I've hit an age where I know that going to the mall and sifting through tons of clothes on a rack is not my cup of tea anymore. It actually brings me a lot of anxiety. I physically get warm and hate how much time I spend looking for the perfect thing. So, I've decided to help myself out by doing all my shopping online. LOVE Amazon Prime by the way. It was my saving grace during the late nights I was having with my daughter in the first month we had her home.
I've graduated from doing my own shopping.
I've started to outsource what I can and it's made my life more efficient and less stressful. Don't get me wrong. I love to save money but if the benefits outweigh the negatives than it's worth paying someone else to do the legwork for me. It's all about balance and knowing what you're willing to trade off.
But, there are still pros and cons to having someone else curate your selections for you. So check out my insider tips below and test it out for yourself.
Let's start with grocery.
I tested out Kroger Clicklist and Walmart Curbside Pickup.
1. Pickup is FREE at Walmart! But, Kroger has a service fee after the first three orders. Fees vary by location location and store so you'd have to review the details when looking up your store.
But the Free part.....Need I say more???
2. I was more prepared! Holy moly. I never go to the store with a list. Pretty much never.
When I do, sometimes I leave the list in my purse and go by memory. Talk about being lazy. But, doing my grocery shopping online forced me to manage my budget and better prepare. I'd talk to my husband about meal ideas and he would give me specifics to add to the list for dinners. I would look up recipes (I rarely ever do this..really never do this) and put the ingredients in my cart. I was pretty impressed with myself.
Being prepped alleviated the stress of just winging it.
3. I had to commit. I scheduled a time to pick up within a window that worked for me. And all I had to do was call when I was there. I couldn't late cancel or move it so it was an appointment I made time for. I was in control of the window scheduling for the most part so I knew I could set it when it made the most sense. There was no excuse making once that order was placed.
I had to show up.
4. Curbside pickup is the bees knees. You don't have to do anything but open the back hatch. No tip required and they do all the loading for you. I could pull up with my daughter still in the carseat and it takes no more than 10 minutes. This is the best part about this service. Plus, they are super nice.
Walmart sent me a holiday gift in the mail!
1. Still have to make time to put your list together. I found that I would drag this out. And if I didn't get the order in the night before, it would be another day before I could schedule a pickup. Walmart does offer Same Day Pickup but I was never ready in time to make it later that day. Be sure to check your store location details to see if this option is offered for you. It might vary by location and store. Kroger does not offer Same Day.
2. Too much stock. Admittedly, I waste food more than I like. I don't set the time aside to get to the meal prep I had intended to do so things go sour and to the trash they go. I plan to solve for this by being more realistic with my intentions and buying one new meal's worth of ingredients to work on. Once I can accomplish that then I can move on to more.
3. Over spend. This ties into #2. I buy more than I have time to eat up so I waste money.
4. They don't deliver. But, that doesn't bother me too much. I've tried delivery services like Green Bean Delivery and while the food is great, it is more on the higher end for cost and you don't have the wide selection of a grocer. Need toilet paper or dog food? You can get it all from a curbside pickup. Just add it to the list!
My top grocery selections
My selections so far are Kroger and Walmart. I decided to test the two and found Walmart has better prices, but Kroger has better meat and produce. So we mix the two up.
Now Clothing Shopping.
I've tested Fabletics, Wantable (fitness edit), and Trunk Club.
1. Someone else hand picks for you. You answer some profiling questions based on your likes and the rest is out of your hands. No sifting through the clothes rack for hours or worrying about lines. This applies to Wantable and Trunk Club only. Fabletics requires you to pick your selections.
2. No commitment fees. Be careful on this one. Fabletics locks you into a subscription so it's an automatic charge each month unless you cancel. They give you credits to do your own shopping. Wantable and Trunk Club only charge you a styling fee of ~$25 for each box and don't charge again until you request another or the next one is up for shipment. This is the only charge you get unless you decide to keep some items.
3. Pay for what you keep. The ones I have tested only charge you a styling fee of $25 upfront to send you the clothes and it's applied to your final order. The pro I see here is that you only have to pay for the items you keep.
4. You get to try the clothes on at home. You have around 5-days to return and walk around house with them on. Get a feel for them and see if it's something you can pair with some of your current closet pieces.
5. You can chat with your stylist directly. This part I love. I can tell them exactly what I like and don't, what fits best, and looks I'm trying to go for. They listen and I know a computer is not generating my picks each time.
6. Free shipping, free returns and free pickup. This is really a top notch service that I expect. Well, not the pickup part but I'm spoiled by it now. To pack up everything and make a trip to a UPS or Post Office is inconvenient for me. I love the pickup option for returns but you must be present to hand the box over, but you get to pick the time window.
1. Selections may not hit the mark. But, you can give it another try. I go by the three strikes rule. If it doesn't work for you then you can move one. Or test a few services at once to see which one nails it for you the first go around and then you can make a decision.
2. You have to remember to return on time. I need someone to do this for me! Ha! If you don't do this on time you could get hit with a huge fee and own a bunch of clothes you may not like.
3. Subscription services that lock you in. I want something that's flexible and easy to cancel when needed. Be sure to read the fine print before you buy in. I've found myself having to call into Fabletics to cancel when all I wanted was an easy option online to handle it for me. Wantable and Trunk Club are easier.
Don't let the service make this part harder on you.
There you have it! Would you hire personal shoppers to make your life easier? Share if you like and comment below if you have tested a service of your own. I'd love to hear it.