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The Beauty Vault - Aug
The Beauty Vault - Aug

Stress Free Christmas Shopping - Tis the Season!

2 December, 2018 - 02:54pm by - First Lady | 10 Comments

Article by BR Natalie

I have a confession.  I started my Christmas shopping last year and was finished by May.  I even have presents for next year already in the Christmas cupboard.  Everyone is accounted for and I am spending no more!

But I wasn't always this organised.  I've done the 'I've just been paid, time to race around the mall three days before Christmas' thing.  Numerous times.  And boy oh boy does it suck the festivity out of the festive season. 

So the Beauty Crew have put their heads together and have amassed our vast shopping experience to bring you our top ten tips for stress free Christmas shopping!

1. Reccy.  Invest time in a bit of reconnaissance.  List everyone you want to buy for and brainstorm ideas. There's nothing like checking items off a list to limit stress and have a visual of your progress.

2. Budget.  Work out what you can afford to spend and stick to it.  This is part of the reason I like to shop through the year, I can't stand the huge dent in finances that last minute shopping can create.  

3. Beat the rush.  Ok with less than a month to go, this probably seems like a cow's opinion.  But think about it - the malls will be thrice as busy in three weeks time than they are right now.  Emptier malls are less stress.  They just are.

4. Be prepared.  If you're planning a huge shopping stint, be sure to make it as enjoyable as possible.  I like to keep treat sized Snickers in my pocket to keep The Husband amiable.  Wear comfortable shoes and if you're going to buy a lot, consider how you're going to lug the purchases around.  Halfway through a shopping mission, I deposit The Husband and boys somewhere fun, leave them with the accrued bags, and go off to do the last half myself.

5. Late night.  Make the most of late night shopping.  Call in the Nanna or your favourite babysitter, hit the mall and hey, why not combine it with a date night - catch a film or have a nice meal after.  Win-win. 

6. Online.  Avoid the crowds all together and shop around in the comfort of your own PJs.  Now you're probably pushing it for international delivery, but there are lots of amazing NZ sites with  reasonable pricing and amazing delivery time frames.

7. Vouchers.  Vouchers are not the same as giving someone cash.  Vouchers say "I know the sorts of things you like, I just don't know what you would like exactly."  Case in point.  The Husband once went into a local boutique store I love.  I unwrapped an Owl Toilet Roll Holder that Christmas.  Now had I opened an envelope containing a voucher for said store, The Husband would not be known as the man who gave me a toilet roll holder for Christmas, but the man who knows what store I like! 

8. Beware the money traps.  Let's be honest, chances are whatever you buy is going to end up on special (another win for vouchers!) but if you're going to buy presents beware of money traps.  Christmas themed chocolate - you could probably buy much yummier chocolate without a little Santa on it for less.  Items advertised as 'stocking fillers' or in a Christmas box - stand back and assess.  Genuine stocking filler, or tat with Christmas written on it?

9. Beware of DIY.  Everyone (well not everyone...) loves a homemade gift.  But don't be fooled into thinking homemade is cheaper, or easier.  Do you want to knit hubby a pair of 'special socks' or buy him a 5 pack of good-enough socks?  Weigh up the cost of materials, your time and not to mention crafter's stress, when the finished result looks like this Pinterester is a daytime drinker.  Is it worth it?

10.  Let it go.  It's Christmas.  It's the season of peace, love and joy.  Hey if you don't find the perfect gift for someone don't stress, that's what receipts are for! 

So there's our top ten tips for stress-free Christmas shopping.  Does Christmas shopping get you in a tizz or are you super organised?  Do you have any tips to add?

Comments

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12th December, 2018

Fantastic tips, I haven't done any shopping yet but only need to buy for my parents am looking at likely buying the gifts online as I really hate the Christmas rush of shoppers. After reading this I think I will take on board these suggestions and try to be more organised and have gifts purchased well in advance

6th December, 2018

So far I have only brought two gifts which were brought online but this year we have cut our list right down so for the first time in years,I am not feeling stressed out at all.I have a list on my mobile and I stick to that and I find this makes Christmas shopping so much easier and quicker.

4th December, 2018

This might sound selfish but for quite a few years I've done the thing, where I was pretty much emptying my bank account for weeks to buy 20+ people presents (I come from a large family) and that's with me being a sales and bargain shopper. So for the last couple of years I trimmed down my list and told people not to worry about getting me anything for Christmas and just bought a few people presents who were nearest and dearest, like my best friend, grandma and parents. And it's taken loads of stress off of me, plus it means I can then spend my money on sales on myself on things I need or wanted that are finally on sale. Plus, it takes the stress off other people trying to give me presents and let's face it, I shop for presents for me better than anyone I know!

Annie_loves_to_shop
6th December, 2018

I have done exactly the same thing as you this year,trimmed my list right down and boy does it feel great plus for the first time in I don't know how many years,we will actually have money to do things as a family over the Christmas break.

4th December, 2018

I am organised. I often buy little things in the boxing day sales the year before to put away. Then plan my main gift closer to time and snap it up the moment it is on special.

4th December, 2018

I like being organised and online shopping is the best way to get around it.

Annie_loves_to_shop
6th December, 2018

Gotta love online shopping :)

3rd December, 2018

Xmas clubs are a godsend this time of year especially when you have children or lots of presents to buy. It certainly takes the stress out of shopping.

3rd December, 2018

Great advice! it's hard to stick to a budget - for some reason unexpected things always crop up. I always buy and wrap a couple of extra boxes of biscuits and chocolates because an unexpected gift would always turn up from somewhere and need reciprocated.

MareeB
3rd December, 2018

I have also found buying a second beauty box is a Godsend to use for Christmas and birthday presents. My friends are always grateful for a beautiful product for a gift. I can never break up the first one though - it's mine!

tannygirl
4th December, 2018

That's a fantastic tip! Saves you the awkward "Oh thank you but I didn't get anything for you."

MareeB
4th December, 2018

Lol yep, I've been caught by that too many times - horrible situation!

SmileyPisces
4th December, 2018

Yip i totally agree Maree.. It’s good to be prepared with extra pressies ;D

2nd December, 2018

I really have to finish my shopping. Will definitely be waiting for the late night mall shopping to finish it off.

2nd December, 2018

I think i’m a little too eager with my X’mas shopping, as i end up buying and wrapping all my pressies in advance, then when i start to see the nicer things appearing in the stores weeks later.. i wish i had waited a bit longer hahaha =D

tannygirl
4th December, 2018

Happened to me too!

MareeB
4th December, 2018

That always happened to me when my children were small. I'd buy things on sales throughout the year then they'd ask for things that were just out at Christmas. It was a bid to live within a tight budget!

2nd December, 2018

I have a list with everyones names and the gift i want to buy for them. If I can I buy online, if not I know the exact places I need to go, the worst thing is trying to find a carpark and carpark rage lol. I haven't started yet but will next weekend probably. I don't stress over xmas, not worth it.

MareeB
9th December, 2018

Me too. You'd think the shops would be quieter with online shopping nowadays, but it doesn't feel like it! I went to New World on Thursday for their Christmas shopping day. It was packed. They had a sausage sizzle though - heaven!