Your Say: Do you feel compelled to spend and buy more at the year end?

by Paris B on · 37 comments

in Discussions,Musings,Shopping

year end shopping Your Say: Do you feel compelled to spend and buy more at the year end?

Where I live, we often get sales and promotions on all sorts of goods almost all year round. Barring luxury goods which go on sale only about twice a year, most everywhere else goes on sale very often. I often tell people that if they’re waiting to buy something, wait a few weeks and they might just get it at a discount. Having many religious and cultural festivals helps too. Great for the consumer! icon biggrin Your Say: Do you feel compelled to spend and buy more at the year end?

But I’ve also noticed that despite the almost year round sales and discounts, the shopping season intensifies somewhere around November all the way through January. Part of the reason is the year end school holidays, and then it’s Christmas and then Chinese New Year so it’s a solid 3 months of shopping, deals and discounts. On top of all this, I see Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals flying all over the place and bombarding my inbox (nevermind that I’m not even based in the USA) and this starts in October!

But this year, I got to wondering – do you feel compelled to shop more at the year end? Do you think you get better discounts? Or maybe for beauty shopping, it’s all the gift sets that get you whipping your wallet out?

Many brand people have shared with me that the year end, or Christmas time is when they make the most sales for beauty products and perfumes. I suppose the pretty packaging coupled with the value priced gift sets just makes a consumer go “What a great deal! I’ll have to buy it!”

Personally, I too used to wait for year end deals. Truly, if you are planning to buy something, you can’t go wrong waiting for a value buy set or gift set. It just makes economical sense.

However, over the years I’ve stopped being sucked into year end sales, best buys, value buys and gift sets. I was in fact, quite put out this year by the explosion of sale notices in my email inbox and the many “gift guides” that appear at around this time of year. No offence to anyone, but the endless push to buy! buy! buy! really turned me off. I have stopped putting together gift guides for this reason. I just don’t want to be part of this vicious cycle, even if I do feature products, but I feature them all year round so it’s no different at this time of year.

These days, instead of keeping all my shopping till the end of the year, I spread it out through the whole year. There are always gifts to buy and I do like gifting people I love, but I work out what I want to get ahead of time, and then when I see a good deal, pick it up and keep it. When I travel, I pick up items that I see and add it to the gift pile. This way, I spread out my spending, I don’t feel the pinch when I get my credit card at the end of the year, and I don’t get too suckered in to buying stuff I may not need, just because it’s on sale or there’s a good value buy gift set.

It helps of course that I am saving up for big ticket items so every sale that I skip means more money saved towards my goal. But it’s also a good way to keep control of limited funds. I guess you could say I’ve put my shopaholic days behind me. I never was one to start, but now I’m truly not one and that makes me very happy. I’m a big girl now icon biggrin Your Say: Do you feel compelled to spend and buy more at the year end?

Do you find yourself spending and shopping more at the year end? Do you feel compelled to shop during the sales everywhere?

When I didn’t have a financial goal, I did I freely admit. Year end sales are usually the best sales with the best discounts, and a great time to pick up clothes and beauty products. These days however, I spread out my shopping for gifts (Christmas and birthdays) and shop when I need to which means I save more, shop less and end up owning and gifting fewer, but better quality items icon smile Your Say: Do you feel compelled to spend and buy more at the year end?

Paris B

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[ 37 comments… read them below or join the discussion ]

Tine @ Beautyholics Anonymous December 3, 2013 at 8:45 am

I do, mainly to buy presents for Christmas. And the stupidest thing is I don’t buy them during massive sales like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, etc. I budget out the max amount to spend per person and then decide what to get from there. The thing about these big sales is that it really really sucks you in and you end up buying a lot of stuff you don’t need simply because they’re cheap.

