Pop-Up Anticipation!

One of my favorite sales of the year is coming up in less than two weeks!
The annual 5-day Splash of Pink pop-up at the Tanger Outlets in Westbrook, CT starts on Wednesday August 16th at 9:00AM.

Some tips of advise from previous years:

*Get there early, VERY early (especially on the weekends).  The line will start forming a few hours prior to the opening time.  It’s better to be waiting at the beginning of the line and get to enter the store first, than arriving late and watching others through the window shop while you wait to be let in.  The employees will only let a certain number in at a time – but it still seems crowded once you enter!

*Come prepared.  I mean, black Friday prepared. It’s not uncommon to see women sipping on their morning coffees and eating breakfast in line.  And, I’ve seen a portable chair or two – just make sure you’re with someone who will bring it back to the car for you when it’s your turn to enter. Trust me, your boyfriend/husband will NOT be the only one dragged along (there’s a nice ledge they all sit on as they watch the shopping madness and hold mile-high piles of potential purchases)

*Grab fast.   It is First Come, First Served – and sizes & styles are very limited.   So if you see something you love, grab it.  If you turn around or walk away, it might be gone for good.  Items are re-stocked throughout the weekend, but shoppers never know which items will be re-stocked or when the re-stock takes place.  With that being said, make sure you try it on, because all sales ARE final.  Which brings me to my next tip….

*Wear “conservative” undergarments.  The dressing room consists of one giant curtain.  Basically, you find a spot right next to someone else to strip down and try on items.  You’re sharing mirrors in one massive mob of women. And it may sound far fetched now, but if someone sees you trying on an item that they LOVE, they may “stalk” you to see if you’re going to give it up as you leave the fitting room.
(And, I don’t use the term stalk lightly.  Last year, I had a teenage girl and her mom eyeing my every move as I contemplated between a size S and size M of the TuskInSun t-shirt dress.  They watched me try each size on, commenting on the fit, and trying to convince me to choose the M even though it was way too big!  Unfortunately for her, I ended up snatching the S).

*Just have fun! Pop-up sales can be hectic, but when you find an item you love, they are totally worth it! Since Lilly rarely goes on sale, this one is not to be missed!

Just in case you didn’t receive a postcard in the mail, I posted a photo of it below! Please be sure to read the details, they only take certain payment options (no checks), and remember sales are final, so make your selections wisely!

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If you’ve been to this pop-up in the past, I’d love to hear your experiences, advise & tips – please share in the comments section!

Till next time, get ready!
(And be sure to check back after the sale to get a peak at my findings!

It’s My Month: Birthday Rewards & Freebies!

One month out of the year, the mail stack gets larger, and the e-mails become more frequent.  For me, that month is October!

Even though my birthday is still a few weeks away, I’ve already begun to receive extra coupons and promotions.  Rewards Programs and Rewards Cards are exactly as they sound, rewarding.

  • At some point over the past year, I signed up for the Edible Arrangements e-mail list.  Today, they sent me a coupon code for a free 12-piece box of chocolate dipped fruit any day in October.  It also mentions I can pick it up in store, so there is no shipping cost.  Yum.

Edible Arrangements Free Dipped Fruit!
 

  • Victoria Secret sent me $10 off of any purchase, on my Angels card any day in October.  They have a huge variety of lipsticks and lip-glosses for exactly $10, so I’ll most likely grab one of those for free (Spending exactly $10 is the trick to getting out of swiping your card).  I typically NEVER use the credit card, but I average 8 “free underwear” coupons per year, and definitely take advantage of those.  It doesn’t matter if you don’t use the card, in fact, I think they send me more coupons just to get me in the store (but they can’t trick me).
  • Ann Taylor sent me a card with $15 off of any purchase, no minimum any day in October.  I can easily grab something on the clearance rack for just around $15.  Just like VS, I literally haven’t used the Ann Taylor credit card in months, yet I still get the coupons!
  • Sephora offers a two pack of Nars lipsticks, completely free the month of your birthday in store, or online, when you sign up for their Beauty Insider Program (the program is completely free!).  I love using my earned points for free items.  When you order online, you’ll receive 3 free samples of your choice.  If your order is over $25, you’ll receive an extra larger sample of your choice.  If your order is over $50, you don’t pay shipping.  I had a $50 gift card (from my discover rewards!!) – and used it to purchase a $54 gift set of FAB Beauty Products which are 100% fragrance free and allergy tested for extremely sensitive skin.  I also used 250 of my built up Beauty Insider points to get extra samples of my choice.  Free shipping and a LOT of free samples later….. this is what I got for $7.43 (the remaining $4+$3.43tax):
My Sephora lot, under $8!
Free NARS lip pencils from Sephora!
  • I’m signed up for the Ulta rewards program too (you can sign up in store or online for free).  Today, they sent me an e-mail saying that I’ll get double points on any purchase in October, plus a note to look out for another e-mail for a free bareMinderals Marvelous Moxie Lip-gloss.
Free Lip-gloss at Ulta on its way!

