A few days ago, while I was in a total mess of clothes that I didn’t even recognize I realized it was time – I have to brutally declutter! And while it was hard, to say the least (harder than I expected) it hit me – I have to stop shopping online! With every piece that I only wore once and every piece that got ruined after one laundry cycle, I scolded myself for shopping online again and again.
The problem wasn’t that I was addicted or that I shopped too much, it was that I truly believed that online shopping is the correct way to stay a minimalist and to not over the shop.
Let’s face it – shopping online has its advantages:
- Shopping online saves time.
- You can easily search for what you need.
- Easy returns (we’ll talk more about that).
- Great promotions.
- Clear sales.
- No “spontaneous” purchases.
After 4 years of swearing by online shopping, Suddenly in one day of purging my closet, all the reasons to stop shopping online were realized:
I ended up getting things that don’t fit me.
Online stores are made to perfection with the sole purpose of making you SHOP, and they know what they’re doing. Everything looks perfect on the model, their photoshoots are made in mind to sale, sale, sale. I was sure I always know exactly my style, what would look bad on me even when it looks great on the model but I was wrong. The item can be made poorly, not my size, doesn’t flatter me or just isn’t my style. In a store, I wouldn’t have compromised on those items.
“So why didn’t you just return the things you didn’t like? It’s so easy” I hear you say! Why not really? Well, I did return a lot, but also kept a lot of things that weren’t right for a few reasons:
I forget to return what I don’t like.
It happens to all of us, life gets to us and we forget to repack and send back. The items lie somewhere waiting to be attended to, but by the time we get around to it, it’s been 30 days and you can’t return anymore. It doesn’t happen to me often because I don’t forget about my money (trust me lol) but in 4 years it happened a few times. I ended up passing the clothes to my friends and family but I just wished I hadn’t purchased them, to begin with.
The fact that I had already PAID is making me keep something that in the store I wouldn’t have purchased.
There’s something about paying already that makes you feel like the money is already gone and then I find myself keeping things because “like whatever”… I find that when I already made the process of thinking if the piece is worth my money, I’m not making it again. I had already paid and now I’m willing to compromise. If I was in the store, and I would see that something doesn’t fit me, I wouldn’t even go into the process of thinking if this is worth my money, I would just not buy it.
I compromise because I already purchased the item. If I was in a mall I would keep looking for a better piece.
As a minimalist I try to match every item to my wardrobe, my style, and my life, so when I shop I always look for specific items. I noticed that I can spend a lot of time looking for a perfect black T-shirt online, and not loving it upon receiving it. But because I had already “researched” for a perfect one, I feel that I don’t want to keep on looking. If I was going through physical stores, I wouldn’t compromise on items that I don’t love, I would keep looking.
I got tempted into buying cheaper items because I couldn’t get myself to pay a lot of money on something I can’t try first.
When I don’t allow myself to fall in love with a piece by actually trying it on and see how it fits me, I’m not willing to spend my money on a well-made item. I end up shopping for something cheap so I wouldn’t feel guilty if it doesn’t fit me or I don’t like it. I don’t actually believe in that mindset and I don’t think it goes well with my overall attitude toward a minimalist wardrobe
I buy things that I think I need but eventually never wear because I don’t love them.
Like I’ve said before, I try to only shop for things I know I need in my wardrobe, so I end up getting things just because I think I need them. Eventually, I
I found that There are even more temptations online.
Another thing that I could swear is so much better online – easy searching for what you need and getting out! If you go to a store, there are so many pretty things you just have to try on the way to look for the minimalist black T-shirt. But that’s ridiculous, you are so much more exposed to everything the online store has to offer you. It’s right there, displayed perfectly on a model, it’s not folded or hung, it’s much more tempting.
I got addicted to online shopping even while trying to be a minimalist.