I find it scary because for the first time ever, Tim went completely bonkers during the Black Friday sales. I’ve never seen him going from site to site, comparing prices, joining Hop Shop Go, getting on Paypal, etc. He usually buys his stuff online anyway but this time, he pulled out the big guns. I just stood behind him, munching my popcorn and watched him go crazy. :P


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 4:50 pm

Yeah I used to do the whole year end shopping thing but in my defence, online shopping only really heated up in the past few years and I only really got organized in the past few years too haha! I don’t deny the year end really sucks you in with all the gift packs and sales and pretty shiny things but I’ve learned to step back and away especially when it comes to clothes coz at the year end, it’s all fall/winter wear (I know, Malaysia has 2 seasons, wet and hot and yet they stock winter wear) and party clothes which I rarely wear on most days, so I usually wait for the off season sales and then shop ;)


liyeun December 3, 2013 at 8:47 am

Oh yes I admit I got sucked into the year end shopping habit especially when I started work. I got excited with all the extras (miniatures, travel sizes, pouches and the colourful packaging) and also, when I splurge, it was to reward myself (okay this is another excuse) during year end and get prepared for the new year! And the cycle goes on…… when spring collection comes……hahahaha


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm

That rush of knowing you have finally earned money to splurge is so exciting isn’t it? :D Fell for it hook line and sinker myself LOL! I tell myself I reward myself after a year, but then I realised I was rewarding myself at every opportunity. Not that smart after all eh? :P


Hanny Daforcena December 3, 2013 at 8:48 am

I would think that it’s because in the year end, kids are out of school and there’s also Xmas and CNY shopping. My family has always shopped during the end of the year, only because there’s massive sales during this time. ^_^ It has since become a habit for me. heh heh


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 4:56 pm

Yep, I see a lot of people doing a lot of shopping at the year end but I also think some of this shopping (Perhaps for non necessities) could be spread out through the year. My family used to do a big year end shop as well but then back in those days, we only got one big sale a year ;) These days, sales happen all the time so I’ve trained myself to spread out my shopping. Finances look healthier too :)


LeGeeque December 3, 2013 at 9:03 am

I don’t to be honest. Not because I have a very good sense of self control. More like being completely put off by everyone reporting sales here and there that I blank out and go nup, keeping my pennies to myself. Like you, I do buy throughout the year for friends as well. As for christmas presents, I’m extremely selective who I give to. A few people at work I’m close to, a few close friends and that’s it. Traditionally, we’ve never exchanged gifts as a family so that’s easy. I think there’re less than 10 people I need to shop for. It’s not much :)


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 4:57 pm

I only gift close friends too since Christmas isn’t a festival I celebrate :) I tell people I celebrate the commercial Christmas LOL But yeah, this year the whole retail push really got to me. I don’t usually get crabby about it, but this year, boom! :P


Lee Yi Ying December 3, 2013 at 9:13 am

I did spent a lot more during year end. The festive atmosphere makes me feel like buying myself present to compensate my hard-work throughout the year. The festive gift sets and seasonal sales make me feel like spending much worthy than normal.
Arghh… one more month to go… I can’t estimate how much I am going to spend!


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:01 pm

That’s what I used to tell myself too Yi Ying, that I was rewarding myself at the year end. But it is definitely a nice way to treat yourself after a year of hard work. I choose not to, preferring to recognise my milestones as I go along. Helps me spread out my finances more ;)


Shasha December 3, 2013 at 9:19 am

There’s always some kind of sale going on around KLCC..but the year end sale seems to put me off a lil. Gift boxes are normally sold with only 1 product that your really use/need and the rest are more like “fillers” to make the whole package look full.
End up you pay for items you dont even want in the first place..So i too only buy essential items i need throughout the year.
But i do like to window shop and look around :)


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:04 pm

I feel you Shasha! I have to admit I used to be all eager beaver going a bit mad at the year end but these couple of years have left me wanting. Maybe it’s all the many sales we’re getting all year round that’s numbing me to the whole sale thing. But you’re right, window shopping is fun at this time of year. Everything’s so pretty! But the crowds are also mad LOL


brianna December 3, 2013 at 9:54 am

I too felt offput this year by the big end of the year push. If I wasn’t going to buy it anyway, then sales and promotions aren’t going to convince me otherwise.


