Summertime means many things to many people — pool parties, holidays, concerts and so on. Now, let’s get real: What we all really look forward to are the end-of-season sales.
As enticing as sales are, who among us hasn’t got carried away and bought something totally needless just because it was on an 80 per cent off or a dress that didn’t quite fit right because the bargain was just too good to ignore? Here are top five summer shopping tips to avoid overzealous purchasing.

Plan your attack
Be strategic, stick to your budget and only buy what you have been absolutely coveting. What makes a great deal is a classic and versatile piece. A lot of us go crazy when we see something on sale. We buy it, but we don’t know what to do with it. Instead, look for pieces that work year round.
Best bet: Avoid buyer’s remorse from impulse splurges. Look to see what’s in your closet, what is missing, and how you can maybe mix and match your clothes.

Go with a trusted friend 

Most of our worst shopping decisions have happened during sale time. Battle the urge of buying things you’re not sure about by taking a friend who you completely trust, and who won’t let you out of a store with that ill-fitting dress just because the price seemed irresistible to pass up. 
Fashion disaster: An ill-fitting dress (too tight or too loose) will add bulk, bring attention to problem areas, and destroy the best aspects of your body.

Hunt for items you’ll wear

This is a time to scoop up designer items that rarely go on sale like Manolo Blahnik pumps, or designer versions of items you know you use often such as bags, jeans, blouses and black pencil skirts. 
Smart tip: When all else fails, buy denim. A pair of dark denim jeans (or even coloured ones) is always the perfect piece for years.

Accessories are never enough

One of the easiest things to buy are accessories. You’re going to see a lot of great bags (in different colours), scarves, bracelets and necklaces. These pieces can be carried to the next season and can be mixed and matched with what you already have in your wardrobe. 
Worth noting: Go for an oversized bag in pleasant colours to liven up an otherwise dark wardrobe.

Arrive as the store opens or before closing

Most stores open early on the first day of sale and some devoted shoppers even camp outside for the best deals. If you’re choosing to shop in person, it’s worth getting there earlier than later. Also, stores replenish their stock an hour or two before closing — that way, the sale will look fresh for next day’s customers. 
Beat them to it: If you get there as sales assistants are tidying, you’ll not only get the best items first but also the perfect sizes.