Great Deals at Mall Stores!

Budget Friendly Shopping at the Mall

Anyone who knows me can tell you that I like a good deal. If it is full priced or too expensive, I am not buying it. Some might even dare call me cheap or stingy. That is OK. I still have enough money to pay my rent and bills, so who cares what anyone else thinks?

Plenty of people will tell you there are no great deals at the mall. I know some people that shop only at discount stores, thrift stores, and/or dollar stores. Let me assure you, if you know where to look, you can find a great deal at the mall. If your friends are going to mall and you feel silly not being able to go, trust me, you can go.

In general, here are my rules for mall shopping:

  • I never buy any designer clothing, purses, shoes, etc. It is a waste of money.
  • I don't let other people convince me I need brand names. Often, these are the same people that can't afford to pay their bills and have to borrow money from someone else.
  • I avoid stores if I know I cannot afford their products. This includes Coach, Louis Vuitton, Abercrombie & Fitch, etc. Why walk in and feel sad that I can't afford anything in their store?
  • If you have a budget, stick to it. If you are a few dollars over, don't beat yourself up over it. Just buy one less item at the grocery store next time you go (like that frozen pizza you probably shouldn't eat anyway).
  • If you are undecided about an item, walk away. If you are still thinking about it a week later, maybe it is worth buying. Chances are, you won't even remember it an hour later.

So I know what you are thinking - give me the good stuff! Tell me where I can shop that is just as inexpensive as Walmart or Target. I'm getting there.

The Icing and Claire's

When it comes to jewelry, I do not want to spend a lot of money. If you are looking to buy a nice piece of jewelry to last years, you are going to have to shell out some real money. If you are looking for something trendy, why buy real gold or silver? You can shop at either Claire's or The Icing and get something really cute.

Plenty of people are under the impression that both shops are geared towards teenagers. It is true that plenty of teens shop at both stores. However, there are plenty of classy earrings, necklaces, and rings that anyone can wear. Are they going to last for years? Maybe not. Is it something trendy that will be out of style in a year or two anyway? If the answer is yes, why not buy it?

I wear lots of jewelry from Claire's and The Icing and some of it is years old. However, I can't promise that everything will last years, but most really will hold up a long time. All of the earrings are for sensitive ears, so I don't have any problems with allergic reactions. Usually both stores offer some type of "Buy 1 Get 1" or "Buy 2 Get 1" deal for their jewelry. Often you can walk out with a few items for $15 or less. I personally feel like that is a great deal.

While you're there, check out the handbags (normally $25 or less) and the hair accessories. I have two different handbags from Claire's and a number of hair accessories from both stores that are really attractive. I get compliments on the handbags all the time, and no, they do not look like something a 13 year old would use.

Payless Shoesource

Do you need some shoes for a special occasion? Please don't tell me you are thinking about going to some high priced store for a pair of shoes you may only wear once. You need to go to Payless.

There was a time when Payless did not have the best selection in shoes. If you shopped at Payless, it was because you did not have a choice. That is all in the past now. Payless offers a number of different types of shoes, really high quality brands, and great prices. What I like best about shopping at Payless is that they sell shoes that I want to wear. If I do go into a more expensive store to look at shoes, I often find the colors or the styles of the shoes just are not as nice as Payless. The fact that Payless is so low priced makes the whole shopping experience even better.

H & M

I recently discovered the joy of H & M shopping about 5 years ago. I used to see the store at malls, but assume it would be too expensive. I saw the outfits from H & M and thought they looked expensive. As it turns out, this is not the case.

I would say the average price of a shirt at H & M is going to be somewhere between $15 to $25. Often, H & M puts items on sale to clear them out of the store fast. When this occurs, the average shirts goes for about $10. You really can't beat that for a new shirt. Of course, H & M sells more than just shirts. You can buy dress pants, jeans, dresses, and accessories as well.

I've found that H & M's clothing is usually very high quality. I have not had any issues with tears or rips. Obviously I am not the only person that feels H & M sells high quality items. I read an article recently about First Lady Michelle Obama wearing an H & M dress. Everyone knows she is known for her good taste.


New York & Company

New York & Company is another example of a store that looks as if it will be expensive, but it is not. I feel like New York & Company is the best place to go if you need to buy a lot, but spend a little.

