I’m kind of on the fence about shopping. Sometimes I love it, sometimes I hate it. It’s more a matter of needing to be in the mood for it. I find that the best kind of shopping is when you need to buy some new clothes but you’re not really looking for anything in particular—you just want some cool new stuff to spruce up your wardrobe. Looking for something super specific can be exhausting, especially when that particular item is not that common and therefore not that easy to find. By that same token, however, having the freedom to shop for whatever can become equally exhausting, when you have too many options and you just can’t decide. (I’m a Libra so this struggle is all too real.)
Recently I got a new job that required me to get some new threads. I’ve graduated school, I’ve travelled, and now it’s time to get serious and adult. I can’t quite get away with rocking my Roots sweatpants and U of T sweatshirt on the regular anymore, nor can I wear the sneakers-and-jeans uniform I’ve become so accustomed to from working at a bar for years. Now I’m a professional. And I’m a firm believer in looking the part, so if you want to be a successful professional, you need to dress like one.
So, I went shopping. It started out well and I was all excited. Six hours took me through countless items of clothing that were tried on and rejected until eventually, I had my four shopping bags (and a new pair of shoes to boot!) and got the hell out of there. And I was miserable by the end of it. I was too hot, my head hurt, my purse seemed to be getting heavier even though my wallet was getting lighter, and it all made me less than excited about the awesome haul I’d just scored.
So here is the advice I wish I could have given to myself that day, which would have made the whole process a little less painful.
Wear proper shoes. By proper shoes, not only do I mean comfortable, but I also mean as fuss-free and sweat-proof as possible. That day I wore my boots, which are easy enough to slip on and off (major points here) but they were way too warm which in turn made me way too warm which in turn made me way too cranky.
On that note, wear layers. It’s Canada and it’s freakin’ cold most of the time so of course we need to dress warmly to get to the mall. But for some reason, they crank the heat in these places up to an alarming temperature. Shopping while sweating is really, really not fun or cute. So wear a couple of layers so you can keep warm or cool off when you need to.
But on that note, don’t wear too many layers because taking them all off and putting them all back on every time you enter a change room is annoying. A tank top under a long sleeve shirt is probably good.
And on that note, for the love of God do not wear a shirt with buttons. Unbuttoning and rebuttoning every time you enter a change room is even more annoying.
If you have long hair, wear it up in a simple bun or ponytail. Not only will this help with the heat problem, it will also keep you from getting tangled and staticky.
Don’t wear makeup. I promise you’re beautiful without it so don’t worry. And it sucks to try to avoid touching your face to all the shirts you’re going to try on. And it sucks even more to find a shirt you really love only to have it smeared by someone else’s face. (This actually happened to me several times on that shopping trip and it was actually really gross.) Don’t be that girl that ruins the shirts.
Sooo on that note, wear transparent deodorant. Deodorant stains aren’t as bad as makeup ones, but still, nobody likes them.
These are all the items you should carry in your purse: wallet, cell phone, keys, water bottle and a granola bar or some other snack. Nothing more. You won’t want the extra weight once you started heavy hitting with the purchases. The water and snack will help keep you hydrated and energized to make it through. Sustenance is key for successful shopping!