Splurging On A Budget

Splurging On A Budget



It’s no surprise that at the beginning of a season, Fall to be exact, we suddenly become enticed with all the beautiful clothes that filter in our favorite stores and overcome with the unbearable desire to buy everything off the rack without even so much as glancing at the price tag. The moment when cashmere sweaters, satin and wool trousers, leather pants, suede boots, and faux fur coats start becoming a staple in our everyday wardrobe. That perfect season when layering becomes inevitable…and the time in which charges also happen to start multiplying in your bank account. Nevertheless, it’s when you find yourself transitioning from Taylor Swift’s sundresses or Rachel Zoe’s maxis to Audrey Hepburn’s Holly Golightly trench coat and Olivia Palermo’s polished NY legging and chic sweater style. A moment when splurging on a budget becomes a real issue.

In essence, an exciting and dangerous moment for your wallet…and definitely a moment when our inner self-control is tested. Confessions of a Shopaholic anyone?

Well, when you’re torn between filling that aching yearn to purchase that pair of Saint Laurent booties to share on Instagram versus staying on your budget and burning a hole through your YSL wallet (that took you forever to save for), we’ve got your back.

Here’s what you need to do Modern Alice!

Splurging On A Budget

If you want to splurge on an expensive item but try to live frugally, first consider these three questions to avoid buyer’s remorse. Impulse buys are the bane to all stylish women that take their image as serious as their careers while being mindful of their budget. However, there are always control measures we can take to mitigate pitfalls that most fashionistas fall prey to. Answering the following list will help lessen that all too familiar guilt when buying something we’ve saved up for specifically. Because let’s face it, splurging when on a budget lifestyle is hard and there is nothing like a guilty conscience to increase your stress levels when your bank account suddenly plummets to the abyss from overspending and ruthless overdraft fees.

Splurging On A Budget


    The creme de la creme question of whether or not splurging on an item is valid. For instance, if you are debating whether or not to buy a pair of beautiful black Stella McCartney cigarette trouser pants you’ve been eyeing for quite sometime, ask yourself how many times will you actually wear it? Does it go with everything in your closet? Can you wear it for work during the week then to a girls night out that weekend? You have to understand the value of the item. (Is it a For Now or a For Life kind of product?) If you still can’t decide, just divide the price by how many times you wear the item which then theoretically gives you the real amount you’re paying for it. Genius formula isn’t it? Well, Cost-Per-Wear is a real thing. (Never underestimate a woman’s immediate ability to channel her inner Archimedes to justify investing in a valuable piece of clothing or accessory). And if you need more convincing dear Modern Alice, look no further than this article from The Coveteur – Fashion Math: The Cost-Per-Wear Theory (picture below). ***NOTE: This formula is not a way to justify extravagant purchases. It’s a tool to see how often you will be wearing an expensive item to really validate the purchase. Some splurges make sense, other’s are truly pointless. 

Splurging On A Budget


    Often times we fall in love with a product that we justify the extreme want as a necessity that soon spirals into an unhealthy dose of covetousness. When you feel this coming on, pause and investigate the real reason for wanting to purchase whatever item it is you just “have-to-have.” Do you want to buy those $300 Prada glasses because they’re super cute that frames your face perfectly and well…they’re Pradas, or is it because they just collaborated with Google or SnapChat to record and livestream everything you see or perhaps the glasses are curing your astigmatism? Ask yourself if you truly have the appropriate disposable income to spend. Is buying that new Marc Jacobs watch for show worth it? Can you really afford to display a brand name and forego functionality and mileage in usability? Knowing the real purpose of the purchase really does help lessen buyer’s remorse. Because we can guarantee you, there is nothing worse than purchasing a new pair of Christian Louboutins or the hottest designer heels at the moment, only to go home and sulk because it set you back a good grand. Which ultimately brings me to the last question —

 Splurging On A Budget


    Let’s be perfectly clear, treating yourself to that Chloe or Celine purse you’ve saved up as a 30th birthday present is perfectly ok…even investing in a great tailored power pantsuit for an important board of director meetings is nothing to be frowned upon. However, impulsively buying or emotionally investing in a designer accessory or clothing item is never recommended. Take a moment to ask yourself, does buying a $1,000 pair of red bottoms really worth paying your rent late and not eating for a month? As women, we are emotional buyers by habit (we’re all a little guilty). It’s something innate within us and others are just better at controlling themselves. As the voice of reason in most households, that skill becomes a double edge sword. Women are the best at creating reasons as to why a certain action is justified and substituting one thing for something else. So really ask yourself (HONESTLY) if making a dent in your wallet or maxing out that credit card(s) is truly worth the purchase—and can you survive financially without consequence? After all, falling behind payments and affecting your credit score which, unfortunately, we’ve seen happen one too many times all because they wanted to splurge without being prepared, is never ok.

Splurging On A Budget

Reward as an incentive is encouraged, however, when splurging on a budget, it’s important to distance from engaging in emotional and impulsive buying behaviors. Splurging doesn’t mean having to sacrifice your financial wellbeing. Be prepared. Don’t let the lure of fancy things become the bane of your reasoning. Not all that glitters is gold so when you’re splurging on a budgeted lifestyle, be smart about it.

READ  Investment Pieces You Need


Although we have given three questions to help with the thought process prior to swiping that card for an article of clothing with a high price tag, here’s the real deal on splurging on a budget.


    Sales. Sales. Sales. Sometimes, the best time to buy that timeless camel trench coat is at the end of a season. Staples never go out of style. Plus, let’s face it, some designer products are still a splurge when they’ve been marked down.


    If you’re a frequent and loyal customer, it’s worth investing in joining a brand’s reward system. After all, you get free perks and great discounts. Once you’ve built up a reputation, you can exchange all that you’ve accumulated into something that helps towards purchasing that item attached with a hefty price tag.


    Do your research before splurging on any item (look to see how well a product is made, look into their return policies, check out reviews, warranties, etc.). If you’ve done your due diligence and can affirm that the purchase you’re about to make is logical, then go for it.

Sometimes, forgoing some luxuries is a great decision to make it easier to spend a little bit more in other areas. Instead of spending money on manis and pedis every two weeks, learn to give yourself a manicure and splurge on a great handbag or coat. The real trick is to understand what is most important to you and what isn’t. That’s the ultimate decision maker on balancing your budget and learning to save and when to spend. 

Mastered the art of when to splurge? Share your tips or post a photo of your favorite item you splurged on and tag us at #conqueringWonderland!

The Modern Alice

Join the movement: #ConqueringWonderland

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