Do you LOVE luxury goods… but HATE luxury prices? Here's how to buy luxury goods at discounted prices.
True luxury goods are amazing because they are the pinnacle of their industry.
The best materials, the finest craftsmanship – all in all, the best money can buy.
Maybe you're convinced you can't afford the finest quality… so you've never tried to find out if it's possible.
If that's you – STOP limiting yourself. Stop thinking the best is for other guys. Are you sure you can't afford even one small accessory made with real pride and skill?
With these ten tips, you can. And when you do, it'll change how people see you – and how you see yourself.
#1. Plan Your Purchase
Never buy anything big on a whim. Your favorite brands will almost certainly be discounted at some point in the year (keep reading for more on that).
Know what's a good price for the item you're looking for. There's nothing worse than thinking you've scored a bargain, only to find out you were fleeced. Do some window-shopping or look online and get a sense of the ballpark figure you should expect to pay.
Travel abroad can be a great time to score bargains if the exchange rate is on your side – but did you know you should ALWAYS pay in local currency if you get the choice? Paying by credit card in your own currency can cost you up to 10% extra in conversion fees.
#2. Buy Last Year's Model – Out Of Season
Go shopping for your summer clothes in fall… and your winter clothes in spring.
Why? Stores will have a bunch of old stock they want to get rid of to make way for next year's collection. There'll be discounted clothes all over the place. If you dress in classic men's style nobody will know or care if your clothes are last year's model… they may not even notice if they're last decade's.
#3. Buy “Damaged” or “Returned” Luxury Goods
Stores have to dispose of a lot of goods that are damaged in some barely-visible way or returned in slightly less than mint condition. Quality standards don't allow them to sell these goods at full price, but they're still perfectly fine to wear.
Reselling these products is a massive business.
To find damaged or returned goods stores near you, try searching for ‘off price mens clothing' on Google, or check out the clothing section of Amazon Warehouse, which sells lightly used goods for discounted prices.
#4. Buy Second Hand Luxury Goods
Thrift stores are your friend. Besides supporting a charity, thrift-store shopping is also good for the environment, and you know you're not exploiting anyone.
Here are a few tips to find the best discounted clothes:
- Visit thrift stores in upmarket neighborhoods.
- Make a shopping list so you know what you're looking for before you go in.
- Be prepared to visit the store several times and sometimes come away empty-handed.
- Ask in the store if there's a certain time and day of the week when they put new items out, and visit close to that time.
- Load up on sports jackets. Make sure they fit in the shoulders and aren't too short or tight anywhere, and you can get the rest tailored.
Ebay and Grailed.com are also great places to find discounted menswear, but be aware that if you buy online you're going to have a few wasted purchases that turn out not to suit you. One way to get around this is to try clothing on in a store, find something that fits and looks good on you, then look for it in the same size online.
#5. Try Lesser-Known Luxury Brands
With the most famous brands, you pay a premium for the name. Do some research and find out which lesser-known brands are similar to your favorites. For instance, Tudor watches have a very similar look to Rolex, but for a much lower price.
Visit high-end stores in your neighborhood and try things on. Learn what distinguishes the look and feel of luxury goods. That way, when you encounter a brand you don't know, you'll be able to tell whether you're getting good value.
Lesser-known brands often have better and more personalized customer service than bigger brands, so you can have a better experience overall at the same time as paying less for the same quality.
#6. Check Out Capsule Collections
Designers often put out ‘capsule collections' made up of a few staple pieces that showcase their best work or a collaboration with a certain brand. This enables them to mass manufacture these few pieces, which drives down prices so they’re more affordable.
You’ll still get the name and similar quality, but you’ll spend less.
Watch out, though – capsule collections are typically a limited run and won't be coming back into stock once they've sold out.
#7. Buy From Bridge Lines
A “bridge line” is another way of getting discounted designer clothes. It's a collaboration between a high-end designer and a lower-priced retailer. The designer creates a ‘line' of clothes that are manufactured more cheaply by the retailer, thus ‘bridging' the gap between the designer and those who can't afford their regular prices.
For instance, Marc Jacobs worked with Neiman Marcus to design a bridge line for Target.
Do be aware that while you're getting top-quality design in these bridge lines, you're also getting cheaper manufacture, and sometimes it shows.
#8. Buy Lower-Cost Versions Of Luxury Brands
When you visit a department store you'll see names that are similar to designer brands but not quite the same, like Marc by Marc Jacobs, or REDValentino. These are genuinely made by the same designer but at a lower price point.
The downside with these is that they can be lower on quality or lean more towards fashion rather than classic style, and sometimes they're limited to just accessories.
#9. ASK To Get A Special Discount
If you don't ask, you don't get. But before you try and haggle, learn about the profit margin on different menswear items.
If you're looking to buy something with a big profit margin, such as men's jewelry, the seller can afford to give you a discounted price and still make a profit.
If you try and haggle over your custom suit, you're likely to cause offense. Because of the cost of the skilled labor involved, custom suits have a much smaller profit margin and your tailor really can't afford to cut you a deal.
10. Shop Private Sales
Again – ASK in store if there are any private sales going on. Go to your favorite brands' websites and sign up for their email lists – I guarantee you'll see some discounted stuff you would have missed otherwise.
Flash sale sites such as Beyond the Rack, Gilt, and Shop It To Me are also great places to sign up to find discounted designer brands.
So here's your checklist of 10 tips to get discounted luxury goods:
- Plan Your Purchase
- Buy Last Year's Model – Off Season
- Buy “Damaged” or “Returned” Goods
- Buy Second Hand
- Try Lesser-Known Brands
- Check Out Capsule Collections
- Buy From Bridge Lines
- Buy Lower-Cost Versions Of Designer Brands
- ASK To Get It Discounted
- Shop Private Sales
Do yourself a favor and try these out… if you've never owned the best before, it's going to blow your mind.