It’s so easy! It takes no time, you’re under the illusion you’re doing the right thing and that you can easily return it all (AS IF). I just found myself constantly browsing online stores while I was bored or too tired to do anything else. I wasn’t bad by any means – I still kept my purchases low, but I shopped too many times just as an activity and not because I actually needed something.
Does this mean that I don’t have items I purchased online that I love? Not at all, I have many items that I got online and I love, but I had too many items that weren’t worth the hassle, the money, and the waste.
Online shopping can be great, but due to all the reasons I listed, I’m going to stay away from it for a while. I’m going to stop shopping online and start going to physical stores and see if it goes better with my minimalist approach (let’s hope so ;).
I would love to hear from you guys – do you like shopping online or going to actual stores and trying on clothes? Do you feel that shopping online is better or more wasteful?
I will never stop shopping on line. The only things I won’t buy online are groceries! I loveeeee grocery shopping way too much!
Hahaha… Yes, online shopping is a lot of fun 🙂 But maybe regular shopping will be fun for me too, I’ll find out soon lol.
Shopping online is convenient but has to be managed since we can go overboard. Maybe it’s better to buy some items of clothing in store to try them on. Some of the deals online can’t be beat though.
Hey Kim, I agree that it’s convenient, but it’s not convenient to send back things we don’t like, unfortunately. I believe that online deals are there to make you shop more than you would otherwise, and eventually spending more money than you would in a store.
I agree with so much of what you said. I love shopping online, but sometimes I find myself compromising on a piece because I’ve already paid for it and it’s too difficult to send back.
Hey Kaitlan, it took me some time to realize that I’m compromising! Now that I notice it I won’t do it again.
I love shopping online, but you make a lot of good points! I also have many clothes that I end up donating because they did not fit right, so I should probably cut down my online clothes shopping as well.
Hey Patricia, we can be more mindful about each purchase and maybe it will help minimize the items we end up getting and not liking.
I don’t do much clothing shopping online. I’m way too picky on how something fits so want to try it on. The only thing I often order online is swimsuits because I like the ones from VS and they hardly carry any in stores.
Hey Stephanie, I agree, we should be more picky about what we’re getting so we would actually wear it.
I often get tempted into buying cheaper items that I wouldn’t waste my time on if I saw it in the store. When you can’t hold the items or try them on you often compare apples to oranges and the prices sway you!
Hey Nicole, too many times prices have influenced me to get something that I don’t really love! And it makes no sense because I’ll get much more wear out of something that I love so the cost per wear is better actually.
Excellent points you have. I have only one reason not to shop online and it’s because I can get addicted to doing it, and I end up spending a lot of money there. However, that hasn’t stopped me. lol I really find it therapeutic. I won’t stop but I will control myself lol
Hey Wendy, I got addicted at one point lol, that’s why I’m taking a break. We can buy online, but be mindful of it.
I have cut back on buying clothes online. Well cheap clothes that is. They look cute but are always garbage for kids and adults. But I’ll order from nicer stores and I love ordering my groceries online!
I actually find the opposite for me. I impulse buy in the store and spend way too much. Online, I let things sit in my cart for awhile and thing about them. I also weed things out because I can see the amount I’m spending.
Wow what a wake up call this was! I have so many clothes but always find myself online shopping. Our mall in the area isn’t great so I always resort to it. I need to purge my closet some more!
I much prefer to go to a store and try on things…. My closet is overstuffed with online items that were not sized correctly…
Shopping online is something that I love to especially if it is for a specific product. That way I can really find the best price and most places will offer free shipping for a certain minimum.
I loved shopping online. Ever since we moved, it was easy to order everything online and don’t worry about the hassle of sitting in traffic and dealing with other people. However, last week I went over to the mall and it felt amazing picking out clothes and trying them on in the fitting rooms. Makes me want to drop online shopping for clothes and go to the mall.
David Allen Elliott
Yeah for me I just think the hassle of trying to return things from online are just too much for me. And because I need the ability to do that, I cannot just shop online.
online shopping has many drawbacks .. shop stores and get what fits.