Last week, The Cut wrote about the epic fail that is online returns. And we couldn’t agree more: the letdown of things not fitting or being just plain ugly when they arrive in the mail is a major bummer. As savvy online shoppers, we thought we’d share some of our most sacred online shopping tips with you, as to avoid this calamity:
1) Always Check Sizing Charts: What J. Crew considers a size 6 is actually Banana Republic‘s size 4. This video series from Nordstrom will ensure you never return another pair of shoes. (Don’t forget your calf size!)
2) Google Customer Reviews: Customers all over the nation write in every day about how products really fit and appear in real life. Google first.
3) Shop Free Shipping & Return Sites: We love Zappos, Shopbop, Piperlime and ShoeBuy because they offer free return shipping! Without it, you’re looking to spend around $7 or more for insured shipping back to the warehouse where the damned thing came from. (Check out our full list of free shipping sites).
4) Beware of Boutiques: Smaller online boutiques typically only offer an exchange and/or store credit. Read the fine print — you might be buying an item that is final sale, in which case, you’re doomed. Best to re-sell on eBay.
5) Resolve to be Surprised: Still not sure what to size to go with on a gotta-have-it dress? Order one size larger and have it tailored to fit. While you’re there get all of your measurements taken at once and save the details in a text file on your computer for when you need your next shopping fix.
6) Denim Don’t: Only purchase denim online if you know your fit with that particular designer. It’s a tough material to tailor without puckering or ruining the $200 design job you paid for.
Armed with this knowledge, you can now shop our sales and deals. While you’re there, check out the hottest wide calf boots of the season (February will be chilly) or peruse trendy handbags which are always (thankfully) one-size fits all!