A few stores are not as generous, but still try…

  • Bloomingdales sent me a 25% off birthday coupon, plus if I spend $100 any time in October I’ll receive a $25 gift card back for a future purchase.
  • Vera Bradley sent me a 25% off “entire purchase” coupon, which can be used at any full-price store, any outlet store, or online.
  • White House Black Market sent a coupon code for Free Shipping – they could do better than that, it’s a little stingy.
  • Crabtree&Evelyn sent me 15% off my purchase, also stingy in my opinion since their products are incredibly overpriced (I can’t even use anything they sell in their store since they use fragrance)…
15% off purchase at Crabtree&Evelyn

I wonder what will be in my mailbox the next few days!  Check back as I add more Birthday Deals and add photos of what I receive throughout the month!

‘Till next time, get what you can for free!

I’ll walk you through the process:

CVS. Okay, I know you’ll get bored if I keep posting about CVS – but I wouldn’t want you to miss out on free Colgate toothpaste!

Every so often, my fiancé accompanies me to the store.  I thought it was about time to teach him my saving ways so he follows suit.  To start, I made him sign up for his own CVS ExtraCare card.  Without that, you mine as well throw money down the drain.

His first trip to the in-store kiosk was pretty rewarding – it printed out a $3 coupon for linking his new card to the phone app, and a $2 instant coupon off of Colgate toothpaste (everyone gets one this week).  It also printed a $1 off any P&G product, but we saved that one for later (we’ll be going back to buy Tide).

For this particular shopping trip, we had two coupons from home – $1 off any Colgate toothpaste and $1 off any Colgate mouthwash.  These came in the Sunday newspaper.  Another set also came in my mailbox on Thursday with the local town paper (so I still have two more coupons for another time!)

I’ll walk you through the purchase, just as I explained it to him:
The Colgate toothpaste this week was on sale for $3.00 and the Colgate mouthwash was on sale for $3.99, plus $1 back in ExtraBucks for buying one.  When we combined the $2 instant toothpaste coupon with the $1 toothpaste manufacturer coupon – it was free.  Then when we combined the $3 coupon for linking his card with the $1 mouthwash manufacturer coupon – that washed out the mouthwash.  He actually, technically “lost” a penny – you win some you loose some. Just make sure you win more than you loose.

Overall, 100% savings with a $0.00 receipt total – plus a $1.00 coupon on the bottom for his next purchase!  If these items were not on sale, without coupons he would have paid $9.48 – yikes!

As the cashier bagged his items, she said “It always feels good when it’s free!”.  Yes, good is an understatement.

cvs2cvs

You can get your own free toothpaste until CVS closes Saturday night
(September 5th)!

Don’t forget – the CVS website has a “sneek peak” of the full flyer for the upcoming week.  Before you buy something, make sure there wont be a better deal in a few days!

‘Till next time, keep saving!

The Difference: Extreme Couponers VS Me

I recently saw an instargram photo from a self proclaimed “extreme couponer” – it showed an entire table full of junk food, over 30 sticks of deodorant and over 15 bottles of off-brand shampoo that she paid a few measly dollars for.  Unless this person was going to donate all of the food to a local food pantry, and donate all of the personal care items to a local shelter – I think they wasted their time.  This same person also posted a photo of an entire living room floor completely covered in coupons – how do they even get those (dumpster diving?!)  Some couponers spend hours, even days planning their purchases.  A trip to the store could take them hours.  I’m not an extreme couponer, and I’m totally okay with that!

