Sale season, sale season, the best time of the year! Overwhelming? Absolutely. Capable of tricking you into believing you need things that you absolutely don’t? Of course! But isn’t that the magic of a dollar spent, not saved? Here we wait the whole of two months (LOL) for winter product to go on sale and then just in time for the season to rear its head, boom: there it is, 40, 50, 60% off and yours for the taking. Will you wear those white square toe flats? Probably not. But they were 60% off and then an additional 30% off with a coupon you received by digital mail, so, you know, you did it. You had to! I get it.
If I sound like an enabler, that’s no doubt because I am. Phase One of sale season is typically when I begin stock the F up on tissue turtlenecks (they’re $19!) and high-waist denim, sequins and sparkly-ass tights to anticipatorily (not a recognized word according to Merriam, I know, but this is my blog post, so it stays) pair with the vast trench coats and blazers and wool over-things that have gone on sale, but will indubitably be cheaper by this time next month, when I usually plan to scoop them up like a seagull selecting its feed. Not this year, though! This year, I watch as delightful dresses (!) and sassy pants and really great sweaters paradoxically remain expensive, but also get cheaper from the inside of an ivory tower, locked with a key marked “Pregnant” while I dress in the same blue neoprene pants and striped t-shirt day in and out, trying with the sum of my might to decorate my ears, my wrists, my head and my feet with the conviction of a Counting Crows fan at Jones Beach.
So, please, for my sake, get some shit! It would really mean a lot to me. And if you need a bit of inspiration, here’s a list of things acquired (and a couple of justifications for opting out, bla bla bla) by some of the mighty members of team Man Repeller.
Amelia, Head of Creative, also the unofficial worst lunch orderer on Mott Street
Item: Everlane’s cream oversize cable knit turtleneck; $130 before, $130 after (no sale)
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? I’ve been waiting to buy it since I got an email about it — and it’s not on sale — but something about the fact that everyone was in BUY BUY BUY mode made me go for it.
How will you wear it? I want to wear it with workout leggings, camp socks, hair in a ponytail with a ribbon, a blanket over me, Chet Baker playing (always is in the best version scenarios of myself) and a drawing pad in hand. In reality I will wear it while running around in leggings all day, maybe take a nap in it, wake up, realize I’m late for something that involves other people, pull on jeans and those black Ganni kitten heels then run out the door like C-YA! (Then run back in like oh shit I forgot a coat, hope I packed my keys.)
Edith, Photographer and resident employee who claims she has never experienced stress
Item: Drunk Elephant’s Sukari baby facial; $80 for a full bottle every other day of the year, $25 for a mini bottle on Cyber Monday
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? I didn’t cave on any Black Friday or Cyber Monday deals for myself (I bought something for my boyfriend but I cannot reveal what it was!) until I got an email about this promotion. I’ve been wanting to try this product for a year-ish but couldn’t commit to anything larger than a sample size, so I’m excited to give it a whirl in the name of self-improvement.
Elizabeth, Market Assistant and holder of blonde hair
Item: Two sets of Brooklinen classic core sheets; $258 pre-sale, $200 post-sale (spend over $200, get $50 off)
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? I needed new sheets and knew that would be my Black Friday purchase but had never noticed Brooklinen on sale before. Two sets of sheets for $200 is actually really good (right?).
Harling, Fashion Editor and lady of leisure in green satin mules
Item: Sea cotton ruffle shirt; $345 pre-sale, $172 post-sale
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? Impulse — induced by a sale promotion Moda Operandi was running. But I already had an existing site credit and persistent desire to look like Little Jane Birkin on the Prairie.
How will you wear it? I would like to pair it with raw denim and patent leather pilgrim loafers and maybe some pearl earrings. I hope I encounter plenty of doilies so I can ask people who wore it best.
Jasmin, Senior Account Strategist with a great (and real!) British accent
Item: A polka dot dress from H&M; $59.99 pre sale, $39.99 post-sale (and free shipping!)
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? Totally impulse! There were four hours until Black Friday ended and I was perusing MR in bed as I do and Harling Ross caught me with her curated picks.
How will you wear it? I’ve recently rekindled my love for dresses and boots so I’ll be wearing this with patent leather boots and a chunky sweater around my shoulders.
Erica, Managing Editor and conspiracy theorist
Item: 3×1 tabby striped flared jeans; $245 pre-sale, $149 post-sale
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting buy them? I’d been stalking them for a while and eventually talked myself out of it until I checked back a few weeks ago and saw there was only one pair left in my size. Then Harling’s Moda sale post happened. Still, I pushed it out of my mind, but couldn’t resist sneaking a peek on Black Friday because I was full and bored. The single pair was still there and further discounted so I bought them. Originally, I planned to buy winter boots for my Black Friday/Cyber Monday splurge but it’s 60 degrees in NY so I’m content with the last minute decision to treat myself to kick flares instead.