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:06 pm

Interesting that you felt that way too Brianna :) I”m glad to know I’m not the only one! It just felt so much more aggressive this year.


rudi December 3, 2013 at 10:10 am

I used to buy just because the packaging is so gorgeous and it’s great value – bought into all that hype. But really, as Shasha says, it’s only 1, maybe 2, items there that you really want.

Now i’m much more in control and do ask myself if i need the item before i buy. Doesnt stop me from looking and admiring all the frills n pretties though.

Also, keeping in mind the expenses of Chinese New Year round the corner helps rein in the urges to spend.


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:07 pm

Yep! Chinese New Year is creeping up so soon after Christmas, we’ll barely see the Christmas decor come down before all the red CNY ones go up again! Maybe that’s why I’m so put off this year. So much spending so close to each other >.<


Ting December 3, 2013 at 10:26 am

I dedicate this song to you, Paris.
“I’m a big, big girl, in a big, big world…” :D

For beauty and skincare, I tend to spend a lot twice a year: end of summer sales and then of course the christmas sales. Summer sales mainly from UK websites. Everything seem so shiny and “value added” it’s hard to resist!! :p


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:08 pm

LOL!! Yes yes I am a big big girl in a big big world :D I know how irresistable the online sales are! Gosh. It’s just so easy at a click of a button isn’t it? Thankfully I’m slowly weaning myself off keeping my eye on the prize. Big purchases mean less money left for frivolities!


Isabel December 3, 2013 at 10:31 am

I do spend a little more towards the end of the year but only on items that I use anyway such as skin care. I treat it as “stocking up” because the Christmas deals are usually the best. I just bought a set of my skin care products where paying the normal price for the moisturizer and serum got me a whole bunch of deluxe-sized sample of other items (which I do use but don’t treat as essential) plus AEON vouchers which have no expiry date. It’s the same as how I’d buy the same items whenever I pass through Changi as my skincare items are a lot cheaper there.

But I don’t go crazy and buy stuff that I don’t need or use just because it’s “sales”. Besides, I’m trying to stick as much as I can to the minimalistic lifestyle that was part of my resolution for this year – where the only big items I spend on are my travels. I think I’ve become a lot more prudent and wiser about spending money … if I may say so myself :P


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:10 pm

Oh yes, if it’s something you use anyway then value sets are the way to go! I do that all the time, snapping up items I want to restock as it were because it’s always good to get more for less right? :D Oh and collecting vouchers! Ahhh haha! I haven’t shopped in AEON forever but I remember their vouchers. Really good value!


Isabel December 7, 2013 at 11:04 am

I hardly ever shop at AEON either but my Origins putlet moved from their own stand alone boutique into AEON in Penang. I didn’t expect the vouchers so it was a lovely surprise – one made all the more pleasant by the fact that they do not have expiry dates unlike Parkson ones!


Isabel December 7, 2013 at 11:05 am

putlet!?!?!?!?!? Clearly, I meant “outlet”. Fat fingers be damned!


Paris B December 9, 2013 at 10:30 am

teehee putlet ;) But yes Aeon vouchers are really good. I’ve lost my membership though, don’t shop there enough anymore LOL


Yu Ming December 3, 2013 at 10:53 am

Everytime I see something I want to buy I hear my mum’s voice in my head asking “Do you really need this?” and “Is this really necessary?”. Then I end up not buying it! So I guess I have my mum to thank for not falling prey to all the tempting sale offers. Haha. I do accumulate gifts in advance as well. I plan for birthdays coming up in the next few months and get them whenever I see a good deal.

A lot of my money saved goes into travel or to give my niece and nephew a good time when they visit from Melbourne. I get more satisfaction this way :)


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:12 pm

Ah travel is the best thing to save for, really! I have a little bit put by all the time for my travel fund because as you said, it gives me loads of satisfaction too!


Victoria December 3, 2013 at 3:02 pm

I do not really splurge when it comes to the year end (although the items on offer look so tempting) but I do notice I spend a bit more than usual because somehow, some of my skin care and vitamins just seem to finished by this time of the year which requires me to replenish them. I look out for sales and good GWPs during these times to maximise the money spent on the items I want to purchase.

