Ah, being a woman rocks. Especially this time of year, when the Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale rolls around. This morning, Angel cardholders received the email invitation to dive into the online sale early. Being a shopping ninja, I’ve learned some tips and tricks over the years to make the most out of this little-unmentionables bargain-a-thon.
1. The winter sale is better than the summer one. Why? Because the week after the in-store sale starts, it’s major closeout time with all clearance bras dropping to about $15 — even if the bra was a $125 Christmas special edition — and panties going for $2.99. In some stores, like Connecticut Avenue in D.C., all sleepwear is also half off the last marked price, so you’re getting the Pillowtalk Tank PJ, regular price $49.50, for $15. Prices also drop late in the online sale. Because the summer sale is shorter, doesn’t have as good of a selection, and is not as price-dropping as the winter one, get the things you want quickly in the summer one.
2. Shortly before the sale begins, Victoria’s Secret will start teasing loyalists with sale offers — hold fast and save up for the real deal. The only one that’s a better bargain than the SAS is the 7 for $26 panty sale that VS held in store and online this past weekend — they come out to $3.71 per pair, better than the $3.99 sale price.
3. When the online sale starts, pick up matching sets first and any neutrals you may want. While Victoria’s Secret has gorgeous colors and prints, these will be in plentiful supply both later in the online sale and in stores. And later in the sale, it’s more of a hunt to find matching bras and panties.
4. The sale is the time to try one of the new lines of bras that you hadn’t wanted to try at full price. But buy that sample piece early enough so that there are still others colors left if you’re smitten and want to go back to buy more.
5. The in-store sale, which begins nearly two weeks after the online sale begins, generally has better deals on beauty products (like 75 percent off fragrances) and on sleepwear. If there are prints you want in the Angel sleep T’s, though, the 2 for $39.50 deal online is comparable to the $19.99 markdown in stores.
6. Suss out over a couple of sales cycles which of your local stores has the best selection in your size during the SAS. This will make it easier to target the right store locations promptly when the in-store sale begins, hopefully on a weekday when it won’t be such a madhouse.
7. Always look at the color codes instead of the color names to see if two items from different lines will match. Something could be called “passion pink” in one line and “pink sugar” in another, yet the matching color codes would still reveal them to be the same shade.
8. Online, look through all the categories as some items are sometimes oddly divided within the categories. In store, look through bins and drawers neighboring your size as people often put things back in the wrong place.
9. If you have a Victoria’s Secret Angel card, you get access to the online sale a couple days early and access to the in-store sale at 7 a.m. You’ll also get reward certificates for what you spend, so you can always put SAS purchases on the card and pay off right away. I mean, right away: they accept card payments at the cash register.
10. Gentlemen, this sale is a great opportunity to pick up something special for your lady. One caution, though: The PINK line is geared toward teens and college students. When a friend hinted to her husband that the SAS was on, he brought her a bag full of PINK, including lime green cheekies that said “I’m Yours” or something like that across the butt. The grown-up stuff is sexier and doesn’t include cheeky sayings on the cheeks geared toward eyebrow-raising age groups.