What to Buy After Christmas to Save Money
The best shopping experience I know is when I walk into a store teeming with tons of great stuff on sale for low, low prices. I want to raise my arms and shout, “Yaaaay!” It’s a gold mine for a frugal shopper like me. This doesn’t happen often though. One of the rare times it does it during after-Christmas sales, when bargains pop up everywhere. It’s like Black Friday, but you don’t have to leave Thanksgiving dinner early for it.
After-holiday sales are an easy way to save money because it’s the end of the year. Companies want to get rid of their holiday-themed items and hit their sales goals for the year. Do you ever see candy on sale at the drugstore after Valentine’s Day and Halloween? I go and pick up candy and decorations at half off! It’s the same idea for after-Christmas shopping. You purchase whatever is left that stores didn’t sell but often at half the cost or more off.
If you haven’t taken advantage of after-Christmas sales before, here are several things to buy and save.
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Buying gift-wrap on sale is a no-brainer. It’s amazing how much wrapping paper can cost, especially if it’s high quality like thick paper with gold foil. Gift wrap often gets recycled so I don’t like spending much on it. The same goes for gift tags, gift bags, and bows.
When you shop after-Christmas sales, sometimes you find both Christmas designs and other styles that work for any occasion. I’ve purchased hologram looking paper before that made birthday presents look luxurious. I was sad when that one ran out.
If you’re a second-hand seller like me, you probably wrap your sales before you ship them out. I use tissue paper, cards, and stickers to wrap and decorate my packages. I stock up on these things on sale too and they last me much of the next year.
Am I imagining things or are greeting cards expensive? Just the other day I stopped at Walgreens and found some beautiful holiday cards that cost $8-10 each. I have a huge weakness for stationery, so it was hard to pass them up. My best bet to get fancy cards is to buy them on sale after Christmas and hold onto them until next year. Instead of paying $20 for a box of 10 cards, I might pay $5 for the same amount.
If you don’t have the option to buy boxed cards after Christmas, another way to save is to purchase greetings cards from Trader Joe’s. They’re only $1 each. In past years, I only had a handful of cards to send so I bought them for only a few dollars. I didn’t want to be stuck with a box full of unused cards. You might be surprised at how pretty $1 cards can be.
Seasonal decorations & houseware
Being frugal and practical, I don’t pay full price for household decorations. We don’t eat them, they sit out a few weeks or months a year, and we can actually do without them. I consider them non-necessities, but I love seasonal décor, which is why I only buy them on sale. Some of my favorite things to buy after Christmas:
Seasonal themed plates
Clothes & seasonal clothing
We’ve had several new babies in the family and among friends in the past year or two. After Christmas, I buy holiday clothes and cold weather clothes (whatever is on sale) for the sizes they’ll be next year. I already have gifts for their next birthdays and next Christmas!
When it comes to holiday-themed clothing, I don’t pay much for it because I won’t get a lot of use out of it. I pull out my Charlie Brown Christmas sweater every December and wear it as much as possible for the month. It sits in the closet the other 11 months of the year, but it’s no problem though because I bought it on super sale!
Seasonal personal care & gift sets
Lots of brands like Aveeno and Kiehl’s sell personal care and gift sets of their products during the holidays because they make easy gifts. I see so many of these at discount stores before and after Christmas, things like lotion sets, tea and cookie sets, and cookies and appetizer packs. I pick them up to use for myself and to give as gifts all year round.
Do you have a hard time finding budget-friendly birthday gifts for friends and family members? After-Christmas sales are a great time to shop for them because lots of things are on sale, not just holiday items. Non-perishable items keep all year long. Just don’t forget where you store them! My mom has purchased things far in advance and forgotten where she placed them. If you keep them organized like stored together in one closet, you can pull out the gifts when it comes time to give them.
Online vs. in-store sales
This year I plan to look online for after-Christmas sales because shopping from home is so much easier than navigating crowds and lines at stores. Some of my favorite stores are Kohl’s and Macy’s, where I can get new clothes on super sale. I save even more by shopping using the free cash-back program Ebates.
Have you heard of Ebates? When you shop your favorite stores through Ebates, you get a percentage of your purchase back. The percentage often increases during peak shopping times like during after-Christmas sales. It’s free cash back. You’ll wonder why you didn’t use it sooner!
Sometimes the best after-Christmas sales can only be had in stores. My favorites are Marshalls and TJ Maxx because they have an ever-rotating selection of great items at low prices. It’s hard to find those same items online. If you plan to shop stores like those, it pays to show up early the day after Christmas to get the best goods or they’ll be gone.
No matter where you shop and what you buy, I hope you’ll buy what you like, buy what you’ll use, and save a ton of money!
What do you like to buy after Christmas? Where are your favorite places to shop for good deals?