clothes you never wear


  • Gloria

    Gloria is a top-performing fashion designer with more than eight years of experience in developing fashion concepts.

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