I have a very active lifestlye, I have absolutely no time to be an extreme couponer – nor do I have any desire to be.  But, I do want to save as much as they do – and I think I’ve proved that I can through my past posts.  Instead of getting cheap shampoo that I would never dream of washing my hair with, I want to get the same deals with the high-quality, brand name products that I use daily.  I don’t want things to go to waste, and I certainly don’t have a “storage room” for years worth of products – I will never give up my craft room!

Maybe I’m picky.  Or maybe I buy certain brands because I absolutely have to.  Having struggled with chronic seborrheic dermatitis and contact dermatitis my entire life, I know what I can, and what I can’t use.  One load of laundry washed with scented detergent will cause irritation and discomfort for days, even weeks.  Same goes for any beauty products, lotions, soaps, hair care – you name it, I probably can’t use it.  Spraying aerosols or harsh cleaners can easily prompt an asthma attack.  My point? The list of products I can safely use is limited – very limited and they tend to be extremely overpriced.   So, I have a dilemma – I either break the bank buying products I need to use on a daily basis, or I buy cheaper products that are going to cause side effects.  I don’t like either of those options, so I make sure I can always get what I want, and what I need, for a fraction of the cost.

Yesterday, I did just that.  I didn’t spend an hour, or two, or five searching for deals.  I literally spent 20 minutes quickly skimming through the flyers in the Sunday newspaper (which you can also easily find online…) to find the items that were on my shopping list!  CVS had ALL Laundry Detergent (including the scent free version) on sale for 2/$7.  It is normally priced $7.79 each.  There was a manufacture coupon in the newspaper for $2 off when you purchase 2 – so I could use that.  Every time you fill 10 prescriptions at CVS, you get $5 back in rewards – I had just hit #10 last week.  So as soon as I walked in the store, I scanned my card at the coupon Kiosk – and out came the $5 coupon to use on anything in the store!

WordPressCVS Laundry Detergetn

Overall, I had exactly $7 worth of coupons.  Since the detergent was on sale for 2/$7… well that’s easy math.  Without my ExtraCare card and coupons, I would have spent $15.58, but instead I didn’t even open my wallet (tax is on the price after coupons, and there’s obviously no tax on $0!).  100% savings – and I wasn’t even in the store more than five minutes.

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So, I got what I wanted, what I use, what I needed – for free.  Maybe I do have one thing in common with extreme couponers: I LOVE the feeling I get when I leave a store with full shopping bags in hand – that I didn’t cost me a cent!

‘Till next time, keep on saving!

Act Fast – Free Item Alert!!

I’ll get to the point and make this post short and sweet.  If you don’t like free stuff, then move on to another blog – otherwise keep reading, then head over to your local CVS.

This week (until August 1st) at CVS, the 33.8oz bottle of Colgate mouthwash is on sale for $4.79. You’d be crazy to pay $4.79.

If you received the Sunday newspaper, cut out the $2 Colgate mouthwash manufacturer coupon.  If you didn’t get the paper, I’m sure one of your neighbors or family members did – so snatch theirs.

As soon as you walk into CVS, scan your Extracare card at the kiosk and a $2.79 coupon will print out automatically.  I’ve already harped upon getting this free card – but if you haven’t taken my advice yet (why not?), you can easily sign up for one within a minute at the front desk.

It’s as easy as this:  Bring the mouthwash up to the register.  The cashier will scan your Extracare card, ring up the sale-priced mouthwash,  scan your $2.79 CVS coupon and then scan your $2.00 manufacturer coupon.  Total: $0.00 Free. Free. Free.  

  

Lets just say you didn’t get the newspaper, and you don’t know anyone else who did…. you can still print off a 75 cent coupon from the Colgate website.  Combine that with the $2.79 CVS coupon and you’d get the mouthwash for $1.41 (including CT sales tax)!

‘Till next time.  Don’t wait too long or they’ll be sold out!