During the recent Sephora sales, I managed to get myself the Tarte blush in Natural Beauty which I have been lemming for so long because of the 20% discount. I would have loved to purchase more items from the sale but my tight budget prevented me from doing so. A good thing too as at least I would not end up over-spending :-)


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Haha your skincare and vitamins are in a conspiracy to make you spend! But just as well, I suppose since you can make the most of the year end sales and deals? ;) I stagger my purchases these days. I remember when I’d go mad at things like warehouse sales (gosh those were the days) and year end sales on anything from beauty to clothes and shoes! But now that sales happen almost all year round, I’m finding it easier to keep things in control. I didn’t even go to Sephora for their sale! LOL Actually I forgot and then I got busy so I didn’t have the time. Whew! ;) Hope you liked the Tarte blush? I was quite surprised at their pricing here. A bit high, if you ask me!


Sunny December 3, 2013 at 4:48 pm

We also have sales all year round in Taiwan. When I first landed here, I felt compelled to buy something during EVERY sale because there weren’t many. Things have changed now with all the webshop sales, and even the local beauty scene (this year for example, I got 2 F&F sale coupons and the same chain had a big anniversary sale). I am beginning to realize to “save” the money with the discount, I have to spend what I probably wasn’t going to spend, at least not right this moment. I find it easier to sit most sales out that way.


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:21 pm

I think this all year round sales thing must be an Asian thing LOL! I’ve heard the sales are really good in Taiwan too! You made a good point re: discount vouchers. It’s why I’m a bit nonplussed when I receive them because as you said, you have to spend before you can use and they are sneaky and make you spend to a certain price point! So I’m quite good these days and erm… just don’t look so I don’t get tempted ;)


Firn December 4, 2013 at 10:51 am

No, I don’t buy gift sets because I would only be eyeing one particular product in the set and it’s still cheaper to buy just precisely what I want.

I’m still dreaming of the day Shiseido will do a gift set (even travel-only exclusives are fine!) featuring their sunscreens… A girl can dream!


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:29 pm

You know, they did! Shiseido I mean. That’s when I bought a set that had the Shiseido Perfect UV, a sample of another sunscreen, a mask and some other samples. Such a good set but I haven’t seen it again :(


Hani Lutfi December 5, 2013 at 9:02 am

Of course! After a year of hard work, shopping only seems like the right thing to do. I usually deprive myself from shopping for months until the whole shopping mall goes on sale. Why buy things at full price when you know they’ll eventually end up on sale anyway? :)))


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:44 pm

Good on ya Hani :) I used to do the same but these days, I prefer spreading out my spending just in case a rainy day happens and I need spare cash. So easy to overspend these days with all the sales going on throughout the year!


Shay December 5, 2013 at 9:31 pm

This year I joined the black friday sale
It was awesome. I don’t need more stuff but its nice to get Rebecca Minkoff bag when its heavily discounted. I also got some clothes.

This time I introduced my colleagues to the delight of online shopping and turned them into monsters. Oops. :P


Paris B December 6, 2013 at 5:57 pm

If you’re already eyeing something then why not, Shay? :) I’m actually quite glad that many websites still don’t ship to me here in Malaysia. It keeps the temptation on a short leash :D As for introducing your colleagues to online shopping, look at it this way – good deals are meant to be shared (and everyone can go broke together haha!) :D


Jennifer December 7, 2013 at 10:38 am

There are great buys during festive and special occasions like Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day which greatly appeal to me. I have this habit of the fear of losing out (read as diplomatically correct term of “kiasu”), hence I usually stock up my skincare staples during sales or duty free shopping when I have the opportunity. After the first year of splurging on counter brands, I have learnt to control my purchases and spendings better, so I don’t succumb to the value buys and gift sets too much these days. Unless the promotion coincides with the time when I run out of a certain product or thanks to your enablement, only then I will part with the money :) Plus saving for the next big thing plays a big role in shopping restrain, which somehow I am good at…


Paris B December 9, 2013 at 10:18 am

I actually like how we have so many deals all year round. Helps us spread out our money and save more easily. After all, if we miss this sale we know there’s always the next one a month or two down the road! ;)


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