The first thing you should do is sign up on their website to receive email coupons. New York & Company is known for their coupon deals. Often they will send a coupon for $30 off of a $75 purchase, or $75 off a $150 purchase. You can also buy sale items and still use the coupon. One day, I spent less than $80 and walked away with merchandise worth about $200.

So if you are about to start a new job and need some professional clothing, this would be your best deal at the mall. Perhaps you've just lost a lot of weight and need all new sizes; once again, this is the perfect place to get a ton of clothes at a discounted price. Even if you only need just a shirt or two, the sale prices are pretty decent without the coupon. You can often get a nice dress shirt for about $15.

Final Thoughts

I am sure there are plenty of stores I am missing. Every mall has different shops and every store can have a great deal here and there. The stores I listed are stores where I frequently shop, I know their merchandise is high quality, and I know they are located at most malls. I do know you can get some great deals at Old Navy or Forever 21, but sometimes I feel the quality is lacking. You can get lucky sometimes at either store, but the quality is not consistent. I've also starting shopping at a new store at the mall called Love Culture, but this store does not exist at most malls yet. However, I do highly recommend it if you find it at a mall near you.

I hope you've found my advice helpful. I am sure everyone has their own take on finding a bargain, but I just want readers to know you can shop at the mall and get some great, low priced items. Happy shopping!

More by this Author


Comments 11 comments

Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 5 years ago from Virginia

Great hub.....about two weeks I was happily unaware of Coach handbags.....after a one hour trip to Macy's with the wife....I have discovered Coach purses and how much they cost....I could not believe some of the prices....I asked my wife if they came with Ipads.....lol....voted up and funny


Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 5 years ago from Virginia

Sorry if this is a repeat comment...I know I left a comment yesterday.....so I am sure this one will not be as witty as the previous one......but basically about two weeks my starting talking about Coach purses.....as a guy...I was thinking cool....Coach purses.....however after the first hour at Macy's ended my enthusiasm was gone....wow.....Coach purses are super expensive....I asked her if they came with Ipad or WiFi capabalities....voted up


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

How very odd. Your comments were listed as "spam." I was never notified about your comments. I just pressed the "not spam" button and then the "approve" button. Thank you for your comment. I guess the admins must have noticed the words Coach and Macy's and thought you were promoting them.

Yes, you are right about Coach bags. They are just so expensive and I don't know why. I find way cuter bags for much cheaper at other stores.


Fluffy77 profile image

Fluffy77 5 years ago from Enterprise, OR

These are all some of my most favorite stores any way, no way is that cheap or stingy. Just smart shopping, that's all. Voted up and useful.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Thanks for the vote and the comment!


Brinafr3sh profile image

Brinafr3sh 5 years ago from West Coast, United States

Thanks Jeannieinabottle, Forever 21 is a good one. Another good one is Rue 21, now there prices are really reasonable also. Vote up and useful.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I don't think I've ever seen a Rue 21. I will have to check it out. Thank you for the comment and the vote up.


nycgrl profile image

nycgrl 5 years ago from New York

Old Navy is awesome, I am obsessed with that store. 90% of my wardrobe is from there. I also love NY & Company, it is great for work clothes, and whenever I have a job interview that is where I head. Their coupons are ridiculous, there is no need to ever shop there and pay full price. And Payless now sells jewelry too which is super cute plus who can beat BOGO?

For jewelry I also like Mandee's. I think that store only exists here in the NY metro area though. As well as Rainbow and Strawberry also have cute and cheap accessories.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

Hmmm... I've never heard of Mandees, Rainbow, or Strawberry. I guess there are a lot of great stores in different locations. And you are right... why ever pay full price at NY & Co or Payless? There are always great sales and coupons. Thanks for the comment!


nycgrl profile image

nycgrl 5 years ago from New York

Yup, I think all three are only in the NYC metro area. But I know Mandee has a website http://www.mandee.com/

you can have their stuff shipped, if you like Forever 21 and H&M you will like Mandee. Rainbow also has a website: http://www.rainbowshops.com/index2.html though not sure if you can order from there.


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD Author

I will have to check out their sites. I do really love H&M, so I probably would like those stores. Hopefully my mall will get those stores soon. They've been adding new stores lately because the mall expanded. I will keep my fingers crossed! Thanks for the info!

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Jeannieinabottle profile image

    Jeannie InABottle (Jeannieinabottle)1,161 Followers
    440 Articles

    Jeannie has been writing for HubPages for over 5 years. She covers a wide variety of topics - anything from hamsters to office work.



    Click to Rate This Article
    working