How do you plan to wear them? I’m most looking forward to pairing them with this Haim tee and my leopard-print smoking slippers WHILE listening to the Haim song referenced on the aforementioned tee. Oh, and sunglasses.
Ashley, Social Media Editor and big fan of New York pickles
Item: A white sweatshirt from Aritzia; $85 pre-sale, $42 post-sale
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? Impulse purchase
How will you wear it? A lot of my sweatshirts are getting ratty and I thought a crisp white one would look put together when I just wanted to be cozy. I haven’t lived anywhere cold in five years and I’m using that as an excuse to buy things a lot lately.
Louisiana, Photo Assistant and very generous giver of pineapple treats
Item: Ganni Ridgewood Coat; $315 pre-sale, $220 post-sale and then an additional 20% off for Black Friday, making it $176
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy it? I’ve been eyeing it for a while but was always putting in then removing it from my cart, questioning whether I really needed it. I didn’t want anything else so I just decided to go ahead and do it on Black Friday because FOMO and 20% off.
How you plan to wear it? I think I’m going to wear them with a pair of wide legged pants and a turtleneck sweater? We’ll see.
Also, I got some chewed up bubble gum slime from Etsy for $10 (down from $15), which was kind of an impulse purchase, but also not thanks to my late night slime video watching spirals. I can’t wait to make my own.
Patty, Head of Partnerships and model citizen
Were these impulse purchases or have you been waiting to buy them? An informed but quick decision on both. My friend invited me to take the boxing class with her on Sunday and sold it hard with the deal. I checked the expiration terms — agreeable — and had a hankering I would like boxing. Glad I went for it; I’m still sore three days later, but the good kind. Haley recommended silk pillowcases a long time ago and I’ve been slowly upgrading my bedding. The long weekend gave me time to consider what I wanted next, and it was silk pillowcases.
How do you plan to use the items in question? The silk pillowcases are for me dipping a toe into the deep end of bed-indulgence before potentially cannonballing in with a king mattress. I should also admit I bought a king-sized emerald green velvet and cotton bedspread last month…so maybe I’m more like waist-deep. I plan to use the boxing classes to balance out yoga, which has been my primary workout of choice for years. Lover and fighter, what can I say.
Myself, founder, enabler and questionable handler of money
Item: Manolo Blahnik leopard print mules, $695 pre-sale, $417 post sale PLUS an additional 30% off, so $292
Was it an impulse purchase or have you been waiting to buy them? The answer to your question, Leandra, is two-fold. While it was an impulse purchase in that I did not have my heart explicitly set on them to acquire on Cyber Monday, I have had my eye on some version of them for at least the past year and a half. You might remember a satin pair that I was gifted last holiday season. You might not. That’s okay. Anyway, when I noticed that I could now have them for $292 and that they would fit me regardless of what my waistline looked like, I decided to go for it.
How do you plan to wear them? Ugh, I’m so glad you asked because I’m wearing them right now and wore them yesterday and will probably wear them tomorrow! Yesterday I wore them with the neoprene pants I mentioned in this story’s intro (go back and read it if you missed it, it is truly stunning literature) and a size XL tartan plaid Polo button down. Today I’m wearing them with the same neoprene pants, and a red and blue striped t-shirt that is layered under a white henley. I also have two gold necklaces on and a pair of dramatic pearl earrings that are definitely fake. Tomorrow, I think I will wear them with gray Outdoor Voices leggings and a light blue and purple striped cashmere turtleneck. Thanks for letting me get that off my chest! And a merry Hanukkah to you.
And for those who opted out, says Kate, “I’m in the midst of both downsizing and trying to be more intentional with time and money, so I didn’t buy anything, but I’m not sure I’m pleased about it. Overall I’m happy I didn’t spend money but I think ultimately I just traded anxieties — usually I lose a couple hours scouring The Outnet or Yoox for pieces I love and J. Crew to restock basics, and then I remember more sites I want to check and have to go through the full sale to make sure I don’t miss something amazing. Instead, I got that time back but know there are things I’ll be buying in the next month that I could have saved money on. In general, though, I don’t wait for Black Friday/Cyber Monday to buy things. I use it to find deeply discounted luxury pieces I couldn’t have bought otherwise but love.”
From Nikki, our director of ad operations, “Some of the MR articles I love the most are the ones about slow fashion, capsule wardrobes, and just having less clothes. I’ve been shifting over to less shopping and buying higher quality/investment pieces when I do. I don’t think I’ll ever get down to 15 garments, but am trying to see how little I can own and what I really need.
“Specifically for Black Friday, I love REI’s #OptOutside campaign and started a new family tradition of being outdoors for the holiday. But overall, I was motivated from reading The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, my boyfriend moving into my studio apartment resulting in a loss of a closet, and just trying to be more green.”
Illustration by Allen Saalburg/Conde Nast via Getty Images; collaged by Emily Zirimis.